England's Lucy Bronze is nominated for SPOTY award

Monday 30 Nov 2015
Bronze is the first female footballer to be nominated for SPOTY award

England and Manchester City defender Lucy Bronze is on the 12-person shortlist for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award.

The 24-year-old was one of the stars of the summer as her performances and goals helped the Lionesses win a bronze medal at the World Cup.

Bronze scored the winner against Norway in the last-16, headed the crucial second goal against host nation Canada in the quarter final and was named in the FIFA All-Star squad after the tournament.

She also helped City finish second in FA WSL 1 and qualify for the Champions League for the first time.

Bronze is the first female footballer to be nominated for the award.

And for your chance to win a signed #Lionesses shirt, simply tweet us @FA, @FAWSL or @England as to why you will #VoteLucy for #SPOTY this Sunday. Terms and conditions here.

Lucy Bronze profile

Born: 28.10.91
Club: Manchester City
Position: Defender
England caps: 26
England goals: 4
England debut: v Japan, 26.06.13

She said: “We did so well at the World Cup so I was very surprised to be nominated for an individual award because there are a handful of girls that could have represented the team within this category.

“Obviously I’m delighted and humbled that it was me, but I’m happy to be representing the England girls as a whole.

“I don’t see it as me as an individual being nominated for an award, I look at it as me representing what we did in Canada and what we’ve done in the past few years and the changes we’ve made.

“I think it’s a credit to [how much the game has progressed] that there’s a Women’s player nominated for the first time. It shows that the way people are looking at our sport is changing and that is exactly what we want.”

Bronze believes England’s exploits in Canada helped attract support from the nation like never before.

Over 1.6m viewers tuned into BBC One to watch the World Cup quarter final against Canada, despite the match finishing in the early hours.

Lucy Bronze (left) celebrates with Jordan Nobbs after scoring the winner against Norway at the 2015 World Cup

Bronze (left) celebrates with Jordan Nobbs after scoring against Norway

FA WSL 1 attendances were up 48 per cent on 2014, while 13,040 fans braved heavy wind and rain to watch England defeat Bosnia at Ashton Gate on Sunday in their first home match since the World Cup. It was the biggest attendance for an England Women’s home match outside Wembley since 2005.

Bronze added: “2015 has almost been a rebirth of women’s football in England.

“Every kick and every game we played we felt that the nation was getting more and more behind us which is something that we’ve never felt before. The plan is to keep that going.

“People are still excited by women’s football and that’s something we’re very proud of. That’s what we wanted to achieve.

“We didn’t win the World Cup but we did come close and now we know we’ve got a great backing from the nation.

SPOTY nominee Lucy Bronze discusses the news with FATV

“As players, we’ve got more belief because of it and hopefully we can take that into other competitions and that will help us get to that next step.

“What we did at the World Cup was the beginning of the journey. That’s the next step. We want to move that bronze up a stage. We want gold.”

The SPOTY contenders

Lizzie Armitstead
Lucy Bronze
Jessica Ennis-Hill
Mo Farah
Chris Froome
Tyson Fury
Lewis Hamilton
Andy Murray
Adam Peaty
Greg Rutherford
Kevin Sinfield
Max Whitlock

The BBC Sports Personality of the Year ceremony will take place at the SSE Arena in Belfast on Sunday 20 December.

By Glenn Lavery