Ronaldo, Bale among first nominees for Ballon d'Or

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Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo have been named among the first nominees for this year's Ballon d'Or.

The Real Madrid duo join Sergio Aguero, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Gianluigi Buffon as the first names to be revealed on the 30-man shortlist.

The overall list of names put forward for the prize is being announced in five-man groups in alphabetical order throughout Monday.

The Ballon d'Or and the FIFA World Player of the Year awards merged in 2010 to become the FIFA Ballon d'Or, but that partnership came to an end this year, allowing both prizes to return to their original formats.