Adele and Beyonce
Adele and Beyonce are in close competition with each other at the MTV VMAs 2016 Christopher Polk/Getty Images

It looks set to be a Beyonce affair at the MTV Video Music Awards 2016 as the superstar leads the way with 11 nominations. The world of pop stood to attention when Queen Bey premiered her Lemonade visual album in April but Adele also has a powerful hold on the music industry. The Hello singer made a tremendous comeback with her third album, 25, and follows Beyonce with eight nominations.

Which diva will claim the most coveted moonmen at this year's MTV VMAs?

Beyonce, 34, raised and set the bar with Lemonade. Consisting of 12 songs, the album documents the emotional journey of a woman scorned after her husband cheated with 'Becky'. The husband in question is assumed to be Jay Z and the identity of Becky is still anyone's guess. What really blew minds though were the impeccably-shot music videos, fused together to form the hour-long Lemonade film, which premiered on HBO.

Stunning imagery of New Orleans culture, slick choreography and Beyonce reciting spoken word were a huge gust of fresh air. The majority of Beyonce's VMA nominations are for Formation, the pro Black Lives Matter anthem which celebrates African-American heritage.

With five nods, Formation has received the most nominations out of all the Beyonce singles that have been recognised. The Mike Will Made It-produced track celebrates African-American heritage and drew even more attention to the Black Lives Matter campaign. It also became the subject of a police protest with authorities claiming the Destiny's Child star was promoting the Black Panther activist movement.

Formation ultimately took on a life of its own and there is no denying the music video's brilliance. The visuals were directed by Melina Matsoukas who also worked her magic on Beyonce's Sweet Dreams, Upgrade U and Pretty Hurt videos to name just a few. Most notably, Formation has been nominated for video of the year where it will compete with Adele's hit single Hello.

The ballad's black and white visuals, directed by Xavier Dolan, stars 90210 actor Tristan Wilds as Adele's ex-boyfriend. It has somewhat of a personal feel with Dolan opting for a handheld camera style of shooting for depicting the happiest moments of their relationship. The video became the subject of viral memes with many famously mocking Adele's use of a flip phone in 2016. Hello dominated the charts and airwaves for several months around the world but can it confidently trump the strong message of Beyonce's Formation?

Rihanna and Drake
Rihanna and Drake stand a good chance of beating their main competitors at the MTV VMAs with Work Roc Nation

Adele is just as much a superstar as Beyonce, if not more based on chart sales, but in relation to the VMAs, it boils down to 'the voice' vs. 'the visual' artist.

With both singers promoting two major releases within the same year, it was inevitable that they would be pitted against each other at the VMAs and forthcoming Grammys 2017. However, OneRepublic frontman Ryan Tedder, who has worked with both Beyonce and Adele in the past, recently told IBTimes UK that there should be no competition.

The prolific songwriter told critics: "Stop being b*****s. Stop creating controversy when there's no controversy. They're both amazing they're both completely different. I hate that s**t. Screw the b*****s that start those wars."

Watch Beyonce's Formation music video:

At the moment, it very much looks as though the divas are the VMAs frontrunners but could a VMA underdog sweep the victory from under their feet? Drake has also received a nod in the video of the year category with his much-talked-about Hotline Bling video. The One Dance rapper is up against Beyonce and Kendrick Lamar in the collaboration category but he has a good chance of winning the title thanks to his Work clip alongside Rihanna.

Drake, 29, faces both Beyonce and Adele in the art direction category but even the late David Bowie could take that accolade with his Blackstar videos. Plus, Rihanna could possibly triumph over Adele and Rihanna in the female category.

One person left completely out of the race this year is Taylor Swift whose Wildest Dreams, New Romantics and Out Of The Woods visuals were completely snubbed. That just leaves the rest of pop's fiercest ladies to compete for the moonmen. Let the friendly battle commence.

The MTV Video Music Awards 2016 will take place at New York City's Madison Square Garden on 28 August.

Watch Adele's Hello music video:

MTV Video Music Awards 2016 nominations

Video of the year

Beyonce – Formation

Adele – Hello

Justin Bieber – Sorry

Drake – Hotline Bling

Kanye West – Famous

Best female video

Adele – Hello

Beyonce – Hold Up

Sia – Cheap Thrills

Ariana Grande – Into You

Rihanna ft. Drake – Work

Best male video

Drake – Hotline Bling

Bryson Tiller – Don't

Calvin Harris ft. Rihanna – This Is What You Came For

Kanye West – Famous

The Weeknd – Can't Feel My Face

Best collaboration

Beyoncé ft. Kendrick Lamar – Freedom

Fifth Harmony ft. Ty Dolla $ign – Work From Home

Ariana Grande ft. Lil Wayne – Let Me Love You

Calvin Harris ft. Rihanna – This Is What You Came For

Rihanna ft. Drake – Work (short version)

Best hip hop video

Drake – Hotline Bling

Desiigner – Panda

Bryson Tiller – Don't

Chance The Rapper ft. Saba – Angels

2 Chainz – Watch Out

Best new artist

Bryson Tiller


Zara Larsson

Lukas Graham