Premier League stars dominate UEFA awards
The shortlist for this year's UEFA European Club Footballer of the Year awards is dominated by Premier League players.
Chelsea, Manchester United and Liverpool all reached the Champions League semi-finals last season, with United overcoming Chelsea on penalties in the Moscow-hosted final.
That is reflected in the shortlist, announced today by UEFA, with 17 players from the 25-strong shortlist currently playing in England's top flight.
Last year's Champions League top scorer Cristiano Ronaldo, Liverpool's Fernando Torres and Chelsea's Frank Lampard will all be leading contenders for the award. Barcelona's Lionel Messi and Carles Puyol are also in contention.
The coaches of the 16 teams which reached the knock-out stages of last year's competition will cast their votes next Thursday, at the Champions League group stage draw in Monaco.
There are also awards for goalkeeper, defender, midfielder and forward of the year.
The list of nominees, from which the overall winner will be selected, is:
UEFA club goalkeeper of the year: Manuel Almunia (Arsenal), Petr Cech (Chelsea), Manuel Neuer (FC Schalke 04), Jose Reina (Liverpool), Edwin van der Sar (Manchester United).
UEFA club defender of the year: Jamie Carragher (Liverpool), Rio Ferdinand (Manchester United), Carles Puyol (Barcelona), John Terry (Chelsea), Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United).
UEFA club midfielder of the year: Michael Essien (Chelsea), Cesc Fabregas (Arsenal), Steven Gerrard (Liverpool), Frank Lampard (Chelsea), Paul Scholes (Manchester United).
UEFA club forward of the year: Didier Drogba (Chelsea), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Fernando Torres (Liverpool).