Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud named as finalist for FIFA Puskas Award


Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud is one of three players through to the final stage FIFA's Puskas Award for "the most handsome goal of the season".

The Arsenal striker has been nominated for his stunning goal against Crystal Palace at the Emirates on January 1.

Former Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic's goal in the FA Cup semi-final against Tottenham was among those that failed to make the cut after initially being recognised.

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Castellanos is the second Venezuelan teen in consecutive years to reach the final three, following in the footsteps of countrywoman Daniuska Rodriguez who reached the top trio last year.

Voting for the victor concludes on October 23, with the prize awarded that evening during The Best FIFA Football Awards in London.

The other finalist - which was whittled down from a previous shortlist of 10 - is goalkeeper Oscarine Masuluke who scored a bicycle kick playing for South African side Baroka.

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Mamelodi Sundowns captain Hlompho Kekana was nominated for the Puskas Award in 2016 with a long-range screamer for Bafana Bafana against Cameroon, but Malaysian Mohd Faiz Subri got the nod.

The Puskas Award is a Federation Internationale de Football Association award given to the player judged to have scored the best goal of the past year.

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