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Ivan Yates on Stephanie Roche nomination: 'It's tokenism because she's a woman'

Broadcaster says there’s ‘no way’ Roche should win the Puskas Award at tonight’s Ballon d’Or ceremony.

Image: ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

NEWSTALK PRESENTER IVAN YATES has claimed that Stephanie Roche is nominated for FIFA’s Goal of the Year because she’s female.

The former politician added that there’s ‘no way’ Roche deserves to win the Puskas Award and that the entire campaign has been ‘sham amateurism’.

Speaking on the radio station’s Breakfast show, Yates offered up a withering assessment of Roche’s acclaimed strike for Peamount United against Wexford Youths – a goal that will see her rub shoulders with the best players in the world at tonight’s Ballon d’Or awards ceremony in Zurich.

She will battle it out with Dutch striker Robin van Persie and Colombian star James Rodriguez.

“It’s the height of tokenism”, Yates commented.

“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! Its sham amateurism.”

Roche’s goal has received widespread praise with a litany of high-profile names backing the strike owing to its technical difficulty.

But some dissenters have questioned how Roche can legitimately compete with Van Persie and Rodriguez’s strikes owing to their high-profile nature.

It’s your very last chance to help Stephanie Roche win the Puskas Award

Robin van Persie will miss tonight’s Ballon d’Or ceremony because of injury

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Eoin O'Callaghan

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