The Ballon d’Or shortlist for 2015 has been announced (via the BBC), and Alexis Sanchez has unsurprisingly made the cut. He’s the only Arsenal star on the list, and is alongside the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero, and Eden Hazard.
The 23 man shortlist really is the best of the best, and there are very few surprises – as there was with the 59 man longlist. David Ospina was one of the more questionable names on the longlist, but he has understandably been cut.
Alexis has been absolutely superb since he arrived at the club, and was our top scorer last season. He was somewhat jaded at the start of the new campaign after an action packed summer with Chile, but he’s been back to his best in recent weeks.
He’d do extremely well to clinch the award ahead of Ronaldo or one of the many Bayern Munich stars included in the list, but if he continues performing the way he has been recently then you never know.
A deciding factor in the Ballon d’Or is trophies won as well as individual performances, so that obviously puts the South American star at a bit of a disadvantage – although the FA Cup and Copa America are at least something.
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It also means Arsene Wenger is unlikely to clinch the manager’s award, in which he is one of the ten finalists.