Author Topic: Solo won't play or attend final U.S. World Cup match  (Read 1239 times)

Offline David

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4229
    • View Profile
Solo won't play or attend final U.S. World Cup match
« on: September 29, 2007, 07:16:08 PM »
SHANGHAI — Hope Solo, the unbeaten U.S. goalkeeper who was replaced by veteran Brianna Scurry before the team's disastrous 4-0 semifinal loss to Brazil Thursday in the FIFA Women's World Cup, has been effectively dismissed from the U.S. team after a private meeting of her teammates on Saturday.

Solo, 25, will not play in Sunday's bronze-medal game with Norway and will not be allowed to attend the game here.

Her transgression was criticizing coach Greg Ryan's decision to replace her and disparaging 36-year-old Scurry's performance in a post-game interview with ESPN.

But her rejection by her own teammates was sealed by her indirect dismissal of the team's historical past successes, saying, "The fact of the matter is, it's not 2004 anymore," a reference to the team's gold medal win at the 2004 Athens Olympics in which Scurry was in goal for every minute of every game.

Scurry has played in four Wold Cups and two Olympics. This was Hope's first World Cup experience.

Ryan announced her expulsion at a Saturday afternoon press conference in Shanghai, saying "This has been a distraction for the team and our focus is now on Norway. It's your losses and defeats in life that reveal your character."

The U.S. plays Norway Sunday afternoon here in the third-place match. Brazil meets defending champion Germany that night.

Veteran players Kristine Lilly and Abby Wambach spoke to reporters and said the team made the decision after meeting and discussing the issues.

"Now we just want to focus on Norway," Lilly said.

Solo did post an apology of sorts on her My Space page:

"I am not proud or happy the way things have come out. Although I stand strong in everything I said, the true disheartening moment for me was realizing it could look as though I was taking a direct shot at my own teamate. I would never throw such a low blow. Never. Many (sic) of this goes way beyond anyone's understanding, and is simply hard to justify. In my eyes there is no justification to put down a teamate. That is not what i (sic) was doing. I am confidant (sic) in knowing that i (sic) would have made a major difference on the field. I have to believe that. I have to believe that I should have been on the field or why am I a professional trying to be the very best? I also have agreed to disagree with our head coach and I stand firm in my beliefs that it was the wrong decision. However, to put down a teamate was never, ever my intent. I only wanted to speak of my own abilities yet also recognize that the past is the past. Things were taken out of context, or analyzed differently from my true meaning of my own words. For that I am sorry."

But it was too little too late for her teammates.

Prior to the Solo announcement, U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil K. Gulati told reporters that he thought there could be reconciliation on the team.

He also said the media storm generated by the controversy "is a sign of the maturity of the sport and women's soccer in particular.

"Do I wish that some of the things that have happened over the last few days weren't what generated the controversy? Yes. But this shows that people care about this and that we didn't play well against North Korea (a 2-2 tie in the team's Cup opener on Sept. 11) … People care and they're writing to me asking, 'Aren't you going to do something about this issue?' "

"That's all good. It's absolutely positive as far as I'm concerned. … What is it in sports that we want people to do? It's care, and that's a good thing."

Ryan will have to wait to see if U.S. Soccer will send him packing, too. His $175,000 a year contract ends Dec. 31.

"I don't second-guess coaches on tactical decisions," Gulati said. "We lost to a great team in a critical game in a very important tournament. That's very disappointing. We'll analyze the situation after (Sunday). We've already started analyzing it.

"It would be silly to say we haven't thought about what's happened in the last few days."

Offline Dr Gonzo

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4031
    • View Profile
Re: Solo won't play or attend final U.S. World Cup match
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2007, 03:51:00 PM »
Oh who cares...

Uploaded with [URL=http://imageshack.u