FIFA Woman Player of the Year - Xtratime Community
View Poll Results: Your choice for Woman Player of the Year
Birgit Prinz of Germany 1 25.00%
Mia Hamm of the USA 0 0%
Hanna Ljungberg of Sweden 2 50.00%
Somebody else (please specify below) 1 25.00%
Voters: 4. You may not vote on this poll

 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old November 28th, 2003, 00:28 Thread Starter
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FIFA Woman Player of the Year

FIFA will announce the World Player of the Year December 15.

There are three finalists: Birgit Prinz, Mia Hamm, and Hanna Ljungberg.

Which one is your choice?
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old November 28th, 2003, 00:31 Thread Starter
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Birgit Prinz - from FIFA.com

For the second year in a row, Germany striker Birgit Prinz has made the shortlist of three for the FIFA World Player of the Year award: Prinz finished runner-up in 2002 behind Mia Hamm, the darling of American women's football, who is also on the shortlist and bidding for her third accolade in succession. And alongside the two front runners, Sweden's Hanna Ljungberg must also be in with a shout of the prestigious honour after an outstanding FIFA Women's World Cup campaign.

Prinz enjoyed a fabulous 2002, collecting winners' medals in the German Bundesliga and Cup, the UEFA Cup and the WUSA professional league. But those who thought she might ease off the gas in 2003 have been forced to think again.

In October 2003, the 26 year-old scaled a new peak in her playing career as she fired Germany to FIFA Women's World Cup glory in the USA, demonstrating the class which earned her the 2003 German Player of the Year award. Prinz headed home in the opening match against Canada, scored twice with the boot against Japan and then rounded off the group stage with her finest goal of the tournament, a mouth-watering volley against Argentina combining artistry and acrobatics. Another brace in the quarter-finals against Russia took her up to six for the tournament, and she added her seventh and Germany's third in semi-final stoppage time against the USA.

The FIFA Women's World Cup trophy was the first of a host of accolades for the 1.79 metre tall player: she also collected the Golden Shoe as top scorer - her seven goals took her well clear of the field - and picked up the Golden Ball as Player of the Tournament. Despite all that silverware, she played down the importance of the honours: "I was delighted to finish leading scorer, and to be named best player of the World Cup, but the team winning the title was much more important."

The Frankfurt-born player has since picked up where she left off at the end of the tournament: Prinz and her Germany team-mates set a new record with a 13-0 demolition of Portugal in a European Championship qualifier, Prinz finding the net on four occasions to raise her total to 65 international goals. The player herself says there is more to it than scoring: "I lay on plenty of goals too, although I'm a striker and ultimately you're judged on your goals."

Following a brief spell with WUSA outfit Carolina Courage, Prinz returned to 1. FFC Frankfurt at the end of August: the German champions and Cup winners are overwhelming favourites in their domestic competition again this term. In the preceding WUSA season, despite Prinz's 11 goals in 20 games the Courage finished outside the play-offs in seventh place. Former Carolina coach Marcia McDermott, in charge during the WUSA title-winning season, has nothing but praise for the player with 111 international caps: "She's full of energy and deadly in front of goal. It's just great fun watching her score over and over again."

Even before the FIFA Women's World Cup triumph, Prinz had already assembled an impressive array of honours. She made her international debut in 1994 as a 16 year-old and was a beaten finalist at the FIFA Women's World Cup with Germany the following year. She has European Championship winners' medals from 1995, 1997 and 2001 and a bronze from the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Her collection is rounded out by six domestic championships, seven German Cups and the 2002 WUSA crown with Carolina.

And despite all this, the qualified physiotherapist is still hungry for more. "I'm nowhere near my full potential," she says. Prinz looks destined to make waves on the international football scene for a while yet: next stop the 2004 Athens Olympics.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old November 28th, 2003, 00:33 Thread Starter
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Mia Hamm - from FIFA.com

After being crowned “FIFA World Footballer of the Year” in 2001 and 2002, Mariel Margaret Hamm, known as “Mia”, is once again in the elite group of three players who stand a chance of the taking the illustrious title for 2003.

That despite a year of mixed fortunes for the 31-year old in which she was denied crowning glory in her FIFA Women’s World Cup swansong. Hamm had dreamed of bowing out in the USA in her fourth and final tournament by lifting the title in front of her home crowd. A fiercely competitive opening match saw her lead the USA to 3-1 triumph over Sweden, and that game was followed by victory over Nigeria, Hamm scoring two early goals to secure an effortless victory. USA completed their group games with a routine win against North Korea and appeared well set for another world crown.

Their quarter-final victory over Norway was lacklustre, but no real cause for concern for Hamm & Co. Then, in the semi-finals, came the unexpected. Despite creating a number of good chances and dominating the first half, the Americans, inspired by Hamm, just could not put the ball past the outstanding German goalkeeper Silke Rottenberg. At the final whistle, the devastated American team trudged from the pitch after a 0-3 defeat, their FIFA Women’s World Cup dreams over. The subsequent 3-1 victory over Canada secured third place in the tournament for the Americans, but it was scant consolation for the disappointed team. Since then, the smiles have returned as Mia Hamm and her cohorts celebrated her first game after the FIFA Women’s World Cup with a 3-1 victory against Mexico. Hamm claimed two assists from corners, both of them headed home by Abby Wambach, and was voted player of the match.

The year had started so brightly: the USA lifted the Algarve Cup courtesy of a 2-0 victory over China. Hamm, who was plagued by a serious knee injury last year, was a constant threat, scoring one goal and laying on the other.

She also enjoyed a fantastic season in the WUSA, America’s professional league. Her club Washington Freedom defeated Atlanta Beat 2-1 in the Final to land the title, despite only having finished fourth in the table.

Hamm, born in Selma, Alabama in 1972 owes her love of football to her older siblings and father. She made her international debut at the tender age of 15 and has since made 245 appearances for her country, scoring an incredible 144 goals. She won Olympic gold in Atlanta in 1996, and took silver in Sydney in 2000. She was part of the FIFA Women’s World Cup winning teams of 1991 and 1999, and gave an unforgettable performance as goalkeeper against Denmark in 1995 after Briana Scurry was dismissed. USA went on to finish third in that tournament.

Hamm is the icon of women’s football and in the USA enjoys the same celebrity status and popularity as pop stars. The blonde idol has even written an autobiography entitled “Go for Gold”. Her work away from football is equally laudable. She has set up the Mia Hamm Foundation, an organisation which battles bone marrow disease.

Hamm has caused recent headlines with her private life, after finding happiness with baseball star Nomar Garciaparra of the Boston Red Sox. Despite her astronomical success she has retained her humility, not least due to the influence of her former coach and mentor Anson Dorrance who discovered her. “I just play football and enjoy being successful,” says Hamm on her formula for happiness.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old November 28th, 2003, 00:34 Thread Starter
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Hanna Ljungberg - from FIFA.com

Birgit Prinz may have lifted the FIFA Women’s World Cup and Mia Hamm may have landed the WUSA title, but one other player can lay equal claim to the title of “FIFA World Player of the Year”. Step forward Hanna Ljungberg.

The 1.60 metre Swedish striker can look back on an extraordinary year of success. In October, she led her team to the Final of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in the USA where Sweden suffered a narrow 2-1 defeat to Germany on a Golden Goal. For a long spell in the game, it had looked as though Sweden were destined for glory, especially after Ljungberg gave her country a 1-0 lead with a fantastic goal before half-time, but Germany fought back gamely to triumph at the death. Ljungberg scored three goals in the campaign and alongside strike partner Victoria Svensson, she proved the scourge of the opposition in every game.

Just a few months earlier, the 24-year-old whirlwind celebrated a historic success with club side Umea IK, when the perennial Swedish champions won the UEFA Women’s Cup for the first time. Ljungberg played a significant part in the triumph, scoring two goals and laying on another two in the first leg. In the return leg, she won the penalty which led to her side’s opening goal and scored herself later in the game. Umea crowned the season with their third successive championship.

Earlier in the year Ljungberg had shot herself into the spotlight in style in the Algarve Cup. She was the top scorer in the tenth edition of the tournament, scoring four goals in four games. Unfortunately, her team had to be content with fifth place despite a string of strong performances including draws against USA, Norway and Canada.

Ljungberg is without doubt one of the best strikers in the world. Her international record reads 51 goals in 95 appearances. A month after the FIFA Women’s World Cup was over, she was back among the goals, scoring in a European Women’s Championship qualifier in Serbia & Montenegro.

Ljungberg has her own theory on why things have gone so well: “I was injury-free all year,” she explains. "In the previous two years I had a lot of injuries to cope with, but this season I could play almost without interruption. I think that is why I have scored so often.”

In the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup in the USA, Ljungberg suffered a torn knee ligament against Ghana. The Swedes could not replace her and lost in the quarter-final to Norway.

The likeable blue-eyed Swede recently hit the headlines when Italian Serie A club Perugia declared an interest in signing her. Ljungberg admitted she was flattered by the offer, but did not have to think hard about her reply to eccentric Perugia President Luciano Gaucchi: “I am only 1.60m tall. It would be asking too much for a woman to play alongside men. I don’t imagine that the offer was really serious, but it was very nice to receive such a compliment from such a big club nevertheless.”

It was not the first time that an Italian club has shown an interest in Ljungberg either. Lazio, one of the strongest teams in the Italian women’s league, made an enquiry, but Ljungberg rejected the advance, insisting that the Swedish women’s league is stronger than the game in Italy.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old December 16th, 2003, 01:14 Thread Starter
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Finally, justice was done!

Birgit Prinz is the 2003 FIFA woman player of the year.

Results (top 3):

Prinz - 268 points (including 41 first-place votes)
Hamm - 133 points (including 15 first-place votes)
Ljungberg - 88 points (including 8 first-place votes)

FIFA article

Complete vote results (.pdf download)

How the coaches voted (.pdf download)
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old December 16th, 2003, 06:01
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Prinz Finally Wins!

Quote:
Originally posted by Jeff
Finally, justice was done!

Birgit Prinz is the 2003 FIFA woman player of the year.
I'm really happy for Birgit that she finally won the award that she also deserved last year as well. Birgit won five trophies with her club teams Frankfurt and Carolina in 2002 and this year Birgit won the Golden Ball and the Golden Boot as Germany won the WWC.

Most of the FIFA coaches did a much more responsible job than they did the previous two years. However there were a couple of exceptions with the most glaring being the head coach of the Solomon Islands Matai Vave who gave his second place vote to Michelle Akers . I guess no one ever bothered to tell him that Akers retired during the previous millennium.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old December 17th, 2003, 04:28 Thread Starter
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I don't even know why Solomon Islands gets a vote equal to the others.

They can't even muster a team to compete for the Oceania spot in the Olympics. :rollani:
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old January 2nd, 2004, 11:07
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this should have gone to the hottest player with the juiciest boobs
if she knows how to kick a ball should be by-criteria
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old January 12th, 2004, 17:10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Abominus
this should have gone to the hottest player with the juiciest boobs
u mean breast feeding one?

"there is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in"

"rocks on my path? i keep them all , one day i'll build a castle"
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old February 18th, 2004, 21:35
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I know she wasn't nominated but that Canadian Girl
I don't know her name.
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