SANTA MONICA – Right after being traded to FC Kansas, Sydney Leroux announced her pregnancy at the beginning of January 2016, forcing her to miss the Olympics and the entire NWSL season. When she came back in 2017, she had a whole new set of obstacles to face.
It is no easy feat being a working parent in general, however, going back to the NWSL after having a child is much, much harder. Aside from having to navigate the waters of taking care of a new human life, Leroux also had to get her mind and body back into elite shape to play pro soccer. She would have to adjust to late nights with her new baby and early mornings on the field.
Fellow soccer mama Christie Pearce, who was the captain of the USWNT after the birth of her children, lent her some advice. According to Vice Sports, Pearce told Leroux, “don’t be so hard on [her]self. It’s a process. Your body went through a lot. You’re up late at night. You’ve just got to be mentally strong and do what you can do when you’re out on the field.”
Although it wasn’t easy, Leroux has been consistently getting better and better since her return to soccer, and people have been taking notice. Her ability to come back and play with such strength has recently landed her on the USWNT roster for their upcoming friendlies in Europe and, just this week, she was named NWSL player of the week for her outstanding skill in last weekends game.
After being down early in the game, Leroux scored two goals this past Saturday and helped Kansas City defeat Washington Spirit 3-2. Leroux will be back in action this Saturday when FC Kansas take on North Carolina Courage at 12:30.
Photos courtesy of ISI.