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Ronaldo, Messi and Ribery in running for Ballon d'Or

The Canadian Press

12/9/2013 9:39:58 AM

ZURICH, Switzerland -- Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Franck Ribery are in the running for the Ballon d'Or.

FIFA announced the shortlist Monday after voting rules changes made Ronaldo the favourite after helping Portugal qualify for the World Cup last month.

FIFA gave voters -- national team captains and coaches, plus selected journalists -- two extra weeks to choose from 23 candidates, and even change preference.

Ronaldo's hat trick against Sweden helped lift his tally to 67 goals for Portugal and Real Madrid in 2013.

Messi, who has won the last four player of the year awards, scored 45 goals for Argentina and Barcelona before being injured.

Ribery was already named Europe's best player for helping Bayern Munich win the Champions League, Bundesliga and German Cup last season.