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'I'm Not Going To Lie, I Was Holding Back The Tears': Roche On WNT Breakthrough

'I'm Not Going To Lie, I Was Holding Back The Tears': Roche On WNT Breakthrough
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2022 has been a historic year for women's football in Ireland with Vera Pauw's side qualifying for the World Cup next summer in Australia and New Zealand.

"We've always said for years that if the women's team qualified for a major tournament, it would be another stepping stone to promote the women's team, to put them in a position where people are really looking at them and seeing what they can do.

"I was doing the commentary on the game and I'm not going to lie, I was holding back the tears because I know how much it means to not just every girl in that squad who played their part throughout the campaign, but also to people who have put so much work into women's football over the last ten, fifteen, twenty years.

"There are people that won't get the recognition but they're the ones that put in a lot of work and graft over the years when no one really cared.

"I think it was a brilliant moment and hopefully now the whole country will get behind the girls next year."

The domestic season saw Shels do the league and cup double. Roche still plays for Peamount United who will be without the inspirational Aine O'Gorman next season after her move to Shamrock Rovers was confirmed this week.

"She's been a great captain for the club and she's given everything the whole time she's been there.


"She's made the decision to go onto Rovers, who are going to be offering semi-professional contracts, it’s the way forward for the league and I wish her well.

"I think she's given everything she could to Peamount and she needed a change."


Roche hopes to see more clubs in the league go semi-pro in the future to help improve the standard but is encouraged by the huge strides forward the league has taken.


"I've been a huge advocate of the league going semi-professional.

I think that's what's needed to get us to a certain level," she adds.

"I've played abroad in different countries and the only difference in a lot of the places I've played in is that teams are getting more professional training.

"If the league can move into a semi-professional model where they're offering players contracts that can help them balance their work life with football and not have to juggle so many things, that would be a step forward, it needs to happen.

"The future of the league is definitely looking bright and the competitiveness is much better.

"Hopefully we can kick on and become a more professional league over the next few years."

Stephanie Roche looking forward to Virgin Media FIFA23 event

Roche returns to competitive action with a difference on Tuesday night at Turner's Cross for a Virgin Media event which will see herself and David Meyler take on the country's top FIFA players Ciaran Walsh and Tyrone Ryan live on Twitch.

Roche is looking forward to the challenge.

"In the last few years I probably haven't played FIFA as much as I would have used to but recently I've got back into playing a little bit and I’m enjoying it.


"I know David Meyler is basically a pro as well so I'm definitely going to have my work cut out.

"Tyrone and Ciaran put a lot into their playing careers so it’ll be interesting to have a chat with them.

"Hopefully, I’m not too far out of my depth."


Virgin Media, the official sponsor of Usain Bolt’s esports organisation and Ireland’s premier esports team WYLDE, will host Ireland’s most unique football battle, which will see Irish football legends David Meyler and Stephanie Roche take on Ireland’s top FIFA players Ciaran Walsh and Tyrone Ryan. In a League of Ireland first, the game, powered by Virgin Media broadband, will take place in Cork City FC’s Turner’s Cross Stadium on Tuesday 29 th November and will be live on Twitch at 5pm.

SEE ALSO: Spain Manager Luis Enrique Will Be Twitch Streaming During The World Cup

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