Christine Sinclair has scored a world record 188 goals. (Photo courtesy of Canada Soccer)
Canadian women’s national team captain Christine Sinclair Monday was honored by FIFA, which surprised the veteran forward with a special award.
Sinclair, who was scored more international goals than anyone on the planet, was feted with The Best FIFA Special Award for being the international game’s top goal-scorer.
The 38-year-old Canadian has tallied 188 goals in 308 international appearances since donning a Maple Leafs uniform in 2000. She also has 53 assists.
“I would like to take this time to thank FIFA for this once-in-a-lifetime recognition,” Sinclair said during her acceptance speech, according to FIFA.com
“First and foremost, I’d like to thank my family for their support and guidance throughout my entire career. From my parents’ constant support and allowing their little girl to leave home at a young age to chase my dreams, to my brother for tolerating his younger sister for all those years. I hope he knows all I wanted to be was him. I’m standing here today because of all of you.
“Throughout my career I’ve been fortunate to experience many successes, from winning trophies internationally and at club level and accepting individual awards. “But, honestly, the victories are quickly forgotten… except winning that Olympic gold medal – I’ll remember that one forever.”
Sinclair was a member of three medal-winning Olympic teams – capturing the gold at last year’s Tokyo Olympics and bronze medals at the 2012 London Summer Games and 2016 Rio Olympics.
“But what truly matters most is the moments I’ve shared and the connections I’ve made,” Sinclair added. “From celebrating with an entire country to experiencing the heartbreak of defeat with those closest to me. To all my team-mates and staff members along the way, I hope you know how thankful I am for all of you. Together, we’ve had the ultimate goal of inspiring generations and changing the sport in our country. And I tell you, we’ve accomplished that and more.
“At this point in my career, the thing I’m most proud of is being able to have been a part of the game from the very beginning, where there was limited support, limited professional environments to now, where it’s truly a global game, where there’s professional environments, successful leagues, successful international tournaments.
“I do want to say that women’s football, women, female athletes have often been an afterthought. My goal moving forward is to continue the fight, continue the change and to continue growing the sport we all love.”
Sinclair, a 14-time winner of the Canada soccer player of the year, among her many honors, has played with the Portland Thorns in the National Women’s Soccer League since 2013.