CBS Sports’ decision to bring in former USWNT captain Carli Lloyd for coverage of the upcoming NWSL Championship final in San Diego on Saturday has proven to be controversial with fans.
The two-time World Champion with the USA has shifted into an analyst role post-retirement. Her prolific career on the field made her a fan favorite, but her comments as a broadcast personality have often stirred the pot and drawn criticism from women’s soccer fans.
This past summer at the World Cup, Lloyd raised eyebrows with a criticism of the USWNT after some players were, according to Lloyd, inappropriately celebrating their narrow escape from the group stage after a 0-0 draw. The team would go on to lose in their first knockout game, becoming to only USA team to not advance to at least the 3rd place match at a Women’s World Cup.
Later in the year, the former player again created a stir when criticizing the US Soccer program. Among other claims, Lloyd asserted she was passed over by US Soccer for sponsorships and other opportunities in favor of “more marketable” players.
Not everyone is happy about Lloyd joining CBS NWSL coverage
American soccer fans certainly enjoyed Carli Lloyd scoring goals for the USA over the years. But not everyone is a fan of her in the broadcast booth.
If you take a quick scan of Twitter/X or the r/NWSL Reddit page regarding the news, you’ll see more than a few supporters bemoaning her being included in the coverage.
Among the highlights from the comment section are:
“The only positive is that I’ll physically be at the game so I don’t have to hear or watch her on the broadcast.”
“Can’t wait to hear CL’s preemptive griping that no one worked hard enough and that what would be just is for both teams to lose and the trophy go to her because she #hustles
Seriously girl, just complete the post-retirement heel turn and just stay on Fox.”
..and a “NO GOD PLEASE NO!” .gif from The Office.
Some are pointing out the conflict of interest, given Lloyd happens to be a minority owner of Gotham FC, who is competing in the title match.
Then on Tuesday, Lloyd was involved in several back-and-forths on social media in reaction to the news, including with Eric Wahl (brother of the late journalist Grant Wahl):
Some fans, however, are appreciative of Lloyd’s direct and no-nonsense style of analysis. Wahl’s comparison to Alexi Lalas is not entirely off-base. The former USMNT player and pundit shares a similar “love them or hate them” aura when it comes to soccer broadcasts in the US.
In any case, adding a former USWNT star to the broadcast team will no doubt beef up the prestige of the coverage. For better or for worse, depending on who you ask.
CBS Sports’ coverage of the NWSL Championship airs on Saturday, November 11 beginning at 8 PM ET on CBS and Paramount+.
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