Rosella Ayane’s journey in the game has been anything but linear, but now she’s reaping the rewards for taking an alternate route, boasting an AFCON silver medal and looking forward to competing in the Morocco women’s national team’s first-ever World Cup – all topics covered in the latest episode of the SoccerBible Podcast.

The Moroccan men's National Team may well have taken the stage by storm at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, lining up a quarter final with Portugal after defeating Spain in the Round of 16, but the women's side had already set the bar last summer, having reached the final of the African Cup of Nations. A key member of the Moroccan Women's National Team is Spurs forward Rosella Ayane – it was her penalty that secured her side a spot at the final of AFCON. Now, as a result of their performance at that tournament, the Atlas Lionesses have qualified for the first time for the World Cup. Not a bad thing to look forward to.

But if you told a 16-year-old Ayane that in just over 10 years she’d be representing Morocco at a World Cup, she probably told you to stop taking whatever it was that you were on. Born in Reading to a Moroccan father and a Scottish mother, Ayane represented England at under 17 and under 19 level. Despite her youth appearances, her mum wanted her to join Scotland, but now she’s playing for Morocco, with a World Cup on the horizon. And that’s just her international story. Her club history is every bit as interesting, and in getting a first hand take on the experience, we go through the whole journey and step into her shoes as she tells us what it's like to score in the final of a major international tournament, among all her other achievements. Dive in, this one’s gold.

Listen to the full episode now on Spotify.

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We just created this special piece of history for women’s football in Morocco – we were in our first final and literally the whole country was behind us. It was insane. I’ve never had that much support in a football game before."
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I’ve played in front of big crowds, but I’ve genuinely never not been able to hear my team mates. I couldn’t hear anything; couldn’t hear the ref’s whistle. Everyone was whistling. So every time the whistle went I had to turn round and check!"
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Listen to the full SoccerBible Podcast episode with Rosella Ayane and our entire back catalogue at Spotify, iTunes and Spreaker.

Rosella Ayane wears the Mizuno Morelia Neo III β, which you can pick up at