Mary Earps says she took the ‘scenic route’ on her way to the top of the sport (Picture: Getty)
The ceremony for the Best FIFA Football Awards took place in London with Lionel Messi and Pep Guardiola securing the top prizes in men’s football.
But England dominated the awards in women’s football with Sarina Wiegman named Manager of the Year after guiding the Lionesses to the World Cup final.
Earps, speaking on stage after being crowned best goalkeeper, said: ‘Last year I won the award but didn’t get in the Team of the Year, this year I thought it might be the other way around!
‘Thank you to all my coaches for England and [Manchester] United. I am just blown away.
‘I talk a lot about how it wasn’t the easiest journey here, I took the scenic route.
‘But looking back now, it all makes sense. It made me so much more prepared for the challenges I face to today, and not to take a day for granted.
‘If you are struggling, keep going. It is never too late to be who you are. 2023 showed we can change the world if we speak out against injustice, so let’s keep doing that.’
Earps was named in the Fifpro Women’s World XI along with England teammates Lucy Bronze, Alex Greenwood, Keira Walsh, Alessia Russo, Lauren James and Ella Toone.
United States star Alex Morgan and Australia’s Sam Kerr also made the team with Spanish duo Olga Carmona and Aitana Bonmati.