U.S.forward Christen Press hugs forward Tobin Heath, left, for Heath's...

U.S.forward Christen Press hugs forward Tobin Heath, left, for Heath's goal against Ireland during the first half of an international friendly soccer match in Pasadena, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019. Christen Press and Tobin Heath are back. OK, maybe not on the field quite yet, but their popular YouTube and podcast series, the RE-CAP show, has returned just in time for this summer’s Olympics. Credit: AP/Alex Gallardo

Christen Press and Tobin Heath are back.

OK, maybe not on the soccer field quite yet, but their popular YouTube and podcast series, the RE-CAP show, has returned just in time for this summer's Olympics.

The show was originally launched last year ahead of the Women's World Cup as both U.S. national team veterans — and two-time World Cup winners themselves — dealt with long-term injuries.

Heath was inspired to create a venue that explored women's sports and fostered community — Gal Culture, as she calls it. Rather that being fodder for the media, Heath wanted to turn the tables and define the media.

“So much of our sports culture has just been adopted from obviously the men’s sports culture, which honestly is very different from women’s sports culture. And I think now is the time that we actually get to kind of pick up the microphone and hold the camera ourselves and get to tell our own stories,” Heath said. “We don’t have to kind of force ourselves into what I found was a very small and narrow version of what the world was portraying as what a women’s athlete is.”

The original series, which spanned eight episodes, included an in-depth discussion with U.S. captain Lindsey Horan, speaking about the team's disappointing finish in the World Cup. Each episode had views in the hundreds of thousands.

The show is an extension of RE-INC., the company that Heath and Press started in 2019 with fellow soccer players Megan Rapinoe and Meghan Klingenberg. The company was part commercial, with responsibly sourced merchandise and proceeds going to causes that focused on women, marginalized communities and human rights. It was also an advocacy platform.

RE_INC. was among the varied projects that athletes created to not only build personal brands, but claim ownership of the growing market surrounding women's soccer. It came as the U.S. women's national team was fighting for equal pay, and the NWSL Players Association was seeking better wages and playing conditions.

RE-INC's more recent media platform and the RE-CAP Show is a natural extension of that community.

“Everything that we do sits at the intersection of sports, progress and equity," Press said. “And we really feel strongly that the women’s sports community, their values, extend far beyond off the pitch to the issues that they care about — social justice, equality, queer rights, anti-racism, building new structures and reimagining the world for the better. And so our business is a vessel to allow this community to come together and create collective action, connect through our love of sport and begin to shake up the status quo and be disruptors."

After four knee surgeries, Press is working her way back to her club team, Angel City in the National Women's Soccer League. She's joined the team at practice, although is not yet participating in full training.

Press tore her ACL during an Angel City match in June 2022. Her last national team appearance was at the Tokyo Games in 2021. Over the course of her career, Press played in 155 matches with 64 goals for the United States.

Heath's journey back is more complicated. She has a cartilage issue that has required two surgeries. In an interview with The Associated Press, she said she's not ruling out a comeback.

Heath has 181 appearances and 36 goals with the U.S. national team. She last played at the club level for the Seattle Reign in 2022.

“I haven’t been public about it, but I can say that I have been actively healing and trying to get back to the football pitch,” she said. “I haven’t ruled it out, to say the least. But I am definitely in my own recovery journey.”

For now, the pair are looking forward to the Olympics and seeing what the United States can accomplish under new coach Emma Hayes. So they have a lot to talk about.

“I think for the first time in in a few years, there’s a lot of excitement and hope around this team that felt a little bit like they were a little untethered, you know? I think with Emma being this kind of leader figure that this young group needs, it’s an exciting time and we can all be very hopeful,” Heath said. “And with an Olympics, that is always a funny tournament in itself, I think anything’s possible.”

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