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Brandi Chastain

Brandi Chastain

Brandi Denise Chastain (born July 21, 1968) is a former soccer player, who was on the U.S. women's national soccer team from 1991 to 2004 and the San Jose CyberRays of the WUSA (2001-2003). She is best known for her game-winning penalty kick against China in the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup final and her bra-baring celebration afterwards.

Early playing career

She attended Archbishop Mitty High School in San Jose, California, helping take the team to three section championships. In 1986 Chastain was awarded the Soccer America Freshmen Player Of The Year award at the University of California-Berkeley. Soon after, she underwent reconstructive surgery on both knees which caused her to miss much of the 1987 and 1988 seasons. She transferred to Santa Clara University, leading them to two Final Four NCAA appearances before she graduated in 1991.

Chastain first represented her country on April 18, 1991, against Mexico. She came off the bench as a forward to score five consecutive goals in a 12-0 United States win in a CONCACAF FIFA Women's World Cup. Team USA went on to win the World Cup, staged in China.

After that first World Cup, she played club soccer for one season in Japan in 1993, earning team MVP honors and was the only foreigner to be selected as one of the league's top 11 players.

As a defender, she made the U.S. National team again in 1996 and participated in the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, helping the Americans win the gold medal by playing every minute of every U.S. game, despite a third serious knee injury suffered in the semifinal against Norway. Of her 192 career caps, she played 89 primarily at defender during which she occasionally played midfielder.

Sports bra episode

On July 10, 1999 at the Women's World Cup at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, after scoring the fifth penalty kick to give the United States the win over China in the final game, Chastain celebrated by peeling off her jersey and falling to her knees in a sports bra, her fists clenched. This image was featured on the covers of TIME, Newsweek, and Sports Illustrated .

Chastain's take on the incident was "Momentary insanity, nothing more, nothing less. I wasn’t thinking about anything. I thought, ‘This is the greatest moment of my life on the soccer field.’

Professional career

Chastain played on the San Jose CyberRays in the Women's United Soccer Association from its formation in 2001 until its suspension in 2003. She played on the US women's national team until her last game on December 6, 2004.

She appeared in the HBO documentary Dare to Dream: The Story of the U.S. Women's Soccer Team.

She was a broadcaster with ABC/ESPN on their coverage of Major League Soccer.

Chastain's website and her book about women's competitive sports are titled It’s Not About the Bra.

She posed nude except for soccer cleats and a strategically-placed soccer ball in the lad's mag Gear..

Chastain will serve as an analyst for NBC Sports coverage of Soccer at the 2008 Summer Olympics.

Personal life

She currently lives in Santa Clara, California, where her husband, Jerry Smith, is the women's soccer coach at Santa Clara University. The couple's first child, son Jaden Chastain Smith, was born on June 8, 2006.

Sources

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External links

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