Guest column: GOP tax bills harm charities, donors, society

first_imgRELATED: House Republicans consider adding some state income tax deductions to overhaul billAs widely reported in the press, the proposed tax “reforms” would essentially double the standard deduction thereby eliminating individual deductions by the vast majority of individuals, particularly including charitable donations.This will profoundly impact all nonprofits in the U.S. likely resulting in loss of billions of dollars of critical funding.This will threaten the survival of many fragile nonprofits and damage the safety net which is largely made up of nonprofits, particularly given government’s devolution of services to local communities.My interests here are first, as father of a permanently disabled daughter named Jennifer, and also as member of the Eastern New York Developmental Disabilities Advocates (ENYDDA). ENYDDA is an independent, all-volunteer organization founded in 2015 to advocate for disabled family members and educate the public on matters pertaining to the developmentally disabled. I am gravely concerned, along with many other parents, with the legislation’s impacts on all nonprofits, particularly including human service providers not only in this area but across the nation. While consulting with a tax professional is always recommended, donors can accelerate or expand their regular contributions or make major donations to the charity of their choice, in this tax year, before Dec. 31, 2017, before any changes in the tax law can take effect.Secondly, given the dramatic rise in the stock market, an opportunity to discuss with a tax advisor is to donate appreciated securities.This not only allows the deduction on the appreciated value but avoids or minimizes capital gains taxes which can be substantial.Such actions may make particular sense to maximize benefit to your favorite charity now– and lock in the tax savings before the next major stock market decline.While these steps can hardly compensate for the substantial damage to charities, donors and society the GOP legislation inflicts, they at least provide some incremental benefit to charities and donors alike, and in the process all communities which depend so heavily on the nonprofit sector and the services it so critically provides.Christopher Corbett is a nonprofit researcher and author of “Accountability and Ethics in Nonprofit Organizations” in the Global Encyclopedia of Public Administration, Public Policy and Governance (2017, Springer International). The views expressed are the author’s alone. More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motorists Sure, the government and for-profit sectors are important. But it is the nonprofit sector that is largely responsible for America’s exceptionalism.That is, charities and nonprofits fill in many of the gaps and fulfill roles that neither government, nor for profits, are remotely capable of performing, particularly relating to critical health and human services.As noted by de Tocqueville, such institutions are responsible for our country’s most unique character.Under a substantially increased standard deduction, the vast majority of citizens will no longer be able to deduct charitable donations as they would not likely exceed the dramatically higher standard deduction.Yet nonprofit organizations are responsible for the very fabric of a civilized society and are an essential byproduct of our country’s longstanding freedom of association.Given the timing and partisan back-room dealing, there may be limited actions that can be taken at this point.However, there are steps donors can immediately take to reduce the risks of the new legislation.center_img Categories: Editorial, OpinionAfter reading Albert H. Hunt’s column in The Daily Gazette “Republicans’ haste leading to flawed tax legislation”, (Nov.  30, 2017), my reaction is the column substantially understates the damaging implications of this partisan legislation proposed under President Trump’s administration.The column fails to mention the great harm to charities and the whole nonprofit sector.last_img read more

Unai Emery explains why he benched Nicolas Pepe again for Arsenal’s clash with Burnley

first_imgThe club-record £72million signing is being integrated into the side slowly (Picture: Getty)Unai Emery says Nicolas Pepe still isn’t quite up to speed with the rest of the Arsenal team but was happy with his performance off the bench in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Burnley.The club-record £72million signing from Lille is yet to start a match for the Gunners, playing 19 minutes last weekend at Newcastle before coming on at half-time against Burnley a week later.Emery is in no rush to play Pepe despite the enormous outlay and is prepared to give him time to adjust to his new team, and was happy with his latest cameo at the Emirates. Emery’s priority over the summer was increasing the competition for places (Picture: Getty)‘We have different options with big performances. When every player is good to play then perfect. But the way is long, the season is long. Different issues and circumstances are coming for each player. We need to be competitive.‘Last year we lost some points at moments where we didn’t have different possibilities for some matches. This year I prefer to have important players on the bench with the possibility to have good impact after. The team is going to be more competitive, that’s always my idea.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing Arsenal Advertisement Unai Emery explains why he benched Nicolas Pepe again for Arsenal’s clash with Burnley Arsenal’s record signing made his first outing at the Emirates (Picture: Getty)‘Pepe’s impact is very good. 45 minutes, he’s with us only two weeks and he needs more to be fully fit,’ said Emery about the Ivory Coast international at his post-match press conference.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENT‘Also, I spoke with him yesterday about how he’s feeling every day with us, how he’s feeling before the match, and he’s feeling progressively better but he needs more [time] and I think today 45 minutes for him was perfect.’More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man CityEmery made three changes to his side, with Dani Ceballos, David Luiz and Alexandre Lacazette all coming in and impressing, and the Spanish coach believes the depth of his squad will be key this season.He continued: ‘One thing we wanted to improve is to be competitive in each position in the squad. For example today Granit Xhaka, Mesut Ozil, Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin are out.center_img Comment Metro Sport ReporterSaturday 17 Aug 2019 3:57 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link2.4kShares Advertisementlast_img read more

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer urges Man Utd to beat Arsenal and Liverpool to Real Madrid midfielder Martin Odegaard

first_imgOle Gunnar Solskjaer is keen for Man Utd to sign Martin Odegaard from Real Madrid (Picture: Getty)Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has made it clear to Manchester United that he wants to sign Real Madrid midfielder Martin Odegaard ahead of Arsenal and Liverpool, according to reports.Struggling Premier League giants United are one of a number of clubs who are being linked with Odegaard, who has enjoyed a bright start to the season on loan at Real Sociedad.The 20-year-old made his senior debut for Real Madrid in 2015 but, with first-team opportunities under Zinedine Zidane sparse, he joined Sociedad on a two-year loan deal in the summer.Odegaard scored his first La Liga goal against Mallorca in August and produced a dazzling display last month in Sociedad’s win over Atletico Madrid.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTMore: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man CityThe youngster’s performances have not gone unnoticed and The Sun say Manchester United are keeping tabs on his progress in Spain ahead of a possible move.It is claimed under-fire manager Solskjaer is particularly keen to strike a deal for a Norwegian who made his international debut at the age of 15.The Red Devils, currently tenth in the Premier League, will face stiff competition for Odegaard, however, with Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City all monitoring his situation.Arsenal, who drew 1-1 with Manchester United on Monday, are said to view Odegaard as a potential replacement for Mesut Ozil, who they are open to selling in January. Advertisement Advertisement Madrid midfielder Odegaard has impressed on loan at Real Sociedad (Picture: Getty) Solskjaer says Man Utd players were affected by linesman’s flagTo view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that supports HTML5 video Play VideoLoaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 5:37FullscreenSolskjaer says Man Utd players were affected by linesman’s flag is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Solskjaer’s side have made a dismal start to the 2019-20 season and will look to get back to winning ways on Thursday night in the Europa League against AZ Alkmaar.They will be without midfielder Paul Pogba, however, with the Frenchman ruled out of the group clash due to a foot injury.A statement said: ‘Following a specialist’s opinion, Paul requires a period of further rest and conservative treatment for the foot injury he sustained during the game against Southampton.’Solskjaer has also criticised AZ Alkmaar’s artificial pitch, saying: ‘I was surprised they have chosen to play on this pitch when I look at it.More: FootballBruno Fernandes responds to Man Utd bust-up rumours with Ole Gunnar SolskjaerNew Manchester United signing Facundo Pellistri responds to Edinson Cavani praiseArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira moves‘I am used to Astroturf pitches from back home in Norway and it is not the best I have seen. It is one of the worst ones I have seen for a long while.‘We have all got standards back home in Norway. They are all more modern and new, and you get them changed. But it is safe. It’s just not the newest.‘I probably wouldn’t risk him [Pogba] on Astroturf anyway if he was available for this game. But he needs a bit of rest now.’Manchester United return to Premier League action on Sunday with a trip to St James’ Park to face Newcastle.MORE: Frank Lampard reserves special praise for ‘outstanding’ Chelsea star after Lille win Ole Gunnar Solskjaer urges Man Utd to beat Arsenal and Liverpool to Real Madrid midfielder Martin Odegaard Comment Metro Sport ReporterWednesday 2 Oct 2019 11:16 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link1.1kShareslast_img read more

Galveston District Studies and Projects on Display

first_imgThe U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Galveston District, clarified last week additional work that it plans to accomplish with the funding provided for disaster recovery in Public Law 115-123, the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, signed into law February 9, 2018.“We look forward to serving our community and Nation in executing the high priority regional watershed assessments, Flood Risk Management (FRM) feasibility studies, and FRM construction projects,” said Galveston District Programs and Project Management Division Chief, Dr. Edmond Russo.Russo also said that the public can view a the studies and projects funded at the Corps website.Port Arthur-Freeport-Orange:The Sabine Pass to Galveston Bay Chief’s Report was completed in December 2017. The project is being funded $3.9B under BBA 18 and will result in improvements to the existing Hurricane Flood Protection Systems in Freeport and Port Arthur, TX. It will also include construction of 27 miles of new levees and flood walls in Orange County, TX.Addicks & Barker Dam Safety Project:The Addicks & Barker Dam Safety Project is receiving $1.4M in funds to continue the on-going construction of rehabilitation features of Addicks and Barker Reservoir Dams. This project also received $2M in FY18 Work Plan funding.Corps and Harris County Flood Control District Partnered Projects:Brays Bayou Project: Will receive $75M for continued construction of detention basins along Brays Bayou Channel. This project also received $14.7M in FY18 Work Plan funding to reimburse Harris County Flood Control District for past construction.White Oak Bayou Project: This project is receiving $45M for construction of channel modification and detention basins along White Oak Bayou.Hunting Bayou Project: Hunting Bayou is receiving $65M for construction of channel modification and detention basins along Hunting Bayou.Clear Creek Project: This project is scheduled to receive $295M to perform an economics update, design and construct conveyance and in-creek detention areas (areas that hold and store water) that create a system to reduce flood damages in the upper portion of the Clear Creek watershed.Greens Bayou Project: $4.1M is set for FY18 Work Plan funding to complete construction of channel improvements and detention basin along the Greens Bayou channel.Partnered Studies:Several partnered studies and assessments will be initiated to address flooding concerns in Metropolitan Houston on Buffalo Bayou and Tributaries, and the Brazos River.These include:Brazos River Erosion Study: This study will receive $3.M study will investigate is flood risk management measures to reduce or mitigate erosion losses along the Brazos River near the city of Richmond.Buffalo Bayou and Tributaries Resiliency Study: This study is receiving $6M to will investigate and identify alternatives to stop flooding in and around the Dams during major storm events.Houston Regional Watershed Assessment: $3M is set aside to assess the interaction of the 22 primary watersheds in Harris County during flood events, and identify potential measures to improve operations of existing reservoir dams, conveyance channels and detention basins.The Coastal Texas Protection and Restoration Study: This study is identified to receive $1.9M for the continuation of the on-going study which is evaluating a number of alternatives to reduce coastal surge, including a coastal barrier similar to the “Ike Dike” concept.  Coastal Texas is also evaluating a number of alternatives which include other coastal storm risk management and ecosystem restoration measures all along the Texas coast.last_img read more

Jeffrey tipped to win 65-mile NSC first stage —Hinds favoured for individual time trial second stage

first_imgTEAM Coco’s Raynauth `Obeah Man’ Jeffrey is highly tipped to win today’s 65-mile first stage leg of the National Sports Commission’s sponsored Three-Stage Cycle Road race which wheels off at 07:00hrs from Carifesta Avenue.Speaking with followers of the sport and supporters of individual cyclists’, Chronicle Sport has concluded that Jeffrey is the most favoured cyclist to win today’s first stage which starts on Carifesta Avenue, proceed to Mahaicony, East Coast Demerara, before returning to the place of origin for the finish.The individuals that Chronicle Sport spoke with are also of the view that Team Evolution’s Orville Hinds will win the individual time trial which is a distance of 3.5 miles and commences at 15:00hrs from Carifesta Avenue and concludes at Plaisance, East Coast Demerara.Based on their comments, they all observed that Jeffrey, despite not being among the top performers on the local scene over the past two or three months, is still a very strong and tactical cyclist, who, once he gets the support from his Coco’s team-mates, will definitely `destroy’ the opposition, as the opposing team members will have their eyes set on Jamal John (Team Coco’s) who won two consecutive races, the last being the Digicel-sponsored `Breast Cancer Awareness’ 30-lap criterium around the outer circuit of the National Park last Sunday and as such, the opposition will respond to every attack John launches and in the process, Jeffrey will be aided to stay with the peloton, giving him the advantage in terms of stamina leading to the final 150 metres.The individual time trial will not just see the best sprinter emerging as champion, as the event is not a sprint event, but one that calls for the three s’s – strength, stamina and speed – and here is where Hinds out classes his opponents, as he has all three S’s and the mere fact that each cyclist will have to journey for 3.5 miles against the heavy Atlantic breeze that will be pounding on their chests, Hinds stands out above the others.Meanwhile, the three-stage event will conclude tomorrow with a 30-lap race around the outer circuit of the National Park beginning at 11:00hrs from outside the Guyana Defence Force, Camp Ayanganna compound, Irving Street entrance and will conclude at the place of origin.A total prize package of $400,000 will be up for grabs and the entire event is open to seniors, juniors and veterans.last_img

The Latest: Cypriot soccer league called off amid virus

first_img___The Russian soccer league will restart on June 21 after a break of more than three months because of the coronavirus pandemic.The league intends to pack eight rounds of games into just over one month to finish on July 22. League president Sergei Pryadkin says all games will be held in empty stadiums.The Russian Cup will also continue with the final on July 25. That means some clubs face up to 11 games to finish the season.A planned promotion-relegation playoff has been dropped with only the bottom two clubs in the top division relegated automatically as usual. Associated Press May 15, 2020 The decision came after a team of medical experts rejected a set of health protocols drawn up by the federation and insisted that its own guidelines are followed.The federation said it couldn’t overcome the expert group’s demand that an entire team be quarantined for two weeks if any player tests positive for the virus.Omonia Nicosia, Anorthosis Famagusta, APOEL Nicosia and Apollon Limassol were the top four teams in the standings when the league was suspended and will represent Cyprus next season in European tournaments.The federation also decided that the number of teams in the first division next season will increase by two to 14. There will be no relegation this year but two teams from the second division will move up.The first division will revert to 12 teams the following season with four teams relegated and two teams promoted. The sport’s international governing body issued a statement Friday saying the mid-year test window will be rescheduled when cross-border travel and quarantine regulations are relaxed.New Zealand had been scheduled to play Wales and Scotland, Australia was set to play Ireland and Fiji and South Africa had planned to host Scotland and Georgia. World Rugby said the postponement is due “to ongoing government and health agency COVID-19 directives.”___Aussie rules football will kick off again on June 11, with the second round of the Australian Football League to be played almost three months after the competition was suspended because of the coronavirus pandemic.Australian Football League chief executive Gillon McLachlan on Friday announced the matches for the next four rounds of the condensed season would be released within 10 days. The AFL, Australia’s most-watched sports league in terms of attendance and TV audience, was suspended on March 22 after one round. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___The Cypriot soccer federation has called off the season because of the coronavirus pandemic.center_img The league has also adopted a rule change allowing up to five substitutions per match.___The German soccer federation has delayed the restart of the men’s third-division because it doesn’t have political approval.The third division was scheduled to resume on May 26 amid the coronavirus pandemic but the federation says that can’t happen without the go-ahead from authorities around the country. Games in the first and second divisions will resume Saturday.The third division still has 11 rounds of games to play. The Latest: Cypriot soccer league called off amid virus The pandemic has put several third-division clubs under strain.Leader MSV Duisburg has financial problems and second-place Waldhof Mannheim told local newspapers on Thursday that it stopped training because it doesn’t have coronavirus tests.Two teams are barred from playing until May 27 by the state of Saxony-Anhalt and can train only in small groups.___World Rugby has postponed July test matches involving southern and northern hemisphere nations because of ongoing restrictions on international travel during the coronavirus pandemic. Quarantine requirements and travel restrictions from some states means players and staff from the four AFL clubs from Western Australia and South Australia — the West Coast Eagles, Fremantle Dockers, Adelaide Crows and Port Adelaide — will be temporarily be relocated to hubs on the Gold Coast, an hour south of Brisbane. ___More AP sports: and,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6last_img read more

Pittsburgh-North Carolina, Virginia-Clemson highlight weekend slate of ACC games

first_img Published on February 14, 2014 at 12:29 am Facebook Twitter Google+ After Tyler Ennis lifted the Atlantic Coast Conference into the college basketball tabloids on Wednesday, one would expect a lull in the conference’s action. But a league that was deemed generally disappointing earlier this season is starting to round out, and a great slate of games dot Saturday’s ACC schedule. Here are some of the top matchups. No. 17 Virginia at Clemson, noon, ESPN2Since ACC play has started, the Cavaliers have thrived. Virginia (20-5, 11-1 Atlantic Coast) sits second behind No. 1 Syracuse in the league and will continue its in-conference dominance at the Littlejohn Coliseum on Saturday. Clemson’s (15-8, 6-5) athleticism with K.J. McDaniels and Landry Nnoko will bother the Cavaliers on the glass, but UVA’s one-two scoring punch of Malcolm Brogdon and Joe Harris stave off the upset. The Tigers lack guard play. Correction: The Tigers really lack guard play. And that’s a problem going against Virginia.Pick: Virginia AdvertisementThis is placeholder textNo. 25 Pittsburgh at North Carolina, 1 p.m., CBSHow will Pittsburgh (20-5, 8-4) respond to what may have been the most crushing loss of the college basketball season? No matter what, the Panthers travel to Chapel Hill, N.C., for a date with the Tar Heels (16-7, 6-4), and that could spell problems for Jamie Dixon’s squad. Lamar Patterson was devastated after the Panthers’ stunning loss to Syracuse on Wednesday, which may turn into a dramatic bounce-back performance. But what’s more likely to happen is that Pitt will drag its feet into a hostile environment and stumble to a second straight loss.Pick: North CarolinaMaryland at No. 8 Duke, 6 p.m., ESPNAfter its overtime loss to SU, Duke (19-5, 8-3) has started to flex its conference muscle. Not only have the Blue Devils crept into the Top 10, but they’ve rattled off two straight 20-point wins against Wake Forest and Boston College, respectively. Duke’s momentum hit a rut in the middle of the week when inclement weather forced North Carolina to postpone college basketball’s biggest rivalry, and now Maryland (14-11, 6-6) steps in front of the train. The Terps have had a very inconsistent season, and Jake Layman’s ability to stretch the floor could keep Maryland in the game early on. But the historically better team proves that history continually repeats itself. Pick: Duke— Compiled by Jesse Dougherty, asst. sports editor, Commentslast_img read more

Richardson becomes 1st Syracuse commit to be named McDonald’s All-American since 2012

first_imgSyracuse commit Malachi Richardson was named a McDonald’s All-American on Wednesday night, becoming the first SU commit to earn the honor since DaJuan Coleman in 2012.Richardson, a four-star recruit and the No. 19 prospect in the Class of 2015 according to ESPN, will play in the game on April 1 in Chicago. He’s one of 12 members of Team West and is joined by Top-10 recruits Malik Newman, Ivan Rabb, Caleb Swanigan, Chase Jeter and Stephen Zimmerman.The McDonald’s All-American game is the most touted college showcase of the year, one which Rakeem Christmas also played in before he came to SU. Orange target Thomas Bryant, a four-star center from West Virginia, is also playing in the game.Four-star prospects Tyler Lydon, Moustapha Diagne and Franklin Howard will join Richardson as the incoming freshmen in Syracuse’s Class of 2015. AdvertisementThis is placeholder text Comments Published on January 28, 2015 at 7:08 pm Contact Matt: | @matt_schneidman Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Danish FA backs Danske Spil’s Safe Play campaign

first_img Share StumbleUpon Danske Spil has confirmed a new partnership with the Danish Football Association (DBU) which will see the duo collaborate on a new campaign to protect underage gamblers.The partnership comes ahead of Danske Spil’s flagship ‘Sikkert Spil’ campaign, which will roll out a new Game ID to everyone who wants to gamble in stores, regardless of age and deposit.Niels Erik Folmann, director of Danske Licens Spil, which, among other things, offers Tips and Oddset, said: “Games are for adults and not for children. For many years we have been concerned with ensuring that no children and young people play, for example, Oddset or other bets in the shops.“But despite the fact that we, together with the operators, have made a great effort, we must unfortunately state that we have not been able to fully prevent minors from playing. We are now taking the consequences of this by requiring everyone to have a personal Game ID if they want to play with us.”The DBU has shown its support of the Game ID and Sikkert Spil campaign by opting to keep the campaign logo on its training clothes when the Danish national team meets on 31 August to prepare for the Nations League matches against Belgium and England.In addition, the campaign will benefit from further exposure with branding made visible at stadiums, social media channels and platforms.Jakob Jensen, CEO of DBU, added: “It is a good and responsible measure to prevent children and young people from playing. We are pleased that Danske Spil is taking the lead and introducing Game ID as part of responsible gaming.“Therefore, we are pleased that our national team can help to make the campaign even better known, so that together we fight gambling addiction and other shadowy aspects of betting as a whole.”Summer 2020 saw Danske Spil undertake sweeping changes to its executive leadership team confirming the double appointment of Peter Christensen as new Chairman, supported by former broadcasting executive Nikolas Lynhe-Knudsen as CEO.Taking leadership of Danske Spil, Christensen and Lynhe-Knudsen underlined that the state-owned operator would focus fund raising on the key social areas of ‘cultural life, sports, health and the protection of the environment and climate change’ disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic Submit Related Articles Danske Spil calls for esports makeover with Pinnacle Solution August 25, 2020 Nikolas Lynhe-Knudsen to lead Danske Spil as CEO July 2, 2020 Danske Spil elects ‘political heavyweight’ Peter Christensen as new Chairman  June 23, 2020 Sharelast_img read more

Women’s World Cup: Looking back on the 1999 USA team that changed the history of the sport

first_img“You weren’t playing for yourself. You were playing for the team. And ultimately, that’s what created our success. But it was also during a time that soccer was growing and it really hadn’t hit the forefront yet. Then the World Cup comes and we sell out our games and we win and lots of people watch it and it completely changed our society’s views on women’s soccer.”With the 2019 tournament set to start Friday in France, many of those on the current U.S. national team point to the athletes who electrified America 20 years ago as role models. “The 99ers had a huge impact on me and growing my passion and wanting to play. Being good friends with a lot of them now, I still draw a lot of inspiration from them,” star forward Alex Morgan told reporters at the team’s World Cup media day. Twenty years later, we take a look back at the tournament that forever changed the sport, as told through the eyes of a few key players from the 1999 U.S. national team. Setting the sceneThe tournament began June 19, 1999. It was only the third edition of the women’s World Cup, after the United States won the first tournament in 1991 and Norway was victorious four years later. The Americans made it out of the opening stage, leading Group A with nine points after winning all three games.Then came the knockout round where the U.S. opened with a win over Germany in the quarterfinals (3-2) — and that’s the moment Lilly realized the Americans had a real shot at winning the whole thing.“Obviously, our goal was to win the World Cup and I think we knew we could do it if we played well and played together as a team and everyone did their job,” Lilly said. “We played Germany and we scored a goal and then went down one goal and then tied it up. We ended up winning that game and I thought, ‘You know what, we are going to win this whole thing.’”Then the U.S. defeated Brazil, 2-0, in the semifinals before facing China in the final.“All the teams you play in the World Cup, you have to be respectful of the talent you’re playing against,” Lilly said. “We knew China was good and that they were one of the stronger teams in the ’90s and after playing them in the Olympics in ’96, we knew they would be strong.”The final gameIt was July 10, 1999. A record 90,185 fans packed the stands at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, and 40 million more tuned in around the world to watch the United States take on China to determine the 1999 champion. At the time, the final marked the most-attended women’s sports event in history and brought celebrities from all across the nation to one place, including President Bill Clinton.F-16s flew over. Jennifer Lopez sang. “It was nuts,” Lilly recalled.When the U.S. team walked out of the tunnel, the enormity of the moment hit.“You were looking into the crowd and there were all these people and you were just like, ‘Holy cow.’ … It was just amazing and to top it off it was hot, like 100 degrees,” Lilly said. “And then we actually had to start playing the game.”Once the game began, the stadium fell silent and the Americans’ focus was on winning the World Cup.“I remember being completely fascinated by the huge crowd at the game, but all I remember thinking once the ref handed me the ball was how amazingly quiet 90,000 people can be. In those few seconds, all I could hear was myself breathe,” defender Brandi Chastain told ESPN.The @RoseBowlStadium was venue for 1994 FIFA World Cup Final and the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup Final.— City of Pasadena (@PasadenaGov) February 27, 2013The actual match ended in a stalemate. Neither team scored through regulation and they remained scoreless even after extra time. There was one moment when it looked as if China was going to score off a header, but it was famously saved off the line by the 5-foot-4 Lilly to keep the Americans alive. “It happened so fast,” Lilly said. “There are so many moments like that throughout the whole tournament that adds to our success. That was just one moment that helped us stay alive.”Funny thing, Lilly admits 20 years later: That was the weakest part of her game.“The fact that I actually used my head to save the goal was pretty incredible for me,” she said.Some 300 games she played and, by her count, she saved off the line like that maybe two times. Maybe.So when she made that save … at that point … in that game? “I was just going, ‘Did that really happen?’ Like I couldn’t believe it. I was just fortunate to be doing my job at the time,” she said.Penalty kicksWith the match scoreless after extra time, it all would come down to penalty kicks to decide the champion — a moment that would test the U.S. team’s resolve.And the consensus among the Americans, Lilly said, was: We got this. We’re winning this game.”That was our mentality going in and we found out who the PK kickers were going to be and then we were focusing on our shot and our kick,” Lilly told Omnisport.Goalkeeper Briana Scurry made a huge save on Liu Ying, giving the U.S. momentum right before Lilly stepped to the line. She remembers the crowd going crazy. And then the strangest thing happened: The fans fell silent again as she prepared to take her kick.“I remember I was third, watching Carla (Overbeck) and Joy (Fawcett) and being nervous for them and then getting to my turn,” Lilly said. “I was like, ‘All right, let’s do this.’ And when I scored, I was so happy.”The game came down to Mia Hamm and Chastain. Hamm converted, then it was Chastain’s turn to step to the line.Chastain kicked, watching as the ball left of her foot and landed in the back of the net in what she recalled as complete slow-motion.I remember watching the ball, seeing it spin with the logo and stitching — I mean, it was that slow, almost on pause,” Chastain said. “And then it hit the net and the crowd erupted and it’s back to real time and the team is running over piling on.”“When I saw her take the kick to the left with her foot, I knew it was going in and that the goalie wasn’t getting it,” Lilly said. “We were already starting the celebration, and it was such a moment of complete jubilation. We were so happy and pleased with so many emotions.”Then came the celebration heard ’round the world. A celebration — witnessed by nearly 100,000 in the Rose Bowl and tens of millions more around the globe — that will go down in the history of the sport.And one that redefined women’s sports across the United States.The celebrationChastain ripped off her shirt, swung it around in the air and then fell to her knees in exultation. With her fists clinched and her biceps bulging, Chastain closed her eyes and screamed out of pure happiness. Her reaction was powerful. And it was one that could be felt by everyone who had just witnessed what the U.S. national team set out to accomplish.Her teammates ran from midfield to join her. But in that singular show of strength and triumph and sheer joy, it was the act of celebrating in her sports bra that took the world by storm.”I whipped off that shirt and I kind of whipped it around in the air over my head and dropped to my knees as a ‘Yes!’ moment that we had done what we set out to do,” Chastain said (per the BBC).”I had no idea that would be my reaction — it was truly genuine and it was insane and it was a relief and it was joy and it was gratitude all wrapped into one.” “They’re great people that really shaped the history of this program and I’ll be forever grateful for that,” Morgan said before embarking on another journey in the World Cup.The Americans are coming off a 2015 World Cup title, striving to go back-to-back and extend their record from three to four championships. History-makers, if you will.”Now,” Morgan added, “it’s our turn to make our mark.” Getty Images It was common for male players to celebrate in that way, but it was a first for a woman.”I mean, it was just what happened, exactly how it happened, as I was feeling it. It was spontaneous emotion. At a moment like that, your emotions completely take over and it’s just raw reaction and feeling and sensation,” Chastain told ESPN. “You don’t think, you just are. You’re right there in it and those feelings — when they’re that raw — are never wrong. That’s the honest truth of the emotion of the moment.”I hope that young girls that see that picture, see a little bit of themselves. They see strength and power. They see a lifelong journey. They see the willingness and the confidence that it takes to be seen.” While the world would react to Chastain’s celebration, Lilly — lost in the moment, too — was oblivious.“I wasn’t even paying attention that she took off her shirt after she scored,” Lilly told Omnisport. “We were all running toward her and coming over to congratulate her. It was complete euphoria. You heard the crowd and we were basking in the excitement of everything. We were just so proud that we had accomplished our goal and also ended up having, you know, sellout crowds.”WATCH: Brandi Chastain reflects on her iconic SI cover— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) July 10, 2017Chastain’s celebration was featured on the covers of Sports Illustrated, Newsweek and Time, among others, as she became, quite literally, an overnight celebrity.  “Women’s soccer,” Chastain said, “was not anonymous anymore.”How the sport changedThe conversation around women’s soccer had changed — forever. People were talking about it, and fans were affected by the ’99 team that became an inspiration.”We were all really enthusiastic, but I’m not so sure we knew that it was going to cause this revolution,” Chastain told CBS. As Lilly reflected on the impact she made as part of that national team, she found it “pretty incredible” what they were able to accomplish and hopes to continue being an inspiration for future generations.”Going through it, I don’t think we really understood what we were doing to the sport until after we won,” Lilly said. “We impacted people’s lives. To realize we were a part of that was like, ‘Wow, that’s pretty special.’ And to know we were part of changing people’s lives — it was awesome.”Two decades later, it’s safe to say the ’99 team remains an inspiration. The sport has evolved. And the talent and depth of the national team increases every year, in large part thanks to that group of athletes 20 years ago. It has been 20 years since the most iconic moment in the history of women’s soccer, the United States winning the 1999 World Cup.“It was a powerful year, to be honest,” forward Kristine Lilly told Omnisport. “That ’99 team was special and I don’t think there was one reason why it was special. It was 20 unique individuals that had their own personalities and talent that came together as one team.last_img read more