“I think the bad times are important, too. That’s what makes you stronger and better able to aim high. Obviously, it’s great to have the good times but I also think you learn more during the bad.” This was USA captain Carli Lloyd after she had just won the FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015™, scoring a hat-trick in the final – including an outrageous effort from the halfway line – and ending up with the adidas Golden Ball as the tournament’s best player.

The quote, given in an exclusive interview with FIFA.com in the bowels of BC Place in Vancouver immediately after the Stars and Stripes had beaten Japan in the Final, must surely go down as one of the most memorable of our one-on-one interviews in 2015. There were a few more unforgettable moments in 2015 that are worthy of mention, however…

World Cup stars up close and personal
Whether a spontaneous admission immediately after a game or reflections offered in a quieter, more relaxed setting, a whole host of big-name stars took a few moments amid their triumphant achievements to answer our questions in the last 12 months. One such stellar interviewee was Uruguayan striking sensation Luis Suarez, whom FIFA.com spoke to just a few moments after Barcelona’s victory at the FIFA Club World Cup in Japan, at which he scored five goals to inspire his team to glory. “It’s something that’s excited me since I was a boy, when I used to wake up at six in the morning to watch these games,” said the 28-year-old. “It’s one of the dreams I had yet to fulfil.”

Meanwhile, France’s 1998 FIFA World Cup™ hero Zinedine Zidane revealed which of today's players he really admires; Philipp Lahm, Germany’s World Cup-winning captain from 2014, explained how relaxed he is watching his former team-mates in action; Xavi outlined why he was sure his Spain team would become world champions in 2010; Robert Carlos told us why Brazil, with Neymar in the team, will win another World Cup in the near future; and finally there was Belgium’s national team coach Marc Wilmots, who listed the reasons for the Red Devils’ ascent to the top of the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking this year.

The above are but a taste of the numerous exclusive interviews that FIFA.com brought you in 2015. And if these do not pique your interest, we have also had some unforgettable conversations with the likes of Lionel Messi, Oliver Kahn, Ryan Giggs, Jari Litmanen, Gennaro Gattuso, Diego Forlan, Fabien Barthez, Jurgen Klinsmann, Jay-Jay Okocha, Joachim Low, Michael Laudrup, Homare Sawa, Abby Wambach, Christine Sinclair and many, many more.

“I always say that whereas previously I played with the ball, now I play football, and that’s something different entirely.” Curious to know exactly what Carlos Tevez meant when he said this? Then head to our interviews section, where you can find all of our exclusive one-on-one chats from the last 12 months!