Beth Mead has been voted the 2022 BBC Sports Personality of the Year, becoming the first women’s footballer to win the prestigious award.
It completed a clean sweep of awards for the Lionesses, who claimed Team of the Year, while manager Sarina Wiegman was named Coach of the Year.
Mead enjoyed a stunning 2022, registering six goals and five assists to scoop the player of the tournament and golden boot at Euro 2022 as the Lionesses lifted their maiden piece of silverware.
It caps a year full of individual accolades for the Arsenal forward, who has already been named Arsenal’s player of the season for 2021/22, England’s player of the year and the BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year.
Curling’s Eve Muirhead finished third, and cricketer Ben Stokes was second.
The 27-year-old becomes the first footballer to win Sports Personality of the Year since Ryan Giggs in 2009, and she joins an illustrious list of former footballing winners: David Beckham, Michael Owen, Paul Gascoigne and Bobby Moore.
Emma Raducanu won the award in 2021, and Mead’s triumph means there are back-to-back female winners of SPOTY for the first time in 50 years – since Princess Anne and Mary Peters won the award in 1971 and 1972 respectively.
Mead’s impressive 2021/22 campaign came off the back of missing out on a spot in Team GB’s Olympic squad the previous summer, which was then followed by her mum’s ovarian cancer diagnosis. She has spoken about how both events ignited a fire inside her ahead of the subsequent season.
“For me, football’s always been my first true love,” Mead said as part of her SPOTY VT. “My mum sacrificed so much; she worked two jobs to pay extra money for my dad to drive me to training. I wouldn’t be where I am today without them.
“I know I’m not going to share all those moments with my mum for the rest of my life anymore. So to share that moment with her last summer was just incredible.”