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02nd Oct 2015

Leaked Ballon d’Or longlist includes some very unlikely names

Surely it can't be real...

Tom Victor

Could we be set to see the first Ballon d’Or winner who plays for QPR? It’s possible, according to an apparent longlist leaked in the Spanish media.

QPR’s former Swindon midfielder Massimo Luongo is among 59 names in contention for football’s elite individual prize, but he’s not the only bizarre inclusion.

Arsenal goalkeeper David Ospina also features on the list, published by Mundo Deportivo – prompting plenty of gallows humour from Gunners supporters after the Colombian’s howler set Olympiakos on their way to a shock Champions League win in midweek.

Luongo and Ospina are among 20 English-based players among the 59, ranging from the sensible (David De Gea and Alexis Sanchez) to the promising (Harry Kane and Memphis Depay) and the amusing (Bournemouth’s Christian Atsu).

Of course, there are plenty of more established names included, with Real Madrid and Barcelona leading the way with seven players each.

Cristiano Ronaldo is chasing his third Ballon d’Or in as many years, but he will face competition from Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Gareth Bale and – of course – Massimo Luongo.

The list in full can be seen below.