Paul Pogba was among the stars to speak out in support of Simone Biles after the American gymnast opted to take a step back and withdraw from events at the Olympics.
Biles announced on Thursday that she would not be participating in the individual all-around competition at the Tokyo Games to focus on her mental health.
Her announcement came shortly after she opted to remove herself from the team competition, earning her praise from several top athletes for valuing her own well-being in a time of immense pressure.
“After further medical evaluation, Simone Biles has withdrawn from the final individual all-around competition at the Tokyo Olympic Games, in order to focus on her mental health,” USA Gymnastics said in a statement on Wednesday.
“We wholeheartedly support Simone’s decision and applaud her bravery in prioritising her well-being. Her courage shows, yet again, why she is a role model for so many.”
Many in the sporting world were quick to rally in support of Biles, who has established herself as one of the greatest gymnasts of all time throughout her career.
Pogba, in particular, stepped in to praise an athlete that he called the GOAT for having the bravery to put herself first.
“A moment of undeniable strength from @simone_biles,” Pogba tweeted. “We always focus on the physical aspect of health but the mental aspect is just as important. When you take care of both, you will flourish in life!”