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Lewandowski, Benzema Nominated For FIFA’s Best Award

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Robert Lewandowski is in the running to retain his Best FIFA Men’s Player award after he was named Monday on an 11-man shortlist alongside Karim Benzema and Jorginho.

Perennial candidates Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo feature among the nominees, with Neymar, Mohamed Salah and Kylian Mbappe also up for a prize first awarded in 2017.

Erling Haaland, N’Golo Kante and Kevin De Bruyne complete the list of potential winners.

Four Barcelona players are included on the women’s best player shortlist – Alexia Putellas, Jennifer Hermoso, Aitana Bonmati and Caroline Graham Hansen.

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Chelsea, beaten by Barcelona in last season’s Women’s Champions League final, also have four representatives with Sam Kerr, Ji So-yun, Magdalena Eriksson and Pernille Harder.

Lucy Bronze, who took home last year’s award, was nominated with fellow England international Ellen White.

Canada’s Olympic gold medallist Christine Sinclair is in contention too, as is Stina Blackstenius of Sweden.

Thomas Tuchel is a frontrunner for best men’s coach after leading Chelsea to the Champions League title. He faces competition from Roberto Mancini, the mastermind of Italy’s Euro 2020 triumph.

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Other nominees are Hansi Flick, Pep Guardiola, Antonio Conte, Diego Simeone and Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni.

The prizes for the best men’s and women’s player, coach and goalkeeper are voted for by the captains and coaches of all national teams around the world, as well as an online ballot of fans and a select number of journalists.

Voting will run from November 22 to December 10.

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The three finalists in each category will be revealed in early January, with the awards ceremony to be held virtually from FIFA headquarters in Zurich on January 17.

The separate Ballon d’Or award ceremony will be staged in Paris on November 29.

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