For the first time in five years, the FIFA Women's World Player of the Year is not Brazilian superstar Marta. She has won the award every year since 2006, but thanks to Japan's wonderful performance at the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup and Brazil's early exit, a new reign has started. Women's World Cup Golden Boot and Golden Ball winner Homare Sawa has been named the World Player of the Year, breaking Marta's incredible streak.
Though some will argue that Marta's great performances in club football should have been taken into account, it's very tough to argue that FIFA did not get this one right. The World Cup almost always trumps club football when it comes to FIFA awards in both men's and women's football, and Sawa was clearly the top performer at the last World Cup. Not only did she score the most goals and win the Golden Ball, but she scored the game-winning goal in the semifinals and the game-tying goal of the final, which sent the final to penalty kicks.