France's Kylian Mbappe, center, celebrates after scoring his side's fourth goal during the final match between France and Croatia at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, July 15, 2018. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

Mbappe, Modric on 10-man list for FIFA best player award

July 24, 2018 - 10:14 am

GENEVA (AP) — World Cup stars Kylian Mbappe and Luka Modric will challenge the decade-long dominance of FIFA's best player award by Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

Mbappe, the teenage star of France's World Cup-winning team, and Modric, the Croatia captain who was named the tournament's best player, join five-time winners Ronaldo and Messi among 10 candidates announced by FIFA on Tuesday.

For the first time, FIFA has opened voting within days of the World Cup, and Ronaldo and Messi both exited in the round of 16.

France also has Antoine Griezmann and Raphael Varane, who won a third straight Champions League title alongside Modric and Ronaldo with Real Madrid, on the FIFA list.

Belgium has Kevin De Bruyne and Eden Hazard on a shortlist completed by World Cup golden boot winner Harry Kane of England and Liverpool star Mohamed Salah.

The winners announced in London on Sept. 24 are voted by national coaches and captains, plus media from FIFA's 211 member countries, and fans voting online.

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