Hope Solo, shown after making a save in an exhibition game against China,… (Drew Hallowell / Getty Images )
LONDON -- Hope Solo is the best women's goalkeeper in the world. Yet she continues to make more news with her words than with her play.
Shortly after shutting out Colombia in the U.S. soccer team's second group-play game at the London Olympics, Solo took to Twitter to blast NBC TV analyst Brandi Chastain, who played 192 games for the national team and converted the penalty kick that gave the U.S. the 1999 World Cup title in a shootout win over China.
"Its 2 bad we cant have commentators who better represents the team&knows more about the game," she wrote. Then, three minutes later, she added: "Lay off commentating about defending and gking until you get more educated. The game has changed from a decade ago."
It's believed that Solo was upset over comments Chastain made about U.S. defender Rachel Buehler, who she said was playing too carelessly.
Then after praising her teammates for their play, Solo went after Chastain again in two rapid-fire tweets.
"Its important 2 our fans 2 enjoy the spirit of the olympics.Its not possible when sum1 on air is saying that a player is the worst defender!," she wrote before adding. "I feel bad 4 our fans that have 2 push mute....@brandichastain should be helping 2 grow the sport."
U.S. Coach Pia Sundhage was asked after the U.S. team's first Olympic match Wednesday whether she had cautioned her players about pitfalls of social media posting following the expulsion of a Greek athlete for posting racist comments on Twitter.
Sundhage, who has a Twitter account of her own, smiled and said no. In the wake of Solo's tirade Saturday, a spokesman for the U.S. team was asked the same question again.
"We don’t have anything to say about it," press officer Aaron Heifetz wrote in an email.
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