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Sports

Ballon d'Or: who will succeed to Cristiano Ronaldo?

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2009-11-30

The ten finalists for the Ballon d'Or, or European footballer of the year, award have been named, and no fewer than four of them play for Barcelona. Tell us who is your favorite player.

AFP - European champions Barcelona had four players named among the ten finalists for the Ballon d'Or, or the European Footballer of the Year award, on Sunday.
  
The ten, shortlisted from an initial list of 30 nominees voted for by journalists, were revealed in alphabetical order on the France Football website.
  
The winner will be unveiled in the next edition of France Football magazine on Tuesday, December 1 with Argentina's Lionel Messi tipped as the favourite to succeed last year's winner, Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal.
  
Real Madrid player Ronaldo makes this list again this year with former Manchester United team-mate Wayne Rooney.
  
Four Barcelona players make the final ten - Swede Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Spaniards Andres Iniesta and Xavi and Argentina's Lionel Messi.
  
Former Barcelona player Samuel Eto'o, who moved from the European champions to Inter Milan in the summer, is also among the finalists.
  
Surprisingly Liverpool's Spanish striker Fernando Torres has been left out of the final list.
  
Torres, the scorer of the winning goal for Spain in the 2008 European Championship final, had been expected to figure but finishes in 11th position. His Liverpool team-mate Steven Gerrard is among the finalists.
  
It has been a tough start to the season for Torres, who has suffered niggling injury problems and saw his team eliminated from the Champions League in the group stages.
  

  
Ten finalists:
  
Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast, Chelsea)
  
Samuel Eto'o (Cameroon, FC Barcelona then Inter Milan)
  
Steven Gerrard (England, Liverpool)
  
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden, Inter Milan then FC Barcelona)
  
Andres Iniesta (Spain, FC Barcelona)
  
Kaka (Brazil, AC Milan then Real Madrid)
  
Lionel Messi (Argentina, FC Barcelona)
  
Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal, Manchester United then Real Madrid)
  
Wayne Rooney (England, Manchester United)
  
Xavi (Spain, FC Barcelona)

Date created : 2009-11-29

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