The Best FIFA Awards
Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team captain Christine Sinclair was honoured as a recipient of The Best FIFA Special Award on Monday 17 January 2022. Sinclair, currently preparing for her 23rd international season, is an Olympic Games champion and three-time medalist as well as a five-time FIFA World Cup participant, Concacaf champion, and the world’s all-time international goalscoring leader. She has also won two NWSL Championships with Portland Thorns FC as well as previously two WPS Championships across a stellar professional career at the club level.
Sinclair broke the world’s all-time international goalscoring record on 29 January 2020 and has most recently scored her 188th international “A” goal in Ottawa on Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team Celebration Tour.
“Throughout my career, I have been fortunate to experience many successes from winning trophies internationally and at club level and accepting individual awards,” said Christine Sinclair, Captain of Canada Soccer Women’s National Team. “What matters are all the moments that I have shared and the connections that I have made. Being one of the first to recieve this award is an incredible honour. I hope it inspires young girls around the world to chase their dreams and lets them know that anything is possible.”
Sinclair was also one of three Canada Soccer finalists for FIFA awards from the 2020-21 season. Sinclair was a finalist for the world’s top player for the 10th time while Bev Priestman was a finalist for The Best Women’s Coach and Stephanie Labbé was a finalist for The Best Women’s Goalkeeper. Kadeisha Buchanan, meanwhile, was a finalist for the FIFPro Women’s World XI.
“Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team and no doubt the whole of Canada is immensely happy and proud to see Christine get the recognition she deserves globally for her contribution to the game both on and off the pitch,” said Bev Priestman, Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team. “She is a leader, truly does represent greatness but stands for values that any young Canadian can carry with them in chasing their dreams.”
In 2020-21, Sinclair captained Canada to a world title at the Olympic Games in Tokyo while also helping Thorns FC win the 2020 NWSL Fall Shield and 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup. She was Canada’s first goalscorer at the Olympic Games in a 1:1 draw with Japan in the opening match. She was the NWSL’s top scorer in the 2020 NWSL Fall Series. In leading Canada to a Gold Medal, Canada also became just the third nation to win three Olympic medals in women’s soccer.
After the Olympic Games, Sinclair helped Thorns FC win the 2021 Women’s International Champions Cup, the 2021 NWSL Shield, and reach the semi-finals of the NWSL playoffs. Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team, meanwhile, were named the Canadian Team of the Year by both Postmedia (for the third time in 10 years) and The Canadian Press (for the second time).
Along with her three Olympic medals, Sinclair captained Canada to the Concacaf Championship in 2010. She has played and scored in five consecutive FIFA World Cups (including a fourth-place finish at USA 2003) and won medals at nine Concacaf tournaments and two Pan American Games (including Gold in 2011). At the youth level, she led Canada to a silver medal at the inaugural FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship Canada 2002 where she also won both the Golden Ball and Golden Shoe.
At the club level, she is starting her 10th season with Portland Thorns FC where she has won two NWSL Championships (2013, 2017), two NWSL Shields (2016, 2021), the NWSL Fall Series (2020), the NWSL Challenge Cup (2021), and International Women’s Cup (2021). She won the WPS Championship once with FC Gold Price (2010) and once with Western New York Flash (2011). She has also won titles in the USL W-League, Metro Women’s Soccer League, BC Soccer provincial championship, and NCAA, as well as finished a runner up in Canada Soccer’s National Championships when she was still just 17 years old.
An Officer in the Order of Canada, Sinclair is a 14-time winner of the Canada Soccer Player of the Year award and one of only four players in the world to make more than 300 international “A” appearances. She is a two-time winner of the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award (top Canadian women’s athlete) and one-time winner of the Lou Marsh Trophy (after leading Canada to Bronze at the London 2012 Olympic Games). She was a recipient on the Women Against MS award in 2019 and part of the Canada Soccer London 2012 team inducted to the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame.
In Fall 2022, Bell Media and Uninterrupted will release the documentary SINC: The Christine Sinclair Story available on TSN and Crave with an upcoming book on leadership also in the works. Off the pitch, Sinclair is an advocate for gender equality in sport and in society and she is the spokesperson for A&W’s Burgers to Beat MS campaign to raise awareness and funds to fight Multiple Sclerosis.
CANADA SOCCER’S WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM
Canada are Olympic champions (Tokyo 2020), two-time bronze medal winners (2012 and 2016), and two-time Concacaf champions (1998 and 2010). In all, Canada have participated in seven consecutive editions of the FIFA Women’s World Cup™ (1995 to 2019) and four consecutive editions of the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament (2008 to 2021). At Tokyo 2020, Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team became the first Canadian team to win three consecutive medals at the Summer Olympic Games and just the third nation in the world to win three medals in women’s soccer.
Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Youth Teams, meanwhile, have won four Concacaf youth titles: the 2004 and 2008 Concacaf Women’s Under-20 Championship, the 2010 Concacaf Women’s Under-17 Championship, and the 2014 Concacaf Girls’ Under-15 Championship. Canada have qualified for seven editions of the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup (including a silver medal at Canada 2002) and all six editions of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup (including a fourth-place finish at Uruguay 2018).