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Women’s Super League stars battling to win prestigious FIFA award

Two Women’s Super League stars have been included in the 12-person shortlist for the FIFA Women’s Player of the Year Award 2019.

Forwards Vivianne Miedema and Ellen White have been nominated for the prize which recognises both sporting performance and general conduct on and off the pitch.

Media representatives, national team coaches, national team captains and the general public are allowed to vote, with each group provding an equal weighting in the final result.

Brazilian forward Marta scooped the prize in 2018, narrowly pipping Dzsenifer Marozsan and Ada Hegerberg to first place. Read on as we assess their chances of success.

Miedema a deserving nominee

The Arsenal forward became the all-time leading scorer for the Netherlands at the World Cup this summer, surpassing Manon Melis’ tally of 59 with two goals against Cameroon.

She scored the opening goal in a 2-0 quarter-final victory over Italy and was undoubtedly a standout performer in the Netherlands’ run to the final.

Miedema was the top scorer in the WSL last term, netting 22 for the Gunners as they swept to the title by a seven point margin from Manchester City.

The 23-year-old was deservedly chosen as Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year for 2018/19 and she should be a strong contender for the FIFA award.

Improving White makes her mark

Having previously been dismissed as an honest grafter, White proved her quality with six goals for England at the World Cup.

She scored match-winning goals against Scotland and Japan and finished the tournament as joint top goalscorer alongside Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe.

White previously won the WSL Golden Boot in 2017/18 and will hope to challenge for that award during the upcoming season.

The 30-year-old has joined Manchester City this summer and will be a key part of their push for honours next term.

Ballon d’Or winner a popular pick

Hegerberg is likely to be the biggest threat to the WSL pair’s hopes of winning the FIFA award.

The 24-year-old made history in 2018 as she became the inaugural recipient of the Women’s Ballon d’Or award.

She helped Lyon sweep the board last season, with the French side claiming the domestic league and cup double and the Champions League.

Hegerberg missed the World Cup due to an ongoing dispute with the Norwegian Football Association, but she is undoubtedly the game’s biggest star at the moment.

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