African champions Zambia and coach Herve Renard are in the running for another set of prestigious football awards.
Chipolopolo are in the running for the world team of the year while Renard has been nominated for the world coach of the year award.
Just two days ago, Zambia and Renard were announced in the continental short list for the 2012 Glo/Caf awards scheduled for 20 December in Ghana.
In the 30th anniversary of the World Soccer Awards, the reigning kings of African football are in the running against World and European champions Spain, Olympic champions Mexico, European champions Chelsea, Europa League winners Athletico Madrid, South American giants Corithians of Brazil and Borrusia Dortmund of Germany.
Other teams in the running are Italian powerhouses Juventus, French club Montpellier and Chilean side Universidad who won the Sudamericana Cup.
In the coach of the year category, Zambia’s Herve Renard faces competition from Vicente Del Bosque of Spain, Roberto Di Matteo who was recently sacked by Chelsea, Rene Girard of Montpellier, Jurgen Klopp of Borussia Dortmund, “The Special One”Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid, Diego Simeone of Atletico Madrid, Luis Tena who led Mexico under-23s to Olympic gold and Marcelo Bielsa.
The first World Player of the Year award was made in 1982, along with prizes for the World Manager and World Team of the year.
The World Player award is now the longest-running award of its kind in the world game. FIFA’s award, which has now been merged with France Football’s Ballon d’Or, was first given out in 1990.
Paolo Rossi was the first winner of World Soccer’s World Player award in 1982, and he has since been succeeded by an illustrious list of the biggest names in the world game.
Last year Lionel Messi won the award for a second time, having previously triumphed in 2009, and he is now bidding to become only the second man to collect three World Players titles, after Ronaldo (1996, 1997 and 2002).
Fellow two-time winners are Michel Platini (1984 and 1985), Ruud Gullit (1987 and 1989), Marco Van Basten (1988 and 1992) and Ronaldinho (2004 and 2005).
For 30 years, World Soccer readers have decided the winners of our annual poll. The results will be revealed in the World Soccer magazine of January 2013 edition, published in mid-December.