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Christen Press says she was not aware of Barstool Sports site when approached with opportunity to partner with it

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Utah forward Christen Press (23) gets hugs from Utah Royals FC midfielder Lo'eau LaBonta (9) and Utah Royals FC defender Becky Sauerbrunn (16), after scoring a goal for the Royals, in Soccer action between Utah Royals FC and Portland Thorns FC, in Sandy, Friday, July 19, 2019.

Sandy • Two days after a column in The Guardian criticized her choice to partner with what some see as a misogynistic media company, Christen Press addressed the controversy after the Utah Royals FC’s 2-2 draw Friday to the Portland Thorns.

“To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t familiar with the site when my team presented the opportunity to me,” Press said. “I think everybody that knows me well knows that I support kindness, respect and dignity for all people.”

The column in The Guardian posted early Wednesday morning, before Utah’s training session. There was some speculation Press opted out of the press conference to avoid questions regarding a video she recorded during the USWNT’s victory parade using the official Instagram account of Barstool Sports, which has a reputation of posting content many find offensive toward women.

A Royals spokesperson said Wednesday that Press did not appear because she did not feel well. The spokesperson reiterated that Friday, adding that Press had always planned to reschedule her appearance.

Press was scheduled to appear Wednesday with United States Women’s National Team compatriots Becky Sauerbrunn and Kelley O’Hara for a joint press conference celebrating their World Cup victory and return to Utah. But moments before the event started, a Real Salt Lake official pulled her chair and nameplate.

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