The 2011 Fifa Ballon d'Or award again has poised the omni-present rivalry between Barcelona striker Lionel Messi and his Real Madrid’s counterpart Cristiano Ronaldo in the shortlisted 23-man world best footballers.
Spain the 2010 World Cup winners is highly represented in the race for the prestigious award with seven candidates followed by three players from Germany then two from Uruguay the 2011 Copa America champions same to Brazil and Argentina.
Cameroonian international Samuel Eto’o who plies his trade with Russian side
Anzhi Makhachkala is the only African player nominated.
Eight players from the Champions League holders Barcelona led by Messi Abdre
Iniesta and Xavi Hernindez are in contention for the award.
The winner of the award will be revealed at the Zurich Kongresshaus on January
9, 2012. On December 5, 2011 Fifa and France Football will announce
the names of the three men who have received the most votes.
Eric Abidal (France), Karim Benzema (France), Sergio Aguero, Lionel Messi (Argentina), Iker Casillas, Cesc Fabregas, Andres Iniesta, Gerard Pique, David Villa, Xabi Alonso, Xavi (Spain), Cristiano Ronaldo, Nani (Portugal), Dani Alves, Neymar (Brazil), Samuel Eto’o (Cameroon), Diego Forlan, Luis Suarez (Uruguay), Thomas Muller, Mesut Ozil, Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany), Wayne Rooney (England), Wesley Sneijder (Netherlands).