SOCCER TO THE BONE
In Delran, New Jersey, a small town with a blue collar work ethic, Carli Lloyd lived one block from the field. “I played a ton of pickup games – there were a lot of Turkish guys, all ages, and we’d just play for hours. You could play freely and try different things, not having a coach breathing down your neck. I loved it.” And when there wasn’t a game, she’d head out to the field alone, lugging a bag of collected balls. “I was kind of a ball scavenger. I’d go find them in the woods after weekend tournaments.” She’d shoot on goal, go fetch the balls, and start again.
While Lloyd was always a soccer junkie – the kid who always polished her cleats, the one at the field playing for hours, she says she still “had no idea what it took” to get to the next level. Post-college, Lloyd began developing the intense work ethic and commitment to fitness she’s now known for. She remembers the first time she was told to run for fifteen minutes, “I was like, uh? Fifteen minutes straight? I’m thinking, ‘Oh good lord.’ I’d get a side cramp, I’d be totally gassed. Now I go on 90 minute runs no problem. Before, I couldn’t do 15 minutes.”
Her coach would tell her stories of the greats – how Mohammad Ali would train on Christmas morning because he knew no one else was training on Christmas morning, how Bruce Lee would do 10,000 sits up a day. Lloyd took that to heart: “If it’s a holiday, if I am training on Christmas Day, most likely nobody else is – and that gives me the edge. If I’m supposed to run for 20 minutes and I get back and it’s only been 19:34, I’m going to jog in a circle for 26 more seconds. I’m never going to cut it short. I know what it takes now.”
Carli Lloyd has known her fiancé Brian since she was a kid. “I lived on one side of the field, Carli lived on the other,” says Brian. “I’d always see her by herself kicking balls at the field.” While he is primarily a golfer, he played soccer in high school and continues to train with her to this day.
Full name is Carli Anne Lloyd … Engaged to be married to Brian Hollins late in 2016 … Earned a bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science and Sport Studies at Rutgers University … At the start of 2016, she was honored by the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association as its athlete of the year … Was named the Women’s Sports Foundation Athlete of the Year for 2015 … Was also the March of Dimes Foundation Woman of the Year … In 2013, she was named to the Rutgers University Hall of Distinguished Alumni … Was a 2012 Glamour Women of the Year … When she has time off, she likes to go for manicure/pedicures, shop and spend time with her fiancé Brian … Favorite soccer players are Iniesta, Lionel Messi and Steven Gerrard, and her favorite club teams are Barcelona and Liverpool … Lists biggest influence on her soccer career as personal trainer and mentor James Galanis … Had a flavor named after her at a local ice cream shop: “Carli’s Cake Batter Cookie Dough Kick” … When in Philly, she always has to make a stop at her favorite pizza place - Pietro's coal oven pizzeria ... Her musical favorite artists are Ellie Goulding, Adele, Beyonce and Coldplay … Won the 2008 Native Son Award from the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association, only the second woman to earn the award since it was first awarded in 1991 (other winners include Mike Piazza, Eddie George and Rich Gannon) … Is a big Philadelphia sports fan … Enjoys watching PGA golf and the majors … She supports the Stand Up to Cancer organization … Has a memoir coming out in the fall of 2016 … Has a website at www.carlilloyd.com, her twitter is @carlilloyd, her Instagram is carlilloyd and she has a Facebook fan page.
The WNT’s all-time leading scoring midfielder (heading into 2016, 63 of her 79 goals came while playing center midfield), Lloyd has scored many crucial goals for the USA during her career, most notably at the 2008 Olympics when she scored the game-winning in the gold medal match victory vs. Brazil, at the 2012 London Olympics when she scored twice in the 2-1 gold medal victory vs. Japan, in the 2014 Women’s World Cup Qualifying tournament when she scored five goals with four assists in five matches, and in the 2015 Women’s World Cup, when she scored six goals, all in the knockout round games, and a famous hat trick in the championship game … Named team captain along with Becky Sauerbrunn for 2015 … 2015: Had one of the most spectacular years in U.S. WNT history, captaining the USA in the World Cup Final as the Americans defeated Japan 5-2 behind her hat trick achieved in the first 16 minutes … Played every minute of all seven matches in Canada … She was named the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year, the third American so honored … Was also named U.S. Soccer Female Player of the Year (for the second time), the CONCACAF Female Player of the Year and to the CONCACAF Best XI … Her legendary strike from midfield that capped her hat trick was voted Goal of the Tournament, was up for FIFA Goal of the Year and was named the CONCACAF Goal of the Year … Won the Golden Ball as the top player in the 2015 Women's World Cup and rocked the soccer world when she scored the fastest goal in World Cup Final history, giving the USA at 1-0 lead just two minutes and 34 seconds into the match … She also became the first female player to score a hat trick in a World Cup Final, as the USA was up 4-0 in just a 16-minute span … Lloyd also won the Silver Boot as the second leading scorer at the Women's World Cup, where her knock-out round performance was the stuff of legend as she scored in all four elimination games – against Colombia on a PK in the Round of 16, against China PR in the quarterfinal on a header and against Germany on a clutch PK in the semifinal -- and ended the tournament with six goals total … She also assisted on the clinching goal in the 2-0 semifinal victory against Germany, setting up Kelley O'Hara … Became the first WNT player to score in four straight games in a World Cup when she scored the first goal of her hat trick in the championship game … Became the third U.S. WNT player to score a hat trick in WWC play, joining Michelle Akers and Carin Jennings … Was named to the FIFA Women’s World Cup All-Star Team … Started playing more as a withdrawn forward in the Round of 16 match against Colombia and scored 16 goals in the final 13 games of the year, six in the World Cup and 10 on the Victory Tour to lead the team … Was far and away the leader in goals for the USA in 2015 with 18, a career high for her in a calendar year and breaking her own record of 15 scored in 2012 … She also had five assists was second on the team in minutes played with 2,073 having started 24 matches and played in all 26, just one of two players to play in every game … She opened her scoring account in March in the opening game of the Algarve Cup in Portugal when brought the USA from behind with two goals to win 2-1 against Norway to kick-start the run to the USA 10th Algarve Cup title ... Captain the team in 12 matches in 2015 ... Earned her 200th cap against China PR in the quarterfinal on June 26, 2015, becoming the ninth player to do so ... Scored in her 200th cap, becoming the third WNT player to do so … Had three hat tricks in 2015, upping her career total to six … Moved into sixth place on the USA’s all-time goal scoring list, passing Cindy Parlow … 2014: Had arguably her most productive all-around year to date with the National Team, starting all 23 games in which she appeared, tying her career high with 15 goals scored while adding eight assists and led the team in both goals and assists … Tied for the team lead in games played and led the USA in starts … Led the USA in minutes played and the only player to play more than 2,000 minutes (2,043) … Captained the team on two occasions against France (6/19) and Guatemala (10/17) … Became the ninth player in WNT history to hit the 50-goal milestone when she scored a brace against China PR (4/10) … The only player to play every minute of all five games at the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship, she scored five goals with four assists to help the USA book its ticket to the 2015 Women’s World Cup and was named MVP of the tournament … Had three two-goal games, vs. Russia, China PR and Mexico … Scored a hat trick at the end of the year vs. Argentina at the International Tournament of Brasilia … In a span of seven consecutive games at the end of the year, she scored 10 goals while scoring at least one in each game … 2013: Played 768 minutes in 11 games while starting nine and scored three goals with one assist … Scored against the Korea Republic, Australia and New Zealand … With her 45th and 46th career goals, she tied and then passed Julie Foudy to become the top scorer in U.S. WNT history for a player that has played exclusively in the midfield … 2012: Played in all 32 matches for the USA, one of just three players to do so, while starting 27 … She was once again a hero in an Olympic gold medal game, scoring both goals in the USA’s 2-1 victory against Japan in front of more than 80,000 fans at Wembley Stadium … Became the only player – male or female – in the history of the Olympics to score game-winning goals in two consecutive Olympic gold medal games … Her 2,441 minutes played were the second-most in a year during her career … Her 15 goals were a career high for a calendar year and made her the third-leading scorer on the U.S. team … Did not start the first match of the Olympics against France, but came on early for an injured Shannon Boxx and scored the winning goal … She then started the remaining five games while scoring four total goals, good for second on the team in the Olympics behind Abby Wambach’s five goals … She never left the field again after coming into the France match in the 16th minute … Scored a slew of goals against top teams and registered her first career hat trick in a 3-0 victory against Mexico during Olympic qualifying to seal first place in the group for the USA … Started all five games of the Olympic Qualifying tournament in Vancouver, Canada, scoring six goals (tied for tops on the team) with one assist … Also scored in the 3-0 semifinal victory against Costa Rica that sent the USA to the Olympics … On the short list for the 2012 FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year and finished sixth in the voting … 2011: Tied for the team lead in games played with 19, starting them all, and led the USA in minutes played with 1,654 … Played all but 16 minutes of the Women’s World Cup in Germany, scoring one goal with one assist … The first World Cup goal of her career came against Colombia in group play on a shot from distance ... Tied for second on the team in scoring with six goals and three assists on the year … Scored three goals at the Algarve Cup, against Norway, Finland and then Iceland in the championship game … Also scored against Sweden and China at the Four Nations Tournament … 2010: Suffered a broken ankle early in the WPS season but still played in 15 matches for the USA, starting 14 … She scored three goals with five assists and earned her 100th career cap in the final game of the year against Italy during the second leg of the FIFA Women’s World Cup playoff series … Scored against Germany in the Algarve Cup final … Started all five games at the CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying Tournament, scoring two goals with five assists … Played every minute of both legs of the playoff series against Italy … 2009: Played in six games for the USA, starting five … 2008: Named the U.S. Soccer Female Athlete of the Year … Was a fixture in the midfield for the USA, starting all 35 games in which she played, tying for the team lead in matches started during the year … Set a U.S. record for most starts in a year at 35 … Finished third on the team in minutes played with 2,781 … Had her best scoring year for the WNT, finding the net nine times with nine assists … Scored two huge goals during the 2008 Olympics, bagging the winner in the crucial 1-0 victory against Japan in group play and then scored one of the most important goals in U.S. history in the Olympic gold medal game as she netted the game-winner in the overtime victory against Brazil … Scored against Canada in the championship game of Olympic qualifying on a dramatic free kick in overtime … Scored the winning goal in a 3-2 stoppage time victory against Australia on April 27, in Cary, N.C. … Scored in both of the USA’s matches in Scandinavia, against Norway and Sweden … 2007: Established herself in a starting role in midfield … After scoring once in her first 24 matches, she scored four goals – one in each game – at the 2007 Algarve Cup, earning tournament top scorer and MVP honors … Scored her sixth career goal on a diving header in the USA’s 1-0 victory against Norway on July 14 and then registered her first two-goal game in a 6-1 win against New Zealand on Aug. 12, including one blast from 38 yards … Started 13 of the 23 matches she played … Played in her first Women’s World Cup tournament, starting three (all in the first round) of the five games she played … Had nine goals and three assists to finish third on the team in scoring … 2006: Earned her third career cap at the 2006 Four Nations Tournament … Earned the first two starts of her career at the 2006 Algarve Cup, gaining a place in the starting 11 against Denmark and in the championship game against Germany … Played in 19 games, starting 13, and scored one goal, that against Chinese Taipei … 2005: Earned her first two caps in 2005, playing against Ukraine and Mexico, a game in which she broke her wrist … 2004: Trained with the U.S. team during the 2004 Olympic Residency Training Camp … Youth National Teams: A member of four U-21 Nordic Cup championships teams, winning titles in 2002 in Finland, in Denmark in 2003, in Iceland in 2004 and in Sweden in 2005 … Scored three times in the 2005 Nordic Cup, including two against Denmark and one in the championship against Norway … Had two goals and an assist, starting every match, at the 2004 Nordic Cup ... Assisted on the lone goal in the USA’s 1-0 win against Denmark in the first round of the 2003 Nordic Cup ... First Appearance: July 10, 2005, vs. Ukraine ... First Goal: Oct. 1, 2006, vs. Chinese Taipei.
2015: Was named to the NWSL Second XI after scoring four goals in 12 matches over 1,080 minutes for the Dash ... Finished third in the league in shots with 56 despite playing just 12 games … Finished the season as the all-time leading in shots in NWSL history with 170 and fifth in shots on goal with 70 and sixth in goals with 20 … 2014: Traded to the Houston Dash on Oct. 16 in exchange for midfielder Becky Edwards, defender Whitney Engen, and a third round pick in the 2016 NWSL College Draft … Started all 19 games in which she played for the WNY Flash during the 2014 season … Scored eight goals and had five assists … Named to the NWSL Best XI Second Team … Was third in the league in shots with 61 and sixth in shots on goal with 33 … Led the league in fouls committed with 51 … 2013: Allocated to the Western New York Flash for the 2013 NWSL season and played 1,296 minutes in 15 matches, starting 14 … Missed a few games at the start of the season due to injury, but returned to have an excellent year, scoring eight regular season goals, tied for third in the league with four other players … Scored both goals in the 2-0 playoff semifinal win against Sky Blue FC that sent Western NY to the first NWSL championship game … Finished fifth in the league in shots (53) … 2011: Signed with the Atlanta Beat for the 2011 WPS season, playing 800 minutes in 10 games while starting eight … Scored two goals for the Beat … 2010: Signed with her home state and WPS champion Sky Blue FC during the offseason … Played in just five games for Sky Blue in 2010 after suffering a broken ankle early in the season … Was out almost the entire season but returned to play the last two matches and logged just 200 minutes of action in the second season of WPS … 2009: Allocated to the Chicago Red Stars for the inaugural WPS season in 2009 … Played in 16 games for the Red Stars, starting 14, and scored two goals with one assist … Missed several games during the middle of the season after suffering a deep gash across her knee during national team training … Youth Club: Played for the Medford Strikers club team, winning the 1997 and 1998 State Cups ... Helped lead PDA Galaxy to the 2001 U-23 national title and earned MVP honors … Also trained with the WUSA’s Philadelphia Charge during the summer of 2003.