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The ex-England international thinks it will be hard for the Bayern Munich and France winger to surpass Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in the voting

Former Real Madrid, Manchester United and Liverpool striker Michael Owen believes Franck Ribery’s chances of winning the Ballon d’Or this year are slim.

The Bayern Munich star is being heavily tipped to win the individual award for 2013 after helping his side to an historic treble last season and picking up Uefa's Best Player in Europe award.

However, Owen thinks the honour is still likely to go to one of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, as he feels they remain the two best players on the planet.

The retired 33-year-old, who beat Raul to the award in 2001, told Fifa’s official website: “There are so many good players, but the two players who always come to the top of your list are Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

“In my opinion they are by far the best two players in the world right now.

“Then there are some other players who have had some great success with their teams; Bayern Munich obviously spring to mind as one of the most successful teams over the last year, winning the Champions League and domestically winning the league and cup.

“So players like Franck Ribery are in with a shout, but I certainly think Messi and Ronaldo are the best two players. They've consistently been very good and I would think it will be one of those two.”

This year’s Ballon d’Or winner will be announced on January 13 after the final 23-man shortlist - which included Messi, Ribery and Ronaldo - was announced last week.

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