DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — United Arab Emirates soccer player Theyab Awana, who became an Internet sensation when he scored a backheeled penalty early this year, has been killed in a car accident.
The country’s soccer federation confirmed Monday that the 21-year-old Awana was killed while traveling back from training in Al Ain to Abu Dhabi. Awana, who also played for UAE club Bani Yas, had been injured and was due to fly to Germany for treatment.
Awana was considered a rising star on the country’s national team, but his biggest claim to fame was the backheeled penalty he scored in a 7-2 drubbing of Lebanon in July.
The roads in the United Arab Emirates are among the region’s most dangerous. A goalkeeper for the under-23 side was badly injured in a car crash last year.