Hope Solo deems USWNT celebrations 'overboard'

Hope Solo is spending the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup as a guest columnist for The Guardian and in a piece published Wednesday opined on the U.S. nomen’s national team’s celebrations during a 13-0 drubbing of Thailand in the opener.

In short: The two-time Olympic gold medalist and World Cup champion wasn’t a fan. But the former goalkeeper was on board with a special gesture by Carli Lloyd after the match.

Solo: USWNT celebrations ‘a little overboard’

The win for the U.S. made tournament history for most goals scored by a team and largest margin of victory. Solo had no problem with the final score — “When you respect your opponent you don’t all of a sudden sit back and try not to score,” she wrote — but did take exception to the celebrations given it.

Solo wrote for The Guardian:

“It was tough for me to watch some of the US goal celebrations – which have come under criticism – considering the scoreline. You do want the game to be celebrated and you do want to see players having fun but at the same time I thought some of the celebrations were a little overboard.”

The USWNT turned a 3-0 halftime score into a demolition and continued to celebrate for every goal. Canadian analysts said they were “disgusted” at the display and asserted the players had no decency nor respect.

Megan Rapinoe called it an “expression of joy” and retired superstar Abby Wambach came to the team’s defense in her first World Cup off the pitch.

Celebrations capture ‘rawness of moment’

One of the best and most iconic celebrations ever was an unplanned one in 1999 when Brandi Chastain famously ripped off her shirt after the title-winning penalty kick. Twenty years later it’s almost more common to see coordinated celebrations in professional sports.

Solo mentioned it in her piece on why she wasn’t a fan:

“A few seemed planned out and I do know some players spend a lot of time thinking about celebrations for the fans. It’s not always necessary. We haven’t won the World Cup yet. My favorite celebrations capture the rawness of the moment and are filled with spontaneous emotion. When that happens you actually see how much passion there is in the sport and how much pride the players have.”

The USWNT approached the tournament as business, meeting questions about their fight for equal pay with answers about focusing on repeating as world champions. In their first match out of the gate, according to some opinions, they went the opposite direction and celebrated goals like they were already title-winners.

Postgame moments showed true U.S. colors

After the final minute expired, U.S. players approached Thailand to console them. Alex Morgan, who scored a record-tying five goals, spoke with Miranda Nild and told her to keep her head up.

Lloyd was seen speaking with goalkeeper Sukanya Chor Charoenying, whom she walked off the field with and gave praise to in postgame comments. Solo said it was “one of the classiest things” she saw that day.

10 PHOTOS
USWNT highlights from the Women's World Cup
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USWNT highlights from the Women's World Cup
United States' Carli Lloyd, center, celebrates with teammates after scoring their side's third goal during the Women's World Cup Group F soccer match between United States and Chile at Parc des Princes in Paris, France, Sunday, June 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
Chile goalkeeper Claudia Endler lunges for the ball to make a safe during the Women's World Cup Group F soccer match between United States and Chile at Parc des Princes in Paris, France, Sunday, June 16, 2019. US won 3-0. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
United States' Carli Lloyd celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the Women's World Cup Group F soccer match between the United States and Chile at the Parc des Princes in Paris, Sunday, June 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
United States' Carli Lloyd, left, celebrates with teammates after scoring the opening goal during the Women's World Cup Group F soccer match between United States and Chile at Parc des Princes in Paris, France, Sunday, June 16, 2019. Lloyd scored twice in US' 3-0 victory. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
United States' Megan Rapinoe, right, congratulates teammate Alex Morgan after scoring her fifth goal during the Women's World Cup Group F soccer match between the United States and Thailand at the Stade Auguste-Delaune in Reims, France, Tuesday, June 11, 2019. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)
United States' Alex Morgan, centre, scores her team's fifth goal during the Women's World Cup Group F soccer match between the United States and Thailand at the Stade Auguste-Delaune in Reims, France, Tuesday, June 11, 2019. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)
REIMS, FRANCE - JUNE 11: Mallory Pugh of USA shots to goal during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France group F match between USA and Thailand at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 11, 2019 in Reims, France. (Photo by Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
REIMS, FRANCE - JUNE 11: Megan Rapinoe of United States of America celebrates with the supporters after the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France group F match between USA and Thailand at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 11, 2019 in Reims, France. (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
REIMS, FRANCE - JUNE 11: Mallory Pugh of the USA celebrates after scoring her team's eleventh goal during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France group F match between USA and Thailand at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 11, 2019 in Reims, France. (Photo by Cathrin Mueller - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
REIMS, FRANCE - JUNE 11: Final score on the scoreboard after the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France group F match between USA and Thailand at Stade Auguste Delaune on June 11, 2019 in Reims, France. (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
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