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Roche proud of FIFA nomination

Steph Roche has spoken of her pride after being nominated alongside two of the world's most high-profile players for FIFA's goal of the year.

The Republic of Ireland women's international's stunning volley for Peamount United against Wexford in October 2013 has made a shortlist of three for the Puskas Award at the FIFA Ballon d'Or ceremony.

Her brilliant effort will be up against two goals from the World Cup in Brazil - James Rodriguez's fine volley for Colombia against Uruguay and Robin van Persie's diving header in Holland's defeat of Spain.

Roche's goal - which was captured on camera only because the Wexford manager arranged to have the game filmed - saw her control a cross with her back to goal, flick the ball over a defender and then volley home.

Roche would become the first woman to win the award if she beats off competition from Rodriguez and Van Persie in a public vote which will be conducted via and France Football.

Roche, 25, told Sky Sports News: "It is always a good step to see women nominated for the Puskas Award and this is obviously the first time one has been in the top three.

"I am obviously proud as a woman but I am just proud as a footballer to be recognised at this level and for FIFA to see it as a good goal."

It is thought only 95 spectators saw the goal live but it has since earned millions of views on the internet. It raised her profile and she has since moved on to play professionally for French club ASPTT Albi.

She said: "With this goal I had more interest. I came on trial and it worked out. I think the goal kind of helped but I don't think it was the making of it!"

Roche will discover if she has won the award at a ceremony in Zurich on January 12.


From Belfast Telegraph