Ballon d’Or: Jamie Vardy, Riyad Mahrez, Gareth Bale & Sergio Aguero on shortlist
Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez have been named on the 2016 Ballon d’Or award shortlist for the world’s best player.
Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale, Manchester United’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba, and Manchester City’s Kevin de Bruyne and Sergio Aguero also feature.
Other Premier League names on the list are West Ham midfielder Dimitri Payet and Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona’s Lionel Messi are included.
Messi, who claimed a record fifth award in 2015, or Ronaldo has taken the prize every year since 2007, when AC Milan’s Kaka took the honour.
Vardy and Mahrez won the Premier League with Leicester last season and Algerian Mahrez was named Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year.
Bale scored three goals as Wales reached the Euro 2016 semi-final and won the Champions League with Real alongside Ronaldo.
Pogba, Payet and Lloris are included after finishing runners-up with France to Ronaldo’s Portugal at Euro 2016.
Luis Suarez and Neymar are included alongside Barcelona team-mate Messi, the trio having scored 106 club goals combined in 2016.
France Football magazine revealed the 30-man shortlist on Monday.
Fifa ended its association with the award in September.
The prize has been awarded by France Football every year since 1956, but for the past six years it became the Fifa Ballon d’Or in association with world football’s governing body.
Five Premier League players – City’s Aguero, De Bruyne and Yaya Toure, Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez and Chelsea’s Eden Hazard – made a 23-man shortlist last year, with Bale the only British player on the list.
Ibrahimovic and Pogba were also included last time for their performances for Paris St-Germain and Juventus respectively.
The shortlist has traditionally been trimmed to three players before the awards evening in January.
2016 Ballon d’Or shortlist
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), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Manchester United), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona), Koke (Atletico Madrid), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich), Hugo Lloris (Tottenham Hotspur), Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich), Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Neymar (Barcelona), Dimitri Payet (West Ham), Pepe (Real Madrid), Paul Pogba (Manchester United), Rui Patricio (Sporting Lisbon), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Luis Suarez (Barcelona), Jamie Vardy (Leicester City), Arturo Vidal (Bayern Munich).