US Women’s National Team star Carli Lloyd has opened up on her reasons for retiring and the difficulties she’s faced throughout her career.
Lloyd is the USA’s second most capped player ever and has played more than 300 times for her country.
Though she made her debut back in 2005, it was 2015 that garnered Lloyd global recognition after she scored a hat-trick in the Women’s World Cup final against Japan.
The US would go on to win the game 5-2, catapulting Lloyd into the limelight and bringing a wave of endorsement deals.
As the new face of the US team, Lloyd believed this was her period to cash in financially. As a player already in her thirties, she considered these new opportunities life-changing.
Speaking to Goal on All of US: The U.S. Women’s Soccer Show, Lloyd revealed: “Up to that point, in those 10 years or so, I wasn't really the face [of the team]. I came up big in big moments, between the Algarve Cups, between Olympics and was a mainstay on the team. I didn't have many endorsement deals, besides Nike, and so, when 2015 happened, it was as if my life had changed.
“That was the first time where I was having appearances, I was having endorsements and I'm taking all these things, I'm approaching them just as hard as I would be approaching on the field things and it required me to miss some things. It required me to fly in and out for some NWSL games.”
This proved difficult for the US star as she tried to focus on her career on the pitch and off it. Female athletes are rarely fortunate enough to get brand deals and sponsorship, so Lloyd figured she had to think long term about family and retirement
“It was actually extremely, extremely difficult for me because I was having to find ways to train, often in a hotel, run up and down hotel stairwells while I'm on appearances and juggle life, NWSL, national team, performing and then all my off the field opportunities. No one asked me that.”
Now, having balanced all these things for so long, Lloyd is finally hanging up her boots at the age of 39. Given she is the USA’s top goal scorer this year, there are suggestions she could continue playing for longer still.
Other elite athletes like Tom Brady are in their forties and still performing at the highest level, but Lloyd says she has other priorities now, like starting a family.
“Tom Brady doesn't have to have kids, that's the one thing for starters! My husband, Brian, and I are eventually going to start a family so the clock's kind of ticking on that.”
Ultimately, Lloyd wanted the power to decide when to bow out, rather than be forced into retirement. Indeed, the US veteran scored five in her last game against Paraguay –– ensuring a perfect start to her farewell tour as she bids to end her career in the best possible fashion.News Now - Sport News