Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Franck Ribery will contest the title of Best Player in Europe when journalists across the continent cast their vote on August 29 in Monaco, UEFA said Tuesday.
The three emerged on the shortlist after a second preliminary vote whittled down an interim 10-strong list.
UEFA president Michel Platini began the initiative two years ago in partnership with the European Sports Media (ESM) group with Messi and his Barcelona teammate Andres Iniesta winning the first two editions.
In Monaco the journalists will vote live, via an electronic system, for their best player from the shortlist. Positions four to ten are already fixed after each journalist provided a list of their top five players, with the first receiving five points, the second four points and so on:
4 Arjen Robben (NED) – FC Bayern MUnchen (57 points)
5 Robert Lewandowski (POL) – Borussia Dortmund (39)
6 Thomas Müller (GER) – FC Bayern München (38)
7 Bastian Schweinsteiger (GER) – FC Bayern München (32)
8 Gareth Bale (WAL) – Tottenham Hotspur FC (24)
9 Zlatan Ibrahimovi (SWE) – Paris Saint-Germain FC (14)
10 Robin van Persie (NED) – Manchester United FC (10)