It was earlier this week that France Football unveiled the 30-man shortlist for the 2016 Ballon d’Or.
Again, the most prestigious individual honor in football released its shortlist for the 2016 prize with Barcelona’s Messi and Real Madrid’s Ronaldo topping the list.
Need I remind you that both players had dominated Ballon d’Or in the past five years? The Argentine and Portuguese either finished first or second in the last five years with Messi edging out Ronaldo with three wins to two.
However, it’s been speculated that the regular visitors will face stiff competition from players like Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski and Barcelona’s Neymar and Luis Suarez.
France Football is the sole organizers of the prize following a split after the last FIFA Ballon d’Or was awarded to Messi in 2015. France Football partnership with FIFA ended and restored the previous formats of their respective awards.
Below is the Full list of the 2016 BALLON D’OR Nominees:
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund)
Gareth Bale (Real Madrid)
Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City)
Paulo Dybala (Juventus)
Diego Godin (Atletico Madrid)
Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid)
Gonzalo Higuain (Juventus)
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Manchester United)
Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)
Koke (Atletico Madrid)
Toni Kroos (Real Madrid)
Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)
Hugo Lloris (Tottenham Hotspur)
Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City)
Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich)
Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich)
Dimitri Payet (West Ham)
Pepe (Real Madrid)
Paul Pogba (Manchester United)
Rui Patricio (Sporting Lisbon)
Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)
Luis Suarez (Barcelona)
Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
Arturo Vidal (Bayern Munich)
Arsenal boss, Arsene Wenger stirred some controversy today when he congratulated Mesut Ozil for being nominated for the 2016 Ballon d’Or.
The problem was, no player from Arsenal was nominated to run for the award. Ozil wasn’t named in the shortlist. He and other players like Juventus’ Leonardo Bonucci were among the surprise omissions identified in the list.