Hope Solo doesn't back down from tweets

Hope Solo doesn't back down from tweets

Credit: Getty Image

Hope Solo, left, and Brandi Chastain

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by Associated Press

KING5.com

Posted on July 30, 2012 at 3:46 AM

Updated Monday, Jul 30 at 11:18 AM

MANCHESTER, England  -- U.S. women's soccer goalkeeper Hope Solo didn't back down Monday from her Twitter outburst against NBC analyst Brandi Chastain, saying the tweets were her way of expressing her opinion about the quality of television announcers.

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Solo addressed the matter briefly on her 31st birthday during the team's tour of historic Old Trafford stadium, where the Americans will play North Korea on Tuesday. She didn't apologize or express regret, and she answered only one question about the matter, declining to address, among other things, whether a social media rant in the middle of the Olympics was the proper time and means to convey her feelings about broadcasters.

"It's not about what made me unhappy," Solo said. "It's not 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 tomorrow's game against North Korea, playing at Old Trafford. The team's excited. It's my birthday. I don't really care to answer any other questions about Brandi.”

She indeed declined to answer follow-up questions about the matter, including whether she has spoken to Chastain.

Solo railed against Chastain's commentary following the Americans' 3-0 win over Colombia on Saturday, upset over Chastain's criticisms of the team's defensive play. She 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.”

The outburst led to a meeting with Solo, coach Pia Sundhage and the team captains on Sunday, with the coach expressing concern about how the tweets reflected on the team's image and the need to cut out distractions and focus on the next game. The coach did not tell Solo to stop tweeting.

Solo has never been shy about expressing opinions. Her criticism of then-coach Greg Ryan got her kicked off the 2007 World Cup team. She's also been promoting a memoir that is scheduled for release two days after the Olympics.

Chastain, one of the most accomplished players in U.S. team history, has refused to be drawn into the dispute, saying Monday that she's doing her job as an "honest and objective journalist at the Olympics.”

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