Hope Solo hasn’t played competitive soccer in Seattle since leaving the University of Washington. That is expected to change Monday when she joins the Sounders Women in their preseason friendly opener against Seattle Pacific.
“It’s been a long time,” she said Wednesday, while her new club practiced at Starfire Sports Complex in Tukwila. “I owe it to my fans. I owe it to the city that really helped progress my career. I don’t think I would have been on the national team if I hadn’t made decisions that kept me around the Seattle area. So I’m very grateful for that. I owe a lot of people. It’s time for me to give back.”
Solo, 30, is a Richland native who played at UW and went on to be the No. 1 goalkeeper for the U.S. national team. She played with Magic Jack of Women’s Professional Soccer until that league suspended operations.
In the absence of a major women’s professional league in North America, Solo returned to Seattle to join the Sounders Women of the USL W-League. The club also has signed national team members Stephanie Cox, Sydney Leroux, Alex Morgan, and Megan Rapinoe. All but Rapinoe are expected to be available for the friendly next week at Starfire Sports Stadium, which is nearly sold out.
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And while some of those players could move on if the WPS resumes play, Solo said she is home to stay.
“As of now I have no intention of going back to the WPS,” she said. “And before it suspended I had no intention of going back. I want to be with an organization that I really stand behind, and I’m happy to be here in Seattle.”