Solo apologizes for World Cup outburst

October 13, 2007

ST. LOUIS -- U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo apologized for harsh criticism of coach Greg Ryan during the World Cup in a statement issued Saturday night about a half-hour before the team's exhibition against Mexico.

Solo also decided not to dress for the opener. She said she would not make any further comments beyond the statement.

"This public apology comes later than it should have, but I hope that does not diminish the fact that I am truly sorry.

"I made a mistake and I take full responsibility for my actions. I let my teammates down and have lost their trust."

Ryan opted for veteran Briana Scurry in the Cup semifinals, a 4-0 loss to the Brazil that led to a third-place finish for the top-rated Americans. The 25-year-old Solo had allowed two goals in four World Cup starts and had a shutout string of nearly 300 minutes, and lashed out at her coach, saying, "You can't live by big names. You can't live in the past."

Solo, 11 years younger than Scurry, made it a point in the statement to "especially apologize" to Ryan and Scurry.

"There is no excuse for insulting a coach or a teammate," Solo said. "My focus now is solely on reconciliation with the team."

Solo is one of three goalies on the roster for the three-game exhibition series against Mexico, but Ryan said Friday he wasn't certain if she would get any playing time.

Solo's decision to not dress reflected a desire to get back in the good graces of her coach and teammates. She was an excused no-show at Friday's practice, apparently wanting to avoid further controversy.

"I am here to support the team for these games, but after apologizing in person to all my teammates and the coaches, I have made the choice not to suit up for these games since I believe this is the first step in the healing process," Solo said.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press