Matildas attacking midfielder Caitlin Foord has been named the 2016 AFC Women’s Player of the Year.

The 22 year old claimed the award ahead of Matildas teammate Lisa De Vanna and Chinese midfielder Tan Ruyin at the Asian Football Confederation Annual Awards.

“I would like to start of by congratulating Lisa and Tan also on an amazing year,” said Foord on being named the best player in Asia.

“I wasn't really expecting this to be honest.”

Foord's 2016 has seen her overcome injury to be one of the key players for the Matildas during their AFC Women's Olympics preparation and campaign.

Transitioning from her well known defensive role into an offensive threat, Foord scored three goals for Australia - including against eventual Olympic gold medallists Germany - and produced a career best six assists.

Foord is the 2011 FIFA Best Young Player at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup and becomes the second player after China’s Ma Xiaoxu to capture the rare AFC double after being named the AFC Young Player of the Year in 2011.

“I would like to thank the FFA, Staj [Alen Stajcic], the rest of my Matildas teammates.  Me winning this trophy reflects on obviously an amazing year us Matildas have had. I'm taking this on behalf of all of them”

“Lastly, I would like to thank my Mum and my sister for all their support. I wouldn't be here without them.”

The Sydney FC forward becomes just the third Australian to claim the prize and the second in three years as she joins Kate Gill (2010) and Katrina Gorry (2014).

In the other awards, Australian officiating duo Kate Jacewicz and Renae Coghill were recognised alongside India’s Uvena Fernandes for the AFC Referees Special Award 2016.

The trio were the AFC team to officiate the final of the 2016 FIFA U17 Women's World Cup with Jacewicz the first Australian since Tammy Ogston on 2007 to wield the whistle in the final of a FIFA tournament.

“Renae and Uvena are consummate professionals. During training and preparation, they have always given 100% and they are extremely committed to ensuring that we work well as a unit," she said.

“My ultimate aim is to officiate at the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019 in France."

"In the meantime, I am taking it one step at a time and will continue studying our elite referees and AFC instructors."

AFC Women's Player of the Year Winners

1999Sun Wen China PR
2003Bai Jie China PR
2004Homare SawaJapan
2005Natsuko HaraJapan
2006Ma Xiaoxu China PR
2007Ri Kum-suk DPR Korea
2008Homare SawaJapan
2010Kate Gill Australia
2011Aya MiyamaJapan
2012Aya Miyama Japan
2013Ji So-yun Korea Republic
2014Katrina Gorry Australia
2015Aya Miyama Japan