Toure, Ozil, Bale Make Ballon d’Or Shortlist.

Manchester City and Ivory Coast international Yaya Toure is among five Premier League players named in the 23-man shortlist for the FIFA Ballon d’Or award.

All the players nominated for the 2013 award, given annually by FIFA to the player considered to have performed the best in the previous year, currently ply their trades in Europe.

Treble-winning Bayern Munich were rewarded for their record-breaking feat last season with six players- Franck Ribery, Philipp Lahm, Thomas Muller, Manuel Neuer, Arjen Robben and Bastian Schweinsteiger- listed.

Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale, who stood out for Tottenham Hotspur last season, and teammate Cristiano Ronaldo- World’s Best Player in 2008- were among the players from the Spanish La Liga.

Yaya Toure of Ivory Coast.
Yaya Toure of Ivory Coast.

Lionel Messi, who has won the award in the past four years, alongside three other Barcelona players- Xavi, Andres Iniesta and summer signing Neymar- are among the candidates.

Paris Saint-Germain trio Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Edinson Cavani and Thiago Silva also made the cut.

The other Premier League players also vying for a place in the final three are: Manchester United’s Robin van Persie, Liverpool’s Suarez, Chelsea’s Eden Hazard and Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil.

Retired Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson headlines the Coach of the Year shortlist, which also has former Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes and Napoli manager Rafael Benitez.

Ballon d’Or shortlist
: Gareth Bale (Real Madrid/Wales), Edinson Cavani (Paris St Germain/Uruguay), Radamel Falcao (Monaco/Colombia), Eden Hazard (Chelsea/Belgium), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris St Germain/Sweden), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona/Spain), Philipp Lahm (Bayern Munich/Germany), Robert Lewandowski (Borussia Dortmund/Poland), Lionel Messi (Barcelona/Argentina), Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich/Germany), Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich/Germany), Neymar (Barcelona/Brazil), Mesut Ozil (Arsenal/Germany), Andrea Pirlo (Juventus/Italy), Franck Ribery (Bayern Munich/France), Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich/Netherlands), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid/Portugal), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Bayern Munich/Germany), Luis Suarez (Liverpool/Uruguay), Thiago Silva (Paris St Germain/Brazil), Yaya Toure (Manchester City/Ivory Coast), Robin van Persie (Manchester United/Netherlands), Xavi (Barcelona/Spain).

Coach of the year shortlist: Carlo Ancelotti (Real Madrid/ex-Paris St Germain), Rafael Benitez (Napoli/ex-Chelsea), Antonio Conte (Juventus), Vicente Del Bosque (Spain), Sir Alex Ferguson (ex-Manchester United), Jupp Heynckes (ex-Bayern Munich), Jurgen Klopp (Borussia Dortmund), Jose Mourinho (Chelsea/ex-Real Madrid), Luiz Felipe Scolari (Brazil), Arsene Wenger (Arsenal).



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