Kaizer Chiefs midfielder Yusuf Maart is delighted that his goal was adjudged Goal of the Season at the Premier Soccer League awards event, hosted virtually on Sunday, as the curtain came down on the 2022/23 season.
Maart’s wonder goal, a raking 60-yard shot from inside his own half, was also the match-winner in the Soweto Derby between Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs on 29 October 2022, at FNB Stadium. The spectacular goal trended world-wide for months afterwards.
The goal won DStv Goal of the Month for October last year and qualified as a finalist for the Goal of the Season.
For the end-of-season awards, the PSL decided to switch things when it came to voting for the goal of the season. The League appointed a panel of professionals to vote for the best goal of the campaign. The panel consisted of former international players, including Benni McCarthy who is Manchester United’s strikers’ coach, and Steven Pienaar, the Ajax Amsterdam U18 assistant coach.
Former Bafana Bafana striker McCarthy lauded Maart’s mentality and audacity for scoring what he described as “one of the best goals in the Soweto Derby, because I’ve played the Derby and never came close to scoring a goal like that”.
Maart thanked his teammates for the work in making sure he score the goal, especially Khama Billiat who provided the ball and urged him to score as the keeper was off his line. He continued by thanking the supporters who voted for the goal of the month and the panel that believe the Goal was the best of the Season.
“For that goal, I really appreciate my teammates. It’s a team sport and, at the end of the day, without them, I would never have scored the goal. We defended as a team from the front and Khama told me earlier to check their goalkeeper standing off his line. A bit later Khama made a tackle and the ball went loose. I took the ball and looked up and thought to myself,’ Let me just take the risk and hit it’,” said the Atlantis-born midfielder, before concluding, “I’d also like to thank everyone who voted for me to win Goal of the Season, to the fans whom I really appreciate. Amakhosi 4 Life!”
Maart’s goal was one of six contenders for the illustrious award. His Amakhosi teammate, attacker Ashley Du Preez, was also nominated for wonderful curler against Chippa United in Gqeberha, which was voted Goal of the Month in April.
The Goal of the Season accolade came with a cheque of R50 000 for Maart.