Kim Little Named As BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year for 2016
Seattle Reign FC midfielder Kim Little has been selected as the BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year for 2016. Little was nominated for the award on April 25, along with Cameroon forward Gaelle Enganamouit, French midfielder Amandine Henry, midfielder Carli Lloyd of the Houston Dash and FC Kansas City defender Becky Sauerbrunn.
“In its second year this award continues to celebrate the best talent in women’s football globally, showing how far the game has come in recent years. Whilst inspiring people about the women’s game it’s a great opportunity for fans around the world to show their support and vote for their favorite player,” said Mary Hockaday, Controller of BBC World Service English.
Little was also nominated for the award in 2015, which was won by Nigeria and Arsenal Ladies FC forward Asisat Oshoala. Oshoala is in Seattle for the match between Arsenal and Reign FC this Thursday night.
The 25-year-old from Mintlaw, Aberdeenshire, Scotland splits her time between playing for Reign FC and her native Scotland national women’s football team, where she boasts 115 caps and 46 goals. Earlier this season, Little was named Player of the Week for weeks 2 and 3 for her two assists and one goal in Seattle’s 3-0 shutout over the Boston Breakers and leading the club to a 1-0 victory over FC Kansas City on May 1. Little has three goals and two assists this season, leaving her tied with six other NWSL players for the most goals and tied in fourth place for assists.
Little led Reign FC in scoring for the 2015 season with 10 goals, good for second best in the NWSL. Little also led the league with seven assists and was named to the NWSL Best XI.
Little will join up with her teammates in the Scottish squad in the UEFA Women’s EURO 2017 qualifying tournament, where she and her team will face a double-header next week, going up against Iceland on June 3 in Falkirk, Scotland and Belarus on June 7 in Minsk, Belarus. Scotland currently resides in first place in qualifying group 1, with a 5-0-0 record and 15 points. Little carries five of Scotland’s 27 goals for this qualifying tournament run, including a penalty kick scored against Slovenia on April 8. She is currently tied in third place for most goals scored throughout the qualifiers.
In the fall of 2015, Little was loaned to the Australian W-League’s Melbourne City where she spent the NWSL offseason playing for the club along with Seattle teammate Jess Fishlock. Little scored nine goals over 12 games for Melbourne, leading the team to the W-League Grand Final title and earning the Player of the Match award for her goal in the 54th minute.
This Thursday, May 26, Little will face her former club, Arsenal Ladies FC, where she played from 2008 to 2013 under manager Laura Harvey. Harvey, Little, and the rest of the squad will match up against Arsenal in an international friendly that kicks off at 7:30 p.m. PT at Memorial Stadium. Tickets are $18 and can be purchased at reignfc.com/arsenal or by calling (855)-REIGN-FC
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