Shot at big time

Lis De Vanna in full flight. Picture: Emily Mogic/ The Womens Game.
Lis De Vanna in full flight. Picture: Emily Mogic/ The Womens Game.

De Vanna’s perfectly executed strike for Sky Blue FC against Boston in the United States’ NWSL in June placed her alongside big name players Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Neymar in the running for the award.

It is also the first time an Australian has been nominated.

The 29-year-old found herself in a goal-scoring position after finding space behind a defender. She said she had expected to receive the pass along the ground, but those plans changed when the ball was lobbed over the top.

‘I’d actually run past the ball. At the last moment I thought ‘I’m going to bike this’. I just knew I needed to make a connection,’ she said.

‘All I saw was my teammates chasing after me. I thought ‘what the hell did I just do?’.

‘Of all the things to happen out on the field and all the ways to score, I wouldn’t have thought that would happen.’

The public have until December 9 to vote for their favourite goal. The top three will go into a second round of voting, with a winner announced on January 13.

Despite the stunning finish, the former Perth Glory player was keen to downplay the goal.

‘You never think something like this will happen,’ she said.

‘When it does, it’s like ‘wow’.

‘I’ve looked back at the goal a couple of times, but I don’t really look at how good it was because I scored it.

‘But it’s a big achievement as an Australian and as a female. Hopefully it can lead to positive things to the female game.’

Australian Womensport and Recreation Association president Janice Crosswhite said De Vanna’s nomination was indicative of Australia’s position in world sport.

‘Women are performing at the same level, if not higher, than men in international sport at the moment but they don’t get the same amount of coverage. We need to change how we approach female sports. We need more sponsors and commercial operators to come on board,’ she said.

De Vanna will be in town to face her old club when Melbourne Victory clashes with Perth Glory this Sunday at Perth Oval.

To vote for De Vanna, visit fifa.com/ballondor/puskasaward/index.html.