MEGAN RAPINOE fought back tears as she reflected on Canada’s defeat of the United States with Chelsea’s Jessie Fleming netting the winner.
And the USA superstar paid a touching tribute to team-mate Carli Lloyd following the surprise 1-0 result in the Olympics women’s football semis in Japan.
The goal was scored in the 74th minute of the clash at the Kashima Stadium after Tierna Davidson fouled Canada sub, Deanna Rose, in the penalty box.
And the result saw the four-time Gold medallists miss out on qualifying for the finals for the second successive Games.
The team, who have won four World Cups, were beaten by Sweden in the quarter-final stage of the 2016 Olympics in Rio in Brazil.
Rapinoe, 36, told NBC: “We never want to lose to Canada. I don’t think I’ve ever lost to Canada.
“There’s still a lot to compete for. That’s what I told the girls. It’s not the colour we want but there’s still a medal on the line. It sucks.
“Obviously not our best game. Not our best tournament. We didn’t have it today.
“Too many errors from us. I felt like the space was there for us. We just couldn’t get into it.”
Before the clash, the USA had not lost a football match to Canada in 20 years.
The team, managed by Vlatko Andonovski, have won five of their last six encounters against the Canadians going back to the London Olympics in August 2012.
We want to send everybody out on the happiest note and we weren’t able to do that today
The encounter between the sides at the 2012 Games saw the US seal a dramatic 4-3 win with Rapinoe on the scoresheet.
And the OL Reign star, who was part of the US team that won Gold at the London Olympics, was seen comforting Carli Lloyd, 39, following the loss to the Canadians in Tokyo.
When asked how she felt after what could be the pair’s last Olympics playing alongside each other Rapinoe added: “We’ve been in this a long time together.
“We are both closer to the end than the beginning and we’ve both shared moments on the field, not that many sad moments, but a few.
“It’s tough. She’s one of the greatest players to pull this jersey on.
“Who knows, it might not be her last Olympics, but it probably is.
“We want to send everybody out on the happiest note and we weren’t able to do that today.”
Canada, managed by former England Women’s number two Bev Priestman, will face Sweden in a duel for the Gold medal on Friday.
That clash will see Chelsea ace Fleming go up against her Blues team-mate and skipper Magda Eriksson at Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium.
And the USA will take on Australia in a battle for Bronze on Thursday at the Kashima Stadium.
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