Thursday 29 November 2012
Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie are among five representatives of the Barclays Premier League to have been included on the forwards shortlist for the FIFPro World XI.
The Premier League is the competition with the most nominations as the Manchester United duo are accompanied by Manchester City team-mates Sergio Aguero and Mario Balotelli and Liverpool forward Luis Suarez among the 15 players nominated for the illustrious honour.
Didier Drogba, who now plays for Chinese side Shanghai Shenhua, also features on the shortlist after helping Chelsea win the UEFA Champions League and the FA Cup in May.
The 50,000 professional footballers belonging to the players' unions across the world that make up FIFPro are eligible to cast their vote.
Candidates for FIFPro World XI goalkeepers, defenders and midfielders have already been revealed and the winners will be announced on 7 January at the FIFA Ballon D'Or gala in Zurich.
FIFPro World XI forwards shortlist
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City), Mario Balotelli (Manchester City), Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Edinson Cavani (Napoli), Didier Drogba (Shanghai Shenhua), Samuel Eto'o (Anji Makhachkala), Radamel Falcao (Atletico Madid), Mario Gomez (Bayern Munich), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris Saint-Germain), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Neymar (Santos), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Luis Suarez (Liverpool), Robin van Persie (Manchester United).
Manchester United's Shinji Kagawa has won the inaugural Asian Football Confederation International Player-of-the-Year award.
The 23-year-old Japan midfielder beat national team-mate Yuto Nagatomo, of Inter Milan, and Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer to the award in Kuala Lumpur.