In football, there is no greater thrill than scoring a goal. Whatever level you play at, from the school playground to the World Cup Final, nothing quite beats the sight of your shot crossing the line. And the more spectacular the goal, the greater the thrill. The fans, whether up in the stands or watching on television, get that same sense of joy when they see the net bulge, and for the most stunning strikes the feeling is even more intense. So it’s time to get ready for the show! Prepare to shout with joy and to be left dumbstruck with wonder: the ten nominees for the FIFA Puskás Award 2016 have been announced!
The ten nominees are:
Mario Gaspar (ESP) – 13.11.2015, Spain v. England, international friendly
Hlompho Kekana (RSA) – 26.03.2016, Cameroon v. South Africa, Africa Cup of Nations qualifier
Marlone (BRA) – 21.04.2016, Corinthians v. Cobresal, Copa Libertadores
Lionel Messi (ARG) – 21.06.2016, USA v. Argentina, Copa América Centenario semi-final
Neymar (BRA) – 08.11.2015, Barcelona v. Villarreal, La Liga (Spain)
Saúl Ñíguez (ESP) – 27.04.2016, Atlético Madrid v. Bayern Munich, UEFA Champions League
Hal Robson-Kanu (WAL) – 01.07.2016, Wales v. Belgium, UEFA EURO 2016
Daniuska Rodríguez (VEN) – 14.03.2016, Venezuela v. Colombia, South American U-17 Women’s Football Championship
Simon Skrabb (FIN) – 31.10.2015, Gefle v. Åtvidaberg, Allsvenskan league, Sweden
Mohd Faiz Subri (MAS) – 16.02.2016, Penang v. Pahang, Malaysia Super League
The prize will be awarded to the scorer of the Goal of the Year at The Best FIFA Football Awards™, to be held on 9 January 2017 in Zurich. Although the shortlist itself is made up of an exclusive group of players, now is the time for everyone else to have their say. That’s right, YOU the fans carry the huge responsibility of choosing the Goal of the Year! You will decide which scorer’s name will be added to a list of past winners including Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, James Rodriguez and last year’s victor, Brazilian Wendell Lira.
How can you have your say? Voting couldn’t be easier, and the good news is that you’re already in the right place: FIFA.com! All you need to do is watch the ten shortlisted goals, select your favourite and then cast your vote by choosing the appropriate option. Voting will remain open from today, 21 November 2016, up until the day of the ceremony on 9 January 2017, and will be split into two rounds. You have until 2 December to cast your first vote. On that date, the shortlist will be reduced to the three most popular goals, according to the votes received up to that point. Voting will then re-open, allowing you to select your favourite goal from the three finalists. The goal that receives the most votes during the second round of voting will be named Goal of the Year, and the scorer will be presented with the award at the ceremony in Zurich.
Whatever the final outcome, the ten shortlisted goals all have one thing in common: they are all real gems. This should come as no surprise, however, when you consider that they have been chosen by Marta, Gabriel Batistuta and Marco van Basten. Throughout their careers, these three legends became renowned not just for the quantity but the quality of the goals they scored, some of which would by no means look out of place on the FIFA Puskás Award shortlist.
In accordance with the Rules of Allocation, only those goals scored between 30 September 2015 and 30 September 2016 inclusive were eligible for nomination. It took a herculean effort from our panel to narrow down the list to the final ten nominees, such was the quality of the goals scored over that twelve-month period. Considering the size of their task, your job couldn’t be simpler! All you need to do is sit back, marvel at the beauty of ten sensational strikes, and then choose which one you think is the most spectacular.
On your marks, get set, VOTE!