Portuguese international Cristiano Ronaldo leads six other Real Madrid team mates to make up a 30-man Ballon d’Or shortlist released by France Football on Monday.
The 32-year-old, who helped Real win the Champions League and La Liga last season, is believed to be the favourite to retain the trophy.
Should the Portugal forward triumph, he will equal the record of his great rival and five-times winner Lionel Messi of Barcelona, who is also nominated.
Other players nominated include Barca’s Luis Suarez, Paris St Germain’s Neymar and Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe who at 18 is the youngest player on the list.
The Ballon d‘Or, which merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year award from 2010-15 to create the FIFA Ballon d‘Or, returned to France Football magazine this year having been established in 1956.
Meanwhile, Olivier Giroud’s scorpion kick strike for Arsenal against Crystal Palace last season was been shortlisted for FIFA’s goal of the year award on Monday, alongside efforts from Venezuelan teenager Deyna Castellanos and goalkeeper Oscarine Masuluke.
Giroud scored with an improvised volley in the Premier League match on Jan. 1, producing an acrobatic flick with his left heel to convert Alexis Sanchez’s cross into the net off the crossbar while tumbling forward.
Arsenal won the match 2-0 and Giroud, who admitted afterwards that he had a bit of luck with his connection, said it was the best goal he had ever scored.
The winner of the award, named after the late Hungary captain Ferenc Puskas, will be decided by the public and announced at FIFA’s annual player of the year ceremony in London on Oct. 23.
See Ballon d’Or full list:
Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool)
Kevin De Bruyne (Man City)
David de Gea (Man Utd)
Paulo Dybala (Juventus)
Edin Dzeko (Roma)
Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)
N‘Golo Kante (Chelsea)
Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)
Marcelo (Real Madrid)
Dries Mertens (Napoli)
Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
Jan Oblak (Atletico Madrid)
Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)
Luis Suarez (Barcelona)
Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid)
Toni Kroos (Real Madrid)
Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)
Sadio Mane (Liverpool)
Radamel Falcao (Monaco)
Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund)
Edinson Cavani (PSG)
Mats Hummels (Bayern Munich)
Karim Benzema (Real Madrid)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
Eden Hazard (Chelsea)
Leonardo Bonucci (AC Milan)
Isco (Real Madrid)
Kylian Mbappe (PSG)