Top gongs for Arsenal’s Jodie Taylor and Jordan Nobbs at FA awards
Prizes for Tottenham Hotspur Ladies too as Karen Hills is named manager of the year
14 September, 2017 — By Catherine Etoe
Tottenham general managers Valerie Weaver and June Clarke, marketing manager Che Wheatley and manager Karen Hills [ALL PHOTOS: CATHERINE ETOE]
ARSENAL striker Jodie Taylor and midfielder Jordan Nobbs were the toast of the women’s game on Friday when they were honoured at a glittering FA award ceremony at the Grosvenor House Hotel in central London.
Taylor, the Golden Boot star of this summer’s European Championships, won the ultimate accolade when she was crowned England Player of the Year, while Nobbs was named FA Women’s Super League 1 Players’ Player and also won Goal of the Spring Series. Taylor, 31, saw off competition from Nobbs, Reading’s Jade Moore and Manchester City’s Lucy Bronze to take the England gong – and she seemed shocked to have done so.
A veteran forward with experience of playing club football in America, Australia and Sweden, the Merseysider only made her England debut in 2014, but was a class apart at Euro 2017 in Holland this summer.
England Player of the Year Jodie Taylor
In the opening match against rivals Scotland, she made history with three clinically taken goals, joining Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker as only the third English player ever to score a hat-trick in a major tournament. She scored against Spain, and hit the winner in the quarter-finals as England beat France for the first time since 1974.
“No way did I think I was going to win,” she said. “Looking back on the journey I’ve had, it is unbelievable.”
Nobbs, England Player of 2016, was also smiling after her blistering free kick for Arsenal against Man City was voted the best of the WSL1 Spring Series, while her colleagues named her their star turn. “That people think enough of you to write your name down, it’s a privilege to be voted for and I was very surprised,” she said.
There was double delight for Tottenham Hotspur Ladies, too, as they scooped the FA Women’s Premier League Club of the Year Award, while their head coach Karen Hills was named Manager of the Year. Spurs, affiliated to the men’s club since 1991, stormed to the WPL South title in 2017 and will feature in WSL2 this season after winning 3-0 in a play-off against Blackburn.
Assistant general manager Valerie Weaver described their FA awards as the “final piece in the jigsaw” and a legacy from 2015 when her brother, club chairman Glenn Weaver, passed away suddenly. “I like to think that that gave us the momentum and spur for the whole club to push on and from that day, everything has been going in the right direction,” she said. “We start a new era at Tottenham now in WSL2, it’s onwards and upwards.”