Neymar, Ronaldo, Messi on FIFA best player shortlist
Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo, Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Paris St-Germain’s Neymar comprise the Best Fifa Men’s Player shortlist.
Ronaldo won the inaugural award last year, ahead of Messi with Neymar fourth behind Atletico’s Antoine Griezmann.
Chelsea’s Antonio Conte is up for the men’s coach award after leading the Blues to the Premier League title in his first season at Stamford Bridge.
Holder Carli Lloyd is again nominated for the women’s player award.
Lieke Martens, who scored three goals in the Netherlands’ triumphant Euro 2017 campaign, and Venezuela striker Deyna Castellanos are Lloyd’s competition.
Conte is up against Zinedine Zidane, whose Real Madrid side beat Juventus, managed by the category’s third nominee Massimiliano Allegri, in the Champions League final in June.
Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud’s ‘scorpion kick’ volley against Crystal Palace in January and then-Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic’s fierce long-range effort in the FA Cup semi-final against Tottenham in May are nominated for the Puskas Award for the year’s best goal.
The intricate team goal that rounded off Celtic’s 5-2 win over St Johnstone and Moussa Dembele’s hat-trick in February is also in the running.
Harry Kane was the only Englishman to have been long-listed for the men’s players award while Lionesses Jodie Taylor and Lucy Bronze have also failed to make the cut for the women’s award.
The winners will be decided by a jury of club and international coaches, media representatives and fans with the winners crowned at the London Palladium on 23 October.
Fifa, football’s world governing body, is running its awards for the second year since ending its association with France Football’s Ballon d’Or in September 2016. bbc.com