Malaysia star Syahmi Safari’s goal in the semifinal of the AFF Suzuki Cup 2018 against Thailand has been nominated for the prestigious FIFA Puskas Award given to the “most beautiful goal” of the calendar year!
The goal came in the second leg of the semifinal between Harimau Malaya and the War Elephants with the visitors trailing to Thailand 1-0. The goal was a team move started by Malaysia goalkeeper Farizal Marlias and finished off by Syahmi with a superb long range effort.
Syahmi picked the ball some 30 yards away from the goal before driving to the edge of the box and unleashing a thunderbolt which left Thailand goalkeeper Chatchai Budprom with no chance whatsoever.
Malaysia’s Syahmi Safari scores a screamer vs Thailand in AFF Suzuki Cup 2018 semifinal
Malaysia qualified for the final after holding Thailand to a 2-2 draw in the second leg progressing on away goals and settled for the runners-up spot after being beaten by Vietnam in the final held last December.
Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) secretary-general Stuart Ramalingam said that the decision to nominate the goal for the coveted award was made after a meeting that was attended by president Hamidin Mohammed Amin.
“FAM will send an official letter to FIFA to nominate Syahmi’s stunning goal as a potential nominee for the coveted award, and a video copy or recording of the goal has been attached for Fifa to see and judge for themselves,” he said in an FAM statement.
“Even though it is well known that the list of the 10 best goals scored for FIFA’s Puskas Award will be decided upon and selected after careful consideration by Fifa and their evaluation committee, FAM strongly feel that the nomination papers still must be submitted as a means to show FAM’s support and validation for the goal apart from getting Fifa’s attention.”
“Based on just how unique the goal is which was scored after seven passes were strung together involving seven different players, beginning with goalkeeper Farizal, after which Syahmi scored the goal with a thunderous strike from his right foot, FAM are hoping that the goal will earn it’s place and be listed as one of the ten best goals scored vying for this year’s Puskas Award,” Stuart said.
FAM had also carried out the same procedure back in 2016 when they nominated former Penang midfielder Faiz Subri’s goal which ended up winning the award that year!
Malaysian, and Southeast Asian football fans in general, will be hoping that Syahmi’s effort will also end up winning the FIFA gong!