Ada Hegerberg’s message to young girls: ‘Believe in yourselves’

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Story highlights

  • Hegerberg wins first women’s Ballon d’Or
  • Won third straight Champions League title with Lyon
  • Scored record 15 goals in Europe last season

Norwegian Hegerberg, 23, was asked by the DJ if she knew how to twerk after being crowned women’s player of the year, a comment that stood in stark contrast to the powerful speech she delivered after picking up the award.

“I would like to end this speech with some words to young girls all over the world: Please, believe in yourselves,” said Lyon forward Hegerberg.

“I’d like to say a big huge thank you to France Football for letting us have this opportunity to have this award. It’s a huge step for women’s football and the work you put down is such an important thing for women’s football.

“Together we’ll make a difference.”

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Earlier this year, Hegerberg scored a record 15 goals as Lyon became the first team to win three-straight Champions League titles, bettering her tally of 14 from the previous season.

Hegerberg took the opportunity to call out then-Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, who ended his Champions League campaign on 14 goals.

“Got a record now. Sweet, sweet 15,” she wrote last May. “Couldn’t do it without my teammates. Hey @Cristiano can you score one more tomorrow?”

The forward also helped Lyon win its 12th consecutive title in France’s Division 1 Féminine, where for three seasons in a row she has finished as the league’s top scorer.

She ended last season by signing a three-year contract extension with Lyon, and the start of the 2018/19 season has seen Hegerberg bag 10 goals in 10 appearances for her club.

Ada Hegerberg celebrates Lyon's third successive Champions League title after a 4-1 in over Wolfsburg
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Hegerberg finished a marginal six points ahead of Danish captain Pernille Harder to become the first even winner of the women’s Ballon d’Or.

The initial shortlist for the award, like the established men’s version, is drawn up by magazine French Football and the winner is voted for by journalists around the world.

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