Fifa have announced the three names that make up the shortlist for the Ballon d’Or awards.
Barcelona duo Lionel Messi and Neymar will compete with current holder Cristiano Ronaldo for this year’s FIFA Ballon d’Or.
Real Madrid forward Ronaldo has won the award for the past two years, with Messi winning it for each of the four years previous to that. And with Ronaldo named in 2008 too, one of the pair has been named the best player in the world on the last seven occasions.
Messi and Neymar were part of the treble-winning Barcelona side last term and have been in fantastic form over the last year, with Luis Suarez completing the famous ‘MSN’ trio.
Neymar has maintained his form into this season and is currently firing on all cylinders as Barcelona continue to shine. Neymar currently has the most assists (5) in La Liga as well as the most goals (14) and chances created (48).
And while we’re at it, he has also performed the highest number of successful take-ons (52).
This year, the big favourite to scoop the award is Messi, who has the chance to collect what would be his fifth Ballon d’Or. The FIFA gala will held in Zurich on 11 January 2016.
Luis Suarez, the other member of Barca’s “MSN” attack, was also a strong contender to make the final three, as was Bayern Munich’s Polish striker Robert Lewandowski.
The final three for the men’s coach of the year are Pep Guardiola (Bayern Munich), Luis Enrique (Barcelona) and Jorge Sampaoli (Chile). And for the women’s coach of the year, Jill Ellis (U.S.), Mark Sampson (England) and Norio Sasaki (Japan).