FIFA are handing out the Puskas award for the best goal of 2013 for a fifth time, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic looking like the clear favorite to win the trophy, even though Bicycle kicks don’t win, with dribbling and long range cannons being preferred. Neymar, the 2011 winner, is also nominated, but is unlikely to finish in the top 3.
Who else is here? Nemanja Matic of Benfica with one of the most powerful shots you’ll ever get to see is a dark horse candidate to win the award that has Ibrahimovic (who was on the shortlist in 2011 as well) written all over it. Danish unknown Peter Ankersen might also be someone worth looking at with his Van Basten-esque goal, but Matic is probably the only one who deserves even coming close to Ibrahimovic’s perfect execution against England.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Sweden vs England
The leading favorite without a shred of a doubt, as Zlatan Ibrahimovic pulled off an amazing goal in the 4-2 win over England: A scissor kick from almost 40 yards out to complete the win in the friendly match.
Panagiotis Kone, Bologna vs Napoli
A beautiful goal by the Albanian winger, who scored a brilliant goal to even things up with Napoli using some fine acrobatics.
Peter Ankersen, Esbjerg vs AGF
The young Danish right back channeled his inner Marco van Basten to score one of the memorable goal we’ve seen this year.
Neymar, Brazil vs Japan
FIFA had to include something from the Confederations Cup so one of their tournaments seems to mean something, picking Neymar’s brilliant volley in the win over Japan to represent the tournament.
Antonio Di Natale, Udinese vs Lazio
Di Natale, the striker who simply won’t stop scoring despite his age, has been a bit slower this season, but that doesn’t mean his fantastic goal vs Lazio, maybe the best of his career, using his left foot to connect with a cross, isn’t one of the best of the last 12 monhts.
Lisa De Vanna, Sky Blue vs Boston
FIFA love putting in a Women’s goal for the sake of equality, and De Vanna’s rather unexciting bicycle kick was chosen to represent the fairer sex.
Daniel Ludueña, Pachuca vs Tigres
Goals from beyond the halfway line are often a goalkeeper’s fault, but Luduena’s execution is absolute perfection in this one.
Nemanja Matic, Benfica vs Porto
The O Classico usually brings out the best from certain players, and Nemanja Matic of Benfica is no different with a rocket of a volley as the ball stayed up in the air through a cross and two headers before reaching his leg.
Juan Manuel Olivera, Nautico vs Sport Recife
In similar fashion, with some neat passing in the air and a less powerful finish, the 32-year old Uruguayan striker who never likes to stick around in one place for too long also makes the list.
Louisa Nécib, Lyon vs Saint Etienne
Another goal from Women’s football, this time from the French league and the regional empire of Lyon, bringing us a sublime finish from Louis Necib.