Danish sensation Pernille Harder named female world player of the year

The Wolfsburg forward was chosen as the inaugural winner of the female version of the Goal 50 as the best footballer on the planet for 2017

Pernille Harder has been unveiled as the winner of the inaugural Goal 50 Women's Player of the Year award, as decided by She Kicks women's football magazine.

The forward, who will turn 25 on Wednesday, played a pivotal role in Denmark's surprise run to the final of this summer's European Championship in Netherlands, after helping Wolfsburg record a domestic double in Germany.

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As a result, Harder saw off stiff competition from Dutch trio Lieke Martens, Vivianne Miedema and Jackie Groenen, England duo Lucy Bronze and Jodie Taylor and Australia's Samantha Kerr to be crowned the No.1 player in the world for 2017.

Pernille Harder Goal 50

Harder joined Wolfsburg midway through the Frauen-Bundesliga season, after firing former club Linköping to last year's Damallsvenskan title with 24 goals in just 22 games.

She continued to score freely in Germany, netting a crucial strike in a win over rivals Bayern Munich before bagging a brace in the DFB-Pokal Frauen final.

Harder, though, saved her very best form for Euro 2017. Playing in a deeper role for tournament outsiders Denmark, she captained her country to a historic quarter-final win over Germany - who had been European champions since 1995 - before scoring a sublime solo goal in the Scandinavians' 4-2 loss to hosts Netherlands in the final.

Lieke Martens Netherlands

Samantha Kerr Australia

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The Dutch triumph on home soil was founded upon the brilliance of Martens, who was named Player of the Tournament, Miedema and Groenen, while Arsenal's Jodie Taylor walked away with the Golden Boot award.

USA's Megan Rapinoe was arguably the feel-good story of the year, after rediscovering her best form after a third ACL injury, while the brilliant, back-flipping Kerr became the darling of Australian football thanks to her sensational goalscoring exploits for the Matildas and Perth Glory.

However, 2017 - and the Goal 50 Women's Player of the Year award - both belong to the inspirational Harder.

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