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Memories of 2017: Lisa De Vanna becomes top Matildas goal scorer

The highest capped current player, 2017 saw forward Lisa De Vanna embark on her 13th year with the senior national team.

It was also a year where she was chasing a goal scoring record that would see her re-write the Australian history books as the Matildas greatest goal scorer.  De Vanna entered the year one goal behind record holder Kate Gill who, with 41 goals, had held the record since 2014.

It started slowly at the Algarve Cup where the 33 year old struggled to find her feet.  It was the first time ever that De Vanna had been unable to make an impact on the scoreboard at a tournament.

However, by the time the Tournament of Nations came around the mercurial striker looked back to her usual self.

[MORE: Matildas win silverwareMemories of 2017]

A measure of how the weight of the pressure was in the final match of the tournament against Brazil.  After Chloe Logarzo had won a penalty, De Vanna – who doesn’t normally take penalties – stepped up to the spot.  The initial strike was saved but she calmly put away the rebound to draw level with Gill (41).

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20 minutes later De Vanna had the record after some strong lead up work from fellow West Aussie Sam Kerr teed up an easy finish.

De Vanna added to her tally against Brazil in September with a brilliant strike to make the new record 43 goals.

Even without the record, with three World Cup, three Asian Cup and two Olympic Games appearances, there was no doubting that when De Vanna eventually hangs up her boots – hopefully in the distant, distant future – that she will do so as a legend of the game.

Now it’s guaranteed.

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