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January 7, 2013 at 12:33 PM

Abby Wambach named FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year, Alex Morgan voted third

us logo small.jpgU.S. women’s national team forward Abby Wambach was voted FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year on Monday, making her the first American to win the award since Mia Hamm in 2002.

Teammate Alex Morgan, who played for the Sounders Women this past summer, finished third in the voting behind runner-up Marta, a five-time winner from Brazil.

Here are the voting results: Wambach: 20.67%, Marta: 13.5%, Morgan: 10.87%.

“I’m very, very surprised,” Wambach said in a U.S. Soccer news release. “Individual honors only happen if you have great teams and great people who have given you the chance to be here. Not only do I think Marta and Alex could have won, but many other players could have been here as well. Thanks to FIFA, thanks to U.S. Soccer and thanks to all the fans and my family for putting me in this position. I don’t think of myself as the best player in the world, just a player who plays on the best team in the world.”

More reaction from Wambach and Morgan here.

Former USWNT coach Pia Sundhage, who has since left to coach Sweden, was named FIFA’s Coach of the Year in the women’s game with 28.59 percent of the vote. She became the first coach of an American team to win the award. The U.S., of course, won the gold medal in the London Olympics over the summer.

On the men’s side, it was no surprise that Barcelona/Argentina star Lionel Messi won his fourth straight FIFA World Player of the Year award (a feat no one else in history has accomplished). He scored a record 91 goals in 2012 and took 41.60 percent of the vote, beating Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid/Portugal (23.68%) and Andres Iniesta of Barcelona/Spain (10.91%).

The Spanish national team coach, Vicente del Bosque, won FIFA World Coach of the Year on the men’s side with 34.51 of the vote after leading the team to the Euro ’12 championship.

The FIFA team of the year consisted of goalkeeper Iker Casillas (Real Madrid/Spain); defenders Dani Alves (Barcelona/Brazil), Marcelo (Real Madrid/Brazil), Gerard Pique (Barcelona/Spain) and Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid/Spain); midfielders Xabi Alonso (Real Madrid/Spain), Iniesta and Xavi Hernandez (Barcelona/Spain); and forwards Radamel Falcao (Atletico Madrid/Colombia), Ronaldo and Messi.

German legend Franz Beckenbauer received the FIFA Presidential Award from Sepp Blatter for lifetime achievements and service to the game, and the FIFA Fair Play Award went to the Uzbekistan Football Federation for exemplary fair play.

Lastly, here is the winner of the the FIFA Puskas Award for the top goal of the year. Slovakian striker Miroslav Stoch claimed the prize for this strike for Fenerbahce in a Turkish league match on March 3, 2012.


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