Shortlist For The FIFA/FIFPro World XI

A 55-man shortlist has been drawn up after collating the votes of 50,000 professional footballers from across the globe and ten members of Spain’s victorious World Cup squad has been included.

The list contains Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney, despite his patchy form since the turn of the year, while Inter striker Diego Milito is shortlisted after his controversial omission from the Ballon d’Or shortlist.

Tottenham Hotspur ace Gareth Bale is also in contention for a place in defence thanks to his brilliant performances for Spurs this season, including two excellent games against Inter in the Champions League.

The final FIFA/FIFPro World XI will be confirmed at FIFA’s Ballon d’Or gala in Zurich on January 10.

Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Buffon (Italy, Juventus), Iker Casillas (Spain, Real Madrid), Petr Cech (Czech Republic, Chelsea), Julio Cesar (Brazil, Inter), Edwin van der Sar (Netherlands, Manchester United).

Defenders: Daniel Alves (Brazil, Barcelona), Gareth Bale (Wales, Tottenham Hotspur), Michel Bastos (Brazil, Lyon), Ashley Cole (England, Chelsea), Patrice Evra (France, Manchester United), Rio Ferdinand (England, Manchester United), Philipp Lahm (Germany, Bayern Munich), Lucio (Brazil, Inter), Maicon (Brazil, Inter), Marcelo (Brazil, Real Madrid), Alessandro Nesta (Italy, Milan), Pepe (Portugal, Real Madrid), Gerard Pique (Spain, Barcelona), Carles Puyol (Spain, Barcelona), Sergio Ramos (Spain, Real Madrid), Walter Samuel (Argentina, Inter), John Terry (England, Chelsea), Thiago Silva (Brazil, Milan), Nemanja Vidic (Serbia, Manchester United), Javier Zanetti (Argentina, Inter)

Midfielders: Esteban Cambiasso (Argentina, Inter), Michael Essien (Ghana, Chelsea), Cesc Fabregas (Spain, Arsenal), Steven Gerrard (England, Liverpool), Andres Iniesta (Spain, Barcelona), Ricardo Kaka (Brazil, Real Madrid), Frank Lampard (England, Chelsea), Javier Mascherano (Argentina, Barcelona), Thomas Muller (Germany, Bayern Munich), Mesut Ozil (Germany, Real Madrid), Andrea Pirlo (Italy, Milan), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany, Bayern Munich), Wesley Sneijder (Netherlands, Inter), Xabi Alonso (Spain, Real Madrid), Xavi (Spain, Barcelona)

Forwards: Dimitar Berbatov (Bulgaria, Manchester United), Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast, Chelsea), Samuel Eto’o (Cameroon, Inter), Diego Forlan (Uruguay, Atletico Madrid), Gonzalo Higuain (Argentina, Real Madrid), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden, Milan), Lionel Messi (Argentina, Barcelona), Diego Milito (Argentina, Inter), Arjen Robben (Netherlands, Bayern Munich), Ronaldinho (Brazil, Milan), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal, Real Madrid), Wayne Rooney (England, Manchester United), Carlos Tevez (Argentina, Manchester City), Fernando Torres (Spain, Liverpool), David Villa (Spain, Barcelona)

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