Ibrahimovic scored all the four goals for Sweden in the friendly encounter against England few days ago , coming from behind to win 4-2. But it was not the number of goals scored by the PSG striker that is dominating the world headlines, it was the unbelievable kick from 30 metres out that is sparking debates all over the world. For a player towering well above six feet, it was an unimaginable way to use the body.
But reward for the beauty of the goal will have to wait as FIFA said it was a few hours late to be named best goal in 2012 in a FIFA contest.
FIFA said Thursday that Ibrahimovic’s goal came after voting opened early Wednesday for its 10 approved candidates for the Puskas Award.
“Given that a number of votes have already been cast for this year’s award, the select committee for the Puskas Award may not, at this stage, include an additional nominee,” FIFA said in a statement.
Many say it is the best ever in the history of modern football, while others say such a goal at the high level of football comes once in a lifetime.
“I don’t know if you will see another like it in your life,” said Hamren.
“Sometimes, when he’s doing these things, in training or in matches, you don’t think it’s possible, because it’s not possible to do that; the fourth goal, for example.”
England captain Steven Gerrard could not hide his admiration for the goal despite leading the opposing side.
“Sometimes you have to hold your hands up to a special individual performance,” Gerrard said. “And that was a world-class performance from a world-class player. It was the best goal I have ever seen,” Gerrard commented.
Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona have scored goals of exceptional individual brilliance, using their dribbling skills and exploiting their physical balance and small height. Notably is Maradona’s 1986 World Cup goal against England, when he dribbled from the midfield to score for Argentina.
But the world rose to salute Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney when he scored a brilliant overhead kick against Manchester City in February; a goal many still regarded as the best so far; until Ibrahimovic scored on Wednesday.
Gerrard says Rooney’s goal has been eclipsed by Ibra’s stunner.
“I think the best goal I have seen before that is Wayne Rooney’s (against Manchester City),” said Gerrard.
“Everyone knows how special that was but this one tonight – an overhead kick from 25 yards when the ball is six feet in the air – only certain players can do that.”
Outspoken former Premier League star Joey Barton commented on the goal through his twitter account, wishing Ibrahimovic was an Englishman.
“If only the English FA could have given Ibrahimovic a cap or a run out before those pesky Swedes nabbed him,” said the Marseille player.
Tottenham Aaron Lennon congratulated Gerrard on his 100th cap for England but noted that the wonder goal doused the captain’s landmark.
“Congratulations to Stevie G on 100 caps, legend, but what a performance by Ibrahimovic.”
England debutant Leon Osman said, “Ibrahimovic just seemed to have five minutes of dominance and then the wonder goal at the end.
“It is certainly the best goal I have seen live, in its presence. To do what he did, the imagination of it alone and to get as high as he did for a big guy was unbelievable, and it found the back of the net. It was a terrific goal and the best I have seen.”
But the one being celebrated has a different view of the goal. His response suggested that he was only eager to react to the English criticism of his performance for Sweden.
“That’s the way it is with the English. If you score against them you’re a good player, if you don’t score against them you’re not a good player.
“I remember Lionel Messi before the 2009 Champions League final for Barcelona. Then he scored against Manchester United and suddenly he was the best player in the world. Maybe now they’ll say something like that about me.
“Hart was a long way out and I was just trying to get it into the goal. I was on the ground when it was on the way in.
“I saw a defender sliding in to try to get rid of it and I wanted to scream ‘No’ but the ball went in,” he said.