American soccer goalkeeper, two-time Olympic gold medallist and World Cup champion Hope Solo accuses Sepp Blatter, former president of Federation Internationale de Football Association, of sexual assault at a Ballon d'Or awards ceremony.
Former Fifa president Sepp Blatter has been accused of sexually assaulting Hope Solo, the United States of America women's football team goalkeeper, at the Ballon d'Or awards ceremony in January 2013. The events took place just before the young woman goes on stage, she says, to return the trophy to the best player of the year, alongside Sepp Blatter.
Blatter, 81, was banned by Federation Internationale de Football Association for six years in 2015 after his involvement in the Federation Internationale de Football Association corruption scandal.
"I had Sepp Blatter grab my ass. It was at the Ballon d'Or, right before I went on stage... it [sexual harassment] has been normalised".
Hope Solo, capped more than 200 times at worldwide level by the United States, accuses former Federation Internationale de Football Association president Sepp Blatter of sexual harassment.
Blatter is the latest name to be linked with the growing sexual harassment saga that has seen hundreds of women come forward, from across all walks of life, to accuse men in positions of power of a variety of sexual harassment and assault claims. "I was in shock, completely shaken", she entrusted.More news: Goalless draw enough to secure Tunisia World Cup berth
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Blatter has had a history of what many consider to be sexist behavior concerning the women's game. "After [the ceremony] I have not seen and have not been able to confront it", said the sport. "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.
Blatter, however, rejected all such claims against him, and called the allegation "ridiculous".
"I've seen it in sports. From inappropriate comments, unwanted advances and grabs of the ass to coaches and [general managers] and even press officers speaking about players" "tits" and physical appearance, sexual harassment is rampant in the sports world. "Silence will not change the world!"
Asked why she had not spoken out about the Blatter incident before, Solo said she always tries to confront directly people, including team-mates, when it happens. I've seen it amongst players in the locker room.
"Let the women play in more feminine clothes like they do in volleyball", Blatter said.