Curious about the United States Women's National Team's Hope Solo? Get to know the soccer star here.
Who is Hope Solo?
Hope Amelia Solo, aka Hope Solo, is an American former soccer goalkeeper on the United States Women's National Team, who's a self-proclaimed "champion, feminist and activist" and has "has dedicated her life to the game she loves and to making the world a better place for women everywhere," according to her official website.
Specifically, she's a 5'9, 148-pound soccer all-star who wears the No. 1 on her jersey. She was born on July 30, 1981, and she hails from Richland, Washington. She's also recognized as one of the highest paid female soccer players, earning an estimated $22,000 to $65,000 per year, according to Time magazine.
In her life outside of soccer, Hope Solo is also the wife of former American football tight end Jerramy Stevens, the daughter of Judy Lynn and Jeffrey Solo and the sister of Teresa Obert, David Solo and Marcus Solo. Moreover, she's the author of a best-selling 2012 autobiography aptly titled, Solo: A Memoir of Hope. She's competed as a contestant on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars in 2011, advancing to the final four. And she's a fan of beach volleyball, snowboarding, boating, reading and traveling, according to Team USA.
Hope Solo also runs #DearHope through her official website, which she calls her "effort to bring all of us together." #DearHope is a place for her to discuss the issues that matter most to her fans who submit questions, experiences or issues with which they're dealing.
What are Hope Solo's biggest accomplishments?
Hope Solo has a number of career highlights under her belt. After all, Solo is the "most-capped and winningest goalkeeper in women’s soccer history," according to her official website. Here are some of her biggest accomplishments as the goalkeeper for the United States women's national soccer team from 2000 to 2016.
- Hope Solo holds the single-season and career record for most goalkeeper wins at 26 and 153, respectively.
- She also has the most career shutouts at 102.
- Solo also holds the longest undefeated streak by a goalkeeper at 55 consecutive matches, spanning from 2002 to 2008.
- Solo has made more appearances and starts than any other keeper at 202 and 192, respectively.
- Solo is a three-time Olympian (2008, 2012 and 2016) and a two-time Olympic medalist (with two golds from Beijin 2008 and London 2012).
- Solo is a two-time FIFA World Cup Golden Glove Award winner (2011 and 2015).
- She became the first goalkeeper to win the Bronze Ball as the third-best player of the 2011 FIFA World Cup.
Of course, these accomplishments didn't come easy. Solo has worked hard throughout her career, and she's even been through some serious injuries. For example, she had a taxing shoulder-replacement surgery in 2017.
Solo also had quite a controversial career. For example, she was put on a six-month suspension and her contract with U.S. Soccer was terminated following the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, after she reportedly called Sweden’s players “cowards,” according to the Seattle Times.
“The comments by Hope Solo after the match against Sweden during the 2016 Olympics were unacceptable and do not meet the standard of conduct we require from our National Team players,” former U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati said, according to ESPN. “Beyond the athletic arena, and beyond the results, the Olympics celebrate and represent the ideals of fair play and respect. We expect all of our representatives to honor those principles, with no exceptions. Taking into consideration the past incidents involving Hope, as well as the private conversations we’ve had requiring her to conduct herself in a manner befitting a U.S. National Team member, U.S. Soccer determined this is the appropriate disciplinary action.”
But Solo has said that she believes her termination is due to other underlying reasons. She also lobbied for women’s players to earn equal salaries to the male national team players, and told the Seattle Times that she believes her contract was ended because of this.
“My contract got terminated because of my fight for equal pay with the United States Soccer Federation,” Solo reportedly told the Seattle Times.
In March 2016, Solo joined a number of her other teammates to file a complaint of wage discrimination against the United States Soccer Federation, citing inequities between its compensation for players on the women's national team and players on the men's national team. Then, two years later, she also filed a federal lawsuit against the United States Soccer Federation.
What is Hope Solo's background?
Hope Solo was born and raised in the small town of Richland, Washington, which is about three hours southeast of Seattle. There, she attended Richland High School, where she led her team to a state title at the high school level and twice earned Parade All-American honors.
While Solo did not enjoy playing goalkeeper as a child, she learned to love the position while playing in college, according to Team USA. She chose to stay close to home when she went off to college at the University of Washington, where she became the college's goalkeeper under the guidance of former United States Women’s National Team goalkeeper Amy Griffin. She reset the University of Washington's record books from 1998 to 2002 as her university's all-leader in shutouts and saves. And, as such, was named All-Pac-10 four times and All-American three times, and she became the first goalkeeper to ever earn Pac-10 Player of the Year honors. She also took home a Hermann Award as a senior.
In 1999, the United States Women's National Team took notice and called her out for her first full national team camp. Shortly thereafter, she earned her first cap in an 8-0 win against Iceland. Her professional career was full of successes from that point on.
Where can you learn more about Hope Solo?
Learn more about Hope Solo here:
- Hope Solo's Official Twitter Page
- Hope Solo's Official Instagram Profile
- Hope Solo's Official Facebook Page
- Hope Solo's Official Website
- Hope Solo's Official Team USA Page
AnnaMarie Houlis is a feminist, a freelance journalist and an adventure aficionado with an affinity for impulsive solo travel. She spends her days writing about women’s empowerment from around the world. You can follow her work on her blog, HerReport.org, and follow her journeys on Instagram @her_report, Twitter @herreportand Facebook.