How a visit to Wembley Stadium changed Ellie Roebuck's life forever
England and Manchester City goalkeeper Ellie Roebuck recalls her numerous visits to Wembley Stadium as part of the iconic ground's 100th birthday celebrations
My first memory of Wembley Stadium was when I was flag bearer for the England men’s team through Sheffield United’s Centre of Excellence, so I was probably about seven years old and the likes of David Beckham were still playing.
The first time I visited Wembley Stadium, it was pretty overwhelming because it is such a huge stadium.
Just the walk up Wembley Way itself is a great experience and there was less infrastructure in and around Wembley when I first went so you could see it from even further away than you can now.
I have a picture of me on Wembley Way and it is fair to say I am a bit smaller than I am now!
Once inside the ground, I was meant to be concentrating on the job of being flag bearer but I was just mesmerised by all these footballers.
I have a few memories of Wembley to be fair. I am a Sheffield United fan so I have been to see them play at Wembley a few times in the Play-Offs, which were obviously not always successful! So I have shed a few tears at Wembley as well!
But seeing England Women play Germany back in 2014 when I was 15 was a watershed moment for me. It was probably my first realisation of how big women’s football could be.
When I went to see that match, it wasn’t that I didn’t take my football seriously but I was playing football because I loved football and wasn’t thinking about turning it into a career.
One stadium. Countless memories.— Wembley Stadium (@wembleystadium) April 26, 2023
Since 1923 we’ve had the privilege of hosting an array of incredible events, confirming our position as the most iconic stadium on the planet.
Watch below as fans celebrate and reminisce on some of their greatest Wembley memories 🏟️#Wembley100 pic.twitter.com/RNpmf0dxUV
So that match was a lightbulb moment where you was thinking ‘This is pretty cool and if I keep working hard and doing what I am doing, then it could potentially lead to something massive’.
It is fitting therefore that it was Germany I went to watch – in a game which was a heavy defeat – considering I would then go on and be part of the England Women squad which won the EURO Final – it is incredible!
I have lots of memories of Wembley from my playing career. I was on the bench for the 2017 and 2019 FA Cup wins so the first game I played in was the Community Shield and then the FA Cup Final in 2020 but it was kind of sad because it was during Covid so none of my family or friends were allowed in.
But I have had some amazing moments at Wembley and some not so good – we obviously lost the most recent FA Cup Final – but it is such a special thing to have played there and such an achievement.
The standout memory of Wembley has to be us winning the EURO Final as it was an incredible experience and something I will never forget. It is my favourite ever football memory, let alone Wembley memory!
It was so nice to win the trophy on home soil and as a nation, we are so lucky to have Wembley as our national stadium.
100 amazing Wembley moments