In the Game with Alex Morgan

By Samara Mackereth

Jun 27, 2013 11:00am

Whether kicking game winning goals for the Portland Thorns of the National Women’s Soccer League, strutting down a fashion runway or penning inspirational children’s books, Alex Morgan does it all with a smile on her face. There is never a dull moment for the Olympic gold medalist, and that is the way she likes it.

From a young age, Morgan has always shown the ability to excel. A multi-sport athlete who never let education fall by the wayside, she graduated early from the University of California Berkeley while competing on the U.S. National Soccer Team.

“I thought that I could graduate early and if I could make the World Cup team it would work out perfectly. But it ended up working out better than I imagined,” Morgan said.

Her performance in the World Cup won her the 2011 FIFA World Player of the Year and a place in the record books as the first player ever to have both a goal and an assist in a World Cup Final.

Despite her many talents, Morgan always knew that she wanted pursue soccer and set herself a lofty goal.

“When I was 8 years old I knew that I wanted to be an Olympian, and then the ’99 World Cup rolls around and we had Kristine Lilly and Mia Hamm and all of the girls winning. At that point I wanted to be them, I wanted to be in their shoes,” she said.

Now 23, Morgan is giving back to other young girls who dream of becoming professional athletes with her book “The Kicks: Saving the Team.” It is the first in a projected series of three she hopes will inspire young girls to follow their dreams.

“It doesn’t matter what your dream is,” Morgan said. “They should just feel like they can do anything because the sky is the limit.”

Check out more from In the Game at ESPN.

As a shining example for young girls everywhere, Morgan embodies this message of hope.

“They can achieve whatever dreams they have if they set their minds to it and believe in themselves and have the confidence in themselves,” she said.

And what is her secret to feeling confident and empowered before a game? Music.

“Fun, pop music. Katy Perry, just upbeat music that you can dance to. Old school rap, whatever it is, anything that gets us on our feet, gets the nerves out and helps us just have fun,” she said. “Because at the end of the day that’s what it’s about for me I think my teammates as well, enjoying the game, having fun and just loving the moment we are in.”

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Fred Lee

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