Scotland midfielder Kim Little has been voted the BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year 2016.
The Seattle Reign player topped a supporters’ poll to become the second winner of the BBC World Service award.
She beat a shortlist of Gaelle Enganamouit (FC Rosengard, Sweden), Amandine Henry (Olympique Lyonnais), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash) and Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City).
“I’m surprised to win – I’m extremely humbled to win,” Little, 25, said.
“I think women’s football is in a great place and I think especially in terms of the USA and where I’m playing right now, it is leading the way. I’m proud to have won this award and to stand up here for women’s football and hopefully it will progress further.”
Little received the award at her club’s training ground on Tuesday.
Mary Hockaday, Controller of BBC World Service English, said: “Well done to Kim Little. It’s been another outstanding year for women’s football and Kim’s talent shines through on the pitch.
“I’m delighted BBC World Service plays an important part in giving female footballers the recognition they deserve.”
Little was Seattle’s leading scorer, and second overall in America’s National Women’s Soccer League, with 10 goals as she helped the Reign top the league in 2015 before a 1-0 defeat by FC Kansas City in the Championship final.The former Hibernian and Arsenal Ladies player – a five-time title winner with the Gunners – has made 115 appearances for Scotland, scoring 46 goals, and in 2015 also played on loan at Melbourne City.
In 2012, the Aberdeen-born player helped Great Britain reached the quarter-finals at the London Olympics.
She was named the FA’s Women’s Player of the Year in 2010, and in 2013 became the first recipient of the PFA Women’s Players’ Player of the Year award.
“She’s a player that has almost everything,” Scotland coach Anna Signeul said. “She’s quick, her balance and movement on the pitch is fantastic, she has brilliant technique, there aren’t many things that she can’t do.
“She’s a role model. She’s perfect in everything she does on and off the pitch, and I think it will take a long time before Scotland gets another player like this.”