No Suarez as Ronaldo, Messi and Neymar shortlisted for FIFA Ballon d’Or

Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Neymar have been shortlisted for the FIFA Ballon d’Or award. Real Madrid’s Ronaldo has picked up the accolade in each of the last two years and three times in total, but Messi has won the award four times.

Andres Iniesta, Xavi, Franck Ribery and Manuel Neuer have been among the challengers over the past five years, but Messi and Ronaldo have finished either first or second in the last four editions.

Neymar’s contribution to Barcelona’s treble-winning success last season has been recognised, however, while the Brazilian has scored 41 times in all competitions in 2015, which is just three less than Messi and four fewer than Ronaldo.

The voting for the Ballon d’Or opened on October 26 and finished on November 20, during a period where Messi was on the sidelines and Neymar took centre stage for Barcelona. Ronaldo scored 61 times in 54 appearances for Real Madrid last season, but there was no La Liga title, no Copa del Rey and no Champions League – trophies which all went to Barcelona.

The winner of the award will be announced at FIFA’s Ballon d’Or Gala in Zurich on January 11.


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