Liverpool forward and Egyptian star Mohamed Salah made it to the nomination list for the prestigious Ballon d’Or award, given annually by France Football. France Football made the announcement on its official website on Monday, listing thirty contenders for the award.
Almost all the major players worldwide made it to the nomination, including the trio who have been vying for every award since the beginning of the season: Cristiano Ronaldo, Salah and Luka Modric.
The three stars were also joined by some of the world’s best including France’s squad members Karim Benzema, Antoine Griezmann, N’Golo Kanté, Hugo Lloris, Kylian Mbappé, Paul Pogba and Raphaël Varane, as well as Argentina’s Lionel Messi and Sergio Agüero, Brazil’s Allison, Roberto Firmino, Marcelo and Neymar. Moreover, Welsh footballer Gareth Bale made the list in addition to Uruguay’s Luiz Suarez, Edison Cavani and Diego Godin, as well as Belgium’s Eden Hazard, Thibaut Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne.
Other players nominated for the award include Spain’s Isco and Sergio Ramos, England’s Harry Kane, Croatia’s Mario Mandzukic and Ivan Rakitic, Senegal’s Sadio Mane and Slovenia’s Jan Oblak.
The winner will be announced in a ceremony in Paris on December 3.
Considered one of the most widely recognized football awards, the Ballon d’Or has been awarded by France Football every year since 1956. The first to ever win the award was British player Sir Stanley Matthews.
In the past ten years, the award has been a duopoly between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, as each star won the award five times.
Ronaldo has held on to the award for the past two consecutive years, making him a strong contender. However, another serious contender for the award this year is Luka Modric, who swept every major worldwide award this year, having won both the Champions League with Real Madrid and the runner-up place in the World Cup with Croatia. Last month, Luka beat both Salah and Ronaldo to win the FIFA Best Men’s Player award.
However, this does not mean that the Egyptian King is out of the race, as he led an unparalleled last season, emerging as the Premier League’s top scorer in addition to cruising Egypt to the World Cup for the first time since 1990. Salah swept countless awards in the process, including the prestigious Golden Boot, PFA Player of the Year (2017-18), and Puskas Award for Best Goal, which he just won in September, beating the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo.