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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Ronaldo, Messi, Neymar, Luis Suarez, Harry Kane on 30-man Ballon d'Or list

Craig Burley and Alexis Nunes run through this week's player power rankings, which see Neymar and Leo Messi top the list.
Cristiano Ronaldo has spoken of his pride at seeing a full Bernabeu when he joined Real Madrid in 2009.
Cristiano Ronaldo jokes that he'll follow in the footsteps of former teammate Rio Ferdinand and take up boxing.

Cristiano Ronaldo will be the favourite to retain his Ballon d'Or as he was named to the 30-man shortlist alongside the likes of Lionel Messi, Neymar, Luis Suarez, Harry Kane and Robert Lewandowski.

Ronaldo, who beat Messi and Griezmann to the award last year, helped Real Madrid to a third Champions League crown in four seasons and a first La Liga title in five years, as well as the FIFA Club World Cup.

He scored twice as Madrid beat Juventus 4-1 in the Champions League final, while also finishing top scorer in the competition with 12 goals, and was one of the final names revealed by award organisers France Football on Monday.

Ronaldo is set to face competition competition from long-time rival Messi, who finished up as La Liga's top scorer with 37 goals -- 12 ahead of Ronaldo -- and helped Barcelona to Copa del Rey success in what was a largely disappointing season for the club.

Spain's La Liga leads all leagues with 11 nominees, followed by the Premier League with seven, Serie A with five, Ligue 1 with four and the Bundesliga with three.

Real Madrid have by far the most players on the list with seven -- Ronaldo, Luka Modric, Marcelo, Sergio Ramos, Toni Kroos, Karim Benzema and Isco. 

PSG are the only other club with at least three, with Neymar, Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe. Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Juventus, and Liverpool all have two players on the list.

France lead all countries with four players, ahead of Belgium, Brazil, and Spain with three each.

Paris Saint-Germain and Brazil forward Neymar was one of the first five names revealed from the shortlist, along with Real Madrid duo Modric and Marcelo, Juventus forward Paulo Dybala and Chelsea midfielder N'Golo Kante.

Barca and Uruguay striker Suarez, Madrid defender Ramos, Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho, Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak and Napoli forward Dries Mertens were named in the second phase of the announcement, followed by Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne, Tottenham's Kane, Bayern Munich's Lewandowski, Manchester United's David De Gea and Roma's Edin Dzeko.

Neymar, who left Barcelona to join PSG this summer in a world-record move, came third in the voting in 2015 and was fifth last year, while Suarez has yet to make it into the final three-man selection.

Griezmann was named in the fourth round of players along with Bayern's Toni Kroos, Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, Liverpool's Sadio Mane and Monaco's Radamel Falcao, before Messi was announced with Dortmund's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, PSG's Cavani, Bayern's Mats Hummels and Madrid's Karim Benzema.

Ronaldo's name finally came up in the last group of names, alongside Madrid teammate Isco, Chelsea's Eden Hazard, AC Milan's Leonardo Bonucci, and PSG's Mbappe.

Among those missing out on being nominated were Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez and Juventus' Gonzalo Higuain.

Ballon d'Or 2017 nominees:

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund), Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Leonardo Bonucci (AC Milan), Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Edinson Cavani (PSG), Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), David De Gea (Manchester United), Paulo Dybala (Juventus), Edin Dzeko (Roma), Radamel Falcao (Monaco), Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Mats Hummels (Bayern Munich), Isco (Real Madrid), Harry Kane (Tottenham), N'Golo Kante (Chelsea), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich), Sadio Mane (Liverpool), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Kylian Mbappe (PSG), Dries Mertens (Napoli), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Jan Oblak (Atletico Madrid), Neymar (PSG), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Luis Suarez (Barcelona)

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