Real Madrid superstar and this year’s Best FIFA Men’s Player Cristiano Ronaldo said he would have backed Baroka FC Oscarine Masuluke’s goal as his choice for the FIFA Puskas Award.
Keeper nominated for Puskas award
The South African keeper was nominated for his overhead kick goal against Orlando Pirates in stoppage time during their Absa Premiership encounter at the Orlando Stadium on April 26.
However, the keeper missed out on the Award to Oliver Giroud’s scorpion kick goal. Giroud accumulated 36.17% of the 792,062 votes, while Masuluke scooped 27.48% and the Venezuelan Deyna Castellanos received 20.47%.
Ronaldo: “I have to give credit to the goalkeeper”
Before the announcement of the Award winner, Cristiano Ronaldo praised Masuluke’s goal. 'I like Olivier Giroud's goal, but I have to give credit to the goalkeeper. He (usually) never goes forward and he tried an amazing goal, too,' said Ronaldo during the FIFA Awards gala.
'Both (goals) I think were great.'
Kane also praised Masuluke
Tottenham Hotspur striker, Harry Kane, also named the South African’s goal as his favourite for the Puskas Award.
'It had to be the goalkeeper, with the bicycle kick. Incredible goal and celebration as well,' said Kane.
Praise all-around for Masuluke
Ronaldo and Kane were not the only ones who preferred Masuluke’s goal. On Friday, Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt backed Baroka FC goalkeeper’s goal.
“I’d vote for Oscarine Masuluke. For a goalkeeper to score an overhead kick in stoppage time like that is impressive,” said Bolt in an interview with FIFA.com.
Baroka FC chairman, Khurishi Mphahlele also lauded the keeper for putting the club on the global map.
'This moment ranks right up there with when we gained promotion to the Absa Premiership,' said Mphahlele in an interview.
'It's something we can brag about that other teams cannot have. You could play 100 years and not come close to winning the award. It's something very special. As a club, it has given us great mileage and has raised our brand and profile,' he concluded.