Nigeria and Liverpool Ladies striker Asisat Oshoala has won the BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year award after a vote by fans around the world, the broadcaster announced on Tuesday.
The 20-year-old picked up the prize in Canada, where she is preparing for the women’s World Cup at which she will star for the Super Falcons.
She was the youngest player on a shortlist of Veronica Boquete (FFC Frankfurt and Spain), Nadine Kessler (VFL Wolfsburg and Germany), Kim Little (Seattle Reign FC and Scotland) and Marta (FC Rosengard and Brazil).
Oshoala, who signed for Liverpool in January, said she felt “very happy and appreciated” at winning, adding: “It’s a very good thing for me and also motivation for the World Cup.
“I had a very good 2014 and had the opportunity of going to the under-20’s Women’s World Cup with Nigeria and I also won the Golden Ball and Golden Boot, so I think maybe that added to the reason why people voted for me.”
Nigeria’s under-20s lost to Germany in the final.
The Super Falcons are making their seventh straight appearance at the World Cup, which starts on June 6, and hoping to improve on their best performance of reaching the quarter-finals in 1999.
They face the United States, Sweden and Australia in the group stages.