Chat with Abby Wambach
Moderator (3:59 PM)
Abby Wambach (4:00 PM)
Hey everybody, I'm happy to be online with you guys today -- hopefully you'll all be watching the game on Sunday on ESPN2 at 4 p.m. ET. Let's take those questions! ...
Joanne, Augusta WV
Big game on Sunday -- how are you're nerves heading into the Founders Cup III? Good Luck to you and the Freedom. BTW, you are a great role modle for young girls. Never turning your back on a fan/child is one of the many GREAT things you do. Congrats!
Abby Wambach (4:02 PM)
Thanks for your support Joanne. I think nerves are a dircect corellation to preparation. If one is fully prepared, you shouldn't be too nervous. I'm just very excited to be a part of this huge event. Nervousness doesn't really come into play with me -- I can't speak for my teammates -- but that's just how I am.
Jamie (Washington, DC)
Congratulations to you and the Freedom for making it to the Founders Cup Final!! I think you are the most talented and aggressive player in the WUSA. My question is this ... What do you do to mentally prepare for a big game?
Abby Wambach (4:03 PM)
Jamie, I do different things depending on the opponent and how my body feels. But I really, coming into every game, I'm just trying to mentally prepare myself to leave it all on the field. Four hours before the game I eat a good meal -- nothing too heavy. I hydrate all day long and I do a lot of mental imagery, I picuture myself playing the game, I see myself doing all those things that my team is counting on me to do.
Dawnie (Syracuse, NY)
Firstly I'd like to say that you're a truly amazing player and I wish you luck at the Founders Cup! We always see you dancin' around during warm ups -- what music pumps you up? What do you listen to when you're not on the field?
Abby Wambach (4:05 PM)
Yes, before the games I'm kinda a goofball. I'm always dancin', singing, anything to calm people down. I guess I'm really trying to keep myself calm too a little bit. Off the field -- I like alternative music, mellow music ... I pretty much like all music. It has to mean something, though, not just mainstream pop stuff, I'm not into that.
Abby Wambach (4:05 PM)
I'm listening to the new Dashboard Confessional cd right now.
Angela (Vienna, VA)
As a fellow Rochester, NY native, I have to ask, what's your preference -- Tops or Wegmans?
Abby Wambach (4:07 PM)
That's not even a questions -- Wegmans for sure. Tops is inferior!
Sara: Jacksonville, Fla
Abby!!!!! The Freedom have shown some inconsisencey during the season, but after every misstep you guys make a comeback. What issues has the team solved and what does the team still have to work for Sunday?
Abby Wambach (4:09 PM)
Good question Sara, in every progression of a season, teams will go through peaks and valleys. What's separates a good team from a great team is less ups and downs -- more consistency. At the same time, yes we did have a rough spot in the middle of the season, we couldn't score a point to save our lives there, for awhile ... and here we are. We really bounced back and that's a tribute to our hard work and our potential. This is what we can do when we're on. I think our true colors will show on Sunday.
Lydie (Houston, TX)
Abby, who is the one famous non-soccer person you've ever met or want to meet? TEAR 'EM APART ABBY!!!
Abby Wambach (4:10 PM)
Angelina Jollie. She is one that I would love to meet.
Jane (Louisville, KY)
Please rank the following in order of what you would take if you were going to be stuck on a deserted island... *a soccer ball, a friend, or your favorite book (what is your favorite book, anyway?) Thank you.
Abby Wambach (4:12 PM)
Jane, a friend would definitely be number one, a soccer ball number two, a book number three -- but number two and three are a toss up. My favorite book is the Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield.
How much do college/national rivalries play into WUSA matches?
Abby Wambach (4:13 PM)
Dave, I think that once everybody crosses over the border into the professional realm we all kind of leave our team rivalries behind. We outgrow that. It's pretty well forgotten in the WUSA. Lines are crossing, now we have new alliances.
Grand Ledge, MI
Congratulations on all of your success, Abby, you deserve it. You're truly insiring and a joy to watch. How has Washington, or you specifically, improved since the Founder's Cup in 2002? Best of luck and God bless!
Abby Wambach (4:15 PM)
I think what I've personally done in the past year is to focus on becoming a better soccer player every single day. The way I see it, no matter if you don't score one goal or if you score 5 in a game -- there is always room for improvement and that's the type of attitude I've maintained for the past year and that is what hopefully will bring me some success.
Jenny (Fremont, California)
Abby, do you ever feel that officials unfairly call more fouls against you since you're stronger and taller than most other players and therefore usually the one still standing after a collision?
Abby Wambach (4:16 PM)
I think that yes, going into a 50/50 tackle, I physically have the edge b/c I'm usually bigger and stronger than a lot of the girls I go up against so in terms of physics, they are probably going to fall down. Sure, sometimes refs don't see this, but that's the definition of sport. There are different vantage points and for a ref, they are trying to keep control and safety so they do their thing. That's how it works.
You rock Abby! Go get 'em on Sunday!! Now, here's my important question -- What's the best concert you've ever been to?
Abby Wambach (4:17 PM)
Natalie Merchant in Buffalo 2000.
Katie (Burlington, VT)
Abby, don't you have a lot of brothers and sisters? What number are you?
Abby Wambach (4:18 PM)
Yes I do, I have six all older. Two oldest girls, then four boys, then me.
Bernadine Herne (Hogansburg NY)
Way to go Abby and Freedom! Who has been the most significant role model in your life?
Abby Wambach (4:20 PM)
I think that soccer-wise, hmm, it's a tough one, Jerry Smith from Santa Clara University coached me for a little while while I was with the U-21 national team. His confidence in my play game me so much confidence and that's probably why I went into the WUSA. Now, I'm busy looking up to all these women in the league, I look up to every single one of them. And of course, getting to play with Mia is certainly something I do not take for granted.
First of all id like say congradulations on the victory, i knew i'd see u guys at the Founders cup. What is it like playing with Mia? Specifically, what is the key to you and mia's outstanding offensive connection? Good luck! I have all the faith in the world in the freedoms ability to come out on top this weekend!
Abby Wambach (4:22 PM)
I think playing next to Mia is something that so many people look at and are in awe of this opportunity -- as am I. The opportunity for me is great, having her on the field next to me is unreal, but just having her out there is amazing. She is so good that she makes us all shine. The decisions she makes on and off the ball, she is so amazing. She really takes all of our games to the next level just by being out there and being THAT good.
Tom Trevett (Cary, NC)
Abby, being a brother of two Mercy high grads who knew your sister's well, I am so excited for your success with the Freedom and the WNT. In telecasts of your games, it seems that you've really focused and improved greatly in fitness this year. Is this a fair assessment?
Abby Wambach (4:24 PM)
Yeah, I think that if anything, just having another year under my belt improved my fitness. Every day you learn something else about what to do and what your body needs. With that comes improved fitness.
Hey! congrats on a fantastic season, we're rooting for you to be at the world cup. Two questions: First and foremost -- what's with the hair? You growing it until you guys lose or something? What's going on? 2. who was going to take the 5th kick on Saturday? where were you on the list? thanks for taking the time to do this. wusa rocks!
Abby Wambach (4:26 PM)
I was the 5th kicker, so i was happy not to take that pressure shot. As for the hair -- did you see my hair last year?? I mean, i was in a hair crisis!! I buzzed my hair off and what you've seen is the growing pains of that catastrophe. Right now it's grown to a point where I don't think I'll screw with it anymore ... although, you never know what I"ll do tomorrow ...
Kathy Stickley (Lancaster Pa)
Hi. What is the worst thing about being a pro soccer player?
Abby Wambach (4:27 PM)
The worst thing? I don't know, I can't really think of anything bad. Really. I mean it. I feel like the luckiest person alive to be able to be doring this. I love my lifestyle. I'm a pretty laid back person, this is so perfect for me. I get to work out and play soccer and get paid for it. It's great to be able to say I truly love what I do.
Pips (portland, oregon)
I was wondering what your thoughts are on how even though you've proven time and time again how much of an asset you are to any team you play on, you've remained the biggest 'bubble player' with the National Team in making the WWC Roster? What are your feelings on this?
Abby Wambach (4:29 PM)
I think that being in company of the women that are on that team, it's not such a bad thing to be a bubble player. In order to become one of them, you have to do your time. Mia did it. Foudy did it. All these players had to go through their time for coming of age in the international game and I feel that that's just what I"m doing right now.
Gina Claborn, Colorado Springs, Colorado
Hey, Abby! First, I just wanted to say the way you conduct yourself on AND, more importantly, off the field makes me proud to call myself an Abby Wambach fan! Congrats! You deserve all your success. Question: (2-parter) What was your major in college, and what would you want to be doing if you werent' a soocer player and/or what do you see yourself doing after your soccer career -- hopefully 10-12 years from now? thanks for the chat! --Gina Prediction---Washington wins 3-1.
Abby Wambach (4:31 PM)
My major in college was called leisure service management. If I wasn't playing soccer I would be mountain biking professionally ... or hiking the Appalachian Trail.
Kelly (Vero Beach, Fl)
Abby!!i What is a most embarassing moment that ever happened to you on or off the field?
Abby Wambach (4:33 PM)
That's hard b/c I don't really get embarrassed. Life is meant to be lived. Embarassment is normal, going through moments that you are not necessarily comfortable in is ok. It's good for you.
Brenda: ( Atlatna, GA)
Abby, how does the team celebrate a big win?
Abby Wambach (4:34 PM)
How do you think, Brenda? :) Just hanging out with each other ... maybe open a bottle of champagne.
Robyn (Killington, VT)
Which teammates do you pal around with off the field. Are you guys all pretty tight?
Abby Wambach (4:36 PM)
I think there are a select few that pal around off the field. On the whole, as a team, we're pretty independent off the field actually. This is pretty cool b/c as soon as we cross that white line we really come together. I think this is very special and shows that we are true professionals.
Ben (Okinawa, Japan)
How do you feel about making it to the final on PK's?(I thought your header was the game winner!) What's your opinion on shootouts? Do you think it's fair for championships to be decided by shootout?
Abby Wambach (4:37 PM)
Obviously it's not the way I wanted it to end, Ben. I'm still kicking myself about that header. ... You know, there has to be a way to end a soccer game. To play endless rounds of overtime just isn't conceivable. I'm not a big fan of PKs, and I don't think any player wants to win or lose on their account, but I do think they are a neccessary asset to the game.
Mackenzie: Palm Springs, CA
What's up Abby?! Question for you -- What was the craziest thing a fan has ever done to get your attention?
Abby Wambach (4:40 PM)
I've actually had someone come up to me and tell me that I was the most beautiful person that they've ever seen. I was pretty shocked. Just people screaming my name is flattering. Having the chance to sign autographs is great too. If I have the chance to touch someone's life in anyway, if it's a ten year old kid, so be it. It's a huge honor.
Gina (Indio, CA)
What is your favorite movie?
Abby Wambach (4:41 PM)
Brave Heart or The Hours.
Hey ABby!! Washington Fans would be devastated if you left our city anytime soon. Do we have anything to worry about?
Abby Wambach (4:42 PM)
Jodie, where would I go?!
Kim (Washington, DC)
Good luck on Sunday! I wish I could be out in San Diego to support you guys, but I will be rooting for you at home. What kinds of hobbies and activities do you participate in off the field? Are you single?
Abby Wambach (4:45 PM)
I like to moutain bike, read, hang out, play PlayStation 2. ... Am I single? That's a good question -- it's up for debate, actually.
Michelle, Dallas, TX
You look like Melissa Ferrick. Do you get that a lot?
Abby Wambach (4:48 PM)
What? No way! She is emaciated! Too skinny. But I guess I'll take that as a compliment? I guess we do have similar eyes.
Don Acworth, Ga
What is your biggest concern as you prepare for Sunday's match?
Abby Wambach (4:51 PM)
Just everybody showing up -- in terms of everybody playing well when it counts. When we are on, when we're playing to our full potential, nobody can beat us.
Who is the funniest person on the team
Abby Wambach (4:54 PM)
Lori Lindsey takes the cake on this one. She is always making everybody laugh -- sometimes with her and sometimes at her. But its all in good fun.
Abby, the DC 101 interview was awesome. You and Siri were so funny. Do you enjoy media attention like that? What would you put in a singles ad of your own?
Abby Wambach (4:57 PM)
Being in the media has plus and minuses. I like doing things for fans, this kind of stuff. The media is an interesting thing, I just think of it like ... I've been fortunate to have exposure because I play the game of soccer. I'm not better than anybody else, I'm just a person in a position of exposure. I'm honored to be an abassador for the game and for women's sports. In terms of my ad... I would never take out a singles advertisement for myself. Wouldn't do it.
Kelsey, Woodbridge, Va
Who on the Freedom has the messiest locker?
Abby Wambach (4:58 PM)
ME! I think I'm the second youngest on the team so that has to be part of the explanation. Siri actually just made fun of me for it today.
Lori, New Orleans, LA
Many, many years from now, when your career is nearing an end and your game is at legendary status, how do you want to be remembered? What is the mark you want to leave on soccer and on women's sports?
Abby Wambach (5:13 PM)
Just being able to be remembered amongst these women, the veterans of the league who are reaching the end of their careers now. That means the world to me. The mark that I"m trying to leave is really just the advancement of the game and league and the level of play. Again, that's one of those things where there is always room for improvement and any contribution I can make to that cause is an accomplishment in my mind. I am also trying to make sure that the U.S. Women's National Team is on top. That's my job right now, and hopefully in ten years we'll still be number one.
Abby Wambach (5:16 PM)
Hey everybody, thanks so much for all of your questions and comments. I had a lot of fun, this is always one of my favorite things to do. I love the chance to get to know my fans and I really appreciate all the questions -- even the playful and fun ones, those are always good too. Hopefully you guys will be tuning in to ESPN2 on Sunday to watch our game at 4 p.m. ET. Check it out on TV or if you're lucky -- I'll see you there! For now, I'm out! Be happy! Thanks again! - Abby