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Cristiano, Messi and Buffon up for UEFA Player of the Year award

Modric, Kroos and Sergio Ramos are in fourth, fifth and seventh place respectively The winner will be announced on 24 August.

Los tres finalistas para la UEFA.

This afternoon UEFA announced the three finalists who are up for the Best Player in Europe Award which will be handed to one of the three candidates: Cristiano Ronaldo, Leo Messi or Gianluigi Buffon at the Champions League group stage draw gala in Monaco on 24 August.

Modric, Kroos and Ramos in the top 10

Among the top 10 in UEFA's list for the award are Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Sergio Ramos, in fourth, fifth and seventh respectively. Completing the list are Dybala, in sixth, Mbappé in eighth, Lewandowski in ninth and Ibrahimovic at number 10:

4: Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
5: Toni Kroos (Real Madrid)
6: Paulo Dybala (Juventus)
7: Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)
8: Kylian Mbappé (Monaco)
9: Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)
10: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Manchester United

The shortlist of 10 finalists was drawn up after votes were cast by 80 coaches (who are not allowed to vote for players from their own clubs) that took part in the 2016/17 Champions League and Europa League group phases as well as 55 journalists selected by European Sports Media (ESM) - each one represented each of the federations under UEFA's governance. 

Criteria for winning the award include sporting achievements at national, European and international levels. 

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Cristiano's case for the UEFA Player of the Year award

Last season, Cristiano Ronaldo's credentials include winning LaLiga, the Champions League, UEFA Super Cup and finishing as the top scorer in the Champions League, including two goals in the final.

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Messi, Europe's top scorer

As for, Leo Messi he won the Spanish Supercup and the Copa del Rey with Barcelona, as well as collecting the Golden Shoe award for a fourth time for his 37 league goals - the most to be scored in any European league.

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Laurence GriffithsGetty Images

A brilliant season for Juve's leader Buffon

Buffon picked up the Coppa Italia and Serie A with Juventus - winning the league for the fifth season running. He was also one of the outstanding performers in last season's Champions League playing a key role in Juve's European campaign.

Cristiano and Messi have won the UEFA award twice each since it was created in 2011. Messi won it in 2011 and 2015, while Cristiano won it in 2014 and 2016. In 2012 and 2013, the trophy went to Andrés Iniesta and Franck Ribéry respectively.

Other awards to be given out at the UEFA gala

During the gala, awards will also go to the best players in the following categories:

Candidates for the best goalkeeper: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Jan Oblak (Atlético de Madrid).

Candidates for the best defender: Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus – now AC Milan), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid).

Candidates for the best midfielder: Casemiro (Real Madrid), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Luka Modric (Real Madrid).

Candidates for the best forward: Paulo Dybala (Juventus), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid).

Another prize will go to the best player in last season's Europa League with Manchester United trio Zlatan Ibrahimović, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Paul Pogba, the nominees.

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