LONDON: United States women’s goalkeeper Hope Solo is at the centre of a Twitter storm all of her own making as she appears to be pursuing more headlines off the pitch than on it writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
In June Solo received a public warning from the US Anti-Doping Agency after a June urine test detected a banned substance. She was cleared after explaining that she had been prescribed a pre-menstrual medication and was not aware it contained any banned substances.
Solo also raised eyebrows with her claim about Olympic Village escapades at a previous Olympics before prompting the latest controversy centres with a Twitter assault on Brandi Chastain, who is working as a football analyst for NBC, a US broadcaster.
Chastain – who secured all-time iconic status in 1999 when, at the end of the Women’s World Cup Final, she ripped off her shirt in bra-revealing delight – had criticised the US’ attacking play during their 3-0 win over Colombia.
Solo, who publishes an autobiography after the end of the Games, tweeted that Chastain should “lay off commentating about defending” and goalkeeping “until you get more educated” and “the game has changed from a decade ago.”
She was questioned about her comments on Monday, her 31st birthday and during the team’s visit to Manchester United’s Old Trafford where they were due to play North Korea.
She said: “It’s not just about one game. I have my beliefs that the best commentators and the best analysts should be analyzing come Olympics, come World Cups, and it’s only my opinion.
“You can take it or leave it, to be honest, so it’s my opinion, and I think analysts and commentators should bring energy and excitement and passion for the game, and a lot of knowledge, and I think it’s important to help build the game, and I don’t think Brandi has that.
“It’s just my opinion, and nothing else really matters, to be honest. What matters is the game against North Korea, playing at Old Trafford.”
NBC Sports responded with a statement in support of Chastain, saying: “We are thrilled to be able to offer such complete and compelling coverage of the entire Olympic soccer tournament and Brandi has been doing an outstanding job. We wish the U.S. women’s team the best of luck.”
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