Class of 2009: Joan McEachern

Joan McEachern can take pride in the recent success of the women’s national program. After all, she was one of the early pioneers that paved the way for what is now one of the best programs in the world.



“Those first couple of years, you would go to a camp and you would play some games,” says Joan McEachern. “As the program evolved, it became much more. Even though we worked full time (in non-soccer jobs), soccer also became a full-time job.”

Listen to Joan McEachern



Joan McEachern can take pride in the recent success of the women’s national program. After all, she was one of the early pioneers that paved the way for what is now one of the best programs in the world.



“Those first couple of years, you would go to a camp and you would play some games,” says Joan McEachern. “As the program evolved, it became much more. Even though we worked full time (in non-soccer jobs), soccer also became a full-time job.”



Canada’s women’s program didn’t even exist when McEachern was growing up. In fact, she was already 24 years old when she made her first appearance with the national team. She was already a two-time national champion with her club team, the Edmonton Angels.



“I was an offensive player (with my club),” says McEachern. “I played outside midfield and I was looked upon to provide offence.”



McEachern won the Jubilee Trophy with the Angels in 1985, 1986 and (after her international debut) 1988. Seven years later, she won another national title with Coquitlam.



“I have been very very fortunate,” says McEachern. “The teams were great teams, but they were great people as a unit, too.”



For country, McEachern says she was more of a role player on a team of all stars. She joined the program in its second year of existence and a year later represented Canada at the 1988 FIFA Women’s Invitational Tournament in China.



She also took part in three CONCACAF championships – 1991, 1993 and 1994. In that last competition in Montréal, she helped Canada qualify for the FIFA Women’s World Cup for the first time in program history.



“When we qualified, it was just a great feeling,” said McEachern. “When we achieved that as a team, we felt very very proud.”



McEachern can be proud of her accomplishments and her participation in Canada’s first FIFA Women’s World Cup at Sweden 1995. Now, she joins a select group as just the seventh female player inducted in The Soccer Hall of Fame.



“I was very hard working,” says McEachern. “I think my teammates would say that I just did my job. I knew my role and I provided that role.”

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