Mane, Salah are only Africans among nominees for FIFPro World 11

Mesut Ozil Gareth Bale GFX

The list which features two players from Africa, will be whittled down to a list of 11 players voted by nearly 25,000 professional footballers from 65 countries.

With close to 25,000 footballers in 65 countries casting their votes for the final eleven, the Blues' trio will hope to make the final cut - though the competition is intense.

Dejan Lovren and Šime Vrsaljko are among the 20 selected defenders, making the list for the first time, and Croatia national team hero, the recently retired Mario Mandžukić, has returned to the list for the first time since 2013.

The shortlist for goalkeepers and defenders for the FIFPro World XI has been released, and it features Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk.

The final FIFA FIFPro World11 2018 will be announced at The Best FIFA Football Awards in London on Monday 24 September. Surprisingly there is no Gareth Bale, who finished last season at a high level and scored in the Champions League final.

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Liverpool's Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane were the only two African nominees. Messi's club-mate Philippe Coutinho - who left Liverpool in January to join Barcelona for £146m - is also included. An interesting situation if he is named alongside Mo Salah.

Mohamed Salah, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are among the contenders in the reckoning to feature in FIFPro and FIFA's World XI. Their impressive performances means the Spanish La Liga is usually dominant.

Mohamed Salah was nominated to the final list after presenting spectacular performance on both club and global level last season with Liverpool and the Egyptian national team.

He is joined by Liverpool teammate Dejan Lovren and Real Madrid's Sergio Ramos - who lifted Real's third successive Champions League trophy, at the expense of Liverpool - as well as Madrid teammate Marcelo.

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