The Puskas Award: apparently these are the best 10 goals in 2013

November 11, 2013 in Awards, Europe by Joseph Kingsley-Nyinah

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Goals. As a Spurs fan, you might be able to argue that I’ve forgotten what one looks like. Which is why the irony of me being asked to critique the Puskas Award for the best goal in 2013 was so delicious I had to take it.

According to FIFA, the best goal is judged on importance of the goal, lack of luck or fail, fair play and, most importantly, tekkers. In so many words.

So yeah. Here’s my view of all ten goals on the shortlist.


Zlatan Ibrahimovic - SWEDEN Vs England

This is a goal that needs no introduction, which is why I’ve put it first. The fact that the goal was scored in a friendly, when Sweden were already one up after Joe Hart fluffed a clearance 30 yards away from his goal line also drew my attention.

This goal violates so many of the so-called criteria it shouldn’t be here. Which means it’s probably going to win.

Antonio Di Natale - UDINESE Vs Chievo

A cross deeper than the hole Crystal Palace have dug themselves into. A volley from an angle tighter than a tactical game between Roy Hodgson and AVB; and hit sweeter than a Fredo bar that’s still 45p.

So simple, but I doubt Serie A will come up with any better.

Panagiotis Kone - Napoli vs BOLOGNA


An equalising scissor kick in the 85th minute against the second best team in the League? This is more like it.

I’m bewildered as to how he managed to get enough space in a crowded penalty area to even do that, but I guess that’s why he’s a professional and I’m a guy who can barely dribble without tripping over his own feet.

Peter Ankersen - ESBJERG vs AGF

One of my favourites. He turns a terrible cross into a possibility with his first touch and summons the ghost of Marco Van Basten* with his second.

Just a pity his team were already 4-1 up when he lashed it in.

Neymar - BRAZIL vs Japan

It’s a Neymar volley. That means it has no back-lift, it’s struck cleanly and you could hear the sound of hipsters’ flies unzipping across the world when it hit the net.

Probably the main contender for Ibra’s crown. Just as well, Neymar will never win the main event.

Lisa De Vanna - SKY BLUE FC Vs Boston Breakers

This is actually a really nice team goal. Worked from a throw in, add a one-two and a chipped cross that De Vanna could’ve finished in anyway she wanted. Her choice of a ferocious bicycle kick set the tone in a 5-1 rout. Decent.

Daniel Luduena - TIGRES vs Pachuca

Chip from the half-way line? Been there, done that. Next.

Nemanja Matic - BENFICA vs Porto

This goal is heroic. It’s an equalising goal in a game between the two biggest teams in Portugal, who at this point were both unbeaten. The assist is essentially a game of head tennis, and the summarizers response is what I presume is the Portuguese for “Unbelievable, Jeff!”

What’s not to like?

Juan Manuel Olivera - NAUTICO Vs Sport

There’s a headed one-two in the build-up to this goal. And when Olivera gets the return ball, he smacks it into the top corner. Filthy.

Sorry Nemanja, you’ve been replaced.

Louisa Necib - LYON vs Saint Etienne

Why is this goal here?

I’m not being mean, but it’s a goal we could see anywhere at any level on any given matchday. This list has no Gareth Bale, no Messi and, more importantly, no crazy dribbling skills and we have this here? Seriously?

I’m out.

*Marco Van Basten isn’t actually dead.