Hope Solo to run for president of US Soccer Federation

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Solo made the announcement Thursday night, December 7, 2017, on Facebook.

US Soccer Federation chief Sunil Gulati said this week that he would not seek re-election next year, indicating that the qualifying debacle influenced his decision.

The USSF boss, an economist who remains a member of the Federation Internationale de Football Association council, told ESPN that the national team's failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup was the reason for him not entering the battle for presidency.

FILE - In this April 10, 2016, file photo, United States' Hope Solo waits for the team's worldwide friendly soccer match against Colombia in Chester, Pa.

Former US women's national team goalkeeper Hope Solo joined the crowded race for the US Soccer Federation presidency on Thursday.

Solo announced her candidacy on Twitter and FaceBook with a message about her family's struggles with the money required for young people in the United States to participate in top-level youth soccer programs and questions about the financial dealings of USSF. She recorded 103 shutouts in 202 worldwide matches, making her the greatest women's goalkeeper of all time. Her accomplishments include two Olympic gold medals (2008 and 2012) as well as a World Cup championship in 2015. She last played in a game when the US was eliminated by Sweden in the quarterfinals of the 2016 Olympics. She called Sweden, the Americans' quarterfinal opponent, "cowards".

She was suspended from the team shortly thereafter and has not returned.

Solo, 36, has won one World Cup (in 2015) and two Olympic gold medals (in '08 and '12) in a career that has included 202 caps with the USA women's national team.

But she's also been dogged by a number of off-the-field controversies.

The former star goalkeeper has announced that she is running for U.S. Soccer president.

Solo said she is campaigning on four core principles: She aims to create a winning culture in U.S. Soccer, starting with youth development; she'll push for equal pay for the women's national team and all women within U.S. Soccer; she'll address the "pay-to-play" model to make soccer accessible to all; and she'll stress transparency within the federation. In her introductory note, she both laid out her issues with US Soccer's "outdated" and "arrogant" system and explained how she would plan to effect change. "We now must refocus our goals and come together as a soccer community to bring about the changes we desire".

- She was suspended for the third-place game against Norway at the 2007 Women's World Cup after blasting head coach Greg Ryan for dropping her in favor of Briana Scurry, the hero of the 1999 Women's World Cup triumph, for the semifinals.