Cristiano Ronaldo,Messi and Modric Headline the full 30-man shortlist by France Football magazine for the 2018 Ballon d’Or season is in full swing.
The Portuguese forward – who won his fifth Ballon d’Or in 2017 – is joined on the shortlist by his former Real Madrid team-mates Luca Modric,Gareth Bale, Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane.
Lionel Messi, another five-time Balon d’Or winner, has been shortlisted for the award with former Barcelona team-mate Neymar.
It is 10 years since Juventus attacker Cristiano Ronaldo first won the award, marking the start of an unprecedented duopoly between the Portuguese and Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi.
The last winner outside of the superhuman pair is Kaka, the Brazilian playmaker who won the prize in 2007.
Trio of stars have been joined by the likes of Harry Kane, Mohamed Salah and Kylian Mbappe among the nominees announced on Monday, along with Chelsea duo Eden Hazard and N’Golo Kante.
Liverpool forwards Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah are also in contention.Paul Pogba, Kylian Mbappe and Hugo Lloris were some of the World Cup-winning France squad recognised by France Football.
The names were released in groups of five throughout the day, with a 30-man shortlist drawn up ahead of the awards ceremony in Paris on December 3.
The Ballon d’Or is separate from FIFA’s own world player of the year awards, known as The Best, which was won by Real Madrid’s Croatia midfielder Luka Modric.
The shortlist is curated by the editorial office of France Football, and the winner is then picked from the list by a panel of international journalists, with one representative per country.
The Ballon d’Or is awarded according to three separate criteria. The panel judge nominees on: their performances during the calendar year, their talent and fair play, and their achievements throughout their career.
Each panel member picks their top five nominees, with their first pick being awarded six points, their second pick receiving four points, their third three points, their fourth two points and their final pick one point.
The player with the most points received once all panel members have cast their votes is awarded the Ballon d’Or. In the event of a tie, the player with the most first picks is given the award.
Only Michel Platini, Johann Cruyff and Marco van Basten have won three of the awards, while Germany duo Franz Beckenbauer and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Brazil’s Ronaldo, Spain’s Alfredo Di Stefano and England’s Kevin Keegan have won two apiece.
It remains to be seen, however, if Ronaldo or Messi will be successful again this year, after Luka Modric won the FIFA Best Men’s Player of the Year award.
Take a look at all 30 of nominees in TRN’s slide list!
Sergio Aguero – Manchester City & Argentina 🇦🇷
Alisson – Liverpool & Brazil 🇧🇷
Gareth Bale – Real Madrid & Wales
Karim Benzema – Real Madrid & France 🇫🇷
Edinson Cavani – PSG & Uruguay 🇺🇾
Thibaut Courtois – Real Madrid & Belgium 🇧🇪
Cristiano Ronaldo – Juventus & Portugal 🇵🇹
Kevin De Bruyne – Manchester City & Belgium 🇧🇪
Roberto Firmino – Liverpool & Brazil 🇧🇷
Diego Godin – Atletico Madrid & Uruguay 🇺🇾
Antoine Griezmann – Atletico Madrid & France 🇫🇷
Eden Hazard – Chelsea & Belgium 🇧🇪
Isco – Real Madrid & Spain 🇪🇸
Harry Kane – Tottenham Hotspur & England
N’Golo Kante – Chelsea & France 🇫🇷
Hugo Lloris – Tottenham & France 🇫🇷
Mario Mandzukic – Juventus & Croatia 🇭🇷
Sadio Mane Liverpool & Senegal 🇸🇳
Marcelo – Real Madrid & Brazil 🇧🇷
Kylian Mbappe – PSG & France 🇫🇷
Lionel Messi – Barcelona & Argentina 🇦🇷
Luka Modric – Real Madrid & Croatia
Neymar PSG & Brazil 🇧🇷
Jan Oblak – Atletico Madrid & Slovenia 🇸🇮
Paul Pogba Manchester United & France 🇫🇷
Ivan Rakitic Barcelona & Croatia 🇭🇷
Sergio Ramos – Real Madrid & Spain 🇪🇸
Mohamed Salah – Liverpool & Egypt 🇪🇬
Luis Suarez Barcelona & Uruguay 🇺🇾
Raphael Varane Real Madrid & France 🇫🇷