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Resources Dec 05, 2014

Stephanie Roche could be first woman to win FIFA Goal of the Year

FIFA has narrowed the field for goal of the year to three spectacular goals, and you get to vote for this year’s winner. Two of the contenders won’t surprise you. You’ve never heard of the third. She is Irish footballer Stephanie Roche, and her goal was scored in front of a crowd of 85 fans and recorded on video by her team manager.  

+Goal of the Year Videos

Here are the contenders:

Irishwoman, Stephanie Roche:

Peamount United – Wexford Youths / Bus Eireann National League / 20 October 2013: When the ball came towards Peamount United forward Stephanie Roche against Wexford Youths, she had her back to goal, yet three touches later and without the ball touching the turf, it was in the back of the net. With her first touch she controlled it masterfully, before producing a dink over her marker’s head, spinning and unleashing a magnificent volley.

Colombian James Rodriquez:

Colombia – Uruguay / Copa Mundial de la FIFA / 28 June 2014: There appeared little danger when Abel Aguilar directed a looping header towards James Rodriguez, whose back was to goal on the edge of the Uruguay box. However, the Colombia No10 exquisitely chested the ball over his head, swiveled instantly and unleashed a venomous, dipping volley which crashed in off  the underside of the crossbar.

Dutchman Robin van Persie:

Spain – Netherlands / FIFA World Cup / 13 June 2014: The Netherlands were 1-0 down to Spain when Daley Blind launched a high, hanging ball forward towards Robin van Persie. The watching world expected the Oranje captain to take it down but he instead produced a first-time header from just inside the box, which looped over Iker Casillas and set his side en route to a stunning 5-1 victory.

A woman has never won Fifa’s best goal award. Indeed, ever since the Puskas prize was launched five years ago, only a handful of female players have made it into the top 10 nominations. Now, I get to vote for my favorite.

Roche, herself, has issued an interesting challenge: “I don’t want to sound cocky but I’d like to believe I’m there on merit,” she says. “I’d just like to be recognized for the goal and not just for my gender.”

Can I set aside gender to cast my vote?

And was that grass or turf?

Here is an excellent article that will tell you more about Roche.