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Liverpool dominate Ballon d’Or shortlist

DUTCH centre back Virgil van Dijk is one of seven Liverpool players on the 30-man shortlist for this year’s Ballon d’Or, with the Champions League winners dominating the nominations for France Football magazine’s prestigious award.

Van Dijk’s club teammates Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Georginio Wijnaldum and Alisson are also on the list, along with Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling, Riyad Mahrez, Kevin de Bruyne, Bernardo Silva and Sergio Aguero.

Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona’s Lionel Messi, who have won the award 10 times between them, are included, but Messi’s former teammate Neymar, who now plays for Paris St Germain, missed out.

Tottenham Hotspur striker Son Heung-min and goalkeeper Hugo Lloris made the cut, but there was no room for their teammate Harry Kane, while Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba was another high-profile omission. – Reuters

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