Neymar out as Messi, Ronaldo, eight others battle for FIFA best player award

Neymar, Messi and, Ronaldo
L-R: Neymar, Lionel Messi and, Cristiano Ronaldo. [Photo credit:]

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi may have had a disappointing show at the recently concluded World Cup, but their overall display last season as earned them yet another nomination for the Best FIFA Men’s Player of the Year award for 2018.

Joining the duo on the star-studded list of nominees are Kylian Mbappe and Mohamed Salah.

Ronaldo, who won the award in 2017, helped Real Madrid to their third Champions League title in a row, while Messi scored 34 league goals to guide Barca to the Liga title.

World Cup winners, Antoine Griezmann and Raphael Varane, join international team-mate Mbappe on the list, and Golden Boot winner Harry Kane is also included.

Salah, meanwhile, is rewarded for an incredible season at club level with Liverpool; the 26-year-old scored a record-breaking 32 goals in 36 league appearances to help the Reds finish fourth in the table.

The Belgium duo Kevin De Bruyne and Eden Hazard also give the Premier League more representation.

Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric who was voted as the MVP at Russia 2018 also makes the final 10 as he claimed Champions League glory and played a pivotal role in Croatia’s run to the World Cup final

There is, however, no place for Neymar, who finished third in last year’s voting, after an injury-hit season with PSG and difficult World Cup that saw Brazil knocked out at the quarter-final stage by Belgium.

FIFA have also announced the nominees for the Coach of the Year award, with the likes of Zinedine Zidane, Pep Guardiola and England manager Gareth Southgate all part of the list.

The award ceremony takes place in London on September 24, with fans votes, and those of journalists, national team coaches and captains all contributing to the outcome of the final three.


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