Skip to content

Hope Solo angry with Brazil’s ‘unsportsmanlike antics’

Jul 12, 2011, 12:39 PM EDT

USA's goalkeeper Hope Solo (top) falls o

It’s the biggest headline coming out of Germany today. Yes, Deadly spider shuts down German supermarket. But the next biggest headline is this: Hope Solo says ‘We’re bringing home the cup.’ That’s pretty bold talk, even after the miracle-ish win over Brazil.

But the interesting thing to me about Hope’s comments following the win over Brazil is not really her prediction that the U.S. will win it all. It’s her take on the Brazilian team and the way they played against the U.S. An excerpt from her remarks on the Jim Rome Show:

You can get too involved with the emotion of the game and not play, not continue your focus and not play to the best of your ability or you can manage those emotions. I found myself extremely overwhelmed with anger towards the ref, towards the Brazilians, the players, their antics, and their unsportsmanship. I found myself just incredibly angered, but I knew there was still a way to win this so I did everything I could to manage my emotions, to stay focused, to stay in the zone, and that’s what I was able to do.”

Did once-proud Brazil really devolve into a cheating machine against the Americans? Take a look at this graph from ESPN Soccer’s Roger Bennett:

But Marta herself led the descent into the dark side of the ugly game. Niggling, heckling, faking injuries and flopping to run out the clock. Her performance stooped so low, she achieved a rare feat — the heckling of the Brazilian jersey. Neutrals in the crowd whistled her every touch. The world’s finest female soccer player transformed herself into a wrestling heel.

And from USA Today:

There were heated exchanges on the pitch as well, where minute by minute — all 122 of them — tensions rose till the climatic shootout.

Marta found it hard to deal with and she turned into the villain of the match as her brilliant play was offset by constant whining.

It didn’t help that she set up and converted Brazil’s penalty to level the match in the 65th minute and seemingly secured the second with a delicate volley in the 92nd minute. The crowd still turned against her, with boos and whistles growing louder every time she touched the ball.

“They love me,” Marta said about the crowd, in a remark dripping with irony. Even the referee had to intervene, giving her a yellow card for protesting on the verge of halftime.

A pretty shameful performance for the country that’s supposed to play host to the 2016 Olympic Games. Then of course there was some epically bad officiating:

Hope Solo: ‘We’ll be bringing home the Cup’ [Sports Radio Interviews]
Marta, Brazil take a turn to the dark side [ESPN]

  1. vikesfansteve - Jul 12, 2011 at 2:36 PM

    That’s has a lot to do with why American’s in general don’t like soccer like other sports because of the mentality. In soccer much like baseball cheating is trying. However the difference is baseball players don’t fake injuries & flop on the field. Hockey & Football players will play with broken bones & no teeth. Americans like that. Show’s that they are tough. Then you see a soccer player writhing around on the field holding their leg screaming in agony & the replay shows they weren’t even touched. American’s hate that.

    • medtxpack - Jul 12, 2011 at 5:24 PM

      partly why everyone is hating on the Miami Heat as well. its crap and its not sport. its acting.

      • comeonnowguys - Jul 13, 2011 at 9:20 AM

        I’d +2 you guys if I could. That’s exactly it. I think there was some obvious predisposition to root against the Heat, but they did themselves no favors with the flopping (and then the smirking when they got away with it).

        I enjoy watching soccer, but it feels way too much like the WWE to see someone writhing in pain only to hop up and run away 30 seconds later.

    • melodyb94 - Jul 13, 2011 at 4:05 PM

      Or it shows that they’re too stupid to do anything else so a few broken teeth is a small price to pay for the their ridiculous salaries.

  2. letmesignup6t9 - Jul 12, 2011 at 4:08 PM

    Lets take a vote: Hope Solo could pass a gender test

  3. florida727 - Jul 12, 2011 at 5:34 PM

    “vikesfansteve” brings up a great point. That idiot skirt on Brazil is carted off the field ON A STRETCHER and before they can even get her to the sideline, she miraculously unstraps herself from the stretcher and RUNS back onto the field. And the rest of world wonders why Americans thumb their nose at the ‘sport’? Seriously? How can you respect a sport that allows that? Oh yeah, yellow carded her. Wow. That had an impact on her the rest of the game.

  4. allthin7 - Jul 12, 2011 at 9:03 PM

    Wambach’s goal came during the added time likely due to the “flop and stretcher injury” stoppage. Poetic justice!

  5. pjmarn6 - Jul 12, 2011 at 10:15 PM


    • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 12, 2011 at 11:34 PM

      Sorry….maybe you should just go back to watching Chuck Norris movies.

      • metalhead65 - Jul 13, 2011 at 2:12 AM

        if given a choice between the 2 who would not choose a Chuck Norris movie over soccer?

    • melodyb94 - Jul 13, 2011 at 4:03 PM

      Americans have no appreciation for any game that requires actual tact and talent, this is why baseball and football are so big. Any idiot (and we’ve seen plenty of them on TV and Twitter) can play….well that is as long as you start the droids early enough. Though soccer has lately been plagued with a lot of acting, it’s still the most watched sport in the WORLD….the US isn’t the World…though it always thinks it is. Another reason American’s can’t appreciate the sport is because their gratification whores…they need instant gratification and can’t see the beauty and grace and athleticism it takes to create a play in soccer. I guess that is why half the population is also over-weight. No one wants to get off their ass and move, but they will spend billions on the newest weight-loss pill!!


      • asuthyo - Jul 14, 2011 at 12:56 PM

        If you honestly believe that soccer requires more talents and athleticism and is more complex than football, basketball, or baseball then your a complete moron. Your lack of knowledge about these other sports is absurd.

      • clefan12 - Jul 14, 2011 at 3:25 PM

        Yes, there is no more “beauty and grace” than watching a grown man weep as he grabs his ankle when a call doesn’t go his way. The stunning beauty cannot be explained. The same beauty and grace that a two year old has during a tantrum.

      • morganm86 - Jul 14, 2011 at 9:23 PM

        Oh Melody, you completely lost the point. I am a woman soccer player who played very seriously all through my childhood and teen years and who watches soccer somewhat regularly, not just at WC time. I clearly enjoy the game, think it is a beautiful game, and appreciate the difficulty and skill it takes to play. However, I do have to agree with the posters here that it is so frustrating and annoying to see people flop when they weren’t hardly touched or maybe not even touched at all. One of the things I admire most about soccer is the toughness it takes to play. To play 45 minutes straight, with no timeouts, no rests, nothing, takes incredible endurance and fitness. Combine that with the fact that an average soccer midfielder runs between 2 and 3 miles a game, and the battling that goes on for headers and to win challenges, and the toughness is just unbelievable. When people flop for nothing, it really ruins that aspect of the game, especially when a lot of the time they could have won the ball and gained the advantage the old fashioned way by just staying on their feet. That is what bothers people and bothers me. I do have to say, the women do it waaaay less than the men, and I think that is to be respected. Play a tough game tough and quit taking the easy way out.

  6. razedeyebrow - Jul 13, 2011 at 10:17 AM

    Bring me Solo and the nookie!