Written by Oluwaseun Oyediji
When a player inspires a team and a whole country to its first major title after 56 years, she deserves to be the women’s footballer for the year.
2022 was a historic year for the English Women’s national team as a trophy finally “came home” for the first time in over five decades.
England and Arsenal FC Women player, Bethany Mead began the Lionesses’ road to glory with the winning goal against Austria in the opening game of the 2022 UEFA Women’s Euro.
A hat trick during Sarina Wiegman’s 8-0 thrashing of former European and World Champions, Norway was a major highlight of the Euros for Mead.
A goal each against Northern Ireland and in the semi-final during a 4-0 bashing of Sweden ensured that Mead ended the Euros with six goals only failing to score against Spain in the quarter-final and Germany in the title-winning final match in Wembley.
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As England clinched the Women’s Euros, Mead became the Golden Boot winner, Player of the Tournament, and top assist provider. Her contributions in front of the goal lifted the European side to win a major tournament for the first time.
England qualified for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup with a perfect run of winning all ten games during the Qualifiers to top Group D with 30 points. The team scored a whopping 80 goals without conceding any goal.
Mead emerged as the team’s top goal scorer at the end of the Qualifiers with 13 goals and 12 assists making a total number of 25 goals contributions out of her team’s 80 goals. She finished third on the goal scorers chart at the end of the Qualifiers behind Belgian Wullaert and Germany’s Lina Magull.
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For Arsenal, Bethany Mead has been in superb goal scoring form in the league even though the Gunners didn’t win the league last season. She scored 11 goals in 22 league games last season and has scored 3 in 7 games this season.
Last season in the UEFA Women’s Champions League, she scored a goal in 11 games and has surpassed that with 2 in 4 games thus far this season. Mead capped up 2022 with the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) Sports Personality of the Year award.
A creative and prolific forward, she holds the all-time most assists and all-time second-most goal contributions records in the Barclays English FA Women’s Super League (WSL).
Unfortunately, she finished second to Alexia Putellas for the Ballon d’or and UEFA Player of the Year, Mead’s form and historic feats last year make her Bettitude Women’s Footballer Of 2022.
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