Lionel Messi not among Ballon d’Or nominees, favourite Karim Benzema included

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Seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi has not been named on the 30-man shortlist for the 2022 award.

Lionel Messi – who won last year’s award – endured a frustrating first season at Paris Saint-Germain in 2021-22 after arriving on a free transfer from Barcelona, ​​scoring just 11 goals in 34 games in all competitions.

Three goals in two games at the start of the new season wasn’t enough to see Messi through, but Manchester United’s great rival Cristiano Ronaldo was among them.

Six players from Ronaldo’s former club Real Madrid have been named in the 30, including heavy favorite for the award Karim Benzema, while there are also six players from Premier League duo Manchester City and Liverpool.

Nominations for the prestigious award were announced on Friday, with notable names including Bayern Munich’s Sadio Mane and City’s Kevin De Bruyne, the latter of whom is also among the three nominees for the 2021-22 UEFA Player of the Year along with Benzema. and Thibaut Courtois.

Benzema will be happy to take home the award after a season in which he scored 27 goals in 32 LaLiga games as Madrid won the title and also scored 15 in 12 Champions League games as Los Blancos lifted their 14th European crown in Paris in May.

The Yashin Trophy for the best goalkeeper will be contested by 10 nominees, including Courtois and Eintracht Frankfurt’s Europa League winner Kevin Trapp.

The 10 nominees for the Kopa Trophy for the best under-21 player include six Bundesliga players, including Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham and Bayern’s Jamal Musiala.

Alexia Putellas, last year’s Women’s Ballon d’Or winner, has been announced as one of the 20 nominees despite missing the Women’s Euro 2022 due to injury.

Lyon’s five Champions League winners are included, as are three members of the England squad that won the Euros on home soil last month.

The winners of each award will be announced on October 17, a month before the men’s World Cup, meaning the year-end tournament in Qatar will count towards the 2023 awards.

Full nominee lists

Ballon d’Or: Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid), Rafael Leao (Milan), Christopher Nkunku (RB Leipzig), Mohamed Salah (Liverpool), Joshua Kimmich (Bayern Munich), Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Vinicius Junior (Real Madrid), Bernardo Silva (Manchester City), Luis Diaz (Liverpool), Robert Lewandowski (Barcelona), Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City), Casemiro (Real Madrid), Son Heung-min (Tottenham), Fabinho (Liverpool), Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Mike Maignan (Milan), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Darwin Nunez (Liverpool), Phil Foden (Manchester City), Sadio Mane (Bayern Munich), Sebastien Haller (Borussia Dortmund), Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Antonio Rudiger (Real Madrid), Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Dusan Vlahovic (Juventus), Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool), Joao Cancelo (Manchester City), Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain), Erling Haaland (Manchester City)

Ballon d’Or Feminin: Selma Bacha (Lyon), Fridolina Rolfo (Barcelona), Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal), Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), Sam Kerr (Chelsea), Christiane Endler (Lyon), Lena Oberdorf (Wolfsburg), Kadidiatou Diani (Paris Saint-Germain), Catarina Macario (Lyon), Alexia Putellas (Barcelona), Alexandra Popp (Wolfsburg), Aitana Bonmati (Barcelona), Wendie Renard (Lyon), Alex Morgan (San Diego Wave), Beth Mead (Arsenal), Asisat Oshoala (Barcelona), Marie-Antoinette Katoto (Paris Saint-Germain), Millie Bright (Chelsea), Trinity Rodman (Washington Spirit), Ada Hegerberg (Lyon)

Yashin Trophy: Yassine Bounou (Sevilla), Alisson (Liverpool), Thibaut Courtois (Real Madrid), Ederson (Manchester City), Mike Maignan (Milan), Edouard Mendy (Chelsea), Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Jan Oblak (Atletico Madrid), Kevin Trapp (Eintracht Frankfurt), Hugo Lloris (Tottenham)

Kopa Trophy: Karim Adeyemi (Borussia Dortmund), Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund), Eduardo Camavinga (Real Madrid), Gavi (Barcelona), Ryan Gravenberch (Bayern Munich), Nuno Mendes (Paris Saint-Germain), Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich), Josko Gvardiol (RB Leipzig), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Florian Wirtz (Bayer Leverkusen)

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