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Dear Hope Solo, Please Stop.

July 31, 2012

Features, Olympics, Soccer

U.S. Olympic Soccer Goalkeeper, Hope Solo.

As much as Hope Solo is known for her quality goal keeping skills, she has quite the ability to stir controversy as well.

In 2007 she gained much attention for her comments towards then U.S. Women’s National Team starting goalie Briana Scurry.

Solo was benched for the 2007 Women’s World Cup semifinal matchup against Brazil; the U.S. were dealt one their worst defeat in history, 4-0.

After the game she had these comments towards Scurry and the team’s manager at the time, Greg Ryan: “The fact of the matter is, it’s not 2004 anymore,”.

With that being said she alienated herself from that team, and did a huge no-no, which is publicly criticizing her teammates and coaching.

Fast forward to 2012 and she is stirring quite the controversy again with her comments towards former USWNT member and 2-time Gold Medalist, Brandi Chastain.

After the U.S. defeated Columbia in Olympic play Solo had these tweets directed at Chastain.

What Solo is referring to is to is Chastain’s commentary of defender Rachel Buehler during the match.

“As a defender, your responsibilities are to defend . . . win the ball, and then keep possession,”And that’s something that Rachel Buehler actually needs to improve on in this tournament.”

Solo continued ranting about Chastian and her commentary on NBC, more of her tweets can be seen via her twitter account.

Chastain responded to the comments finally, and did so in a classy manner.

“My only comment is I am in London to cover women’s soccer for NBC in an honest and objective fashion, and that is what I have done, and will continue to do for the rest of the tournament.”

Which is 100% correct. Chastain is not there to be a total mouth piece for the USA, and if there is something that she feels worth noting then by all means she has the right to say it.

It does not matter if she is a former USA player or not, she would be doing the viewers a disservice by not informing the masses about what she felt was a huge concern for the USWNT.

The fact that she is a former player, and a legendary one at that gives her EVERY right to call out her former team, and as players who have yet to prove themselves on that scale, they should take her words and learn from them not attempt to discredit them.

If Hope Solo wants to save any face in this situation she needs to take a note from the U.S. Olympic Men’s Basketball Team from here on out.

They have gained much criticism for comparisons made to the 1992 Olympic “Dream Team”. However, we have not seen any of the players from that team speaking out against those who criticize them, most notably Shaquille O’Neal.

Why is that? Because they realize that their duty is to play and prove themselves that way. One can make comments all they want, but if the team wins the gold then all of those said comments are worth nothing.

Solo should not let these comments effect her team, and their play. Too much dwelling on that could lead the team to another disappointing finish similar to that of the 2011 Women’s World Cup.

So to Brandi Chastain keep doing what you are doing, you are giving the viewers an honest and objective outlook on the U.S. Olympic teams play.

Not that you need my words of encouragement however, the World Cup championships plus the Gold Medals have given you the right to be an authority to criticize the Women’s game regardless of what Solo says otherwise.

To Hope Solo, shut up. These comments in 2007, and 2011 have alienated you amongst your own teammates along with many others. Chastain is paid to commentate and you are paid to play. It really is that simple. The game of soccer has not drastically changed to the point where Chastain’s comments are invalid, or that she is no longer a credible source of criticism.

I do however encourage you to take the criticism, keep it in house, and urge your teammates to shut Chastain up with their play.

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