WASHINGTON (CBSDC) — U.S. goalie Tim Howard received a drug test following his incredible 16-save performance in the loss to Belgium.
Howard revealed to ESPN Radio Wednesday that he was randomly drug-tested following U.S. Soccer’s 2-1 loss to Belgium on Tuesday after being asked what the mood in the locker room was following the game.
“I got dragged into drug-testing again, randomly, so I didn’t hear all of them. I think once I got back into the room it was quiet … it was somber,” Howard told ESPN Radio. “No words can make you feel better. Some guys had tears. Some guys kept sitting quietly. It’s tough. Losing in sports, no matter what sport it is, feels exactly the same. It’s gut-wrenching. We just tried to shower and get out of there as quickly as we could, and get back to our families.”
Howard kept Belgium scoreless in regulation time with several phenomenal saves, putting the U.S. on his back. Despite the 2-1 loss in extra time, Howard became a legendary figure in America for single-handily keeping the U.S. in the game.
Howard, along with Clint Dempsey, spoke with President Barack Obama by telephone on Wednesday as the commander in chief thanked them for rallying a nation behind them.
“I just wanted to call to say you guys did us proud. You guys did great, and as somebody whose first sport was soccer, although I was never that good, to see the way you guys captured the hearts and the imaginations of the whole country is unbelievable,” Obama said.
The president also joked with Howard that he will have to change his appearance when coming back to the U.S.
“Tim, I don’t know how you’re going to survive the mobs when you come back home, man. You’re going to have to shave your beard so they don’t know who you are.”
Howard thanked Obama at the end of the call for supporting the team throughout the World Cup.
“We know you were watching and we know how big of a supporter you are, so hopefully we made you proud. It was our honor, as it always is, to represent our country,” Howard said.
The 35-year-old goalie says he does not know yet whether he’ll try to compete for the U.S. in the World Cup in Russia in 2018.