Messi, Ronaldo, Ribery face off for Ballon d'Or

Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Franck Ribery will fight it out for the title of the world's best player after FIFA announced its shortlist for the 2013 Ballon d'Or.


Argentina and Barcelona forward Messi has won the award for the world's best player in each of the last four years, while Portugal and Real Madrid forward Ronaldo won the award in 2008.

France forward Ribery has had a sparkling year for treble-winners Bayern Munich.

Gareth Bale did not make the cut from the 23-man longlist despite scoring 26 goals for Tottenham last term before becoming the world's most expensive player when he joined Real Madrid for 100million euros (£85.3million) in September.

Sir Alex Ferguson, Jurgen Klopp and Jupp Heynckes have been named on a three-man shortlist for this year's Fifa World Coach of the Year prize.

Ferguson retired over the summer after guiding Manchester United to the Premier League title, while Klopp reached the Champions League final with Dortmund, in which BVB were beaten by Bayern Munich.

But the favourite for the award is former Bayern boss Heynckes, who also called time on his coaching career in June, after guiding the Bavarians to a sensational treble last term.

The 68-year-old lifted the Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and the Champions League before being replaced by former Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola.

The award was created back in 2010 as the coaching equivalent of the Ballon d'Or, with Jose Mourinho taking home the gong and Guardiola doing the same a year later. The current holder is Spain boss Vicente del Bosque, following his Euro 2012 success with la Roja.

The winner will be revealed at the FIFA Ballon d'Or gala in Zurich on January 13, 2014

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