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Adriana Leon: The Prolific CanWNT Striker

CanWNT Forward and Lethal Goal-Scorer, Adriana Leon,

Adriana Leon, a 31-year-old winger, was born in Mississauga and raised in Maple, Ontario. She also moved to King City with her family at the age of 16.

Adriana Leon: The Lethal CanWNT Goal-Scorer

Adriana Leon’s Childhood

Leon is an athlete who also played other sports. The first sport that she played was figure skating, but later moved to playing ice hockey. This is what Leon said about playing ice hockey and rugby in addition to soccer, and how it correlates with her soccer career (source: Wendy Graves of Hockey Canada):

“There are so many similarities between all sports – a lot has to do with your drive, your willingness, your preparation, your work ethic,” she says. “Seeing that across all sports is pretty important, just to know you need that in every game you play.”

Leon made her name known in the ice hockey world when she played with the Toronto Aeros. She played with present Team Canada Hockey players, Erin Ambrose (currently plays for PWHL Montreal) and Jill Saulnier (currently plays for PWHL New York). In Leon’s final year of ice hockey in 2009-10, she had 20 points in 20 games. This is what Saulnier said about Leon’s time with the Aeros:

“I remember playing with [Leon] and being, ‘wow, she’s so fast. I can’t keep up,’” said Saulnier. “She was a spitfire out there. She was the fastest one on the ice and just tenacious all the time.”

Also in her youth, Leon played youth soccer with Vaughan SC, Brams United, and the Mississauga Falcons. She also won bronze at the Canada Summer Games and was the top scorer with seven goals in five games (source:

Adriana Leon – College Career

Leon spent three years in college. In her first year, she scored the important goal to help Notre Dame win the NCAA College Cup crown. She was tied for third in Notre Dame scoring with four goals and was fifth in team points with 10. Leon would up that tally in her final season with Notre Dame, with 17 points earned including six goals and five assists.

Her last season in college was spent with the Florida Gators, where she made 17 starts in 22 games. She was tied for the sixth most goals within the team with five goals, which included scoring four game-winners. Additionally, after the game against Texas A&M match, was named the College Sports Madness SEC Player of the Week.

Stats and information can be found at

The Professional Career of Adriana Leon

Leon started her career with the Toronto Lady Lynx, scoring three goals in nine games. There are many teams Leon has played for. In this article, since Leon played for so many teams, there will be three teams highlighted in terms of which teams she has influenced the most. One of her notable teams not on this list was the Chicago Red Stars, where she scored three goals in 35 games.

Boston Breakers (2013, 2017)

Leon spent two memorable years with the Boston Breakers in 2013 and 2017. The first stint with the Breakers was not that successful, only scoring one goal in six games. However, it was her second stint that was much more successful. This is what then NWSL Boston Breakers head coach, Matt Beard, said about Leon joining the team (source: Stephanie Yang of SB Nation: The Bent Musket):

“Adriana is keen to come back to Boston and prove herself back in the NWSL and also to get back into the Canadian Women’s National Team,” said head coach Matt Beard.

Leon would score six goals in 24 games for the Breakers. Also, after not appearing for a single game for Canada in 2016, she made six appearances for the national team in 2017. Another highlight of her career was being named NWSL Player of the Week on May 2, 2017 after scoring two goals and dishing out two assists against the Seattle Reign FC.

West Ham United (2019-22)

Leon joined West Ham United in 2019, making her big move to England. Her relationship with then West Ham United head coach, Beard (he was coached by Beard with the Boston Breakers), mentioned above, said this about her (source: The Canadian Press):

“I had a great working relationship with her at Boston, and she brings a winning mentality with her to West Ham,” he said. “Dri will bring goals and assists to our side,” he added. “With us still being a relatively new group, she will add some more experience to our squad and even more quality to the final third.”

With West Ham United, Leon was able to make her name. Playing four years with the club, she scored nine goals in 43 games and was a runners-up of the 2019 Women’s FA Cup.

Aston Villa (2023-Present)

After an unsuccessful stint with the Portland Thorns FC, Leon signed with Aston Villa. This is what the Aston Villa head coach said about signing her (source: The Canadian Press):

“Adriana is someone we’ve monitored over the last 18 months and is someone who has displayed great pedigree in the Barclays WSL,” Aston Villa coach Carla Ward said in a statement. “She can play off both sides and will add another dimension to our evolving group. We’re delighted she’s committed her future to us and we’re all looking forward to working with her.”

Villa is making her name known with her club team, scoring four goals in only 10 games of league play.

CanWNT (2012-Present)

Leon is tied for fourth in goals scored with 36 as she has made more than 100 appearances for her country. One of her most notable moments early in her career was earning a penalty for her team in the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup against China. That penalty was scored by Christine Sinclair and is considered one of the most iconic goals scored in the national team’s history. Then, in the 2018 CONCACAF Women’s Championship, Leon was second in the tournament with six goals scored. She also scored the game-winning goal against New Zealand in Montreal and scored all three goals in the two wins against Australia in 2022.

Leon was also the only CanWNT player to score a goal in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in a win over the Republic of Ireland. She has continued this form into the 2023 Concacaf W Gold Cup, where she currently co-leads the competition with five goals scored. This included a hat-trick scored against Paraguay and two goals scored against El Salvador. She however, always gives credit to her team as well, as this is what she said after scoring a hat-trick (source: Maurami Kourabi of Canadian Soccer Daily):

“I thought the team played really well,” Leon told CONCACAF in a post-game interview. “I took my chances and am happy to score three goals… Hopefully, we will just grow across the tournament.”

Leon currently leads the team and the tournament with five goals scored. She could very well be an X-Factor in Wednesday’s game, as they face their rivals, the USWNT.

What the National Team Means for Adriana Leon

READ MORE: Cloé Lacasse: A Rising Star With the CanWNT

This is what Leon said when she won a Gold Medal in Tokyo 2020 (source: Benedict Rhodes, contributor):

“This medal right here here means the world, it means everything,” said Leon, who kept looking down to admire it. “It’s such an honour to bring this back home to Canada, and to arrive at the airport and see the excitement from our families and friends. It was such an amazing experience in Japan for the last couple of months, and we created memories that we’ll never forget.”

Leon was left off the 2016 Olympic team, but was able to pull through and make something of herself with the national team. She is a player that is always at the right place at the right time and that is why she has so many goals for her country. In order for Canada to take it to the next level, they will need Leon more than ever. This is especially true on Wednesday at 10:15 PM ET, as her team faces the USWNT in San Diego, California at SnapDragon Stadium.

This semi-final knockout game can be seen live on OneSoccer as well as Telus and FuboTV Inc.


Photo Credit: Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports, of an Adriana Leon Headshot, on February 25, 2024.


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