Soccer star Hope Solo has had a tumultuous few weeks. She was dragged on the internet and given a six-month suspension for calling her Swedish opponents “cowards” after losing to them at the Rio Olympics.
Following the controversy, the U.S. Women's National Soccer Team decided to terminate Solo’s contract altogether, and a leaked video clip shows her candid reaction to learning the heartbreaking news.
The clip was released by the website FullScreen from an episode of the documentary show “Keeping Score,” which features Solo.
Her first visible reaction is shock as she asks, “It’s not just a suspension?!” and a montage begins showing her in tears, swearing, and being comforted by her husband Jerramy Stevens.
“17 f***ing years and it’s over!” Solo exclaims in the video. It’s clear that she didn’t anticipate her punishment to be so severe.
Her comments about Sweden were admittedly unsportsmanlike and inappropriate; however, coming off such a huge loss would invoke an uncontrollable level of frustration in most people.
Solo and her teammates were on a mission to fight for equal pay amounting to what their male counterparts are paid. “To make our argument for equal pay, winning the Olympics would be massive,” said Solo’s former U.S. teammate Megan Rapinoe.
With that in mind, their performance in Rio was about much more than titles and medals. Their loss against Sweden may have cut Solo a bit deeper than other losses amid their ongoing struggle to close the gender pay gap.
Ironically, gender inequality is present even beyond paychecks as Solo’s whole career has been threatened as a result of her actions and yet U.S. swimmer Ryan Lochte, who blatantly lied about being robbed in Rio, seems to be gaining more fame.
He may have lost some endorsements, but he wasn’t dropped from his team, the public has mostly treated the incident as a laughing matter, and his celebrity status outside of the pool is in full swing as he prepares to appear on “Dancing with the Stars.”
Aside for the upcoming episode of “Keeping Score,” Solo is essentially being forced into the shadows for speaking too candidly. The organization has certainly made an example out of her for other female athletes to be very careful with what they say and do.
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