Thorns FC midfielder Crystal Dunn was announced as the 2021 Concacaf Women’s Player of the Year last evening at the Concacaf Awards event.
Dunn was selected based on a football first voting system, which included the participation of coaches and players from Concacaf's 41 member associations, as well as media members from our region and fans. More details on the new voting process introduced for 2021 are available here.
Dunn was a key member of the U.S. team that won the Bronze Medal at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, starting all six matches and playing 554 minutes and earning a place in the tournament’s Best XI. The 29-year-old left winger also started two games for the U.S. at the 2021 SheBelieves Cup, the 1-0 win over Canada and the 2-0 victory over Brazil, helping the U.S. win their fourth SheBelieves title. In addition to the medal-winning performance in Tokyo and the SheBelieves Cup, Dunn appeared in 10 international friendlies with the USWNT, who compiled a 9W-1D-0L record in those matches. Overall, with Dunn on the field in 2021, the USWNT had a 13W-3D-2L record.
There was even more hardware for Dunn at the club level in 2021. As a member of the Portland Thorns, Dunn helped her side win the 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup, the 2021 International Champions Cup and the 2021 NWSL Shield. Dunn featured in 15 NWSL matches with the Thorns in 2021, 12 as a starter, scoring one goal in 1,071 minutes played. Like always, Dunn’s contribution could be seen in all phases of the game for Portland. Over the course of the NWSL season, Dunn made four clearances, two blocks and seven interceptions in defense. Her passing was also a weapon for the Thorns, with Dunn completing 377 of 504 passes, along with eight successful crosses and two assists. Dunn was also very skilled at setting up her team with set piece opportunities, drawing 14 fouls during the 2021 season.
Dunn’s excellent 2021 is a continuation of the stellar career she has enjoyed to this point. A two-time winner of the Concacaf Women’s Under-20 Championships in 2010 and 2012, Dunn also won the Golden Boot (6 goals) at the 2016 Concacaf Women’s Olympic Qualifying Championship. She then starred at the 2018 Concacaf Championship and 2020 CWOQ, garnering a spot in the Best XI of both tournaments, while also helping the U.S. win the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup with another Best XI honor.
Additionally, Thorns forward Christine Sinclair was named to the 2021 Concacaf Best XI. Sinclair scored five goal in 15 NWSL regular-season matches in 2021 while also helping Canada win their first-ever gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics.