Canada Soccer announced that Christine Sinclair has been voted the Women’s National Team winner for the 2016 Canadian Players of the Year award. Sinclair from Burnaby, BC was honoured from a vote shared by Canadian media (50%) and Canadian coaches (50%).
Sinclair is one of two winners of the 2016 Canadian Players of the Year award. Her co-winner from the Men’s National Team will be announced on Friday 16 December.
“Christine Sinclair is such a great Canadian and this is reflected in her leadership of our team, not only in the way that she can inspire her teammates, but also in the way that she can inspire all Canadians – she thoroughly deserves this award,” said John Herdman, Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team Head Coach.
Sinclair was a star for both country and club in 2016, winning an Olympic bronze medal with Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team and winning an NWSL Shield (first place) with Portland Thorns FC.
“There have been so many highlights for her in 2016, including her 250th international appearance and becoming the second-highest goalscorer of all-time, while more importantly for the team she consistently delivered in the biggest moments when it mattered most.”
With Canada, she scored seven goals and four assists in 18 appearances, including the winning goal in the bronze medal match at the Rio 2016 Women’s Olympic Football Tournament. In the National Women’s Soccer League, she scored seven goals in 12 appearances with Portland Thorns FC and was named the NWSL Player of the Olympic Games. Down the stretch, she scored four goals in the last five games to help Portland clinch the NWSL Shield.
In 2016, she also won her seventh CONCACAF medal (one gold, five silver, one bronze) after Canada finished second at the CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament. In the match that clinched Canada’s spot at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, she scored an all-world “golaso” against Costa Rica after juggling the ball, spinning, and volleying her left-footed shot into the net off the inside of the crossbar.
“I will always remember that goal against Costa Rica to ensure our Olympic qualification and her composed finish against Brazil that sealed the bronze medal for Canada,” said Herdman.
Also in 2016, Christine became the world’s second-best goalscorer with her 159th international goal, surpassing Mia Hamm in February (she finished the year at 165 goals in 250 matches).
Remarkably, this marks the 13th time in 17 years that Christine Sinclair has been selected Canada Soccer’s Player of the Year.
In 2016, Sinclair finished first in voting ahead of runners up Ashley Lawrence (second place), Janine Beckie, Kadeisha Buchanan, Jessie Fleming, and Sophie Schmidt.