The FIFPro Women's World XI class of 2016 has taken to social media to celebrate the announcement of last week's awards.
FIFPro unveiled the team on March 8, 2017, to coincide with International Women's Day as one of numerous initiatives by the World Players' Union to help develop the sport. A new survey, due for release later this year, is currently being prepared by FIFPro to raise awareness around the challenges facing women who want to pursue a career in professional football.
In accepting her World XI prize, US forward Alex Morgan told her nearly three million followers on Twitter of the "sacrifices" made to reach the top. She received the most votes of all attackers in a poll that reached 3,200 players in 47 countries.
Morgan, one of five World XI stars from French powerhouse Lyon, also appears in a new video which showcases seven players who received a visit from FIFPro during the recent SheBelieves Cup in the United States.
Hope Solo embraced the recognition of her peers, which comes at a peculiar time for the veteran goalkeeper who has lost her spot on the US national team and is currently searching for a new club.
Honoredtoberecognizedbymypeersas the best goalkeeper in the world! Congratstomyfellow keepers! 💪⚽️🌎 https://t.co/iB3ZtP1zzK— Hope Solo (@hopesolo) March 10, 2017
Hedwig Lindahl (Sweden/Chelsea) and Katarzyna Kierdrzynek (Poland/Paris Saint-Germain) displayed their appreciation after finishing in second and third respectively behind Solo in the goalkeeper category.
Wolfsburg's Swedish international Nilla Fischer said she is "beyond grateful". She was the second most popular defender behind Lyon's towering French centre back Wendie Renard, with Ali Krieger (USA/Orlando Pride) and Leonie Maier (Germany/Bayern Munich) filling the final two slots.
Ada Hegerberg and Eugenie Le Sommer sit alongside Morgan in a front three made up entirely of Lyon players.
Marta posted an image on her Instagram account with a message of thanks to her Brazil and FC Rosengard teammates, not to mention those worldwide who voted for the five-time world player of the year.
Former US international Heather Mitts, a three-time Olympic gold medallist with 137 caps, seized the opportunity to congratulate her fellow Americans.
We saw a variety of messages from national federations, clubs and leagues, all basking in World XI glory in their own special way.
The final word goes to Manchester City's new recruit Carli Lloyd, US captain and two-time world player of the year, who told FIFPro of her desire to leave a legacy that takes the women's game forward.
- Published: 13 March 2017