Reign FC’s Megan Rapinoe was named FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year today at an awards ceremony in Milan, capping off a spectacular summer that also saw her win the Golden Boot and Golden Ball trophy at the World Cup and draw deserved accolades and global attention both for her on-the-field performance and off-the-field activism.
Rapinoe beat out U.S. teammate Alex Morgan and England fullback Lucy Bronze in the final vote, which was equally weighted between between fans, journalists, national team coaches and captains. She is the third NWSL player to receive the award in the last four years, joining Carli Lloyd and Marta in that distinction. The 2017 award was won by Lieke Martens of the Netherlands and FC Rosengård/Barcelona.
In her nomination, Rapinoe was lauded for her excellence throughout the World Cup, stepping up to score at crucial times, including scoring both goals against Spain in a 2-1 victory in the Round of 16 and another brace against France in a 2-1 victory in the quarterfinals. She capped this off by scoring the winning goal from the penalty spot in the final.
Beyond her contributions to the U.S. national team, where she scored 12 goals in the past 12 months, she was noted for having helped lead Reign FC back to the NWSL playoffs in 2018, for the first time in three years. Rapinoe had seven goals and six assists in 17 appearances for the Reign in 2018 and was named to the league Best XI for the first time.
In addition to her individual honor, Rapinoe was named to the FIFA FIFPro Women’s World 11 at today’s awards, along with four of her USWNT teammates. Rapinoe is the second Reign FC player to be so honored, with former Reign goalkeeper Hope Solo making the list in 2015 and 2016.