Soccer Star Carli Lloyd Reveals How the Postponed Olympics Helped Mend Her 12-Year Family Rift

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·2 min read
Soccer Star Carli Lloyd Reveals How the Postponed Olympics Helped Mend Her 12-Year Family Rift
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When the 2020 Tokyo Olympics were postponed, Carli Lloyd found herself with some extra time to heal—not only from a knee injury she'd suffered that year but also from a decade-long rift she'd had with her family.

"I don't know what would've happened if the Olympics actually went on in 2020," the two-time World Cup champion told Today. "Would they have been a part of it? Would I have rekindled the relationship with them? I don't know. I'm just happy now that we are in the place that we are, and everybody feels good about it."

As Lloyd shared in her 2016 book, When Nobody Was Watching: My Hard-Fought Journey to the Top of the Soccer World, she had been estranged from her family for about 12 years. Lloyd wrote her parents had "a difficult time letting go" when she became a professional soccer player and started making her own decisions about her career. This included her training with former personal coach James Galanis, who she said her parents felt was "coming between" them, and spending time away from home on breaks. She said her father threw her out of the house ahead of the 2008 Olympics and that she was not invited to her sister's wedding.

2021 Summer Olympics Status Check

According to Today, Lloyd cut ties with Galanis last year and has since taken steps to build up that bond with her family.

"I was talking to my sister since 2016 since my book had come out, so we had a relationship," the star athlete told the news organization. "I think I just got to a point where you go for so long with not talking, and you kind of are like a ‘Why are we doing this?' type of thing. I think it was many different factors that contributed to that. So she kind of helped break the ice a little bit and sort of be that buffer to my parents and my brother."

Carli Lloyd
Carli Lloyd

Lloyd's parents and brother came to her house for the first time last year, Today reported, and they've continued to spend holidays and birthdays together.

Now, she's preparing for the Tokyo Games once again, being named to U.S. Olympic women's soccer team last week. Unfortunately, her family won't be able to be there due to restrictions that prohibit overseas spectators from attending. So, they'll be watching from home as Lloyd strives to add to her two gold medal count.

"I'm in the best shape I've ever been in my life, and it's also the happiest I've ever felt going into a major tournament," she told Today. "I've felt good and happy going into other tournaments, but this one just feels different."

(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family).