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Messi, Ronaldo missing from Champions League awards shortlist

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo were both missing from the final shortlist for UEFA’s positional awards next month.

The awards recognise the top performers in each position during the 2019-20 Champions League campaign, with the shortlist comprising of players with the most votes from a special jury.

Both Messi and Ronaldo have always made the final shortlist but this year will see neither man up for the forward’s award.

Predictably, Bayern Munich have dominated proceedings with seven players nominated across the four categories.

Manuel Neuer is up for the best goalkeeper award, along with PSG’s Keylor Navas and Atletico Madrid’s Jan Oblak.

David Alaba, Alphonso Davies and Joshua Kimmich dominated the defender list while Thomas Muller and Liverpool-bound Thiago got nods for best midfielder.

Manchester City star and PFA Player of the Year Kevin De Bruyne is the only Premier League representative on the list but faces stiff competition from the Bayern boys.

Robert Lewandowski is the hot favourite to win the UEFA’s best forward award, while PSG duo Kylian Mbappe and Neymar are also in the running.

The awards were introduced for the 2016-17 campaign, in a bid to acknowledge the best players in Europe’s elite club competition.

A jury, which comprises coaches from the 32 clubs in last season’s group stage and 55 journalists, choose their top three players in each position of goalkeeper, defence, midfield and attack, with five points awarded to their first choice, three for second and one for their third choice.

Coaches were not allowed to vote for players from their own teams.

The winners for each position will be announced at this year’s UEFA Champions League group stage draw in Nyon, Switzerland on October 1.

Man City star Kevin De Bruyne was the only Premier League representative up for an award

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The UEFA Men’s Player of the Year and UEFA Women’s Player of the Year will also be announced at the event.

Last season’s winners saw Alisson pick up the best goalkeeper award while Liverpool team-mate Virgil Van Dijk was nominated as the campaign’s best defender.

Frenkie de Jong was awarded the best midfielder while Messi was picked as the Champions League best forward.

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