Today United States Women’s National Team forward Abby Wambach was named FIFA’s Women’s World Player of the Year. She joins Mia Hamm as the only US players to win the award and she is the first US player to win the award since Hamm in 2002.
“This award goes to my teammates, both present and past. They are the sole reason why I’m standing here. I’ve never scored a single goal without a teammate of mine helping me do it.”
Joining Wambach as finalists were Brazil National Team player Marta (5-time winner of the award) and Wambach’s current USWNT teammate Alex Morgan.
“I can’t think both [Morgan and Marta] enough for the opportunity not to just sit by them but for Alex to play along side her and challenge myself day in and day out,” Wambach said in a post-awards interview with FIFA. “And for Marta to play on the opposite side of the pitch as her. She challenges not only me but my teammates so much. Whether we are playing her or not, she is one of the best in the world.”
Twitter was abuzz following Wambach being name FIFA’s Women’s World Player of the Year including some of her current and former teammates posting their congratulatory messages:
— Alex Morgan (@alexmorgan13) January 7, 2013
— Ali Krieger (@AlexBKrieger) January 7, 2013
— Kelley O’Hara (@kohara19) January 7, 2013
— Lori Lindsey (@LoriLindsey6) January 7, 2013
— cat whitehill (@catwhitehill4) January 7, 2013
So proud of you @abbywambach. You are an incredible player & even better person. I’m lucky and thankful to call you my teammate and friend.
— Ashlyn Harris (@Ashlyn_Harris) January 7, 2013
— Heather Mitts (@heathermitts) January 7, 2013
During the pre-awards press conference, Wambach touched a little bit on the NWSL.
“It’s exciting for us … It was another reason why we wanted to bring back gold because we knew that it would give our country the best opportunity to get a league started again … We are really looking forward to 2013 and getting to eight different cities around the United States to continue to spread the word of soccer.”
Although the national team player allocation has yet to be performed, going from Wambach’s comments (and Morgan’s head nodding) it seems like both USWNT players will be playing in the NWSL.