Defending champion and seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi failed to earn a nomination for the 2022 edition while Cristiano Ronaldo has made the 30-man shortlist.
In addition to the Men’s awards, the Organizers of the awards France Football released the nominees for the women’s award, Kopa Trophy, and Yashin Trophy for the ceremony scheduled to hold on October 17.
Football pundits and observers alike have tipped, France and Real Madrid point man, Karim Benzema to claim the sport’s biggest individual accolade after guiding Real Madrid win the La Liga title, Champions League, Supercopa de Espana, and UEFA Super Cup during the past 12 months.
Names like Kylian Mbappe, Kevin De Bruyne, Robert Lewandowski and Sadio Mane are also touted as favourites and outsiders.
Premier League sides, Manchester City and Liverpool continue to battle for primacy on the list as the latter had six of its players nominated including, Mohamed Salah, Luis Diaz, Darwin Nunez, Virgil van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold, and Fabinho. Former player, Mane also made the cut.
Manchester City stars on the list include Riyad Mahrez, Erling Haaland, Joao Cancelo, Kevin De Bruyne, and Phil Foden.
Ronaldo continues to make history as he has made every Ballon d’Or shortlist since 2005 while winning on five of those occasions.
Chelsea’s Millie Bright, Arsenal’s Beth Mead and Barcelona’s Lucy Bronze, Asisat Oshoala and Putellas are favorites to emerge winners from the 20-person shortlist for the women’s awards.
Barcelona’s Gavi, Real Madrid’s Eduardo Camavinga, and Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka made the 10- player shortlist for the Kopa Trophy, awarded to the most outstanding youngster in Europe.
While four Premier League goalkeepers make the nominations for the Yashin Trophy, given to the best goalkeeper in Europe. Liverpool’s Alisson Becker, Manchester City’s Ederson, Chelsea’s Edourard Mendy and Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris, Real Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois is the favorite to win the award after his influential role in Real Madrid’s unbelievable run to Champions League glory, especially after his final’s heroics.