Aya Miyama

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Aya Miyama
宮間 あや
Aya Miyama in 2011.jpg
Miyama playing in the 2011 World Cup
Personal information
Full name Aya Miyama
Date of birth (1985-01-28) January 28, 1985 (age 33)
Place of birth Oamishirasato, Chiba, Japan
Height 1.57 m (5 ft 2 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1999–2000 Nippon TV Beleza 6 (2)
2001–2008 Okayama Yunogo Belle 110 (62)
2009 Los Angeles Sol 20 (0)
2009 Okayama Yunogo Belle 6 (1)
2010 Saint Louis Athletica 5 (0)
2010 Atlanta Beat 17 (1)
2010–2016 Okayama Yunogo Belle 122 (48)
Total 286 (114)
National team
2003–2016 Japan 162 (38)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Aya Miyama (宮間 あや, Miyama Aya, born 28 January 1985) is a former Japanese football player. She played for the Japan national team starting in 2003, and from 2012-2016 served as captain of the team. She appeared in fourWorld Cups from 2003-2015, including the team that won the 2011 World Cup for Japan. Miyama also led Japan to a silver medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.

Club career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Miyama was born in Ōamishirasato, Sanbu District, Chiba Prefecture,[citation needed] on 28 January 1985 . She started her career as a football player in the club her father founded. She later joined Nippon TV Beleza in 1999 after playing with Yomiuri Menina (Nippon TV Menina), but when she was in eleventh grade, she left the team and went to the high school football club. Even among male players, she kept playing football.

Miyama joined L.League side Okayama Yunogo Belle in 2001, having received an invitation from Midori Honda, the coach.

WPS[edit]

Aya Miyama (Left) playing for Saint Louis Athletica against the Boston Breakers. Kelly Smith is pictured on the right.

On 24 November 2008, Miyama was selected by Los Angeles Sol of the U.S. Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) in the 2008 WPS International Draft, and joined Sol in 2009. In the 2009 Women's Professional Soccer season, she had 6 assists but no goals. When the Sol disbanded in early 2010, she was taken by Saint Louis Athletica. Miyama signed as a free agent with the Atlanta Beat on 10 June 2010.

Return to Japan[edit]

Miyama returned to Okayama Yunogo Belle in September 2010. She left the club at the end of the 2016 season.

National team career[edit]

In the 2007 World Cup held in Shanghai, China, Miyama performed brilliantly in Japan's match against England, scoring the team's two goals both on direct free kicks, leading Japan to a draw. In Japan's first group stage match of the 2011 World Cup, she scored the go-ahead goal in Japan's win against New Zealand on a scorching 68th minute free kick, and was named Player of the Match.

At the 2011 World Cup in Frankfurt, Germany, Miyama scored the winner – a curling free kick – to help Japan beat New Zealand, and netted Japan's first goal in the final against USA. Miyama also scored Japan's first penalty of the eventual penalty shoot-out in the final which ended 2–2 after extra time. Her team won 3–1 in the penalty shoot-out, making Japan the first Asian team to lift the World Cup.

At the moment of victory, Miyama did not join her teammates in celebration, but instead went to the USA players to hug them and congratulate them on a good game. This has been reported both by Hope Solo and the Japanese media as evidence of Miyama's sportsmanship and respect for her opponents.

Miyama was named the AFC Women's Footballer of the Year in 2011,[1] 2012[2] and 2015.

At the 2012 Summer Olympics, she led the team to the silver medal as a captain. At the 2015 World Cup, Japan won 2nd place. At 2016 AFC Women's Olympic Qualifying Tournament, Japan failed to qualify for the 2016 Summer Olympics; following the tournament, she retired from the national team. She played 162 games and scored 38 goals for Japan.

Club statistics[edit]

As of 21 November 2015
Club Season League National Cup League Cup Other1 Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Nippon TV Beleza 1999 0 0 -
2000 6 2 - -
Total 6 2 -
Okayama Yunogo Belle 2003 16 13 2 1 - - 18 14
2004 14 17 - -
2005 21 8 4 4 - - 25 12
2006 17 6 4 0 - - 21 16
2007 21 9 2 0 0 0 - 23 9
2008 21 9 2 1 - - 23 10
Total 110 62 0 0 -
Los Angeles Sol 2009 20 0 - - 1 0 21 0
Total 20 0 - - 1 0 21 0
Okayama Yunogo Belle 2009 6 1 2 2 - - 8 3
Total 6 1 2 2 - - 8 3
Saint Louis Athletica 2010 5 0 - - - 5 0
Total 5 0 - - - 5 0
Atlanta Beat 2010 17 1 - - - 17 1
Total 17 1 - - - 17 1
Okayama Yunogo Belle 2010 7 4 2 0 0 0 - 9 4
2011 16 9 3 1 - - 19 10
2012 18 5 2 2 4 2 - 24 9
2013 18 6 3 1 10 9 - 31 16
2014 28 15 2 1 - - 30 16
2015 24 6 2 1 - - 26 7
Total 111 45 14 6 14 11 - 139 62
Career total 275 111 1 0

1Includes 2009 Women's Professional Soccer Playoffs.

National team statistics[edit]

[3][4]

Honors[edit]

Team
Champion: 2011
Runner-Up: 2015
Runner-Up: 2012
Champion: 2014
Gold Medal: 2010
Champions: 2008, 2010
Individual
All-Star Team: 2011
Bronze Ball: 2015
Best player: 2014
  • AFC Women's Player of the Year
Winner: 2011, 2012, 2015
Best player: 2012
Best Eleven (6): 2007, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Best Player: 2004
Top Scorers: 2004

References[edit]

  1. ^ "AFC Women Player of the Year: Aya Miyama". AFC. 23 November 2011. Archived from the original on 11 September 2012. Retrieved 23 November 2011. 
  2. ^ "AFC Women Player of the Year: Aya Miyama". AFC. 29 November 2012. Archived from the original on 2 December 2012. Retrieved 29 November 2012. 
  3. ^ Japan Football Association(in Japanese)
  4. ^ List of match in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 at Japan Football Association (in Japanese)
  5. ^ 2015 FIFPro Award

External links[edit]