support system, salary … what happened during Gunnarsdottir maternity hospital in Lyon

The day after the statements of Sara Björk Gunnarsdottir, who explained that she was not paid in full by OL during her pregnancy, RMC Sport explains how the French club managed the pregnancy of the Icelandic, a new case at the time, l ‘Olympique Lyonnais. Coach Sonia Bompastor reacts for the first time.

What happened in supporting Sara Björk Gunnarsdottir’s pregnancy and comeback? OL, aware that it can progress in this kind of new situation, is at fault according to Fifa for paying Gunnarsdottir’s salaries and the club had to pay him €82,000 following a decision by the Fifa football court. Nonetheless, it should be remembered that at the time of little Ragnar’s birth there was legal vagueness on the salary coverage of female players during pregnancy.

Fifa validated the reforms at the end of 2020 for 14-week maternity leave with mandatory salary payment, but no rules on this same salary since the player is absent from work and does not carry out other activities within the club – a pregnant player’s forehand. The federal contract does not protect players on this aspect, most of them take out additional insurance to protect themselves in the event of a serious injury, for example.

Gunnarsdottir has refused an accompanying fixture from the club on his return

An episode that obviously recalls the need to standardize the situation on the salary aspect through a global structure that will be the future Lega Professionisti. Gunnarsdottir has been away from work since April 2021. In the midst of the Covid crisis, she is said to have especially insisted on going home to her relatives, which is understandable, but without really discussing the matter with her management, d ‘after our information.

However, the coaching staff remained in contact with the midfielder when he was in Iceland, as explained by coach Sonia Bompastor, appointed at the end of April 2021 and mother of four: “Romain Segui, the physical trainer, also very regularly to follow – up during the pregnancy and after the birth. She was the contact person at staff level to be able to organize all this work. Camille Abily, my assistant, had contact with Sara, to have a follow-up and because we wanted to know how she was going her motherhood, as mothers ourselves, we also wanted to better organize her return for January 2022.

Some observers of the women’s section underline the investment of employees and personnel for the return of the former Icelandic international. Indeed, according to our information, he was OL to find the nanny for the child and tried to help his player as much as possible when this situation was also a discovery in the functioning of the team. OL even offered Gunnarsdottir a test trip: going off with the group, her baby and her nanny to approve the feasibility of a season’s duration. Proposal rejected by the data subject based on our information.

A gimmick still being implemented for the attention of Amel Majri for the away match in the Champions League at the end of last year. The Lyon number 7 was able to travel with Maryam and the nanny, maintaining the pace of the group as best he could for a European match. Organization renewed during the remedial course in Les Sables d’Olonne at the beginning of January.

“The framework is not rigid, we are listening”

“As for Sara and Amel, we had the same discussions and the same proposals. What we had implemented for Amel we had also proposed to Sara. We had shown that we wanted to develop things and that we took into account the fact that she was a mother as well as an athletic one, despite everything she remains an experiment, the frame is not rigid, we are listening”, specifies Bompastor, in full bloom in this double role of mother -coach in Lyon.

She also confides: “My feeling is that it was new for the club, at management level they relied heavily on our sensitivity as women towards Camille Abily and me. They were attentive to this. We were in dialogue and exchange with Sara from the time when she came back. As this was a new situation, there was a framework to put in place. And we wanted her to feel as good as possible as a mother, to be able to put her best foot forward on the athlete. In fact, maybe she wasn’t everything was perfect because it was also new for the Club. But I have the feeling that in terms of staff technique we had made sure to put in place several things to allow her to feel fulfilled as an athlete and as a mother.

A player who is not among the indisputable starters

When Gunnarsdottir returns to the field, the midfield competition in OL is no longer the same as it was when he left. Meanwhile, the American world champion Lindsey Horan, Damaris Egurrola, Danielle Van De Donk (in recovery at the end of last season) and Catarina Macario arrived on the banks of the Rhône. Without forgetting Amandine Henry or Dzenifer Marozsan, always present. Until the end of the 2021-2022 financial year, the Icelandic (whose contract expires in June 2022) will only make six appearances in official matches, each time as a substitute.

Coach Sonia Bompastor explains: “Sportingly I would like to restore the reality that I assume. I was the one who decided not to continue with Sara. As soon as she got back she was an integral part of the group. I judged her unique on her performances and during the matches, even if Sara was a player that I already know a little bit, in midfield I had a lot of competition and players who responded better to what I wanted to put on the field and profile, didn’t match my expectations and my game plan”. A sporting performance which will mean that you will not be extended at the end of your contract and you will assume the leadership of Juventus.

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