If you don’t’ already follow U.S Goalkeeper Hope Solo’s twitter stream, you really should.
Solo’s twitter rant was in response to former WNT defender Brandi Chastain’s remarks when the U.S. women’s soccer team played Colombia on Saturday. During the first half, Chastain disparaged defender Rachel Buehler’s ball control. She said that Buehler gives the ball away too much, and “needs to work on and improve on” her trapping skills.
She later deleted a tweet she made in response to a former coach who said that Chastain and others are afraid that the new generation of USA women soccer players will “eclipse their legacy,” to which Solo replied, “Some people see through it.” Later, Solo indicated that she thought fans were using the “mute” button while Chastain was talking.
As From A Left Wing describes it:
The problem is not exactly what she [Chastain] said. What defender doesn’t need to work on, improve on her game? The problem is the way Chastain said it – these remarks were part of a constant stream of negative commentary about the US’s game. There was, in fact, so much criticism of the USWNT that there was hardly any real discussion of their opponent. A commentator is supposed to offer criticism of the match – Chastain is not being paid to be a cheerleader for the team (this is where Solo is wrong). But criticism should be even handed. What did we learn today about Colombia? Not nearly enough.
In response to Solo’s tweets, Chastain said her new job is to be a journalist.
“I’m here to do my job, which is to be an honest and objective analyst at the Olympics,” she told news reporters at a media event in Birmingham, England.
In an interview with USA TODAY Sports a day before the Colombia game, Chastain praised Solo’s ability and demeanor, adding that she had a “humongous ego” necessary for her position on the field.
“She’s a big strong athlete,” said Chastain, asked to describe the indispensable players on the American roster. “She’s very coordinated with both feet. She can make big saves and she has a humongous ego. You have to have a goalkeeper that feels she owns the goal. She feels that she can dominate. She plays the villain and I think at times she likes to walk that line. You have to have that swagger to play the position.”
Solo is well known as one of the most outspoken players on the U.S. team. She was basically kicked off the squad at the 2007 World Cup after she criticized coach Greg Ryan for benching her in favor of Brianna Scurry during the semifinals.
Ryan was ultimately replaced by Pia Sundage and Solo made her way back onto the team to become arguably the best goalkeeper in team history, anchoring the gold-medal run at the 2008 Olympics and winning the golden glove award for top goalie at last year’s World Cup in Germany.
The USA Women’s Soccer Team is expected to compete for the gold in London. They have already clinched a berth in the Olympic quarterfinals and will face North Korea in their final group play match Tuesday in Manchester. But in order to stay on course, Solo needs to focus on the task at hand. And she can’t let her her emotions eclipse the U.S. win against Colombia or future matches. She is a leader on the team, and she can’t allow anything to get in the way of what she and her teammates came to London to do.
Solo may have been responsible for a shutout against against Colombia yesterday but did she cross the line after the game? What do you think? Should Solo be allowed to express her opinion or should she keep her thoughts to herself?