Was Carli Lloyd’s toned-down celebration a response to criticism of US jubilation?

There was backlash ranging from Canadian broadcasters to pundits and social media users following the United States’ victory over Thailand last week.

It wasn’t due to the play on the field, but rather the way Team USA players continued celebrating each goal scored in a 13-0 rout. The score was the most lopsided - male or female - in FIFA World Cup history.

Team USA players, such as Megan Rapinoe and Alex Morgan, defended the celebrations in the days following that victory.

But what about when the U.S. played its next match of the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France?

We got our answer after Carli Lloyd, a veteran of Team USA, scored the first goal of a 3-0 victory over Chile just 11 minutes into the match.

Lloyd’s celebration was very low key as she moved toward the touchline and put her hands together as if she were giving a golf clap to the U.S. reserves.

Lloyd did, however, continue celebrating after that move and did so with the bench players.

Team USA made seven changes to the starting lineup it had against Thailand for Sunday’s match with Chile. Lloyd, who scored a hat trick to defeat Japan for the World Cup title in 2015, scored two goals. It was the sixth straight Women’s World Cup match Lloyd has scored in, which is a record.

The two-time FIFA World Player of the Year made a case for more playing time as she started as a center forward, before dropping into a midfield role in the second half. She did miss a penalty in the second half. The two goals she did score give her 10 career in the WWC for the USWNT.

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Sports reporter Jason has covered high school, college and pro sports since joining the Bradenton Herald in 2010. He’s won Florida Press Club awards for sports feature and column writing. He currently writes college and pro sports stories for the McClatchy East Region real-time team.