Ronaldo, Messi, Neuer Nominated for FIFA Golden Ball Award: Source

© Sputnik / Alexey Filippov / Go to the mediabankGermany's Manuel Neuer during a semifinal game between Brazil and Germany at the Mineirao stadium in Belo Horizonte.
Germany's Manuel Neuer during a semifinal game between Brazil and Germany at the Mineirao stadium in Belo Horizonte. - Sputnik International
The winner will be chosen on January 12, 2015, during a ceremony in Zurich, Switzerland.

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MOSCOW, December 1 (Sputnik) — Spanish FC Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo, FC Barcelona forward Lionel Messi, and German FC Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer have been nominated for the most prestigious football award — the FIFA Golden Ball (Ballon d’Or), a source in the award’s organizing committee told RIA Novosti on Monday.

The winner will be chosen on January 12, 2015 during a ceremony in Switzerland's Zurich.

Ronaldo won the Golden Ball last year, while Messi received the prize for three years running prior to that.

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Earlier, FIFA President Joseph "Sepp" Blatter told RIA Novosti that he considers Manuel Neuer, who won the FIFA World Cup 2014 with the German national team, the best football player of the year.

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In the World Cup Final, the German national team beat Argentina 1-0, and Neuer’s performance in many respects contributed to the team’s success. However, many argue that Lionel Messi, who played for the losing side, is the one who deserves the Golden Ball award for his invariable outstanding performance.

Playing for Real Madrid, Cristinano Ronaldo won the UEFA Champions League-2014.

The FIFA Golden Ball is awarded annually to the male football player who has performed the best during the previous year. The final choice is based on the votes of coaches, captains of international teams and journalists from around the world.

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