Dutch women’s international footballer Lieke Martens is among the contenders for the Golden Ball award for the best player of the year.
Sports magazine France Football has been running the equivalent award for men since 1956, but this year categories have been added for the best female and the best young male players.
The 25-year-old Barcelona striker was the linchpin of the team that won the European Championship title last year, when she was named player of the tournament and went on to be crowned UEFA and FIFA’s player of the year.
There are no Dutch players on the 30-strong shortlist for the men’s award, which has been won for the last 10 years by either Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo. Both are once again in contention this year.
Justin Kluivert, who moved from Ajax to AS Roma in the summer, is one of the 10 nominees for the best young player award, for which France’s Kylian Mbappé is the overwhelming favourite.
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