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Lieke Martens’ year like no other has prised the crown of women’s football from Carli Lloyd. The new queen of the women’s game announced her move to Barcelona and excelled as her national team triumphed at UEFA Women’s EURO 2017. Voted Player of the Tournament, which was held on home soil, the vastly talented 24-year-old left winger scored three goals and provided two assists, though there was more to her performance than mere statistics. Martens proved the most elusive of dribblers and set the tempo for her side, showing her innate ability to read the game.
Since starring at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Jordan 2016, where she spearheaded Venezuela’s challenge with such élan that she collected the adidas Bronze Ball and the adidas Bronze Boot, Deyna Castellanos has continued her footballing education in the USA. Castellanos joined Santa Clarita Blue Heat for the 2017 United Women’s Soccer season where, apart from making the UWS All-League First Team, Castellanos was also voted the league’s Player of the Year. Castellanos continues her development after returning to college team Florida State Seminoles in Division I of the NCAA. An instinctive, free-scoring striker, the 18-year-old has plenty of power and pace to go with her impressive array of skills.
A colossal name in the women’s game, Carli Lloyd was crowned The Best FIFA Women's Player 2016 after yet another successful year. The 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup™ winner and two-time Women’s Olympic Football Tournament gold medallist joined her first club abroad this year when she signed a loan deal with Manchester City Women in February. Lloyd and City narrowly missed out on the Women’s Super League Spring Series, finishing second to Chelsea on goal difference. But in her four-month stint, Lloyd helped the Blues to the 2016/17 UEFA Women’s Champions League semi-finals and lifted the FA Women’s Cup for the first time in front of a 35,000 crowd at Wembley.