The home of Fulham and Northern Ireland soccer player Chris Baird's mother was attacked with petrol bombs and police said on Monday they were investigating whether the attack had sectarian motives.
The Premier League player's mother and other family members escaped injury when a device exploded on Sunday against the front window of her home in Rasharkin, Co Antrim.
Attacks by nationalist splinter groups seeking to end British control of Northern Ireland are at their highest level since a 1998 peace agreement largely ended three decades of conflict that cost more than 3,600 lives.
The attacks often spark retaliation by mainly Protestant "loyalist" groups.
Daithi McKay, a member of the Northern Ireland Assembly from the nationalist Sinn Fein party, said Baird's family was being targeted because of being Catholic.
"The family is not involved in anything political and people are shocked and very angry they have been singled out," McKay said.