January 7, 2013
By Michael Lewis
Hamm expects Wambach to break her record:
NEWTOWN, Conn. -- Outside of Abby Wambach's friends and family, no one was prouder of the U.S. striker winning the FIFA women's world player of the year than Mia Hamm.
|Mia Hamm, expects her former teammate Abby Wambach to break her international scoring record.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
And no one would want Wambach to break her international scoring record of 158 goals more than Hamm.
Asked if she would be OK if Wambach broke her record of 158 goals, Hamm replied, "Absolutely.
"I expect her to. I think it's awesome."
Wambach, 32, has 150 goals and counting.
Hamm certainly can relate to Wambach's honor, being the only other American to win the award, in 2001 and 2002.
She called it "well deserved. I'm so proud. What a year those guys had and obviously for her. She has been leading this team the way she does. I'm just so proud of the fact she's recognized."
Wambach scored five goals at the London Olympics as the U.S. women captured their third consecutive gold medal.
She's a teammate you love having next to you, love having on your team," Hamm said. "She's fearless. She literally bleeds for that uniform. She doesn't know what it means to quit. She's always fit, she's always competitive. You know, as someone who has played alongside of her and seen her grow, she earned that trophy. It's not just being lucky and being on the end of some great service. She has earned that trophy. That's why without any hesitation I can say how proud I am of her."
Hamm was one of 40 soccer players who participated in Soccer Night in Newtown, which was held at the Newtown Youth Academy to bring some smiles to the children and citizens of a community that was ravaged by the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14.
When she heard of Houston Dynamo president Chris Canetti, who grew up in Connecticut, was staging an event, Hamm did not think twice of signing up.
So, Hamm signed autographs and posed for photos with children and their parents.
"A lot of them were just saying thank you, thank you for being there and giving you hugs," she said. "That says it all."
Most, if not all of the children and adults who attended the event, left with smiles on their faces.
Hamm reminded reporters that this was one night.
"I don't what to do it a disservice. I don't want to create my impact than greater than it is," she said. "There's still a lot of healing and pain. But what we need to keep in mind is to keep revisiting them because the grieving process takes time. It's not just a one-time thing."