FIFA announces nominees for World XI 2018

FIFA announces nominees for World XI 2018

Manchester United also have four, with David de Gea and Romelu Lukaku being joined by the midfield pair of Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic.

World champion France had eight players, one less than former holder Spain, in worldwide players' association FIFPro's 55-name shortlist for its World XI of 2018 award.

Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva and Kyle Walker have all been nominated by fellow professionals around the world and are among 55 players competing for a spot in the coveted World11. The three Reds Virgil van Dijk, Dejan Lovren and Sadio Mane were also nominated along with the Egyptian star.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp saw five of his current squad included after reaching their first Champions League final since 2005.

The other nine big-player names are Sergio Busquets, Casemiro, Philippe Coutinho, Andres Iniesta, Isco, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic and Arturo Vidal.

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Only Robert Lewandowski, Manuel Neuer and Gonzalo Higuain have dropped out and been replaced from the top 10 in last year's game. Everyone who has worked with him speaks of that hard work and determination to be better than every player who has preceded him.

None of the current Arsenal squad have been selected in this years shortlist with Mesut Ozil dropping out. All three now share the record among defenders.

Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo has been included after winning a third successive Champions League title with Real Madrid.

Real Madrid lead the way with 11 nominations, though there is no place for Gareth Bale. Messi, Neymar and Ronaldo were eventually named the attackers in last year's World XI.

Despite interest from Manchester United and Lyon, in the end, it was Everton who won the race and secured his services.

Finally, Inter have one representative in Sime Vrsajlko, who helped Atletico Madrid win the Europa League last term and was part of the Croatia side who finished runners-up in Russian Federation. Midfielder Marco Veratti has dropped out.

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