Published: Fri, December 08, 2017
Business | By Max Garcia

Hope Solo announces she will be running for US Soccer President

Hope Solo announces she will be running for US Soccer President

Hope Solo is running for president of the U.S. Soccer Federation, the organization that effectively fired her for comments she made at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

Earlier this week current president Sunil Gulati said he will now not stand for what would have been a fourth term in the role, but will focus on the U.S. bid for the 2026 World Cup and his leading roles at Federation Internationale de Football Association and CONCACAF.

Solo was given a six-month suspension from the us national team for comments she made during the Rio Olympics.

While Solo is one of the most decorated players in US Soccer history, she has had several off-the-field incidents that have damaged her reputation. (The charges have not been resolved yet according to press reports.) And in 2015, Solo was suspended from the national team for 30 days after her husband, ex-NFL player Jerramy Stevens, was arrested and charged with driving a U.S. Soccer team van under the influence. The 36-year-old announced her surprise candidacy on Thursday night on Facebook. That includes investing in youth development; pushing for equal pay for women; making youth soccer more accessible to all; and making finances more transparent.

Solo, 36, has won one World Cup (in 2015) and two Olympic gold medals (in '08 and '12) in a career that has included 202 caps with the US women's national team.

"What we have lost in America is belief in our system, in our coaches, in our talent pool, and in the governance of US Soccer", she said.

While Solo returning to the pitch may be a long shot, she isn't about to step away from the game.

Yes, you heard that right, Solo who has been on the outskirts of USA soccer since her suspension following last year's Rio Olympic Games when she called the Swedish team "cowards", is running. "We now must refocus our goals and come together as a soccer community to bring about the changes we desire". Her most recent club appearances were with the Seattle Reign in the National Women's Soccer League. As noted by ESPN, a number of other people already had announced their candidacy to replace him, among them former USA men's player Paul Caligiuri, soccer executive Kathy Carter, current USSF vice president Carlos Cordeiro, Boston-based attorney Steve Gans, businessman and soccer entrepreneur Paul Lapointe, former player and current broadcaster Kyle Martino, New York-based attorney Mike Winograd and former us player and current broadcaster Eric Wynalda.

Solo, though, may have the greatest potential to shake up the outcome of February's election.

"For more than a decade, she loomed menacingly between the posts, a muscular, hyper-focused, lightning-quick goalkeeper who seemed able to stop anything".

She recently accused Sepp Blatter of having sexually assaulted her at Fifa's Ballon d'Or awards ceremony in January 2013.

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