U.S. Women’s National Team star Megan Rapinoe won the 2019 FIFA Women’s Ballon d’Or award on Monday, marking her first time winning the award.
Rapinoe was named winner of the annual award after leading the USWNT to its fourth World Cup title in France last summer. She beat USWNT teammate Alex Morgan and England’s Lucy Bronze for the trophy.
Rapinoe became the first American to win the award, which saw its first female recipient in 2018, when Ada Hegerberg won the prize.
The Ballon d’Or was created by French soccer publication France Football in 1956, awarding its honor to the top men’s soccer player in the world. France Football created a women’s award in 2018.
Rapinoe claimed the Golden Boot at the World Cup after scoring six goals, as well as the Golden Ball for Player of the Tournament. In total, Rapinoe finished 2019 with 10 goals for the USWNT.
“I’m so sad I can’t make it tonight. It’s absolutely incredible; congrats to the other nominees. I can’t believe I’m the one winning in this field, it’s been an incredible year,” Rapinoe said in a recorded message, adding, “I want to thank my teammates and the U.S. Federation.”