Messi, Ronaldo, Neymar lead FIFA World XI; Enrique earns coaching honor
Barcelona and Real Madrid players dominated the 2015 FIFPro World XI, which was announced at the Ballon d'Or ceremony in Zurich on Monday.
Barca and Madrid both had four representatives, while Juventus -- which was runner-up in the 2014-15 Champions League -- had one, along with Bundesliga champion Bayern Munich and Ligue 1 winner Paris Saint-Germain.
No current Premier League players made the cut for the award, which is voted for by professional players from all over the world whose national associations are FIFPro or candidate members, with over 45,000 ballots sent out.
El Clasico rivals Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo made the XI for the ninth time in their respective careers, while Andres Iniesta became the outright third-best performer in the award's history by being named to his seventh team.
Manuel Neuer is selected as goalkeeper for the third consecutive year as he keeps his place from the 2014 FIFPro World XI along with Thiago Silva, Sergio Ramos, Iniesta, Messi and Ronaldo.
Barcelona striker Neymar, Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric and Juventus star Paul Pogba are named to the team for the first time, but Barca's Luis Suarez is still waiting for a debut selection, as are Madrid duo Gareth Bale and James Rodriguez.
FIFPro World XI 2015: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Dani Alves (Barcelona), Thiago Silva (Paris Saint-Germain), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona), Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Paul Pogba (Juventus), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Neymar (Barcelona).
Barcelona coach Luis Enrique has been named as the 2015 FIFA World Coach of the Year at Monday’s Ballon d’Or gala in Zurich, seeing off competition from Josep Guardiola and Jorge Sampaoli.
The 45-year-old led Barca to the treble - the second in its history - in his first season in charge, following that success up with the UEFA Super Cup and the Club World Cup.
A two-legged defeat to Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish Super Cup was the only available trophy he missed out on last year.
Spearheaded by an attack of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar, Enrique’s side ended the previous campaign having chalked up a remarkable 50 wins.
However, Enrique was not present in Switzerland to collect the award, although he didn’t reveal why he’d decided not to make the trip with the Catalan club’s traveling party, which featured Lionel Messi, Dani Alves, Andres Iniesta and Neymar.
"No, I will not be at the Ballon d'Or," was his prompt reply when asked if he would attend after Barcelona beat Granada on Saturday.
Guardiola was nominated after leading Bayern Munich to the Bundesliga, while Sampaoli helped Chile win its first-ever Copa America.