SOPHIE BOTTERILL admits she did not even expect to be nominated for the Jersey FA’s Women’s Player of the Year award, least of all win it.
The versatile St Lawrence player beat off competition from Rozel Rovers teenager Roisin Flynn and team-mate Fiona McKinnon-Fox to win the gong at the L’Horizon Hotel, after a season in which she helped guide her club to a second league title in three years.
Botterill scored eight goals as St Lawrence won the JFA Combination Women’s League by three points, ahead of rivals and previous champions Rozel Rovers. She was also part of the Jersey team that beat Guernsey 5-0 in the 2022 Muratti.
‘I’m over the moon,’ said Botterill (27). ‘It’s definitely a surprise.
‘There’s a lot of new kids coming into the game now, like Roisin Flynn, who I expected to get it. You see these new kids and you don’t expect us veterans to even be nominated.’
Botterill added that the 2021/22 league crown feels more satisfactory, as they played a full season and the final table was not decided by a points-per-game ratio – as it was in 2020 due to Covid-related restrictions. She also praised the attitude of her team in a highly competitive season for women’s football.
‘There’s been a real dedication on and off the pitch throughout the whole team,’ she continued. ‘We had a good team spirit this season which was really shown on the pitch and that has worked well for us.’
Botterill also said that the number of players coming through into senior football, like Flynn, bodes well for the future of the women’s game on the Island.
‘Playing in the Muratti and seeing all the young players out there, they’ve got a good future and they’ll be together for ages,’ she added.
‘That’s good to see.’