Rooney nominated for top Fifa award

Five Premier League players have been named on the shortlist for the 2012 FIFA Ballon d’Or, including Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney.

Wayne Rooney is the only British player to be named on Fifa’s 23-man shortlist for 2012’s best player.

Rooney’s Manchester United team-mate Robin van Persie joins Manchester City trio Sergio Aguero, Yaya Toure and Mario Balotelli on the list, as does 2011 winner, Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo

Didier Drogba who left Stamford Bridge at the end of last season has also been included.

Lionel Messi was awarded the 2011 Ballon D'Or

The shortlist will be narrowed down to three on 29 November, with Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid the favourites to top the list.

Meanwhile, Chelsea’s Roberto Di Matteo, Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson and Man City manager Roberto Mancini feature on the 10-strong FIFA Coach of the Year shortlist.

National team coaches and captain, as well as selected journalists, will now cast their votes with a final shortlist of three names for each category to be unveiled on November 29.
The winners will be announced at a ceremony in Zurich on 7 January 2013.

Player nominees: Sergio Aguero (Manchester City/Argentina), Xabi Alonso (Real Madrid/Spain), Mario Balotelli (Manchester City/Italy), Karim Benzema (Real Madrid/France), Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus/Italy), Sergio Busquets (Barcelona/Spain), Iker Casillas (Real Madrid/Spain), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid/Portugal), Didier Drogba (Shanghai Shenhua/Ivory Coast), Radamel Falcao (Atletico Madrid/Colombia), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris St Germain/Sweden), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona/Spain), Lionel Messi (Barcelona/Argentina), Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich/Germany), Neymar (Santos/Brazil), Mesut Ozil (Real Madrid/Germany), Gerard Pique (Barcelona/Spain), Andrea Pirlo (Juventus/Italy), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid/Spain), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United/England), Yaya Toure (Manchester City/Ivory Coast), Robin van Persie (Manchester United/Netherlands), Xavi (Barcelona/Spain)

Coach nominees: Vicente del Bosque (Spain/Spain national team), Roberto Di Matteo (Italy/Chelsea), Alex Ferguson (Scotland/Manchester United), Pep Guardiola (Spain/Barcelona), Jupp Heynckes (Germany/Bayern Munich), Juergen Klopp (Germany/Borussia Dortmund), Joachim Loew (Germany/Germany national team), Roberto Mancini (Italy/Manchester City), Jose Mourinho (Portugal/Real Madrid), Cesare Prandelli (Italy/Italy national team)