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Tobin Heath and Christen Press on New Talk Show, USWNT’s World Cup So Far: ‘We Expect Better’ (Exclusive)



Tobin Heath and Christen Press may not be on the pitch with the U.S. Women’s National Team at this year’s World Cup, but they’ve still got “that little kid World Cup fever.”

The two-time World Cup winners have been staying busy this month on the heels of launching The RE-CAP Show, their new internet sports show that aims “to reimagine the way women are seen and experienced in sports,” according to Heath.

Heath, 35, and Press, 34, recently spoke with PEOPLE about their new show, what it’s like watching this year’s World Cup after winning back-to-back titles with the team in 2015 and 2019, and what their assessments are of the 2023 squad after it secured its spot in the Round of 16 this week.

Though the USWNT is moving on to the knockout rounds, the team failed to win its group for just the second time in its World Cup history after two draws with Netherlands and Portugal. And meanwhile, other powerhouse teams like No. 2-ranked Germany and Brazil were both eliminated during the group stage in shocking upsets.

But Press points out that the U.S. should still be performing at a higher level.

“We’re still the USWNT,” Press says. “If every other top team in the world lost in the first round, we’re still not going to feel good about losing the first round. We’re going to win no matter what the path is. We’re always going to expect that from ourselves, and the world is always going to expect that from the team. Where we are now, it’s true, we expect better.”


Heath says it’s “worrisome” to hear others say the USWNT should celebrate the fact it advanced to the knockout round this week after tying 0-0 with Portugal. “That kind of makes me stumble a little bit as a USWNT player and a fan,” she says. “That shouldn’t even be a thought that we’re glad to have made the Round of 16. That is the bottom bar. I mean, I don’t even know if that’s even an expectation. That’s where you should be.”

Ultimately, Heath concludes: “I don’t think there’s a lot of positive momentum that you can really take from the group stages in terms of performance.”

The former USWNT players have stayed in touch with their former teammates while they’re at the World Cup through texts and direct messages on social media. While their former teammate Carli Lloyd has levied harsh criticism (that she later softened) towards their former team, Press says the comments they make privately and on their RE-CAP show “don’t come from a place of bitterness and resentment.”

“I have good relationships with the players, so I just say what I think,” says Press, who is missing this year’s World Cup while rehabbing from a fourth ACL surgery. “I hope — and it’s not always true, right? — but I hope that people who are watching this long form of the show can see that we’re coming from a place of support and love.”

So far, Heath and Press have welcomed guests like former USWNT coach Jill Ellis, their former USWNT teammates Abby Dahlkemper and Lauren Cheney Holiday, as well as players from other countries like Welsh midfielder Jess Fishlock and Dutch forward Vivianne Miedema.

The duo discuss everything from their perspective on the USWNT’s games to the sport’s biggest issues, from teams’ funding to players’ uniform requirements. The show is available in video form on YouTube, as well as a podcast.


“We feel like traditional media has really pushed women’s sports through a very specific lens that only tells you one version of what a female athlete is, and we know in our culture, in our locker rooms, that is not the case,” Heath says. “And we want to show the fullness of what women’s sports is.”

To do so, Heath says she and Press felt there was no better time to start than during the women’s World Cup. “What we wanted to do is to start identifying and defining the look, tone and feel of what Gal Culture is, which has been inspired by the badassery of U.S. Women’s National Team,” she says.

Press says the show has “sort of” filled the void of a World Cup, “because similar to when you play a game, you spend days preparing, then you give everything you have to it, and then you review and edit and watch it and promote it.”

“So, it’s actually taking the shape of a World Cup for us, which is really fun because we’re obviously not there,” Press says, laughing as she adds, “I keep teasing Tobin that she created a World Cup for us to play in.”

Meanwhile, Press is hoping to get back out onto the field once she’s finished rehabbing her knee, and is still traveling with her Angel City FC club team for support. “I go to rehab for a couple hours every single day,” she says. “I think it’s really like a working summer where I’m like, okay, head down on doing this show, and I’m definitely going to deserve my post-World Cup vacation that I usually take even though I didn’t go to the World Cup.”

And Heath agrees, noting that the time difference with the tournament taking place in Australia and New Zealand isn’t helping them conserve energy.


The RE-CAP Show will continue through late August with eight episodes announced thus far. Press says they’re in “early” discussions to keep the show running, however, once the tournament ends.

“The spirit of what Tobin and I are doing on this show, alongside our guests, is really bringing the spirit of authenticity and the unleashing of the truth in women’s sports,” Press says. “Don’t be surprised if you see a second edition or a continuation of the show long beyond the World Cup.”