The list of nominees for the prestigious Ballon d’Or 2017 award has been revealed. The award, which was aligned with FIFA from 2010 to 2015, has been won by either Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi for the past nine years.
Last year Ronaldo won his fourth Ballon d’Or and is now just one short of Messi. This year he is favourite to win it again and to level the score.
The names were released by France Football on Monday and together with Messi and Ronaldo, there are a number of other big names that will be hoping to claim the prize.
Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane is one of a few Premier League players to make the short list along with Liverpool midfielder Philippe Coutinho, Chelsea’s N’Golo Kante, Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea and Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne.
Paris Saint-Germain’s Neymar is on the list as is the Real Madrid trio Sergio Ramos, Marcelo and Luka Modric. Barcelona’s striker Luis Suarez has also made it into the final 30.
A panel of journalists has judged the prize since FIFA and France Football ended their partnership in 2015.
The full shortlist is: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund and Gabon), Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Leonardo Bonucci (AC Milan), Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Edinson Cavani (Paris St-Germain) Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool), Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City), David de Gea (Manchester United), Paulo Dybala (Juventus), Edin Dzeko (Roma), Radamel Falcao (Monaco), Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Mats Hummels (Bayern Munich), Isco (Real Madrid), Harry Kane (Tottenham), N’Golo Kante (Chelsea), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich), Sadio Mane (Liverpool), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Kylian Mbappe (Paris St-Germain), Dries Mertens (Napoli), Lionel Messi (Barcelona) Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Neymar (Paris St-Germain), Jan Oblak (Atletico Madrid), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) and Luis Suarez (Barcelona).