Chicago - Alex Morgan, whose 18 goals in 19 matches helped the United States qualify to defend their women's World Cup title, was named US female footballer of the year on Friday.
Morgan's 18 goals in 2018 were by far a team-leading mark and were also the second-most she has scored in a calendar year in her international career, behind only 2012. She has 98 international goals for her career.
This year Morgan scored against nine different countries and had six multi-goal games, including a hat-trick against Japan in the Tournament of Nations.
She scored seven goals to earn the golden boot in the CONCACAF World Cup qualifying tournament, which the US won to secure their place in next year's World Cup in France.
"I'm just happy that I was able to contribute in this way to the National Team, especially leading into a World Cup year, as it was important for the whole team to gain confidence and momentum," said Morgan, who was named Player of the Year for a second time.
"To be named captain with Megan (Rapinoe) and Carli (Lloyd), I felt I was challenged to succeed in a really positive way and was comfortable growing into this larger role with the team.
"I'm also pleased that I was able to improve and evolve in my play along the way. There's a good energy to the team right now and we're all really looking forward to getting started next year."