MOSCOW, September 3. /TASS/. Russian midfielder Denis Cheryshev’s goal scored this summer during the 2018 FIFA World Cup quarterfinals match against Croatia has been included in the list of ten finalists for 2018 FIFA Puskas Award, the world’s governing football body, FIFA, announced on Monday.
Playing on its home soil the Russian national football team reached the quarterfinals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, where it lost 3-4 on a penalty shootout to Croatia. Cheryshev opened the score in that match netting a ball way out from the goal box. This goal earned him a place among the ten finalists for the Puskas Award.
The 27-year-old midfielder scored four goals in five matches of the recently concluded FIFA World Cup in Russia becoming the best scorer of his national side. The FIFA has named him as one of the major highlights of the global football championship.
Commenting on his introduction to the list of candidates for the Puskas Award, Cheryshev said that the goal scored against Croatia is one of his favorite ones.
"It is certainly pleasant that the goal was judged to be beautiful, but I believe that my best goals are still ahead of me," Cheryshev was quoted as saying on the official website of the Russian Football Union (RFU). "That goal is among the favorite ones in my career."
"Unfortunately, it did not help the Russian team to advance further (at the 2018 World Cup)," he said. "It would have been much better for us in terms of emotions, but still I am glad that I managed to score that goal in such way."
"I still cannot completely realize that I scored a goal in a quarterfinal match of the World Cup," Cheryshev stated. "Every kid dreams about playing at the World Cup and scoring goals, moreover, scoring spectacular goals. It all looks like a fairy tale to me."
Other final candidates lined up for 2018 FIFA Puskas Award are:
· Gareth Bale (Real Madrid CF) - v. Liverpool FC
· Lazaros Christodoulopoulos (AEK FC) - v. Olympiacos FC
· Giorgian De Arrascaeta (Cruzeiro) - v. America MG
· Riley McGree (Newcastle Jets FC) - v. Melbourne City FC
· Lionel Messi (Argentina) - v. Nigeria
· Benjamin Pavard (France) - v. Argentina
· Ricardo Quaresma (Portugal) - v. Iran
· Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid CF) - v. Juventus FC
· Mohamed Salah (Liverpool FC) - v. Everton FC
The Best FIFA Football Awards in seven categories will be announced on September 24 in London at the Royal Festival Hall (Southbank).
The Puskas Award was established by the FIFA in October 2009 in order to award a player, who scored the most beautiful or significant goal of the year. The award was named in honor of Ferenc Puskas, who played as a striker for Real Madrid and the Hungarian national team in late 1950s and in 1960s.