Three lionesses on Ballon d’Or shortlist but record winner Lionel Messi snubbed

European champions Millie Bright, Lucy Bronze and Beth Mead are among the nominees for the Ballon d’Or Feminine.

Mead was the tournament’s top scorer and player as England triumphed on home soil last month.

Chelsea’s Sam Kerr and Arsenal’s Vivianne Miedema are also shortlisted, along with Barcelona star Alexia Putellas, while the headline in the men’s nominations was the absence of seven-time winner Lionel Messi.

Messi won the award in 2021 and 2019 – it didn’t take place in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic – but following his move to Paris St Germain, the Argentine was left out.

Messi’s long-time Ballon d’Or rival Cristiano Ronaldo is the only Manchester United contender, while England trio Trent Alexander-Arnold, Phil Foden and Harry Kane are also included in the 30-man squad.

Foden is one of six Manchester City players on the list, including new signing Erling Haaland, while Liverpool quintet Mohamed Salah, Luiz Diaz, Fabinho, Virgil van Dijk and Darwin Nunez – as well as the recently deceased Sadio Mane – are also included.

Son Heung-min joins his attacking partner Harry Kane while the favorite to win the first is Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema.

Lionel Messi has been removed from the Ballon d’Or shortlist (Ariel Schalit/AP)


Champions League winners Real are well represented, including Thibaut Courtois, Casemiro, Luka Modric, Vinicius Junior and recent Chelsea signing Antonio Rudiger.

Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka and Borussia Dortmund’s England international Jude Bellingham are among the nominees for the Kopa Trophy for best player under 21.

The Premier League, meanwhile, is well-represented in the shortlist for the Yashin Trophy as best goalkeeper, with Man City’s Ederson, Liverpool’s Alisson Becker, Chelsea’s Edouard Mendy and Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris alongside Courtois on the 10-man shortlist. Three lionesses on Ballon d’Or shortlist but record winner Lionel Messi snubbed

Fry Electronics Team

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