Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud is one of three players through to the final stage of FIFA’s Puskas Award for “the most beautiful goal of the season.”
Giroud scored a spectacular scorpion kick against Crystal Palace in a 2-0 win at the Emirates last season, with his finish — which he called the best he had ever scored — widely acclaimed.
He is joined on the list by Deyna Castellanos, who struck a 94th-minute winner from the centre circle for Venezuela in the Under-17 Women’s World Cup last October, and goalkeeper Oscarine Masuluke.
Masuluke, who plays for South African club
, came forward to score a spectacular late overhead kick to earn a 1-1 draw against Orlando Pirates last November.
Public voting on the Puskas award winner, carried out through the official FIFA website ,will close on Oct. 23.
The winner, along with those victorious in other categories of The Best FIFA Football Awards, will be announced at a ceremony in London that evening.
The Puskas Award — named after legendary Real Madrid and Hungary striker Ferenc Puskas — has also shined a light on some lesser-known players, though, with Mohd Faiz Subri of Malaysian club Penang the reigning champion.
The award is supposed to reward the best goal scored “regardless of championship, gender or nationality” and the initial shortlist of 10 goals is decided by a group of experts — which this year comprises of Alan Shearer, Celia Sasic, Abby Wambach, Henrik Larsson and Predrag Mijatovic.
The public then votes to decide a winner.
The first part of the voting process was open until the beginning of October and fans were able to cats their votes .
The top three was chosen based on the votes that have been submitted up to this point.
A second vote has now opened to decide the winner. That vote will close on the day of the ceremony itself (October 23).
The winner will be announced on Monday, October 23 at The Best FIFA Football Awards ceremony in London.
This is also when the prizes such as the Men’s Player of the Year — which Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Neymar are in the running for — will be presented.