Rio Ferdinand and Gareth Bale make Fifa World XI shortlist

Rio Ferdinand and Gareth Bale have been named in a 55-man shortlist for the Fifa Fifpro World XI 2011external-link, dominated this year by Spain's Primera Liga.

Four other British players - Ashley Cole, John Terry, Frank Lampard and Wayne Rooney - will also hope to be in the final XI, announced on 9 January.

Spain's top league boasts 22 nominees, mainly from Barcelona and Real Madrid.

Nominees were voted on by 50,000 professional footballers belonging to players' unions around the world.

Ferdinand made 32 appearances last season but injuries have limited him to 13 so far this season.

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has said that Ferdinand, now 33, needs to make adjustments to his game to compensate for losing a yard of pace.

Retired former Manchester United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar also made the shortlist alongside 12 others from the Premier League.

Nine of Barcelona's starting XI which beat Manchester United in the Champions League final in May have been chosen - Pedro and Javier Mascherano the only men to miss out - with Madrid boasting 10 inclusions.

Italy's Serie A contributes nine players to the list, four come from Germany's Bundesliga and one each from Russia's Premier League and Brazil's Campeonato.

Last year's Fifa Fifpro World XI comprised: Goalkeeper Iker Casillas; Defenders Maicon, Lúcio, Gerard Piqué and Carles Puyol; Midfielders Wesley Sneijder, Andrés Iniesta and Xavi; Forwards Lionel Messi, David Villa and Cristiano Ronaldo.

The final XI for 2011 will be announced in Zurich along with the winner of the Fifa Ballon d'Or for the best player of 2011external-link, and Fifa Women's World Player of the Year 2011.

The Fifa World Coach of the Year for Men's Football award and the Fifa World Coach of the Year for Women's Football award will also be named.

The Fifa Puskás Award for the best goal of the year, the Fifa Presidential Award and the Fifa Fair Play Award will complete the line-up of awards presented during the gala.

Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Buffon (Italy, Juventus), Iker Casillas (Spain, Real Madrid), Manuel Neuer (Germany, Bayern Munich), Victor Valdes (Spain, Barcelona), Edwin van der Sar (Holland, retired, formerly Manchester United).

Defenders: Eric Abidal (France, Barcelona), Dani Alves (Brazil, Barcelona), Ricardo Carvalho (Portugal, Real Madrid), Ashley Cole (England, Chelsea), Patrice Evra (France, Manchester United), Rio Ferdinand (England, Manchester United), Vincent Kompany (Belgium, Manchester City), Philipp Lahm (Germany, Bayern Munich), Lucio (Brazil, Internazionale), David Luiz (Brazil, Chelsea), Maicon (Brazil, Internazionale), Marcelo (Brazil, Real Madrid), Alessandro Nesta (Italy, AC Milan), Pepe (Portugal, Real Madrid), Gerard Pique (Spain, Barcelona), Carles Puyol (Spain, Barcelona), Sergio Ramos (Spain, Real Madrid), Thiago Silva (Brazil, AC Milan), John Terry (England, Chelsea), Nemanja Vidic (Serbia, Manchester United).

Midfielders: Xabi Alonso (Spain, Real Madrid), Gareth Bale (Wales, Tottenham Hotspur), Sergio Busquets (Spain, Barcelona), Cesc Fabregas (Spain, Barcelona), Andres Iniesta (Spain, Barcelona), Kaka (Brazil, Real Madrid), Frank Lampard (England, Chelsea), Nani (Portugal, Manchester United), Mesut Ozil (Germany, Real Madrid), Andrea Pirlo (Italy, Juventus), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany, Bayern Munich), David Silva (Spain, Manchester City), Wesley Sneijder (Netherlands, Internazionale), Yaya Toure (Ivory Coast, Manchester City), Xavi (Spain, Barcelona).

Forwards: Lionel Messi (Argentina, Barcelona), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal, Real Madrid), Wayne Rooney (England, Manchester Utd), David Villa (Spain, Barcelona), Samuel Eto'o (Cameroon, Anzhi), Sergio Aguero (Argentina, Manchester City), Neymar (Brazil, Santos), Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast, Chelsea), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden, AC Milan), Luis Suarez (Uruguay, Liverpool), Radamel Falcao (Colombia, Atletico Madrid), Edinson Cavani (Uruguay, Napoli), Karim Benzema (France, Real Madrid), Mario Gomez (Germany, Bayern Munich), Robin van Persie (Holland, Arsenal).

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