Cristiano Ronaldo in contention for third successive Ballon d'Or

Grant SmithOct 09, 2018

Regular names like Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Messi and a few others are expected to make the 30-man list of nominees which will be revealed during the day.

Specialist magazine France Football, which has awarded the prize since 1956, announced the 30 nominees for the calendar year trophy, among whom a victor will be chosen by a group of respected football journalists from around the world.

Do you think Modric will beat Ronaldo and Messi to the 2018 Ballon d'Or prize? Messi has also won the award on five occasions.

Remember the criteria for the Ballon d'Or are: the players' performances during the calendar year, their talent and fair play, and their achievements throughout their career.

Wales global Gareth Bale, scorer of a brace in Real's European final win over Liverpool, is among the 10 names already released.

De Bruyne was nominated for helping his club win the Premier League and his country reach the World Cup semi-finals.

Liverpool's Brazilian forward Roberto Firmino and Uruguay's rugged defender Diego Godin of Atletico Madrid also got the nod.

Men's shortlist so far: are Sergio Aguero from Argentina, Manchester City; Alisson Becker from Brazil, Liverpool; Gareth Bale from Wales, Real Madrid; Karim Benzema from France, Real Madrid.

But a combination of apparent voter fatigue, Croatia's fairytale run, and recent rape allegations against the Portuguese star have lessened his chances with the bookies, with Modric, who captured the rival FIFA Best Player award last month, now considered the odds-on favorite.

The ceremony to announce the victor will take place in Paris on 3 December, when a women's award will be presented for the first time.

In another first, the best under-21 player will receive the Kopa Trophy.

But, with France Football releasing five names at a time alphabetically, neither have had their nominations confirmed.

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