Thursday 18 January 2018

Newstalk's Ivan Yates on Stephanie Roche: It's tokenism because she is a woman. No way she deserves award, it's sham amateurism

Ger Keville

Ger Keville

Newstalk presenter Ivan Yates has said there is no way Stephanie Roche deserves to win the Puskas Goal of the Year Award and described her inclusion in the final three as "sham amateurism".

Roche goes head to head with Robin van Persie and James Rodriguez at the Ballon D'Or ceremony today in Zurich thanks to her sensational goal for Peamount against Wexford Youths last year.

Republic of Ireland Ladies Soccer Star, Stephanie Roche pictured at Dublin Airport as she left for Fifa's Puskas Award in Zurich.
Republic of Ireland Ladies Soccer Star, Stephanie Roche pictured at Dublin Airport as she left for Fifa's Puskas Award in Zurich.
Tickets at the ready, Republic of Ireland Ladies Soccer Star, Stephanie Roche pictured at Dublin Airport as she left for Fifa's Puskas Award in Zurich.
Republic of Ireland Ladies Soccer Star, Stephanie Roche pictured with boyfriend Dean Zambra at Dublin Airport as she left for Fifa's Puskas Award in Zurich.

And while the whole country is backing Roche to win, Yates has described her inclusion as "sham amateurism".

This morning on Newstalk, Yates didn't seem too impressed when Chris O'Donoghue wished Roche all the best in tonight's vote.

"Ah, it’s the height of tokenism. Even Andy Carroll can score against Wexford Youths," scoffed Yates.

"She was playing for Peamount United! Give me a break. To compare Van Persie, a world class goal in a World Cup. I mean, what sort of defence would Wexford Youths put up?

"Even Andy Carroll could score against them. The fact of the matter of it is, it’s tokenism because she’s a woman. The fact that she’s Irish, fantastic and good luck to her. But there’s no way she deserves the Puskas award. No way! It's sham amateurism."

While Yates' colleagues disagreed with his comments and told him he let himself down, the former Fine Gael minister was eager to get his point across.

Listen here from 31.30 onwards.

Maybe Yates should continue discussing topics he is educated on.

 

Here is a reminder why Roche's goal is the best of the three contenders.

THE FIRST TOUCH

Simply outstanding. Whereas Rodriguez had a routine ball to control, Roche risked embarrassing herself by even attempting to control a cross in Peamount’s National League game against Wexford Youths last year.

Consider this: Roche had her back to the goal 20 yards out and the ball was fired into her from the right. Three touches later and without the ball even hitting the ground, it was nestling in the back of the net.

Roche’s first touch was as good as you will see in any game you will watch, or have watched this year, male or female.

AWARENESS

After a stunning first touch it’s simple really. Get it on the deck and get it out wide and talk about the moment over a beer in the pub afterwards. Not for Roche.

To even think of flicking the ball over her opponent’s to set up a shooting chance take some cheek and a hell of a lot of confidence. At this stage Roche was aware of her position knew exactly what she needed to so to create a yard of.

THE SECOND TOUCH

If Lionel Messi executed this touch, I would not be writing this article. To flick a ball over both your own and your opponent’s head with the outside of your foot is fairytale stuff. Just watch the technique again. And again.

THE STRIKE

Like Rodriguez, Roche was not directly facing the goal and needed to adjust her body before cracking the ball into the net. Her body position meant she had to get her foot right around the ball to steer it into the right hand side of the net. She displayed incredible technique and power with her actually strike of the ball every bit as good as Rodriquz’s.

Do the right thing. Vote here for the best goal and that's Stephanie Roche.

Watch James Rodriguez's effort here:

And here is Van Persie's goal: 

Have your say in our poll:

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