Barcelona forward Messi, 25, has already won the title three times and the Argentine is again favourite to win the prize, which will be presented in Zurich on January 7 after votes from journalists, national team captains and coaches.
If he wins, he would become the first player to win the award four times, having already joined French legend and current UEFA president Michel Platini as the only players to win three straight titles. Dutch stars Johan Cruyff and Marco Van Basten have also won three accolades.
Photos: Kareena Kapoor Khan and Aamir Khan at Mumbai airport
Photos: SRK, wife Gauri, Aishwarya Rai, Shweta Bachchan at Vogue Awards
Photos: Harbhajan Singh-Geeta Basra's TV outing with daughter Hinaya
Photos: Malaika Arora flaunts ripped jeans like a boss!
Photos: Vaani Kapoor, Kriti Sanon, Dia Mirza sizzle on the ramp