Netflix kicks off their four-art documentary on the USWNT’s 2023 World Cup campaign with a backdrop of ‘Euphoria’ by Globho (featuring Hustold & Rich Boy). It’s a smart way to bring a familiar refrain (hello Max’s Euphoria) into the viewers’ ears while also running through the team’s journeys at the 2011, 2015 and 2019 World Cup.
This isn’t a analytic series, it’s a story-telling series. Netflix follows similar beats to those you would see in ESPN’s 30 for 30 documentaries except in four parts and not just one singular episode.
Throughout the first half we’re given snippets from before the World Cup, during the World Cup and when the journey ends for the USWNT. Players featured throughout the documentary include Megan Rapinoe, Lindsey Horan and Alex Morgan, and also follows the journeys of Kristie Mewis, Lynn Williams and Alyssa Thompson as they get selected for the 2023 Women’s World Cup roster.
The documentary also follows up with the aftermath of Mal Swanson’s injury, the reactions of the players to that and the four matches they featured in throughout the tournament.
The rebirth of a champion. Or the end of an era?— Netflix (@netflix) December 12, 2023
Under Pressure: The U.S. Women's World Cup Team is now streaming. pic.twitter.com/yYHVUYukDe
The series also examines Vlatko Andonovski through the lens of his players, but probably not as in depth as fans would’ve have expected. We do get some post-World Cup reaction to his coaching methods and what players felt didn’t work as they succumbed to their worst ever result at a World Cup.
With some anecdotes from Carli Lloyd, Ian Wright, Julie Foudy, Meg Linehan of The Athletic and Abby Wambach, the docu-series also tries to shed light on this World Cup by getting an outside perspective so to speak.
There’s not a lot that viewers will glean from this that they didn’t already figure out but it never hurts to hear straight from those who were involved in the World Cup.
If you’ve watched the documentary, what did you think? What interested you the most and what did you feel was missing from it?