Name at birth: Hope Amelia Solo
Hope Solo is the fiery and athletic goalkeeper who led the U.S. National Soccer team to the finals of the Women's World Cup in 2011. Hope Solo was a forward in her youth soccer days, scoring 109 goals in her high school career, but she switched to goalie at the University of Washington. She was a natural, starting from 1999-2002, winning All-American honors from 2000-2002 and ending her college career with a 1.02 goals-against average. She joined the U.S. National Team in 2000 and in 2005 became its starting goalie. Her athletic play, combined with her blue-eyed good looks and signature brunette ponytail, made her a fan favorite. She made the 2007 World Cup squad and started the team's first four games, but the tournament ended badly for Solo: Coach Greg Ryan replaced her with veteran Brianna Scurry for a semifinal match against Brazil. The U.S. lost, 4-0, and afterwards Solo told reporters "There's no doubt in my mind I would have made those saves... You have to live in the present. And you can't live by big names." Solo apologized and said she had been misunderstood, but Ryan blocked her from joining the team for its final World Cup 3rd-place game, in which the U.S. beat Norway, 4-1, with Scurry in goal. Ryan was fired later that year and Solo bounced back under new coach Pia Sundhage, being named the U.S. Soccer Female Athlete of the year in 2009. She played every minute of the 2011 World Cup, helping the U.S. win its way to the finals against Japan, where they lost on penalty kicks after the game finished tied at 2-2. Hope Solo also began playing professionally in 2003, with the Philadelphia Charge. She later played for teams including Goteborg of the Swedish First Division, Olympique Lyonnaise of the French First Division, and St. Louis Athletica. In 2011 she joined Chaz Bono and other celebrities on the TV show Dancing With the Stars.
Hope Solo is 5’9″ tall, according to U.S. Soccer… “Her family owns four chickens,” the U.S. Soccer website reported in 2011.
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