Goal 50: Sam Kerr named female world player of the year

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The Matildas striker has beaten off competition from the likes of Saki Kumagai, Amandine Henry and Lucy Bronze to claim the award

Australia star Samantha Kerr has been named Goal 50’s Women’s Player of the Year, as chosen by She Kicks women’s football magazine.

It has been another explosive year of devastating finishing for the Matildas star, who helped her country reach the AFC Women’s Asian Cup final in April.

Kerr also struck twice as Alen Stajcic’s team only just missed out on retaining the Tournament of Nations trophy by virtue of United States’ superior goal difference.

The striker excelled at club level too. 

Now the National Women’s Soccer League’s all-time record scorer, with 55 goals, Kerr won the Golden Boot for the second consecutive season, netting 16 in just 19 appearances as her new club, Chicago Red Stars, made the play-offs.

However, she also struck 13 times for Perth Glory during the 2017-18 season to win the W-League Golden Boot.

Samantha Kerr Australia

Matildas coach Stajcic labels Kerr "without question the world’s most dangerous player in the final third" and our judges at She Kicks women’s football magazine concurred, selecting the 25-year-old for Goal's prestigious prize ahead of several strong candidates. 

Indeed, Lyon’s classy defensive midfielder Saki Kumagai had an exceptional 2018, captaining Japan to AFC Women’s Asian Cup success against the Matildas, as well as gold in August’s Asian Games.

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Meanwhile, France midfield dynamo Amandine Henry and England full-back Lucy Bronze won the UEFA Women's Champions League with Kumagai in May, while last year's inaugural winner of the Goal 50 award, Denmark and Wolfsburg forward Pernille Harder, continued to impress with important goals for club and country.

However, the team at  She Kicks could not look past Kerr, who, with her pace, poise and personality, is one of the main reasons why Australia are tipped to challenge for next year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in France.

Luka Modric was named the winner of the men's Goal 50 award, breaking Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi's stranglehold on the annual prize.

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