Banner

When Carli Lloyd scored from the halfway line to complete a hat-trick in the first 16 minutes of the 2015 Women's World Cup final, her United States team-mate Hope Solo ran from her goal to scream: "Are you even human?"

Having already scored winning goals in the 2008 and 2012 Olympic finals, Lloyd was already one of the most celebrated players in the United States.

But earning America's first World Cup in 16 years and scoring such a spectacular goal pitched the midfielder's status to almost superhero level, with 2015 and 2016 Fifa World Player of the Year awards following.

After spending years training on her own in a sparse field in Delran, New Jersey, and showing a single-mindedness which led to a relationship breakdown with her parents, Lloyd had finally proven her doubters wrong to reach the pinnacle of her sport.

Now a new journey begins for the 34-year-old US captain after leaving Houston Dash for a short-term deal with Manchester City, which former England striker Kelly Smith, a former club team-mate of Lloyd's, calls a "coup".

City will now hope Lloyd's undoubted stardust and renowned dedication rub off on a team who are gunning for the Champions League title in their competition debut. - BBC -