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Stars That Died

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Who is Hope Amelia Solo?

Who is Hope Amelia Solo? The sporting world knows her as Hope Solo, she  is an American soccer goalkeeper playing for the Seattle Sounders Women. Solo has played for the United States women's national soccer team since 2000.


Solo was  born July 30, 1981 in Richland, Washington on July 30, 1981.[1][2] Her father Jeffrey, of Italian descent who grew up in the Bronx, was a sometimes-homeless Vietnam War veteran. It was Jeffrey who taught her how to play soccer. Although her parents divorced when she was six and she lived with her mother, Solo maintained a close relationship with her father, who continued to be a major influence in her life until his sudden death of heart failure in June 2007.[3][4][5]

Amateur and Collegiate career

Solo has played soccer with the Three Rivers Soccer Club in the Tri-Cities. As a forward at Richland High School, Solo scored 109 goals, leading her team to three consecutive league titles from 1996–1998 and a state championship in her senior year.[6] She was twice named a Parade All American. At the University of Washington, Solo switched to the goalkeeper position and was the team's all-time leader in shutouts, saves, and goals-against average (GAA). She was a four-time All-Pac-10 selection and a three-time NSAA All-American.

Club career

Following her college career, Solo was drafted for the now defunct WUSA team Philadelphia Charge in 2003. She made 19 league appearances for Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC of Göteborg, Sweden in the Swedish Premier Division in 2004[7] and played for Olympique Lyonnais in the French First Division in 2005. She made seven appearances for the French club.[8] She now plays for the Sounders Women.

Saint Louis Athletica

On September 16, 2008, Solo was one of the three players drafted for Saint Louis Athletica in the WPS allocation of national team members, with the new league starting play in April 2009. Solo let in six goals in the first four games as Athletica got off to a very slow 0–2–2 start in their first season. She conceded eight goals in her next 13 games and finished the season with eight shutouts. In 2009 Solo was named the WPS Goalkeeper of the Year.

Atlanta Beat

In May 2010 the Saint Louis Athletica folded and Solo signed with another WPS team, Atlanta Beat, along with two St. Louis teammates.[9] As her previous number (1) was taken, she took #78 for the Beat. Solo's comments on social networking website Twitter led to two separate controversies; after she accused Boston vBreakers supporters of offensive chanting and racism, then questioned the integrity of match officials and the league itself following the Beat's 1–0 defeat to Washington Freedom.[10] The second outburst resulted in a $2,500 fine and one-game suspension.[11] After the end of the season, Solo underwent surgery on her right shoulder on September 22.[12]


Ahead of the 2011 Women's Professional Soccer season, Solo signed for a new franchise magicJack. After one season with the magicJack, the club lost its franchise on October 25, 2011 in the soon to be folded WPS league.

Seattle Sounders Women

On February 14, 2012, it was announced that Solo had signed with the Seattle Sounders Women.[13]

International career

Solo played for U.S. junior national soccer teams before joining the full U.S. national team in 2000. Her senior debut came in an 8–0 win over Iceland at Davidson, North Carolina in April 2000.[14] She was named a member of the Olympic team in 2004, making the 2004 Olympics in Athens as an alternate. Solo has been the team's first choice goalkeeper since 2005. She has recorded several clean sheets and once went 1,054 minutes without allowing a goal, a streak that ended in a 4–1 victory against France in the Algarve Cup.

2007 FIFA Women's World Cup

Solo was the starting goalkeeper for the United States in the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup, giving up two goals in four games including consecutive shutouts of Sweden, Nigeria and England. Heading into the semifinal match against Brazil, U.S. coach Greg Ryan benched Solo in favor of 36-year-old veteran U.S. keeper Briana Scurry, who had a strong history of performance against the Brazilians but had not played a complete game in three months.[15] The U.S. lost to Brazil 4–0, ending a 51–game (regulation time) undefeated streak, while playing much of the match with only 10 players after midfielder Shannon Boxx received two yellow cards at the end of the first half.

Post-2007 World Cup fallout

In an impromptu interview following the match, a clearly upset[16] Solo criticized Ryan's decision. "It was the wrong decision, and I think anybody that knows anything about the game knows that. There's no doubt in my mind I would have made those saves. And the fact of the matter is it's not 2004 anymore. It's not 2004. And it's 2007, and I think you have to live in the present. And you can't live by big names. You can't live in the past. It doesn't matter what somebody did in an Olympic gold medal game in the Olympics three years ago. Now is what matters, and that's what I think."[17][18] Many viewed her comments as being critical of Scurry's performance, although Solo released an apologetic statement the following day saying that was not her intent.[19] On September 29, 2007, coach Greg Ryan announced that Solo would not be with the team and would not play in the third-place match against Norway the following day.[20][21] Team captain Kristine Lilly stated that the decision on Solo was made by the team as a group.[22] The U.S. went on to win against Norway 4–1.
Solo was named to the U.S. women's national soccer team roster for the post-World Cup tour, but she did not attend the first workout ahead of the first game against Mexico. Even though the players' contract with the federation stipulated that anyone on the World Cup roster had the right to play in the tour, she did not play in any of the three games against Mexico, being replaced by Briana Scurry for the first and third matches, and Nicole Barnhart for the second. The third match against Mexico, on October 20, 2007, marked the end of the U.S. women's national team's 2007 season. The team regrouped in January 2008 to begin preparations for the 2008 Summer Olympics.[23] Ryan left the team after his contract was not renewed in December 2007. [24]

2008 Summer Olympics

On June 23, 2008, it was announced Solo would be the starting goalkeeper for the U.S. team at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. In a reversal of roles from the 2004 Olympics, Brianna Scurry did not make the team, though she was an alternate. On August 21, the U.S. women's team won the gold medal by defeating Brazil 1–0 in extra time, in no small measure due to Solo's performance as she stopped an energetic Brazilian attack, making save after save.[25] After the team won gold, Solo appeared on NBC Today Show, and she stated in a 2012 article appearing in ESPN The Magazine that she was drunk while on air. "When we were done partying, we got out of our dresses, got back into our stadium coats and, at 7 a.m. with no sleep, went on the Today show drunk."[26]

2011 FIFA Women's World Cup

Despite missing much of the qualifying campaign with a shoulder injury, Solo was named to the U.S. roster for the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup in Germany.[27] After keeping clean sheets in group C wins over North Korea and Colombia, Solo conceded two goals in the 2–1 loss to Sweden which consigned the Americans to second place in the group and a quarterfinal meeting with Brazil.
The quarterfinal match between the U.S. and Brazil was sent into a penalty shoot-out after U.S. forward Abby Wambach tied the game at 2–2 in stoppage time at the end of extra-time. Solo saved the third Brazil penalty kick by Daiane, helping the U.S. secure a semifinal spot against France.[28] After the quarterfinal victory, Solo commented on the performance and spirit of the U.S. players during the match, "Even when we were a player down and a goal behind in extra time, you sensed that something was going to happen," and added that "[the] team kept fighting. You can't teach that. It's a feeling – and we play with that feeling."[28]
Solo became the twenty-seventh American woman, and second goalkeeper, to reach 100 caps with her start in the 3–1 semifinal win over France.[29] Talking to the media after the match, Solo reflected upon the tournament so far, "It was a hard-fought road [...] It hasn't been easy, but this is where we expected to be. We came this far, we better go all the way."[29]
In the final, the U.S. team lost 3–1 in a penalty shootout to Japan, after twice taking the lead in an eventual 2–2 draw. Solo expressed admiration for the Japanese team and offered her congratulations.[30] Solo won the "Golden Glove" award for best goalkeeper, and the "Bronze Ball" award for her overall performance. She was also featured in the "All-star" team of the tournament.[31]

2012 Summer Olympics

Leading up to the Summer Olympics, Solo received a public warning from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) after a June 15 urine test concluded the banned substance Canrenone had been detected. Solo said in a statement she had been prescribed a pre-menstrual medication and was not aware it contained any banned substances. She cooperated with the USADA and provided them with the necessary information to prove that it was a mistake. Her story checked out and she was cleared with a public warning. [32] The positive test did not require Solo to withdraw from any pre-Olympic matches. On August 9, she won gold with the USA Women's football team.

Other activities

Solo was a contestant on the 13th season of Dancing with the Stars. Her partner was Maksim Chmerkovskiy and she was eliminated in the semi-final round. She appeared nude in ESPN's 2011 "Body Issue." [33]
Week # Dance/Song Judges' score Result
Inaba Goodman Tonioli
1 Viennese Waltz/ "Satellite" 7 7 7 Safe
2 Jive/"Girlfriend" 6 7 6 Safe
3 Cha-Cha-Cha/"Tonight (I'm Lovin' You)" 8 8 8 Last to be called Safe
4 Foxtrot/"You've Got a Friend in Me" 8 8 8 Safe
5 Tango/"Livin' on a Prayer" 8 8 8 Last to be called Safe
6 Rumba/"Seasons of Love" 7 6 7 Last to be called Safe
Group Broadway Dance/"Big Spender" & "Money Money" No Scores Given
7 Samba/"Werewolves of London" 8 8 8 Safe
Team Paso Doble/"Bring Me To Life" 9 8 9
8 Quickstep/"Valerie" 9 9 9 Safe
Instant Jive/"The Best Damn Thing" 8 9 8
9 Paso Doble/"Can't Be Tamed" 7 7 7 Eliminated
Argentine Tango/"Whatever Lola Wants" 8 8 8
Cha-Cha-Cha Relay/"I Like How It Feels" Awarded 4 Points

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