Three Argentine players have been nominated for the 2014 Golden Ball, the prize awarded by FIFA and France Football magazine to the best player of the year.
Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano, from FC Barcelona, and Ángel Di María, from Manchester United, have been included in the candidates list, together with other 20 players.
On December 1, FIFA will choose three candidates from the nominees, and the winner will be announced on January 12 in Zurich, after a group of journalists, coaches and captains from football national teams vote for their favorites.
The list also includes Cristiano Ronaldo, winner of the 2013 edition, who had an outstanding season for Real Madrid, scoring 17 goals in the Champions League, setting a new record, and six World Cup champions for Germany: Mario Götze, Toni Kroos, Philipp Lahm, Thomas Müller, Manuel Neuer y Bastian Schweinsteiger.
The complete list goes as follows:
Gareth Bale (Wales), Karim Benzema (France), Diego Costa (Spain), Thibaut Courtois (Belgium), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal), Ángel Di María (Argentina), Mario Götze (Germany), Eden Hazard (Belgium), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden), Andrés Iniesta (Spain), Toni Kroos (Germany), Philipp Lahm (Germany), Javier Mascherano (Argentina), Lionel Messi (Argentina), Thomas Müller (Germany), Manuel Neuer (Germany), Neymar (Brazil), Paul Pogba (France), Sergio Ramos (Spain), Arjen Robben (Holland), James Rodríguez (Colombia), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany), Yaya Toure (Cote d’Ivoir).-