Ballon d’Or 2021: all about the 20 female nominees this year


The full list of 20 nominees for this year’s Women’s Ballon d’Or has been revealed.

This is the third year of the prestigious title since Ada Hegerberg won the inaugural award in 2018, followed by Megan Rapinoe the following year.

Here’s the full list of the 2021 Ballon d’Or nominees and a look at why each player was shortlisted.

Alexia Putellas (Barcelona & Spain)

Barcelona veteran Alexia Putellas has had a gold-dripping 2021.

The midfielder won the Primera Iberdrola title, the Copa de la Reina, and made history with Barca after becoming the first Spanish team to win the Champions League.

In his side’s unstoppable league season, Putellas scored 18 goals in the middle of the park. She also won the UEFA Women’s Player of the Year award and was named to the Champions League squad of the season.

Magdalena Eriksson (Chelsea & Sweden)

The Chelsea skipper led her team to their fourth Women’s Super League title last season, finishing with just one loss and ten goals conceded.

Eriksson also headed the Blues to a Community Shield and Continental Cup title. They fell just short of the mark in the Champions League, finishing second behind Barcelona in the final.

Magda Eriksson

Sam Kerr (Chelsea and Australia)

Sam Kerr has enjoyed his best WSL season yet after winning the Golden Boot thanks to his astonishing 21 goals and eight other assists.

The forward won three trophies with Chelsea and was named to the PFA WSL Team of the Year.

Sam kerr

Marie-Antoinette Katoto (PSG & France)

Marie-Antoinette Katoto’s contribution to the PSG Women’s Division 1 title was essential.

The 22-year-old has scored 21 goals this season, finishing her team’s top scorer and second in the league behind Khadija Shaw.

Thanks to Katoto’s efforts in D1, she was named the league’s official team of the year.

Last month, she scored her first international treble for France in a 10-0 win over Greece.

Marie-Antoinette Katoto

Stina Blackstenius (BK Häcken & Sweden)

Stina Blackstenius played a huge role in Sweden’s dominant Olympic race this summer.

The Swedes faced Japan and Australia to reach the final in Tokyo against Canada, where Blackstenius scored her team’s only goal.

However, Canada emerged victorious on penalties with Sweden taking silver.

Stina Blackstenius

Wendie Renard (Lyon & France)

Wendie Renard was a solid asset for the challenge of Lyon for a 15th title of champion of France.

Even if the title was not to be, the defender set an example on the pitch and put in a stunning offensive performance.

Renard has scored ten goals and two assists for the season and helped Lyon keep an impressive record of just six goals conceded in 22 games.

Wendie Renard

Sam Mewis (NC Courage & USA)

The American star was on loan with Manchester City last season, which saw her compete for the WSL title before losing to Chelsea.

The midfielder has scored two important goals in Man City’s postponed 2019/20 FA Cup title race – net in the semi-finals against Arsenal and in the final against Everton for the club’s third trophy in the competition.

Mewis also had a strong performance at the Tokyo Olympics, placing third with the United States after beating Australia in the bronze medal match.

Sam mewis

Pernille Harder (Chelsea & Denmark)

Like her Chelsea teammates on this list, Pernille Harder won a trio of trophies with the Blues last season. She ended the WSL campaign with nine goals and three assists.

The Dane was also named to the UEFA Champions League squad of the season after Chelsea finished second in the tournament.

Pernille Harder

Sandra Paños (Barcelona & Spain)

The Barcelona goalkeeper has played an important role in her side’s treble season and has been named to the UEFA Champions League squad of the season.

Sandra Panos

Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal and Netherlands)

Despite Arsenal’s struggles in the WSL last season, Vivianne Miedema has been clinical as always in her team’s attack.

The Dutch star finished the tenure with 18 goals and six assists, behind only Chelsea’s Sam Kerr.

Miedema also made history by breaking the WSL all-time scoring record, taking Nikita Parris’ total of 49 goals.

Vivianne Miedema

Jessie Fleming (Chelsea and Canada)

Not only did Jessie Fleming have a decorated season with Chelsea, she was a national hero on the Olympic stage.

The midfielder was instrumental in Canada’s race for gold – scoring her team’s lone goal in the final and registering the opening penalty for the shootout against Sweden.

Jessie fleming

Irene Paredes (Barcelona & Spain)

Irene Paredes joined Barcelona from PSG this summer after winning the D1 title with the Parisians. She was later recognized for her efforts with Barca in the Champions League to be part of the squad of the season.

Irène Paredès

Ashley Lawrence (PSG and Canada)

The versatile midfielder not only won his first French title with PSG, but was part of the Canadian squad that won their very first Olympic gold medal this summer.

Ashley Laurent

Lieke Martens (Barcelona & The Netherlands)

Lieke Martens has contributed 20 goals and 16 assists in Barcelona’s triple season.

She was nominated for the UEFA Female Player of the Year award before representing the Netherlands on the Olympic stage in Tokyo.

Lieke Martens

Christine Sinclair (Portland Thorns & Canada)

Canadian heroine Christine Sinclair has had a huge year.

The striker recently won her 300th cap for her national team and led it to her first-ever Olympic gold medal in Tokyo.

Christine sinclair

Ellen White (Man City and England)

Man City may have narrowly missed the WSL 2020/21 title, but Ellen White was still a standout artist.

The forward ended the season with ten goals and five assists, which helped solidify her place in the GB 2020 squad for the Olympics.

White also took home the England Female Player of the Year award for 2020/21, the third time she has won the honor.

Ellen Blanc

Christiane Endler (PSG & Chile)

Although the goalkeeper has now left PSG, Christiane Endler is still recognized for her efforts with the French team.

The Chilean shooter was named in the UNFP Football Trophies Team of the Year and won the goalkeeper of the year award.

Endler was also part of the UEFA Champions League squad of the season and kept 19 clean sheets in his 22 D1 appearances.

Christiane Endler

Jenni Hermoso (Barcelona & Spain)

Jenni Hermoso made history in the Champions League last season. Not only did she help Barcelona become the first Spanish team to win a European title, but she also ended the campaign as a joint top scorer, becoming the first Spaniard to do so.

Hermoso was then named the Champions League Forward of the Season and also secured a place in the official Tournament Season Squad.

Jenni hermoso

Fran Kirby (Chelsea and England)

Fran Kirby has made a dream comeback after being unavailable for several months due to illness.

As if she had never been absent, the forward ended the 2020/21 WSL season with 16 goals and 11 assists.

Kirby received the 2020/21 FWA Female Footballer of the Year and PFA Female Player of the Year awards for her efforts.

Fran kirby

Kadidiatou Diani (PSG and France)

French international Kadidiatou Diani won his first D1 title with PSG last season.

The forward has scored 13 goals and nine assists and after a stellar 2021/22 domestic season, she was named the league’s player of the year.

Kadidiatou Diani

The winner of the Ballon d’Or 2021 will be announced in December.

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