World Cup winner Jessica McDonald was told her son was a ‘distraction’ to her game

McDonald gave birth to Jeremiah in 2012 (DPA/PA Images)
16:18pm, Thu 10 Dec 2020
CBAD8A00-D2B9-4E0E-ADDF-D0366C357A34 Created with sketchtool. E9A4AA46-7DC3-48B8-9CE2-D75274FB8967 Created with sketchtool. 65CCAE04-4748-4D0F-8696-A91D8EB3E7DC Created with sketchtool.

‘Plenty of coaches’ told World Cup winner and US star Jessica McDonald that her son was a ‘distraction’ to her game.

McDonald, who gave birth to her son Jeremiah in 2012, said the accusation that he had negatively impacted her football was something which ‘hurt’ her.

The 32 year-old told BBC Sport: "I've had plenty of coaches who weren't parents, which made it even more difficult for me, so there were times when I had a bad training session or a bad game, just like any normal player would have, and sometimes I get it thrown at me that my kid is the distraction.

"It hurt me badly. My kid was the reason I was out there."

McDonald added that the environment in football is getting better for mothers and she welcomes the maternity cover changes FIFA have brought in.

Earlier this month, the governing body introduced new rules that will give players 14 weeks maternity cover on two thirds of their salary.

If clubs do not honour the rules they will face transfer bans.

The North Carolina Courage star said: "It took a long time, but baby steps, we're getting somewhere. 

"It's absolutely amazing because it's going to be easier for us, especially for the future mums who want to continue their dreams as a professional soccer player."

Sign up to our newsletter