Nine people announced their intentions to run in the upcoming U.S. Soccer presidential election, most recently longtime USWNT goalkeeper Hope Solo.
Candidates had until midnight last night to submit the required three nominations and become an official entrant in the race, but according to U.S. Soccer, one of those candidates failed to garner the necessary three nominations.
Via a U.S. Soccer release:
As of 12 a.m. today, U.S. Soccer has received three or more letters of nomination for eight (8) potential candidates for the office of President of U.S. Soccer. Background checks are still being completed on a number of potential candidates who submitted their authorization form Tuesday evening.
That means one of the nine failed to meet the requirements, and according to the New York Times, that person has already been notified.
U.S. Soccer announced in a statement that eight of the nine announced candidates for the position had submitted the required three nominations to be eligible to run for the post, but the federation declined to name those individuals because it had been unable to complete background checks for at least two of them.
Several of the candidates, including the former men’s national team players Eric Wynalda, Kyle Martino and Paul Caligiuri and the former women’s goalkeeper Hope Solo, have publicly declared that they had the required nominations, and the first person in the race, the Boston lawyer Steve Gans, was reported to have his as well.
Two veteran soccer executives running, the federation vice president Carlos Cordeiro and the Soccer United Marketing president Kathy Carter, were less public about their nominations, but given their experience and connections in the game it would be improbable that they would have entered the race without the required support.
The only others to declare for the race are Michael Winograd, a lawyer from New Jersey who said on Twitter that he had “more than” the required number of nominations, and the Massachusetts soccer official Paul Lapointe.
The ninth announced candidate, at least, knows their fate; that candidate, a U.S. Soccer official said, was rejected for failing to submit the required nominations by Tuesday’s midnight deadline.
It’s impossible to know exactly which candidate failed to meet the deadline, but the NYT rundown there breaks it down pretty well; one of the two lesser-known names at the bottom seem the most likely, although it’s also possible Solo’s support wasn’t as firm as she’d thought. If Solo does make it, the background check in question is unlikely to be an issue, even given her past legal issues:
“A conviction or no contest plea to a felony or crime of moral turpitude was reported” will disqualify a candidate. Solo’s charges were misdemeanors and, as far as is known, they were dropped. That should be enough for her to pass that element, if indeed she’s part of the final election.
It’s hard to overstate just how important the election will be for the future of soccer, and it will be immediate and highly visible, as one of the first duties the new president will have involves determining the next head coach of the Men’s National Team, or at least hiring a technical director who will make that determination.
The election is scheduled for February 2018.