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Erik Lamela’s NLD rabona named Puskas Award finalist

Spurs could be the first ever club to successfully defend a Puskas Award.

Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

Erik Lamela is no longer a Tottenham Hotspur player, but he can still help Spurs do something no other team in world football has ever done: successfully defend a Puskas Award. Today, FIFA announced the three finalists for the best goal scored in the 2021 calendar year, and Lamela’s audacious North London Derby rabona goal near the end of the 2020-21 season is one of them.

If you’ve forgotten about that goal (or have decided to block it out because of what happened afterwards in that match) here’s a reminder.

The other two finalists are decent goals, but aren’t anything particularly special, at least to this heavily biased Tottenham Hotspur blogger. Patrik Schick gets a nod for a 50-yard lob for the Czech Republic in a EURO 2020 match vs. Scotland this past June.

Porto’s Iranian striker Mehdi Taremi gets the other finalist nomination for what is essentially a cool but bog-standard overhead kick goal in the Champions League against Chelsea. Check it out.

Again, I’m incredibly biased, but neither of those contenders are as exciting or awesome as watching Erik Lamela wrap his left foot around his right and nutmeg-rabona a goal into the bottom corner through traffic in a North London Derby. It’s not always clear by what metric FIFA uses to judge the Puskas Award, but if it’s purely based on a “this goal slaps” metric, I think Erik’s got this. Build the statue.

The Puskas Award will be announced along with the rest of The Best FIFA Awards on January 17 in a big ceremony.

Tottenham back to back Puskas Award winners, you’ll never sing that!