Matildas striker Sam Kerr has been nominated for the 2017 AFC Women’s Player of the Year.
Kerr is nominated alongside Japanese defender Saki Kumagai and DPR Korea U20 World Champion winning striker Sung Hyang Sim.
It is the first time any of the trio have been nominated for the award and Kerr joins current AFC Women’s Player of the Year winner Caitlin Foord, Lisa De Vanna (2016), Collette McCallum (2007), Kate Gill (2010 winner), Katrina Gorry (2014 winner) and Elise Kellond-Knight (2015) as Australian nominees.
The nomination is another acknowledgment of the 23 year old’s stellar 2017 which has already seen her pick up a host of awards in Australia and the United States.
The striker has been prolific in 2017, netting 31 goals for the Matildas, Sky Blue FC and Perth Glory. She has also claimed the Julie Dolan Medal for W-League Player of the Year, the PFA Player of the Year, the WinS Sportsperson of the Year and the NWSL Most Valuable Player, as well as a nomination for FIFA Player of the Year.
Meanwhile Japan’s Saki Kumagai has also had a strong year with the 27 year old Olympique Lyon defender claiming the treble with the French club including a fourth league title, fourth Coupe de France and second UEFA Women’s Champions League. For the national team, Kumagai has transitioned into one of the leaders of Asako Takakura rebuild.
While Kim So-hyang helped DPR Korea to the U20 FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2016. In 2017, the quick footed attacker again was influential for DPR Korea as they claimed the 2017 AFC U-19 Women’s Championship with Kim awarded the best player and Golden Boot of the tournament.
The 2017 AFC Annual Awards gala will be held in Bangkok, Thailand on 29 November 2017.