Three Man City stars and Alexis Sanchez in running for Ballon d’Or

Segio Aguero Argentina

Sergio Aguero, Kevin De Bruyne and Yaya Toure join the Gunners forward on the 23-man list.

Fifa have announced the 23-man shortlist for this year’s Ballon d’Or on their official website, with five Premier League players making the cut.

Along with Chelsea’s Eden Hazard, Manchester City trio Sergio Aguero, Kevin De Bruyne and Yaya Toure have been included in the contingent, showing the strength in depth and superstar status of Manuel Pellegrini’s squad.

Arsenal attacker Alexis Sanchez also made the cut as the last Premier League representative after a sparkling debut a campaign in North London and his role in helping Chile win the Copa America over the summer.

Former stars of English football such as Gareth Bale and Luis Suarez also were included, but it seems to be a straight shootout again this year between two men.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have jostled for the individual accolade for the last number of years, with the Real Madrid man the current incumbent but the Barcelona star favourite to win it this time round.

If Messi does claim victory again, it will be a record-breaking fifth time he has been hailed as the world’s best player.

The list in full is below:

Sergio Agüero (Argentina/Manchester City), Gareth Bale (Wales/Real Madrid), Karim Benzema (France/Real Madrid), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal/Real Madrid), Kevin De Bruyne (Belgium/VfL Wolfsburg/Manchester City), Eden Hazard (Belgium/Chelsea), Zlatan Ibrahimović (Sweden/Paris Saint-Germain), Andrés Iniesta (Spain/FC Barcelona), Toni Kroos (Germany/Real Madrid), Robert Lewandowski (Poland/FC Bayern Munich), Javier Mascherano (Argentina/FC Barcelona), Lionel Messi (Argentina/FC Barcelona), Thomas Müller (Germany/FC Bayern Munich), Manuel Neuer (Germany/FC Bayern Munich), Neymar (Brazil/FC Barcelona), Paul Pogba (France/Juventus), Ivan Rakitić (Croatia/FC Barcelona), Arjen Robben (Netherlands/FC Bayern Munich), James Rodríguez (Colombia/Real Madrid), Alexis Sánchez (Chile/Arsenal), Luis Suárez (Uruguay/FC Barcelona), Yaya Touré (Côte d'Ivoire/Manchester City), Arturo Vidal (Chile/Juventus/FC Bayern Munich).

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