Bayern Munich’s trio Robert Lewandowski, Manuel Neuer and Arturo Vidal, as well as Borussia Dortmund’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang have been shortlisted for Best FIFA Awards. Bayern’s Carlo Ancelotti and Germany national team coach Joachim Löw have been nominated for the equivalent coach’s award.
Aubameyang and Lewandowski’s battle for the Torjägerkanone has pushed both world-class strikers to show the best of their abilities in recent seasons. The Gabon captain became only the fourth player in league history to score over 30 goals in a single season, totalling 31 goals in 32 Bundesliga appearances in 2016/17.
Lewandowski was one goal shy of Aubameyang’s record tally, scoring 30 Bundesliga goals for Bayern last season. The Polish powerhouse is arguably the world’s best striker, delivering consistently on an international level, with Poland set to qualify for the World Cup in Russia next year.
Watch: The battle between Aubameyang and Lewandowski resumes!
Neuer, who finished third in the voting for the 2015 FIFA Ballon d’Or award, has been nominated once again following a stellar season with Bayern. The new club captain kept 14 clean sheets as the Bavarian’s powered to a record fifth consecutive Bundesliga title last season.
Since arriving in Munich in 2015, Vidal has become a cornerstone of the Bayern squad with his strength, consistency and leadership on show throughout his two seasons with the club so far. He scored four goals last term in Bayern’s title-winning campaign.
Ancelotti has been nominated for coach's award, meanwhile. A semi-final defeat at UEFA EURO 2016 for Germany seems to have fired-up Löw’s troops in World Cup qualifying, in which they currently top Group C.
And Bundesliga fans can make a difference! 25 per cent of fan votes will contribute to the final award, with voting beginning on 21 August, with a shortlist of three players being announced later in September. The other percentages of the vote are made up from media representatives, coaches and captains.