The shortlist for the 2016 Ballon d’Or has been announced.
With FIFA ending its association with the award, French outlet France Football will now be naming the shortlist of 30 players who can be crowned the best player on the planet.
On Monday it has begun to release the shortlist in two batches of five names being announced every two hours.
Manchester City duo Sergio Aguero and Kevin De Bruyne were both named in the shortlist, as was Manchester United’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic, plus Real Madrid’s trio of Toni Kroos, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo were also nominated. Atletico Madrid’s Koke, Diego Godin and Antoine Griezmann, plus Gianluigi Buffon, Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala from Juventus were all named on the shortlist and so to were Borussia Dortmund’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Barcelona’s Andres Iniesta and Bayer Munich’s Robert Lewandowski.
We will update this post as the day goes on, but here are the 15 nominees thus far…
Shortlist for 2016 Ballon d’Or
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City), Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund), Gareth Bale (Real Madrid), Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City), Paulo Dybala (Juventus), Diego Godin (Atletico Madrid), Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid), Gonzalo Higuain (Juventus), Koke (Atletico Madrid) Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Manchester United), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)