Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo won the 2013 Ballon d'Or awardGetty

Angel Di Maria, Eden Hazard and Diego Costa are in the running to be named the world's best footballer, after the Fifa Ballon d'Or shortlist was announced.

The Premier League trio are joined by Thibaut Courtois and Yaya Toure on the shortlist alongside a list of nominees that includes World Cup, Champions League and domestic league winners.

But the stars representing Manchester United (Di Maria), Chelsea (Hazard, Costa, Courtois) and Manchester City (Toure) will have their work cut out to surpass Cristiano Ronaldo, who is the favourite to win the Ballon d'Or, an accolade he picked up in 2013.

The Real Madrid striker is odds-on with bookies to be crowned the winner, with the nominations dominated by six German World Cup champions.

Former Tottenham Hotspur winger Gareth Bale also made the list after a string of exciting performances for Real Madrid last season.

But one name notable for its absence was that of Barcelona striker Luis Suarez, who, despite picking up the Golden Shoe award for being Europe's joint top goal-scorer with Ronaldo while scoring 31 times for Liverpool, was omitted from the 23-man list.

Joachim Low is tipped to win coach of the year after steering Germany to victory in Brazil but will face stiff competition from Atletico Madrid's Diego Simeone, who broke Real Madrid and Barcelona's La Liga duopoly and almost masterminded a Champions League title before injury time goals handed to prize to city rivals Real.

2014 Ballon d'Or men's player of the year shortlist

Gareth Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema, Lionel Messi, Thibaut Courtois, Eden Hazard, Diego Costa, Angel Di Maria, Yaya Toure, Mario Gotze, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Andres Iniesta, Toni Kroos, Philipp Lahm, Javier Mascherano, Thomas Muller, Manuel Neuer, Neymar, Paul Pogba, Sergio Ramos, Arjen Robben, James Rodriguez, Bastian Schweinsteiger

Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo won the Ballon d'Or in 2013Getty

Cristiano Ronaldo (odds: 1/6 favourite)

The figures speak for themselves: 49 goals in 47 appearances during this calendar year, 12 assists and 11 consecutive games in which he has scored so far this season. Ronaldo is now just one goal behind Madrid legend Raul in Europe's all-time leading goalscorer tally, a record he is all but sure to overhaul this campaign.

Lionel Messi
Will Lionel Messi beat Cristiano Ronaldo to the crown?Getty

Lionel Messi (7/1)

Eyebrows were raised when the Argentine was named the player of the tournament at the World Cup but make no mistake, Messi's name deserves to be on the list. Scoring 45 goals for club and country so far this year, the mercurial forward has also contributed 21 assists for his teammates.

Muller
Thomas Muller was awarded the Silver Boot at the 2014 World CupGetty

Thomas Muller (18/1)

The wiry 25-year-old striker was awarded the Silver Ball and Silver Boot in Brazil and lies just six goals behind his nation's all-time leading World Cup scorer, Miroslav Klose. He might look unorthodox in front of goal but Muller's return of 25 Bundesliga goals helped Bayern Munich and Pep Guardiola to the league title at a canter.

Neuer
Manuel Neuer is rated as one of the best goalkeepers in the worldGetty

Manuel Neuer (25/1)

The commanding Bayern goalkeeper has become the blueprint for "sweeper-keepers" and a Ballon d'Or would make him only the second keeper after Soviet hero Lev Yashin in 1963 to win the award. The 28-year-old won the Golden Glove award at the World Cup and kept 15 clean sheets in 31 league appearances for Bayern.

Lahm
Ex-Germany captain Philipp Lahm lifted the World Cup in BrazilGetty

Philipp Lahm (25/1)

The man Guardiola called the most intelligent player he had ever managed. Lahm captained Germany to their World Cup triumph in the summer and, after being transformed into a central midfielder for Bayern, also romped to the Bundesliga crown. The 30-year-old called it a day for international football in the wake of the victory in Brazil.