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Hope Solo says problem with soccer in U.S. is that it’s a ‘rich, white kid’ sport | TribLIVE.com
U.S./World Sports

Hope Solo says problem with soccer in U.S. is that it’s a ‘rich, white kid’ sport

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World Cup champion Hope Solo speaks with Bonnie Bernstein during the Hashtag Sports 2018 conference at the TimesCenter on Tuesday, June 26, 2018, in New York. (Kevin Hagen/Hashtag Sports via AP Images)
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World Cup champion Hope Solo speaks during the Hashtag Sports 2018 conference at the TimesCenter on Tuesday, June 26, 2018, in New York. (Kevin Hagen/Hashtag Sports via AP Images)
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Goalkeeper Hope Solo holds the World Cup Trophy after the 5-2 U.S. win over Japan in the FIFA Women's World Cup Canada 2015 Final at BC Place Stadium on July 5, 2015 in Vancouver, Canada.
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American goalkeeper Hope Solo makes a save during the team's FIFA Women's World Cup training session at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, Canada on June 21, 2015.

Former U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo says that soccer in the U.S. is failing because we are neglecting many talented young players.

The U.S. Men’s soccer team did not qualify for this year’s World Cup, currently being played in Russia and Solo believes that is a direct consequence of the country not identifying and nurturing talent in diverse communities.

“We have alienated the Hispanic communities. We have alienated our black communities. We have alienated the underrepresented communities, even rural communities, so soccer in America right now is a rich white-kid sport,” Solo said.

“Then we have to ask ourselves: Well, no wonder why we are not qualifying for the World Cup when we have alienated a huge population of really talented youth soccer players. And that’s the state of the game right now.”

Solo was speaking at the Hashtag Sports conference in New York City this week.

She goes on to talk about how expensive it is for families to have kids play soccer. “My family would not have been able to afford to put me in soccer if I was a young kid today,” Solo said.

Another U.S. soccer figure, Landon Donovan, shared similar sentiments telling USA Today that “soccer has become a sport that only wealthy people can play. If you’re a parent who makes $30,000, $40,000 a year, how can you possibly afford to pay $3,000-$4,000 to play soccer?”

Solo helped lead the U.S. women’s team to Olympic gold in 2008 and 2012 and a World Cup title in 2015.

In 2014, she was arrested on assault charges in Washington state, which were later dismissed, in an incident involving her her nephew and half-sister.

U.S. Soccer terminated her contract with the team after the 2016 Rio Olympics over her comments about the Swedish national team, according to FOX News .

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