United States soccer star Hope Solo accuses Sepp Blatter of sexual harassment

Tricia Pearson
November 12, 2017

Just before decorated American soccer player Hope Solo walked out to give an award, the former head of Federation Internationale de Football Association allegedly grabbed her bottom. According to her, the former president of Federation Internationale de Football Association would have him "pinched her buttocks" during the ceremony of the Ballon d'or in January 2013.

"I had Sepp Blatter grab my ass", she told Portuguese newspaper Expressor.

Blatter, 81, won five elections as president of Federation Internationale de Football Association from 1998 until 2015, until he was banned by the organisation for ethics breaches relating to a 2m CHF payment made to the then Uefa president Michel Platini in 2011. "Can-I-talk-about-that-" target="_blank">Expresso, Solo said, "I had Sepp Blatter grab my ass". "It was at the Ballon d'Or, right before I went on stage".

Blatter assaulted her at the 2013 Ballon d'Or awards ceremony, Solo said.

After an October New York Times report about repeated sexual assault and harassment claims against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, women throughout the world shared their experiences using the hashtag #metoo on social media. "I was in shock and completely thrown off".

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Several post-18 colleges are located on the campus, including the International Institute of Trade and Development. According to two police officials, the suspect was born in 1989 and known to suffer from a psychiatric disorder.

Blatter has had a history of what many consider to be sexist behavior concerning the women's game. She said she hasn't seen him since.

Blatter has denied the accusation, with his spokesman telling The Guardian: "This allegation is ridiculous". "I had to submit to my co-fellow [Abby Wambach, victor of the Golden Ball 2013, editor's note] the biggest prize of his career, and celebrate with it this time, so I dedicated all my attention", she also added. I always felt I'd "handled it' and stood up for myself in those situations, but there were never any consequences for the perpetrators".

"I've seen it not just with coaches, I've seen it with trainers, doctors, and our press officers. Silence will not change the world!"

Solo went on to add that sexual harassment was rife in all walks of life - claims she said she had witnessed with her own eyes - and stated that more needed to come forward with their stories to combat the "rampant" issue. Female players are pretty, if you excuse me for saying so, and they already have some different rules to men - such as playing with a lighter ball. "I don't know why more players don't speak out against it".

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