Malaysia footballer's goal scores worldwide

PETALING JAYA: A Malaysian footballer could find himself nominated for this year's Puskás Award for the aesthetically best ever goal scored.

Penang's Mohd Faiz Subri's wonder goal from a freekick against Pahang in the Super League at the City Stadium on Tuesday is being shared around the world, with the video clip going viral.

The nippy player's strike is even being compared to the thunderbolt scored by Brazil's leftback Roberto Carlos against France in 1997.

The Puskás Award was introduced in 2009 by Fifa to award the player, male or female, judged to have scored the most aesthetically significant or "most beautiful" goal of the year.

The award was named in honour of Ferenc Puskás, a Real Madrid striker in the late 1950s and 1960s, and a central member of the highly successful Hungarian side from the same era.

Faiz's hit from about 30m looked to be heading towards the top left corner of the goalmouth, but the ball then swerved dramatically to top right corner of the net.

The wicked "physics-defying" swerve deceived the Pahang goalkeeper, who could only helplessly watch the ball sail into the net.

The freekick has awed football-crazy Malaysians, local political figures and foreign publications.

In his posts on Facebook and Instagram, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, who is currently in the United States, confirmed that news of the glorious goal had even reached US shores.

Najib said he had watched a clip of the 29-year-old's incredible feat and described it as "memang cantik!" (truly beautiful).

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng also praised the sportsman from the Pearl of the Orient.

"Cannot get enough of Penang player Faiz Subri's wonder goal that helped brighten up the Malaysian footballing scene," he said on Facebook.

Faiz's goal has also been shared by football fans all over the world.

On the Facebook page, the video has been shared more than 31,000 times. Facebook user James Downie wrote: "The wind was tame and Faiz's freekick was just sheer spin. He sliced that ball beautifully."

The goal has also been highlighted by news organisations worldwide, including the Sydney Morning Herald, Bleacher Report and The Independent.

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