Sept. 29, 2007
By Michael Lewis
Ryan: Scurry, Solo should have been dual starters in goal in the WWC
Shanghai, China -- If he had to do it over again, U.S. women's national coach Greg Ryan said Saturday he would have dual starting goalkeepers for the Women's World Cup, not one.
Goalkeeper Hope Solo started the first four matches and was replaced by Briana Scurry in a rare and controversial move by Ryan prior to the U.S.'s 4-0 semifinal loss to Brazil Thursday. Solo since criticized Ryan and apologized on the internet before it was announced Saturday that she would not be with the team for Sunday's third-place match vs. Norway.
"If you look in hindsight at me . . . and the potential mistakes I've made, my mistake was not leaving them more in a dual starting role in an earlier period of time," Ryan said at a Saturday afternoon press conference at the team hotel.
"Now seeing how good Bri is, I think we needed two kinds of goalkeepers in this World Cup. Hope is just a fantastic goalie on crosses. She's good on everything.
"Bri, to me, is still the best shot-stopper in the world. I wish we played a better in front of her."
Ryan said he was impressed with the way Scurry has handled herself before and after the controversy. Scurry did not complain when she was relegated to a secondary role behind Solo.
"It's not easy for a player with her pedigree to take a backseat role," he said. "She's worked to be ready.
"I'm so proud of her, the way she's handled herself, her character. The fact she's behind a young player who never won a medal, step in front of her, Bri has just been fantastic."