UEFA names candidates for Team of the Year

European soccer's governing body has released the 55 players shortlisted to potentially line up in the best XI of the past year, which will ultimately be decided by fans
UEFA has announced the 55 candidates in with a chance to feature in the 2011 Team of the Year.

A maximum of five players have been chosen in each position, as the final lineup will be revealed on January 18, 2012. Fans must vote for a single player in each category.

Unsurprisingly, Barcelona leads the way with eight nominees, which include Victor Valdes, Dani Alves, Gerard Pique, Javier Mascherano, Eric Abidal, Andres Iniesta, Xavi, Lionel Messi and coach Pep Guardiola - all whom contributed to the team's league and European success last season.

In addition, young talents such as Borussia Dortmund playmaker Mario Gotze, Basel midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri and Lille attacker Eden Hazard have also been included.

However, Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho, who won the Copa del Rey in the previous campaign, and AC Milan's Massimiliano Allegri, who lifted the Serie A title in 2010-11 have been omitted from the candidates in the coaching category.

The 55 players are as follows:

Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich)
Edwin van der Sar (Retired)
Iker Casillas (Real Madrid)
Victor Valdes (Barcelona)
Joe Hart (Manchester City)

Dani Alves (Barcelona)
Philipp Lahm (Bayern Munich)
Christian Maggio (Napoli)
Darijo Srna (Shakhtar Donetsk)
Maxi Pereira (Benfica)

Gerard Pique (Barcelona)
Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United)
Thiago Silva (AC Milan)
Mats Hummels (Borussia Dortmund)
Sergei Ignashevich (CSKA Moscow)
Benedikt Howedes (Schalke)
Javier Mascherano (Barcelona)
Vincent Kompany (Manchester City)
Rolando (Porto)
Adil Rami (Valencia)

Eric Abidal (Barcelona)
Fabio Coentrao (Real Madrid)
Marcelo (Real Madrid)
Alvaro Pereira (Porto)
Ashley Cole (Chelsea)

Right midfielders:
Xherdan Shaqiri (Basel)
Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich)
Mario Gotze (Borussia Dortmund)
Gervinho (Arsenal)
Nani (Manchester United)

Central midfielders:
Yaya Toure (Manchester City)
Xavi (Barcelona)
Jack Wilshere (Arsenal)
Joao Moutinho (Porto)
Luka Modric (Tottenham)

Attacking midfielders:
Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)
Mesut Ozil (Real Madrid)
David Silva (Manchester City)
Marek Hamsik (Napoli)
Wesley Sneijder (Inter)

Left wingers:

Gareth Bale (Tottenham)
Eden Hazard (Lille)
Angel Di Maria (Real Madrid)
Juan Mata (Valencia)
Ashley Young (Aston Villa)

Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
Radamel Falcao (Atletico Madrid)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
Hulk (Porto)
Javier Hernandez (Manchester United)
Robin van Persie (Arsenal)
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
Mario Gomez (Bayern Munich)
Edinson Cavani (Naples)
Antonio Di Natale (Udinese)

Pep Guardiola (Barcelona)
Andre Villas-Boas (Chelsea)
Jurgen Klopp (Borussia Dortmund)
Alex Ferguson (Manchester United)
Rudi Garcia (Lille)

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