30. Christen Press
Christen Press’s season has been all the more impressive given she’s been nursing a persistent ankle injury throughout the majority of 2017.
The Chicago star scored 11 goals as the Red Stars once again reached the NWSL play-offs, an improvement by three on her 2016 season. She also assisted four for her team mates and did enough to be named in the NWSL Best XI at the end of the season.
For the USA, Press scored goals vs Norway, Brazil and South Korea as the US endured a quiet year as they get ready for another assault on the World Cup in 2019.
All in all, another excellent season for a striker who has become one of the most well-known names in US soccer.
Jill Ellis, USA national team head coach says:
“Christen is proven goal-scorer. Her off-the-ball movement always gets her into scoring positions and she’s a crafty finisher who is also dangerous from distance.”
Heather O’Reilly, former USA team mate says:
“Christen is a very well rounded footballer. She is skillful, fast, and smart. Give her a little space at the top of the box and game over. This year, Press scored a ton of goals, as usual, and she has seemingly expanded her leadership roles on her teams, which has been really cool for me to see. A great team mate because she is calm and thoughtful.”
Jen Cooper, US women’s football writer says:
“Christen Press was one of just three players to feature in every USWNT game this year. Her name didn’t appear on the score sheet a lot, but her offensive contributions were critical – she netted the game-winner vs Norway in one of the team’s only two matches on the road, and scored a goal vs Brazil to launch her team’s dramatic 4-3 comeback win in July.
“Captaining a Chicago NWSL team loaded with US stars, Press led the club in minutes played, bested her own club for goals in a single season and tripled her NWSL career assists total. She led the Red Stars to their third consecutive play-offs appearance, although once again the team fell short of reaching the final.”