Irish footballer James McClean shares autism diagnosis


James McClean has shared that he was diagnosed with autism.

The Irish footballer has been open about parenting his four-year-old daughter, Willow-Ivy, who was diagnosed with autism as a baby.

In a candid post, he shared that over the course of himself and his wife, Erin, learning about autism, he realised that he had some of the traits.

This led to the soccer player undergoing tests for ASD (Autism spectrum disorder). His results came back positive.


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A post shared by James McClean (@macajw)

James shared the news on social media alongside a picture of his daughter.

“Autism awareness week,” James wrote.

“As you all know, my daughter Willow-Ivy is autistic. The last 4 years have been life changing in the most amazing way but also very difficult at times as her daddy watching her overcome so many obstacles in her life and learning how to manage the challenges she faces on a daily basis.

“The more Erin and I learned about autism the more we began to recognise I was very similar to Willow in more ways than we thought.
I see so many small traits in her that I see in myself. So I decided to go and get an ASD assessment.”


He continued: “It’s been a bit of a journey and now having a diagnosis I feel it’s time to share it, for the week that’s in it.

“I have debated for a while going public in sharing this as I’ve done this for Willow-Ivy, to let her know that I understand and that being autistic won’t and should never hold her back from reaching her goals and dreams.”

He concluded by simply saying: “Daddy’s girl”.

His wife Erin was quick to comment: “Proud of the 2 of use always.”

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