Relentless and ready for the world: US Women’s National Team’s Crystal Dunn arrives in the Twin Cities

MSR News Online/MSR News Online Crystal Dunn

This post comes from the Two Haute Mamas podcast, a peek into the lives, experiences and perspectives of Sheletta Brundidge and Lindy Vincent, two fabulously fun, engaging and opinionated friends. 

The Champ is here!

The US Women’s National Team continues its World Cup Championship victory tour against Portugal on September 3 at Allianz Field in St. Paul.

Crystal Dunn is part of that 2019 championship team and looks forward to playing in this exhibition game in the Twin Cities.

Called ruthless by opposing teams and versatile by sports critics, Dunn has mastered several spots on the soccer field including forward, midfielder and defender before settling into her role as a wing-back for the USWNT.

Dunn currently plays for the North Carolina Courage in Cary. Prior to her arrival, she spent some time hanging out with me and Lindy on the Two Haute Mamas podcast to chat about her remarkable journey to becoming a superstar soccer player, being a newlywed and her fight for equal pay.

Lindy and I were surprised to learn that Dunn, as great of a player as she is on the soccer field, missed out on the chance to play on the 2015 team.

But she says that didn’t derail her plans to eventually become a world champion. “The World Cup was in 2015 so I missed out. I was sad and bummed I missed out on something great. But I put my head down and got into my zone and became a better person and a better player,” Dunn said

Those four years of training and persistence went by fast.Dunn eventually got the call to participate in the 2019 World Cup.

The 27-year-old newlywed says being a professional soccer player wasn’t her dream as a kid. “I think my journey is different. When I speak a lot of my colleagues they say they always knew they were going to play soccer. For me, I chose soccer because it was fun and I wanted to be around my friends and be out on the field.”

Originally from Long Island, NY, Dunn credits her parents for her strong work ethic.

“I watched my parents who are both hard-working people,” said Dunn. “Watching them and how they were able to turn their lives around to provide a better life showed me the power of hard work. It instilled in me that you don’t have to be a product of your environment. I watched my parents and saw that if I work hard on something I can change my life.”

And soccer has indeed changed her life. “When I look back on my life I see that soccer paid for my education, I met my husband through this game and I met so many great friends,” she said.

Dunn is using soccer as a platform in the fight for equal pay for women. For her, it isn’t just about getting equal pay for soccer players, but about women from all walks of life. 

“Taking a stand is important. For those who don’t have a voice, it’s up to us who do have a voice to stand up and encourage others to do so,” she said. “It was important for us to win the World Cup because our platform got bigger. It’s important for us to keep pushing and not giving in to a simple no. We are not going to settle for discrimination.”

To find out how she’s handling marriage with her whirlwind schedule and what her post-soccer plans are, check out the entire conversation on the Two Haute Mamas Podcast at https://twohautemamas.com/

About Sheletta Brundidge

Sheletta Brundidge is contributing writer at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder. She can be reached at shelettab@gmail.com. You can also catch her as co-host of the Two Haute Mamas podcast online at WCCO Radio. You can listen to the show on her website at twohautemamas.com.

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