Hope Solo has a complicated history with the USWNT which played a role in her retirement. Solo is not playing in the 2019 World Cup but is still at the tournament thanks to her media responsibilities with BBC. Solo noted in 2018 that she was fired before she could retire.
“It’s hard to retire when you got fired,” Solo said, per NBC Sports.
Solo’s USWNT contract was terminated in 2016 and the former goalkeeper was suspended for six months. The federation cited Solo calling Sweden players “cowards” as part of the reason for the discipline.
“The comments by Hope Solo after the match against Sweden during the 2016 Olympics were unacceptable and do not meet the standard of conduct we require from our National Team players,” former U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati noted, per ESPN. “Beyond the athletic arena, and beyond the results, the Olympics celebrate and represent the ideals of fair play and respect. We expect all of our representatives to honor those principles, with no exceptions. Taking into consideration the past incidents involving Hope, as well as the private conversations we’ve had requiring her to conduct herself in a manner befitting a U.S. National Team member, U.S. Soccer determined this is the appropriate disciplinary action.”
The punishment seems a bit harsh and had more to do with additional incidents leading up to her comments. Prior to the World Cup, Solo emphasized she is retired for good but would like a “retirement game.”
“I think we all know the answer to that question, I am not going to play again. I have not retired because, well, I got fired,” Solo told Boston.com. “You know I hope one day U.S. Soccer will give me the respect that every other player has received, which is a retirement game. And hopefully one day I’ll be able to actually, formally retire and say goodbye to all my wonderful fans.”
Hope Solo Is Working for BBC During the 2019 World Cup
Solo remains connected to the game through her work with BBC. The former goalkeeper is part of BBC’s initiative called Change the Game which focuses on women’s sports.
Solo has been spotted at the USA’s World Cup games and has been critical of the team throughout the tournament. Prior to the World Cup, Solo questioned U.S. manager Jill Ellis’ leadership ability. After the USA’s 13-0 victory over Thailand, Solo noted the celebrations “were a little overboard.”
“Should the US have taken their foot off the pedal against Thailand? Absolutely not,” Solo explained, per CNN. “You do want the game to be celebrated and you do want to see players having fun but at the same time I thought some of the celebrations were a little overboard. A few seemed planned out and I do know some players spend a lot of time thinking about celebrations for the fans. It’s not always necessary.”
Solo Had a Miscarriage With Twins in 2018 & Was “Hours Away From Dying”
When Solo is not covering World Cup matches, she lives with her husband Jerramy Stevens in North Carolina on 50-acres of land. During an interview with Elle, Solo opened up about having a miscarriage with twins while she was running for president of the United States Soccer Federation in 2018.
“The doctor said I was hours from dying,” Solo told Elle. “They ended up having to remove my fallopian tube. That speech took a lot. Even before all that, it would have taken courage.”