Let’s just say that neither Hope Solo or Ryan Lochte have acquitted themselves well immediately following the Olympics. Lochte admitted as much this morning during a Good Morning America interview, while refusing to say if he’ll return to Rio to face false reporting charges there.
At least he has Dancing With the Stars to take his mind off of things (is that what he meant when he said “I made a mistake, I’m human”? No? OK, carry on).
Solo has no such fallback position. She’s already appeared on DWTS, in 2011, where she was eliminated in the semifinals. Besides, America’s halfway house for fading and disgraced celebrities is only a very brief fix.
As you know, the U.S. Women’s National Team goalie took much criticism for her comments after a loss to Sweden in Rio, calling her opponents “a bunch of cowards.” The USWNT was so thrilled with her remarks that they suspended her for six months and terminated her contract.
Unfortunately for Solo, her reaction to this news was all caught on camera — the documentary Keeping Score is following the team around, and they were there, in Washington, when Solo got the news on Aug. 24. And of course there are excerpts of that footage available.
That’s Solo’s husband, former Seahawks’ and Buccaneers’ tight end Jerramy Stevens, trying to console her in the video. What a fun couple.
So what now for Hope Solo? She’s taken an “indefinite leave of absence” from her other job as goalie for Seattle Reign FC in the National Women’s Soccer League. Sports Illustrated:
At first, Solo’s punishment comes off as harsh. A six-month suspension and a terminated national team contract for calling opponents “cowards”? But when you break it down, it’s not actually that harsh. The six-month suspension only applies to four, maybe six, meaningless U.S. friendlies. And while terminating Solo’s national team contract sounds severe, keep in mind two things: 1) U.S. Soccer is giving Solo three months severance, and 2) the contract for every U.S. national team player terminates on December 31 when the collective bargaining agreement ends.
The next big national team event is the World Cup in 2019. In addition to her recent controversy, Solo will be 38 at World Cup time — so USWNT coach Jill Ellis will have to decide pretty soon if she wants Solo on that team, otherwise it’s time to start preparing another U.S. goalie.