PRESENTED BY
Naomi Baker—The FA/Getty Images
September 28, 2022 6:00 AM EDT

The world knows Sam Kerr as legendary because of what she does on the pitch. She started playing for the Australian women’s national team at 15, has captained them since 2019, and is their all-time leading scorer. She’s the only female football player to win the Golden Boot in three different leagues on three continents. She recently signed one of the largest women’s soccer contracts of all time with Chelsea. This kid scores goals and wins games.

But I know Sam as a legend because of who she is off the pitch. At press conferences, Sam allows her play to speak for itself. She leads not through bravado about her own skill, but by directing the spotlight to her teammates, celebrating their unique skills and effort. And they rise to the level that Sam sees in them. That’s a leader. That’s a legend.

The world will certainly see Sam crush it on the pitch and celebrate her teammates off of it at the 2023 World Cup. Prepare to fall in love with the Matildas and their leader.

Wambach is a two-time Olympic gold medalist

More Must-Reads From TIME

Contact us at letters@time.com.

Keke Palmer
Sydney Sweeney
Joel Kim Booster
Jack Harlow
SZA
5 stories
EDIT POST