Newly-crowned European Footballer of the Year Fabio Cannavaro of Italy, Brazil's Ronaldinho and retired French playmaker Zinedine Zidane have been shortlisted for the FIFA World Player of the Year award.
FIFA said on Wednesday the three were nominated after a poll of coaches and captains of national teams around the world whittled down the number on the shortlist from 30 contenders.
The winner will be named on December18 when the World Player Gala is held at Zurich's opera house with "Football meets Mozart" as its theme to commemorate this year's 250th anniversary of the birth of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
The gala will also see the presentation of a number of other awards.
In addition to the FIFA Presidential Award and the FIFA Fair Play Prize, the outstanding performers in this summer's World Cup will also be honoured.
The tournament's three best players -- Zidane, Cannavaro and Andrea Pirlo, and three top scorers -- Miroslav Klose, Hernan Crespo and Ronaldo -- will be presented with awards as will the outstanding goalkeeper (Gianluigi Buffon) and the two teams with the best disciplinary records: Brazil and Spain.
The three contenders for the Women's award are Kristine Lilly of the United States, Renate Lingor of Germany and Marta of Brazil. They have been selected from a shortlist of 20.