Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Hope Solo and Abby Wambach Do Stupid Soccer Tricks on Letterman Show

Hope Solo and Abby Wambach, two members of the silver medalist US Women's World Cup soccer team, appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman and took shots at four moving taxi cabs outside the Ed Sullivan Theatre in New York City yesterday.  Solo, a goaltender, finally put a ball right through the sliding door; while Wambach's kicks sailed wide or bounced off the taxis.

Maybe the US goalie should have taken one of the penalty kicks during the championship game loss to Japan on Sunday?


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The losing American team is still getting a rousing welcome home after being upset by Japan.   They were greeted at the airport by fans when they arrived back in the United States and Letterman was one of the first stops for the two stars of the team.  You would have thought they won the whole enchilada.

Solo and Wambach, seated on a couch next to Letterman's desk, looked nervous and demure--a stark contrast to their individual on-field persona.

Letterman opened the interview with the obvious. "Tough loss," the gap-toothed host said.  Both players shook their heads before he lobbed this bon mot," It looked like you were all over those people, the Japanese."

Solo said she received a "good luck" email right before the game from a friend--and one of the opposing Japanese players-- and responded by emailing back; "Whatever happens, happens."  Letterman then joked, " You should have said 'Would it have killed you to lay down.'"

Letterman finally admitted," I know nothing about the game," but never asked the question everyone wanted to know: Do you think you choked?

Solo did answer that question in an interview on ESPN.  It sounded like an apologetic "No."  Then she added, "Only if you truly don't know the game."

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While the US team licks their wounded egos, the same darlings of the media are still getting the star treatment for coming in second.

This week's cover of Sports Illustrated will feature a photo of Solo with the headline;  "HEART AND HEARTACHE- Japan Shocks the US..."

Shouldn't Japan's veteran leader, Homare Sawa, be gracing the SI cover for winning the World Cup?

Amazingly, the US women's team gets the winner's treatment.  I didn't see a photo of LeBron James on the cover of SI for being upset by the Dallas Mavericks or the brooding faces of the men's 2004 Olympic basketball team who came home with bronze.

The US appearance in the World Cup may have drawn more fans to the sport of women's soccer, but give the winner's their due.

Japan's upset could cost the most recognizable faces of the US team-- Solo and Wambach-- millions of dollars in endorsements said Bob Dorfman.

Dorfman, who rates endorsement potential of athletes as Creative Director of Baker Street Advertising in San Francisco, thinks the deals could dry up fast.

"I heard there were some marketers who were planning on using them-- but decided not to because of the loss," said Dorfman.  "Everyone likes a winner."

Rumors that GoDaddy.com had it's sights on goalie Solo joining Danica Patrick in their racy ads, but after the loss they backed off. 

GoDaddy.com spokesman Nick Fuller said," At this point in time, GoDaddy.com is not pursuing a sponsorship deal with Hope Solo."

Getting attention and attracting new fans to the sport are still viable assets for the two break-out female stars claims Dorfman.

They can still work in the "glamor" areas like Patrick and Maria Sharapova do, he said.

While it lasts, Solo and the rest of the team should enjoy all the adulation the USA can throw at them; for if they played for North Korea, chances are, they would probably be serving some sort of penance on a work farm.

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