- Premier League
Seven Chelsea players on World XI shortlist
Seven Chelsea have been shortlisted for the FIFA/FIFPro World XI 2012 after Frank Lampard and Eden Hazard joined the Blues' back five following the announcement of the midfielders' list, with the strikers' nominations due on Friday.
Following on from the 20-strong defenders' shortlist and five-man goalkeepers' list, the midfielders' shortlist sees Chelsea veteran Lampard rewarded for his performances during the Blues' Champions League and FA Cup double triumph in 2012.
Hazard is the only debutant to be nominated after his fine season with Lille and start to life at Stamford Bridge, joining a 15-strong pool that also features Liverpool and England captain Steven Gerrard.
Unsurprisingly, the shortlist is dominated by members of the Spanish national team on the back of their Euro 2012 triumph.
David Silva joins Man City's team-mates Yaya Toure and Joe Hart among the nominees, while his fellow Spaniards Xavi and Iniesta are selected for the third year in succession. Xabi Alonso, selected alongside the Barcelona duo for the 2011 team, is also shortlisted, as are Sergio Busquets and Cesc Fabregas.
Seven of the 15 players ply their trade in La Liga, while the Premier League has five players, the Bundesliga two and Serie A just one in Andrea Pirlo. Juventus and Italy midfielder Pirlo has been on the shortlist for the FIFA/FIFPro World XI for each of the seven seasons since its inception, with Lampard also able to boast that honour.
John Terry, Ashley Cole, Branislav Ivanovic and David Luiz also feature on the 55-strong list compiled by the World Players' Union, FIFPro and FIFA, with the list of 15 forwards to be announced on November 29.
The final XI will be announced at the FIFA Ballon d'Or gala at the Zurich Kongresshaus on January 7, 2013.
The 15-man midfielders' shortlist for the FIFA/FIFPro World XI 2012:
Xabi Alonso (Spain, Real Madrid), Sergio Busquets (Spain, Barcelona), Cesc Fabregas (Spain, Barcelona), Steven Gerrard (England, Liverpool), Eden Hazard (Belgium, Chelsea), Andres Iniesta (Spain, Barcelona), Frank Lampard (England, Chelsea), Luka Modric (Croatia, Real Madrid), Mesut Ozil (Germany, Real Madrid), Andrea Pirlo (Italy, Juventus), Franck Ribery (France, Bayern Munich), David Silva (Spain, Manchester City), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany, Bayern Munich), Yaya Toure (Ivory Coast, Manchester City), Xavi Hernandez (Spain, Barcelona)