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USWNT star Christen Press announces major decision to step away

USWNT, Christen Press

United States women’s national team star Christen Press has announced plans to briefly step away from soccer to focus on her mental health.

Press took to Instagram on Thursday to reveal that she will take a “couple of months” off from the sport, but plans to come back “stronger than ever.”

“I’ve been a professional player for 10 years,” Press shared on Instagram. “And I’m very proud of the fact that I’ve been available for nearly every professional match for both club and country. And yet, that has come with a focus, intensity, and prioritization that has left little room for much else.

“I’ve made the difficult decision to take a couple of months away from the game to focus on my mental health, spiritual growth, and processing grief. I’m sad to miss the upcoming games and seeing all of our wonderful fans. I believe I will come back stronger than ever. Thanks for all your support on my journey.”

The two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup winner was set to take part in the USWNT’s upcoming pair of international friendly matchups against Paraguay. The USWNT announced that Press elected to opt-out of joining the team for these key fixtures.

Press will also put her club career on pause. She had just recently joined new NWSL side Angel City FC following a one-season stint with the Women’s Super League side Manchester United. The veteran forward subsequently signed off on a two-year contract deal with the NWSL expansion club.

For now, the United States women’s national team will push ahead with its upcoming key contests against Paraguay. Not only will the side be without the star forward, but midfielders Julie Ertz and Samantha Mewis each will not feature in these fixtures due to injury.