Washington - President Donald Trump accused US Women's World Cup soccer star Megan Rapinoe of "disrespect" on Wednesday after she swore not to visit his White House.
In the latest of his public feuds with high-profile athletes and celebrities, Trump sent multiple tweets complaining about Rapinoe, whose short, dyed hair has made her one of the most recognizable faces of the mighty US team.
"Megan should never disrespect our Country, the White House, or our Flag, especially since so much has been done for her & the team. Be proud of the Flag that you wear," he tweeted.
In the same series of tweets, Trump announced he was inviting the US women's team to the White House and said "I am a big fan."
Rapinoe, however, "should WIN first before she TALKS! Finish the job!" he wrote.
The president's outburst followed the broadcast of a video clip in which Rapinoe dismisses the idea of visiting the White House.
Such events are a longtime tradition for successful sports teams and athletes but have run into a political minefield during the controversy-filled Trump presidency.
"I'm not going to the f****** White House," the US co-captain exclaimed in the clip on Eight by Eight, a football magazine."No. I'm not going to the White House."
The reigning world champions have swept aside all challengers so far in the World Cup and meet the hosts France on Friday for a quarter final that Rapinoe says she hopes will be "wild and crazy."
Women’s soccer player, @mPinoe, just stated that she is “not going to the F...ing White House if we win.” Other than the NBA, which now refuses to call owners, owners (please explain that I just got Criminal Justice Reform passed, Black unemployment is at the lowest level...— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 26, 2019
....in our Country’s history, and the poverty index is also best number EVER), leagues and teams love coming to the White House. I am a big fan of the American Team, and Women’s Soccer, but Megan should WIN first before she TALKS! Finish the job! We haven’t yet....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 26, 2019
....invited Megan or the team, but I am now inviting the TEAM, win or lose. Megan should never disrespect our Country, the White House, or our Flag, especially since so much has been done for her & the team. Be proud of the Flag that you wear. The USA is doing GREAT!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 26, 2019