SAVING GOALS: Sophie Buller will be competing in the national titles in Coffs Harbour. Photo Trevor Veale / Coffs Coast Advocate
SAVING GOALS: Sophie Buller will be competing in the national titles in Coffs Harbour. Photo Trevor Veale / Coffs Coast Advocate Trevor Veale

Keeper's chance in front of the onion bag delivers rep honour

SOPHIE Buller may have only just hit her teens but already she's kicking major goals in her professional football career.

The 13-year-old has been selected in the Northern NSW Select Representative team to play in the FFA National Youth Championships in Coffs Harbour next month.

Even though she has been playing representative football for some time, Sophie said it was a surprise to hear she had been selected.

"I was shocked when I found out," Sophie said.

"I guess I wasn't sure if I played well enough (at trials) and you always wonder if you're good enough. I was really happy."

Sophie plays club football with the under-14s Woolgoolga Dolphins. She is also a member of the Mid North Coast representative team and has been travelling to Port Macquarie and Taree for trials.

Although she plays on the field in club competition, for the past 12 months her specialty in the representative side is goalkeeper.

"There was no goalkeeper in the rep team so I thought I'd give it a go," Sophie said.

"I love it."

She said she doesn't let the pressure get to her.

"I just keep in mind that if a goal gets into the back of the net, it has to go through the whole team first," she said.

These stepping stones are getting her ever closer to her ultimate goal of playing football professionally.

"I would love to play for the Newcastle Jets or Brisbane Roar one day - that's my goal," she said.

Her dad, Peter, said they were very proud of their daughter.

"She's going really well," he said, "especially only having played goalkeeper for the past 12 months.

"She put her hand up and gave it a go and she's doing so well."

The FFA National Youth Championships will take place at C.ex Coffs International Stadium from July 7-11.



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