– 30 players have been revealed as nominees for the 2016 FIFA Ballon d’Or award
– Barcelona trio of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar were included in the list
– Lionel Messi is the reigning Ballon d’Or winner having won it for a fifth time in 2015
France Football Association has announced thethe 30 names in contention for the 2016 Ballon d’Or award.
Welsh winger Gareth Bale, Sergio Aguero, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Gianluigi Buffon and Real Madrid teammate Cristiano Ronaldo were included in the first batch of nominees announced.
Antoine Griezmann, Kevin De Bruyne, Paulo Dybala, Gonzalo Higuain and Diego Godin were included in the second list.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Andreas Iniesta, Koke, Toni Kroos, Robert Lewandowski added to third batch.
The fourth to sixth batch includes; Hugo Lloris, Riyad , Lionel Messi, Thomas Muller, Lucas Modric, Manuel Neuer, Neymar, Dimitri Payet, Pepe, Paul Pogba, Rui Patricio, Sergio Ramos, Luis Suarez, Jamie Vardy, Arturo Vidal.
This year’s Ballon d’Or is judged solely by a panel of journalists after FIFA and France Football decided to part ways.
They had originally joined forces to combine the previous Fifa World Player of the Year prize with the French publication’s prestigious individual prize in 2010.
Kevin de Bruyne
‘Ghana will head to World Cup again in future’ – Asamoah Gyan
Black Stars skipper, Asamoah Gyan, says even though he is disappointed Ghana did not make it to the 2018 World Cup, he is confident the nation will make a return to the tournament in future editions.
Ghana finished 3rd in their qualifying group behind Uganda and Egypt for this year’s World Cup and missed out for the first time after making three straight appearances between 2006 and 2014.
Gyan, in an interview with the BBC, states that the new crop of Black Stars players are capable of taking the nation back to the tournament very soon.
“We went to the World Cup between 2006 and 2014 and so, it seems we are used to going to the tournament. But we did not make it there this time and everyone is gutted at that.
But we are looking to the future because we have quality, young players coming through who also want to participate in the World Cup.
We did not participate but life goes on. We have to stay focused and wish the African teams in Russia well and then see what happens in the future.”
Gyan did not feature in Ghana’s recent friendlies against Japan and Iceland but the expectation is that he will make a return to the team when the 2019 AFCON qualifiers resumes later this year.
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