Ballon d'Or 2016: Cristiano Ronaldo & Lionel Messi favourites

December 12, 2016
Source: BBC
Ballon d'Or 2016: Cristiano Ronaldo & Lionel Messi favourites

Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to challenge Barcelona rival Lionel Messi for the prestigious Ballon d'Or prize on Monday.

The iconic award, presented by France Football magazine, is given to the world's best player as voted by 173 journalists from across the globe.

Leicester City's Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez are among eight Premier League players named on a 30-man shortlist.

The winner will be announced in a ceremony which begins at 16:30 GMT.

You can discover the winner, following a countdown of all 30 nominees to number one, in a special live text commentary on the BBC Sport website.

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.

However, Fifa ended its association with the award in September.

Fifa will hand out its own prize for the world's best men's player, along with the best women's player and team of the year, at the Best Fifa Football Awards ceremony in Zurich on 9 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).