Ferenc Puskàs: The fame behind the FIFA Puskàs Award

Ferenc Puskàs nicknamed as Galloping Major, is a player who had an exceptional career both as a player and a manager, and is also one of the greatest football players in history.

He made his debut for the Hungarian national team in 1945 and went on to score a whooping 84 goals in 85 games. In 1950’s, he was the captain of the Hungarian national team, during that time they had an outstanding international record of 43 wins, 7 draws and a single loss. They had claimed the gold medal at the 1952 Olympic games in Helsinki and he also led his team to the final of 1954 world cup where he was named the best player of the tournament.

He made his football debut at the age of 16 for a small club named Honved, and won five Hungarian championships between 1949 and 1955, he was also the top scorer in the Hungarian league on 4 occasions and in 1948 he was the top goal scorer in all of Europe.

In 1958, few years after the Hungarian revolution he moved to Spain where he joined Real Madrid. In Madrid, Puskàs teamed up with Alfredo di Stefano to form an attacking duo, and their duo was one of the greatest in the world. Puskàs scored an amazing 514 goals in 529 appearances for Madrid and also won five consecutive league titles and three European cup titles, he also won for himself four Pichichi awards.

In 1961, Puskàs became a Spanish citizen and even represented Spain at the 1962 world cup but he failed to register a single goal in four matches for Spain in the tournament.

In 1966, Puskàs retired from football and became a manager. As a coach he managed teams from all over the world, in Europe, North America, South America, Africa, Asia and Australia.

He guided Panathinaikos of Greece to the European cup final which he lost 2-0 to Johan Cruyff’s Ajax and he also secured one Greek championship in 1972. For South Melbourne Hellas, he won the National league title, and in 1993 he took charge of the Hungarian national football team.

In 2002, the Népastadion in Budapest was renamed the Puskàs Ferenc Station in his honor. In November 2003, during the UEFA Jubilee awards, he was declared the best Hungarian football player of the last 50 years by the Hungarian Football Federation.

In October, 2009, during the tenure of the then FIFA president, Sepp Blatter, the FIFA Puskàs Award was introduced and was to be awarded to the Male or Female with the best goal of the calendar year. Truly, it is a well deserved honor for one of football greats.

 

Notable winners of the FIFA Puskàs Award from 2009 till date.

The first player to win the prestigious award

Christiano Ronaldo in 2009


Hamit Altintop in 2010


Neymar Junior in 2011


Miroslav Stoch in 2012


Zlatan Ibrahimovic in 2013


James Rodriguez in 2014


Wendell Lira in 2015


Mohd Faiz Subri in 2016


Olivier Giroud in 2017


Mohammed Salah in 2018

Daniel Zsori in 2019.

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