BARCELONA, Spanish football giant, tops the FIFA shortlist for the Ballon d’Or world player of the year award with six of its players named in a second 23-strong selection.
Leading the pack is Lionel Messi, an Argentine forward and favourite for the prestigious award. Others are Javier Mascherano, Andres Iniesta, Neymar, Ivan Rakitic and Luis Suarez.
They are to contending the award with Cristiano Ronaldo, current holder, as well as his Real Madrid team-mates, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema, Toni Kroos and James Rodriguez.
Just like Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, giant German football club, also has five nominees for the award.
There are three nominees from Manchester City. They are Sergio Aguero, Kevin De Bruyne and Yaya Toure. Other Premier League players featuring on the 23-man Ballon d’Or shortlist are Eden Hazard of Chelsea and Alexis Sanchez of Arsenal.
In the category of the 10-man coach of the year shortlist are Jose Mourinho, Chelsea manager and Arsene Wenger, Arsenal boss. They are contesting the award with Luis Enrique, Barcelona manager, who guided his side to the treble of Champions League, Spanish league and Spanish cup titles, and Pep Guardiola, coach of Bayern Munich.
Winners of the awards will be announced in a ceremony at Zurich, Switzerland, on January 11, 2016.
Shortlist for FIFA World Player of the Year award:
Sergio Agüero (Argentina/Manchester City), Gareth Bale (Wales/Real Madrid), Karim Benzema (France/Real Madrid), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal/Real Madrid), Kevin De Bruyne (Belgium/VfL Wolfsburg/Manchester City), Eden Hazard (Belgium/Chelsea), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden/Paris Saint-Germain), Andres Iniesta (Spain/Barcelona), Toni Kroos (Germany/Real Madrid), Robert Lewandowski (Poland/Bayern Munich), Javier Mascherano (Argentina/Barcelona), Lionel Messi (Argentina/Barcelona), Thomas Müller (Germany/Bayern Munich), Manuel Neuer (Germany/Bayern Munich), Neymar (Brazil/Barcelona), Paul Pogba (France/Juventus), Ivan Rakitic (Croatia/Barcelona), Arjen Robben (Netherlands/ Bayern Munich), James Rodriguez (Colombia/Real Madrid), Alexis Sanchez (Chile/Arsenal), Luis Suarez (Uruguay/Barcelona), Yaya Touré (Ivory Coast/Manchester City), Arturo Vidal (Chile/Juventus/Bayern Munich).
Shortlist for FIFA World Coach of the Year for Men’s Football award:
Massimiliano Allegri (Italy/Juventus), Carlo Ancelotti (Italy/Real Madrid), Laurent Blanc (France/Paris Saint-Germain), Unai Emery (Spain/Sevilla FC), Pep Guardiola (Spain/FC Bayern Munich), Luis Enrique (Spain/FC Barcelona), Jose Mourinho (Portugal/Chelsea), Jorge Sampaoli (Argentina/Chilean national team), Diego Simeone (Argentina/Atletico Madrid), Arsene Wenger (France/Arsenal).
— Oct 20, 2015 @ 15:55 GMT