Here are the ten nominees, in alphabetical order. A short list will be announced later.
The winner will be announced January 13, 2014.
The blurbs below are from FIFA.
Over the course of 2013, Nadine Angerer left little doubt as to her credentials as one of the world’s best, and the goalkeeper was a decisive figure in Germany’s UEFA Women’s Euro campaign in Sweden, helping her country to an eighth continental crown. As the most-capped player among coach Silvia Neid’s young squad, the 34-year-old was a cornerstone of the team. Angerer saved two penalties in the final against Norway, ensuring Germany defended their title with a narrow 1-0 victory. It was a memorable individual display that was a key factor in her scooping the Best Women's Player in Europe Award.
Despite narrowly missing out on the 2013 UEFA Women's EURO final with host nation Sweden (after of a 1-0 semi-final defeat to eventual winners Germany), the 29-year-old midfielder has demonstrated in recent months that she is among the best on the continent. Not only did her three goals at the EURO 2013 finals earn her the adidas Silver Boot, but she was also selected in the tournament’s All-Star team. On 1 June, Fischer made her 100th international appearance in a 2-1 friendly win over Norway. After the finals, the ball-winning midfielder, who is also strong in the air, joined German treble-winners Wolfsburg from Swedish first-division outfit Linkopings.
In 2013 Lena Goessling achieved what the majority of players only ever dream of: The 27-year-old helped VfL Wolfsburg to glory in the German championship, DFB Cup and UEFA Champions League. As if that were not enough, Goessling was named as player of the match following the continental decider against Olympique Lyon. Shortly afterwards the midfielder was a leading member of the victorious Germany side that took the European Championship by storm in Sweden. Goessling’s towering performances there did not go unnoticed and she was voted on to the all-star team of the tournament as well as shortlisted for the Best Women's Player in Europe Award.
A FIFA Women's World Cup winner at the age of 20 in 2011, Japan's Saki Kumagai is a genuine phenomenon in the women's game. Tough in the tackle, always well-positioned and a fine distributor of the ball, she has proved herself to be one of the best defenders on the planet. In the club realm, she switched from Frankfurt to Lyon this year and wasted little time in making her presence felt at the powerhouse French outfit. "She's like a wall," says her coach, Patrice Lair. "She has excellent passing ability, good technique and she's always alert – she's top quality." The sole negative for Kumagai is that she will end the year having not won a single trophy.
The fact that Marta Vieira da Silva was named FIFA Women’s Player of the Year five times in a row between 2006 and 2010 is an indication of her high standing in the game. During her richly successful career the Brazilian star has also helped take her national team further in international competition than ever before, but without yet going on to claim either Olympic gold or the FIFA Women’s World Cup™. She nevertheless continues to delight fans with her skills, both in her country’s famous yellow jersey and for her Swedish club Tyreso FF.
Alex Morgan began 2013 finishing third in the FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year, and the indefatigable forward has carried that form as the calendar has worn on. In January she joined the newly-formed Portland Thorns. Morgan swiftly formed a potent spearhead with Canadian striker Christine Sinclair which propelled the Thorns to the inaugural National Women's Soccer League title, with the American finishing at the top end of the competition’s scoring and assists charts. The Californian, who turned 24 in July, also dazzled at international level. Morgan’s goal earned USA a draw with Sweden that sent them through to the Algarve Cup final, in which she scored both goals in a 2-0 defeat of Germany.
Yuki Ogimi (formerly Nagasato) enjoyed a stellar season at club level with the Japan striker taking out the coveted Bundesliga top-scorers crown at Turbine Potsdam. It capped an impressive three-year spell at the German powerhouse side with Ogimi scoring at a rate higher than a goal every second match. The 26-year-old joined English Women's Super League club Chelsea in July and played the final matches of the season with the Londoners. The 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup™-winner also had a profitable year on the international stage scoring six times for the Nadeshiko.
Top scorer in France with 24 goals and voted the league's player of the year, Lyon striker Lotta Schelin has taken her game to a new level in 2013. Boasting all-round ability, the 29-year-old Swedish international carried her momentum into the UEFA Women's EURO on home soil, where she finished at the head of the scoring charts thanks to her five strikes. The hosts' 1-0 semi-final loss to Germany ultimately ended their excellent run, just as Schelin's Lyon side narrowly missed out on UEFA Women's Champions League glory after losing the showpiece 1-0 to Wolfsburg.
After enjoying a standout year in 2012 that included claiming bronze for Canada at the Olympic Football Tournament in London, Christine Sinclair translated her success on the international stage to the club level with newly-formed Portland Thorns of the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL). The Burnaby, British Columbia native fit right in with Alex Morgan and Co in the city where she went to university from 2001-05 as Thorns marched to the inaugural NWSL title, scoring in Portland’s 2-0 win over Western New York Flash in the final. A captain for both club and country, Sinclair has scored 145 times for Canada, leaving her third of all-time behind Mia Hamm and Abby Wambach.
Reigning FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year Abby Wambach showed no signs of letting up during 2013. The Rochester, New York native enjoyed a year closer to home playing for Western New York Flash in the inaugural National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) season. Wambach led Flash to the NWSL final where they were ultimately bested by Portland Thorns 2-0, but the prolific scorer struck for 11 goals in 19 games, taking second place in the NWSL scoring charts. On the international level, Wambach reached a massive milestone on 20 June when she struck four times against Korea Republic to surpass Mia Hamm’s all-time scoring record in women’s international football of 158 goals. With Wambach still scoring at will for USA, it seems her recently reached record is likely to stand for some time to come.