Hope Solo opts not to play for Seattle Reign for rest of season

Hope Solo says she will step away from the NWSL’s Seattle Reign for the rest of the season.
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Hope Solo says she will step away from the NWSL’s Seattle Reign for the rest of the season, TheNew York Times reports.

Solo told the Times that following her suspension and termination of contract by U.S. Soccer, she will take a break from the game entirely. The Reign has four games left on its regular-season schedule and is four points clear of a playoff spot. The team granted her personal leave.

“Mentally, I’m not there yet,” she said.

Solo, 35, was suspended by the federation for her criticism of the Swedish national team after the U.S. fell in the quarterfinals of the Rio Olympics earlier this month. The incident was used as cause to end her contract with the national team, also using “past incidents” as justification. The National Women’s Soccer League is funded by U.S. Soccer.

Ellis's silence keeps Solo's U.S. Soccer future beyond her ban on uncertain terms

“Coming to terms with the fact I was fired from the U.S. women’s national team after 17 years of service has been devastating,” Solo said in a statement. “After careful consideration, I have decided to end my season with the Seattle Reign, an organization I love playing for. Mentally, I am not there yet.

“After watching the team’s win against Portland this weekend and seeing Haley Kopmeyer playing so well in goal, I truly believe this decision is what’s best for me and for the Reign organization.”