Female Soccer Players

Topics: FIFA World Cup, FIFA World Player of the Year, FIFA Women's World Cup Pages: 7 (1763 words) Published: December 9, 2013
10. Kelly Smith
9. Hanna Ljungberg

Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images
The popularity of women's soccer has increased exponentially since the inaugural Women's World Cup in 1991, and with the improved quality of play has come a steady stream of great players over the years. This is our list of the 10 greatest female soccer players ever. Most of these names you'll recognize, whether you've followed the game only in America or on the world stage. Who would make your top 10? Let us know in the comments.

10. Kelly Smith

Stuart Franklin/Getty Images
Highlights: Here
English legend Kelly Smith has won loads of silverware during a sterling career with Arsenal. And since debuting for England as a 17-year-old in 1995, she has scored 45 times in 111 international matches. 9. Hanna Ljungberg

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Highlights: Here
Hanna Ljungberg scored 72 international goals for Sweden in a career that lasted from 1996-2008, and she was a vital member of the team that finished second at the 2003 Women's World Cup. Ljungberg—no relation to former Arsenal player Freddie Ljungberg—finished third in the FIFA World Player of the Year voting in 2003. 8. Renate Lingor

7. Cristiane
6. Abby Wambach (United States)
5. Homare Sawa

Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images
The popularity of women's soccer has increased exponentially since the inaugural Women's World Cup in 1991, and with the improved quality of play has come a steady stream of great players over the years. This is our list of the 10 greatest female soccer players ever. Most of these names you'll recognize, whether you've followed the game only in America or on the world stage. Who would make your top 10? Let us know in the comments.

10. Kelly Smith

Stuart Franklin/Getty Images
Highlights: Here
English legend Kelly Smith has won loads of silverware during a sterling career with Arsenal. And since debuting for England as a 17-year-old in 1995, she has scored 45 times in 111 international matches. 9. Hanna Ljungberg

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Highlights: Here
Hanna Ljungberg scored 72 international goals for Sweden in a career that lasted from 1996-2008, and she was a vital member of the team that finished second at the 2003 Women's World Cup. Ljungberg—no relation to former Arsenal player Freddie Ljungberg—finished third in the FIFA World Player of the Year voting in 2003. 8. Renate Lingor

Cameron Spencer/Getty Images
Highlights: Here
The midfield general for Germany's 2003 and 2007 Women's World Cup-winning teams, Renate Lingor claimed two World Cup winners' medals, five German league titles and five German Cup crowns during a 12-year professional career. Lingor didn't score as many goals as some on this list (35 in 147 international caps), but she influenced games like few others. 7. Cristiane

Koji Watanabe/Getty Images
Highlights: Here
Like the highlight video says, you can't have Marta without Cristiane. Cristiane, 27, finished third in the FIFA World Player of the Year voting in 2007 and 2008. She has won the Copa Libertadores with Santos, the Bundesliga with FFC Turbine-Potsdam and a runner-up medal with Brazil at the 2007 World Cup. In just 45 international appearances, Cristiane has already scored 31 goals. 6. Abby Wambach

Koji Watanabe/Getty Images
Highlights: Here
Abby Wambach is still going strong at age 31 (she turns 32 in June), fresh off leading the United States to a runner-up finish at the 2011 Women's World Cup. Wambach will forever be remembered for a dramatic, late equalizer against Brazil in the knockout rounds, but that's not all she's done. In 178 appearances for the US (so far), Wambach has scored an amazing 134 goals. In a few more years, Wambach could be higher on this list. A five-time winner of the US Soccer Athlete of the Year award, Wambach needs a World Cup title on her resume to achieve soccer immortality. 5. Homare Sawa

David Ramos/Getty Images
Highlights: Here
Japan's Homare Sawa shot to international...
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