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The pair will battle it out again to be crowned
the world's best player, having won the prize
seven times between them in as many years
Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are once
again the favourites to win the Ballon d'Or after
the 23-man shortlist for the prize was revealed
on Tuesday.

The award, which is ultimately decided by the
captains and head coaches of national teams as
well as media representatives, will be presented
to the player considered to be the best
performer in the calendar year.

Ronaldo has been named the world's best
player twice in as many years, though Messi
will provide stern competition this time around
having inspired Barcelona's treble-winning
campaign last term.

All 23 candidates play their football in Europe,
with 11 players plying their trade in La Liga, five
in the Premier League, five in the Bundesliga
and just the one nomination from both Ligue 1
and Serie A.

German champions Bayern Munich have five
candidates for the top prize, while Madrid are
the next closest with four.

World Cup 2014 finalists Argentina and Germany
are the best represented nations in the list with
Messi, Javier Mascherano, Sergio Aguero, Toni
Kroos, Thomas Muller and Manuel Neuer all

The ceremony will take place on January 11
2016 in Zurich.

23-man shortlist in full:
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City/Argentina)

Gareth Bale (Real Madrid/Wales)

Karim Benzema (Real Madrid/France)

Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City/Belgium)

Eden Hazard (Chelsea/Belgium)

Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris Saint-Germain/

Andres Iniesta (Barcelona/Spain)

Toni Kroos (Real Madrid/Germany)

Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich/Poland)

Javier Mascherano (Barcelona/Argentina)

Lionel Messi (Barcelona/Argentina)

Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich/Germany)

Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich/Germany)

Neymar (Barcelona/Brazil)

Paul Pogba (Juventus/France)

Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona/Croatia)

Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich/Netherlands)

James Rodriguez (Real Madrid/Colombia)

Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid/Portugal)

Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal/Chile)

Luis Suarez (Barcelona/Uruguay)

Yaya Toure (Manchester City/Ivory Coast)

Arturo Vidal (Bayern Munich/Chile)

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Posted By quadrihatic On 11:18 Tue, 20 Oct 2015

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