Egyptian Striker Mohamed Salah and Algerian winger Riyad Mahrez have been named on the 30-man shortlist for the men’s 2021 Ballon d’Or award.
Salah and Mahrez are the only two African players to contend for the prize handed out by France Football this year.
Salah scored 22 league goals last season and has notched six, joint leader with Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy, at the moment this season.
He has emerged as one of the most fiercest striker across the globe and drawn comparison with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi who have also been listed.
Liberia’s George Weah is the only African player to have won the Ballon d’or when he clinched the title in 1995 ahead of Jurgen Klinsmann and Juri Litmanen and Del Piero.
The winner of the award will be announced on 29 November at Paris’ Theatre du Chatelet.
Chelsea and Senegal’s Edouard Mendy is also nominated for the Yashin Trophy, an award for the best goalkeeper.
Ballon d’Or nominees
*Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea, Spain)
*Nicolo Barella (Inter Milan, Italy)
*Karim Benzema (Real Madrid, France)
*Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus, Italy)
*Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City, Belgium)
*Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus, Italy)
*Ruben Dias (Manchester City, Portugal)
*Gianluigi Donnarumma (PSG, Italy)
*Bruno Fernandes (Manchester United, Portugal)
*Phil Foden (Manchester City, England)
*Erling Braut Haaland (Borussia Dortmund, Norway)
*Jorginho (Chelsea, Italy)
*Harry Kane (Tottenham, England)
*N’Golo Kante (Chelsea, France)
*Simon Kjaer (AC Milan, Denmark)
*Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich, Poland)
*Romelu Lukaku (Chelsea, Belgium)
*Riyad Mahrez (Manchester City, Algeria)
*Lautaro Martinez (Inter Milan, Argentina)
*Kylian Mbappe (PSG, France)
*Lionel Messi (PSG, Argentina)
*Luka Modric (Real Madrid, Croatia)
*Gerard Moreno (Villarreal, Spain)
*Mason Mount (Chelsea, England)
*Neymar (PSG, Brazil)
Pedri (Barcelona, Spain)
*Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United, Portugal)
*Mohamed Salah (Liverpool, Egypt)
*Raheem Sterling (Manchester City, England)
*Luis Suarez (Atletico Madrid, Uruguay)