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State News Olympics Blog

Hope Solo's criticism of Brandi Chastain unwarranted

By Stephen Brooks          Posted: 07/30/12 6:36pm         

U.S. goaltender Hope Solo isn’t backing down from her critical comments toward broadcaster and former U.S. defender Brandi Chastain.

Chastain, most well known for removing her jersey after sinking the game-winning penalty kick in the 1999 World Cup, criticized the Americans defensive efforts after their 3-0 victory over Colombia on Saturday. In response, Solo took to Twitter for a series of rants directed toward Chastain that suggest the analyst “lay off commenting about defending,” until she’s more educated and that the game has changed since Chastain’s playing days.

“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,” Solo told reporters Monday. “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.”

Solo appears to be eschewing the typical respect and bond amongst Olympians from the same country in her response to Chastain’s criticism. I didn’t hear the comments regarding the Americans’ defensive ability, but that is Chastain’s job, after all. Fans and other broadcasters wouldn’t respect her if she just sat there showering the U.S. with love and never said a bad thing about them.

One would think the 31-year-old Solo, widely regarding as one of, if not the best, goaltender in the world would have slightly thicker skin.

Sure, maybe she was caught off guard by a former American player criticizing the current squad, but with as much coverage and notoriety she’s received since last summer’s World Cup, she should be beyond the “kicking and screaming” stage when it comes to being criticized.

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