SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF & AP) — A week after NFL free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick ended his National Anthem protest, soccer star Megan Rapinoe says she will respect a new U.S. Soccer Federation policy that says national team players “shall stand respectfully” during the anthem.
The policy was approved last month but came to light Saturday before the U.S. women’s national team lost to England in a SheBelieves Cup match. A Fox Soccer analyst posted an image of the rule on Twitter.
The policy comes after Rapinoe knelt during the anthem at a pair of national team matches last year.
“It is an honor to represent the USA and all that we stand for — to be able to pull on the red, white and blue to play a game that I love. I will respect the new bylaw the leadership at USSF has put forward. That said, I believe we should always value the use of our voice and platform to fight for equality of every kind,” Rapinoe said in a statement released Monday by her agent.
Citing sources close to Kaepernick, ESPN Senior Writer Adam Schefter reported on the quarterback’s decision to end his protest last week.
But Kaepernick’s decision has drawn a great deal of criticism since it came days before he opted out of the his contract with the San Francisco 49ers and became a free agent.