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Abby Wambach

Category: All Stars & MVPs, Soccer, Women in Sports
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Biography:

Sports Speaker Abby Wambach is an American professional soccer player and a leader of the United States Women’s National team (USWNT). Abby has been a staple on the USWNT since 2003 and has earned the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year award 6 times during her career. As a dominating forward, Abby currently holds the record for most international goals scored by any male or female player ever at 183. She has made plenty of clutch goals over her career, and her header in the waning moments of the semi-final match against Brazil in the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup is the latest goal ever scored in a match and earned her the Bronze Boot and the Silver Ball awards. Abby was also named the 2011 Associated Press Athlete of the Year making her the first ever soccer player, male or female, to win the award. In 2015, Abby was the captain of the USWNT that won the 2015 FIFA World Cup title. This was the third World Cup title in USWNT history and the first since 1999.

Sports Speaker Abby Wambach has been a leader since her college days at the University of Florida when she joined the 3-year old program and helped lead them to their first national championship in school history over women’s soccer powerhouse the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She was drafted by the Washington Freedom in the Women’s United Soccer Association Draft in 2002 which folded in a year when it couldn’t finance the league. The Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league was created in 2008 and lead to Abby becoming a player-coach for the Washington magicJack. She continued to play for the U.S. National team in World Cups and Olympics and her stellar play in the 2012 Olympic Games earned her the FIFA World Player of the Year and the coveted  FIFA Ballon d’Or award as the overall best soccer player of the year.

Of course Abby’s accomplishments opened the door to a world of endorsements and appearances including deals with Gatorade, Nike, and Panasonic. She appeared in the 2012 edition of ESPN magazine’s The Body Issue, and they also aired a 1-hour documentary about her career titled Abby Head On. She is an active philanthropist who has worked with the Epilepsy Foundation and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. She is also an ambassador for Athlete Ally, an organization dedicated to eradicating the stigma of homophobia and transphobia in sports.

Sports Speaker Abby Wambach is a legendary figure in American sports history and a role model for other women in sports.