Stephanie Roche celebrated a sporting achievement recently ahead of her new challenge
It's been just over ten years since Irish footballer, Stephanie Roche, made her senior debut for Ireland and the twenty-nine-year-old's career is still flourishing.
It's a moment that Stephanie describes as the proudest point in her career so far and she says:
"Every cap I receive makes me feel as good and as proud as that first one."
Stephanie's debut for the Ireland Women's National Team certainly means a great deal to the athlete. She took to Instagram to say:
"I've played with some great players in that ten years, who were not only teammates but great friends. Hoping for even more good times ahead with this team!"
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Indeed, Stephanie has enjoyed many career highlights both playing for Irish teams and in international football. Last month was also the anniversary of Stephanie's Puskas Award-nominated volley, scored for Peamount against Wexford Youths. The famous goal helped bring traction to women's football.
The likes of James Cordon, Piers Morgan and Gary Lineker lauded Stephanie for her talent, after the goal showcased her skills to a much broader audience.
More recently, Stephanie appeared on Her's in-house show, Girls With Goals and announced that she is a brand ambassador for Heinz Sports Club, who are helping to provide free kits and equipment for children.
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Sports plays such an important role in my life every day and that all started playing football with my local club as a kid. I'm so proud to be an ambassador for Heinz Sports Club. Its great to see a campaign supporting sport in clubs and schools around the country. Collect the tokens for free sports clothing and equipment for your school or club on Heinz products now ? #heinzsportsclub @heinzirelandofficial
Having been inhibited by a severe leg injury up until September of this year, Stephanie is now rearing to go as she has signed with an Italian club.
Stephanie spoke to Niamh Maher, presenter of Girls With Goals about the move:
"I've had to take my time thinking about and making sure it's the right decision for me."
In 2014, Stephanie signed with French club Albi but had a negative experience of her time abroad as she wasn't happy with how a number of things were handled. This time around is very different as Stephanie revealed she flew to Italy three times before signing as she didn't want to rush into anything.
Niamh also spoke to Stephanie about the vehement campaigning she and her fellow Irish teammates did to secure better resources from the FAI just over a year and a half ago. The footballer spoke positively about the results of their plight saying:
"Since then they've been excellent."
She cited "miscommunication" rather than malice for the unfair treatment from the organisation.
It was revealed this evening that Stephanie had signed with Florentia - and we bet the football sensation will be scoring goals all round her.
20x20 is an ambitious two-year long initiative to better promote and champion women in sport.
With the tagline of "if she can't see it, she can't be it," the 20x20 movement has three targets to reach by 2020:
- 20 percent more media coverage of women in sport
- 20 percent more female participation
- 20 percent more attendance at women’s competitions and events
And at Maximum Media, we're proud that Her and SportsJOE is backing the 20X20 movement as official digital media partners.