St. Louis' showboating, self-proclaimed "loudmouth goalkeeper" is somebody fans love or hate and that's exactly what women's soccer needs, Jason Zengerle writes in the Atlantic. Hope Solo—who refused to wear the "girly" pink outfit provided when the Women's Professional Soccer League kicked off earlier this year—can help give this league the edge missing in the short-lived last league, Zengerle argues.
Part of the fun in sports comes from having "a villainous athlete" to root against, Zengerle writes, and until now, most women's soccer stars have been too bland for anybody but "ponytailed preteens" to get excited about. Solo—considered the best goalie in the world by some—appears to be relishing her bad girl role. "For some reason, people want to think that we’re girls next door, who all get along and go shopping at the mall together,” she snapped. “Treat us like professional athletes.” (Read more Hope Solo stories.)