First five nominees for Ballon d'Or announced

Gareth Bale

Bale scored a spectacular overhead kick in the Champions League final in May as Real Madrid beat Liverpool 3-1

Premier League duo Roberto Firmino and Eden Hazard are among the nominees for the 2018 Ballon d'Or. Real Madrid's Luke Modric is in the running to be named the Ballon d'Or victor for 2018 after winning the FIFA Best award.

Following Sergio Aguero being revealed as the first of 30 men on the shortlist for this year's Ballon d'Or, Kevin De Bruyne has also been revealed as a nominee for the prestigious award.

For the first time ever, France Football is giving out a women's Ballon d'Or, with Germany's Dzsenifer Marozsan and Brazilian Marta among the top names in the running.

Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo, who joined Juventus from Real Madrid in the summer, won last year's Ballon d'Or.

Antoine Griezmann, a World Cup victor with France and Europa League champion at Atletico Madrid, is nominated alongside worldwide teammate and Chelsea midfielder N'Golo Kante.

Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann, two key members of the France national team that sailed to their second-ever World Cup trophy are also likely to finish with high tallies, as are Eden Hazard and Kevin de Bruyne, members of Belgium's star-studded side that came third at Russian Federation 2018.

More news: U.S. reconsiders 'zero tolerance' policy on Iran oil imports

Others are Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson, Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema and Paris St-Germain attacker Edinson Cavani.

The Ballon d'Or is considered the most coveted personal accolade a player can achieve and this year's awards ceremony will take place in Paris on December 3.

Kylian Mbappe is third-favourite after winning the World Cup with France at the age of 19, with 6-1 odds.

The 33-year-old won the FIFA The Best award earlier in the year, pipping Ronaldo and Salah to the trophy.

The Ballon d'Or, which was first won by Englishman Stanley Matthews in 1956, is decided by a ballot of journalists from around the world.

Latest News