02 December 2019

Megan Rapinoe wins Women's Ballon d'Or while England's Lucy Bronze is runner-up

America's Megan Rapinoe has topped off a phenomenal year by winning the Women's Ballon d'Or ahead of England's Lucy Bronze in second and compatriot Alex Morgan in third.

Rapinoe, 34, co-captained the US to World Cup victory in France this summer, claiming the golden boot after finishing with six goals and three assists. She also walked away with the Golden Ball which is awarded to the tournament's top player.

She was unable to attend the ceremony but appeared via video link alongside her mother, Denise and twin sister, Rachel. 

In the video she said: "It’s a bummer [not to be there]. I congratulate all the nominees, I can’t believe I’m the one winning it. I want to thank my team-mates, my coaches, my federation, to allow to be the person who I am on the field and off the field. Thank you to my beautiful girlfriend Sue. I’m so sorry I can’t be there, I know it’s going to be insane but I’ll do my best to get back there next year."

Her trophy cabinet is overflowing after a 2019 peppered with awards including the best FIFA Football award. She also notably used her publicity to speak out against social injustice and share her disagreement with Donald Trump's politics.

This is only the second year the award has been given to a female player, with Norway's Ada Hegerberg claiming the inaugural prize in 2018. Hegerberg, however chose to sit out this year's World Cup in protest over pay inequality.

Ex-American National coach Jill Ellis was named as female coach of the year. Ellis, who stepped down from the role in October beat the Netherlands' Sarina Wiegman and England Lionesses' coach Phil Neville to the prize.

The outspoken Rapinoe was also selected in the Fifa Fifpro women's team of the year; a team in which Lucy Bronze was the only English player to feature.

FIFA Fifpro Women's Team of the year:

Goalkeeper: Sari van Veenendaal (Arsenal and Atletico Madrid/Netherlands)

Defenders: Lucy Bronze (Lyon/England), Wendie Renard (Lyon/France), Nilla Fischer (Wolfsburg and Linkopings/Sweden), Kelley O'Hara (Utah Royals/USA)

Midfielders: Amandine Henry (Lyon/France), Julie Ertz (Chicago Red Stars/USA)

Attacking midfielders: Marta (Orlando Pride/Brazil), Rose Lavelle (Washington Spirit/USA), Megan Rapinoe (Reign FC/USA)

Striker: Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride/USA)

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