Dániel Zsóri won this edition of the FIFA Puskás Award, the honor given to the best goal scored this year, beating out FC Barcelona’s Lionel Messi’s effort. It’s the biggest honor the 18-year-old Fehérvár forward has achieved in his young career, and it feels somewhat harsh to argue he should not have it, and that instead, a superstar should get it.
Zsóri’s long range overhead kick is indeed a stunning effort. That said, Messi’s memorable chip against Real Betis is something that is hard to imagine even in a video game:
And even if you side with Zsóri this time, isn’t it a little weird that Messi has never won the Puskás?
The Argentine star has been nominated seven of the 11 times the award has been handed out, by far more than anyone else. Let’s look at his efforts over the years, shall we?
His first came for this goal against Valencia in 2010:
And it only gets better. What about this 2011 goal against Arsenal?
And then he punctuated a hat trick against Brazil with this late stunner in 2012:
This one is the one that for me is hard to believe it did not win. It’s that goal vs. Athletic Bilbao, in a cup final, no less. It’s a goal so good that we couldn’t even nominate his memorable chip against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League semis that season, because only one goal per player is nominated. But even this one didn’t win, either.
Here’s Messi’s effort from Copa América that was also nominated:
And then there’s this beautiful, insane control and goal vs. Nigeria in the 2018 FIFA World Cup:
So, was this just an excuse to post Messi videos? Maybe. But back to the point here for a second.
The Puskás award is not nearly as prestigious as many prizes Messi has won. It would comfortably have been the second-best prize he would have won even just today, for example. But isn’t it crazy he’s never won it, even once?