The world’s best footballer

Think of the greatest number 10 in a Brazilian shirt, not Zico nor Rivelino or even Pele, think Marta…

Marta Vieira da Silva, to be precise, was voted the winner of the FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year for an unprecedented 5th time in a row.

Upon winning the award, Marta told, “It means a lot, especially for us because it’s harder for women. We work very hard but we’re always thinking about what might happen next year, if there’s going to be a team or a competition even.” This resonates as her American club FC Gold Pride has folded, although she is expected to join another WPS team.

Marta is renowned for her pace, strength and skills with step-overs and the Cruyff turn that are just a small part of her repertoire. She was born in Dois Raichos in the state of Alagoas in 1986 and came to international prominence in 2003 after Brazil won the Pan American Games and reached the quarter finals of the World Cup.

She was then offered the chance to play for Swedish team Umeå IK and won 3 league titles and the UEFA Women’s Champions League. After 5 years in Sweden and 111 goals in just 103 appearances Marta moved to the USA and joined Los Angeles Sol. Despite the west coast team folding, she won the MVP (Most Valuable Player) Award and the Golden Boot, a feat she repeated with FC Gold Pride but this time also winning the WPS (Women’s Professional Soccer) Championship.

Marta is contracted to Santos where she plays in the Copa Libertadores and Copa do Brasil, winning both in 2009 and returning for 2011 competitions.

The FIFA Women’s World Cup is in Germany this year and Marta is out to avenge the 2007 final defeat to this years hosts, “I hope they don’t have the same success. I hope I can win then, with the Brazil team,” she told

By Olly Hunter


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