This cover pose slightly looks as if we’ve interrupted Megan Rapinoe’s Learning Annex course on Low Key Vogueing For the 21st Century, but maybe that’s something we need for this summer. I do love the strength in her face, and the purple hair; there are some other shots from the editorial that I’m surprised didn’t make the cover, though. The one in the white shirt would have been my bet, but you should definitely click through to see the subscribers cover, which is fantastic.

The profile itself is very strong, and benefits from the fact that its writer, Mari Uyehara, has covered Rapinoe before; it doesn’t ever get into that weird sort of “Here’s What It Was Like When I Met This Person!!!” place that celebrity profiles (including ones I’ve done) have a tendency to fall back on. It goes fairly comprehensively into the USWNT’s enraging struggles for equal pay, despite being, by any measurement, at the moment superior to the men’s team:

While the women’s team is hopeful about negotiating a fair collective bargaining agreement before the current one expires at the end of this year, the dispute over back pay still lingers, with U.S. Soccer claiming it would bankrupt them. (“I’m sorry that you practiced gender discrimination and didn’t budget that in,” retorts Rapinoe. “But they’re going to need to reallocate.”) So the struggle continues. “Money is the way our society shows people, especially in sports, how we value them,” Rapinoe says. “We know exactly what’s in a contract every time a man signs it. We never know what women make. Why is it? Because they’re not something to be proud of. We need to change that narrative.”

Fingers crossed.

[Photographs by: Ryan McGinley]