To the joy of many football fans, the USWNT were knocked out of the 2016 Olympics by Sweden on Friday night in Rio. Hope Solo’s post-game outrage highlights not only the issues she has as an athlete, but also exposes her deepest personal demons.
Hope Solo might be a great athlete, but first and foremost she’ll be remembered as a perpetrator of family violence. The assaults against her step-sister and nephew aren’t going away because she’s made a name for herself in the most popular sport in the world. Story of redemption? No thanks. If her return to the Olympic stage was meant to be the final piece in that puzzle, you’ll notice that all she has done is confirmed what the world already knows about her- She is an angry woman who doesn’t care who she steps on as long as she gets to make her point.
According to Solo Sweden’s choice to play a knockout game on the most prestigious stage in the world with a plan is cowardice. That’s fascinating insight from someone who has shown the world that she is a walking, talking coward.
The USWNT don’t have many friends outside of America. Maybe it’s the continual dominance that has made neutral fans grow tired, perhaps it is the bravado that comes along with such a dominant period, but for some (including the person bashing away at the keyboard to get their thoughts onto this page) it’s the likes of Solo getting in people’s faces (so to speak) and taking every opportunity to have a pot-shot at those around them to make themselves feel better.
If you want to be arrogant because you’ve had sustained success, go for it. But it’s a dangerous road to walk down because once you stumble, you fall pretty quickly.
Hope Solo is a hypocrite. Don’t give her a free pass because of who she is. One of the greatest things about sport is that as long as you don’t break the rules, people generally aren’t going to care how you win. Cowardice? No, not even close. Whinging because she didn’t think the best team won? For someone who has as much exposure to professional sport as she has, those comments are amateur at best. How about credit where credit is due? Or is that a concept that was glossed over her development as a professional athlete? Sure, she acknowledged that Sweden are moving on while they go home, but that’s hardly credit, it’s stating the obvious.
Fingers crossed the 2016 Games were Solo’s last so we aren’t subject to more of her imagined self-importance.