Gareth Bale - Real Madrid and Wales
The most expensive player in the world hit the headlines for both his £86m move and his fantastic form for Tottenham that got him there.
Edinson Cavani - Paris St-Germain and Uruguay
The striker joined PSG for £55m after bringing to an end his glittering spell with Napoli, and he has continued his goalscoring prowess with the Ligue 1 champions.
Radamel Falcao - AS Monaco and Colombia
Falcao has already struck eight times since his move to Monaco after impressing with Atletico Madrid.
Eden Hazard - Chelsea and Belgium
The 22-year-old is flourishing under Jose Mourinho, and his first full year in London has seen him make the cut. Expect him to be a mainstay of the shortlist for years to come.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic - Paris St-Germain and Sweden
His arrogance is matched by his brilliance, not to mention his extensive trophy collection to which he added a first Ligue 1 crown this year.
Andres Iniesta - Barcelona and Spain
Many would agree that it wasn't Iniesta's best year - it's always going to be hard to live up to 2010 when he scored the World Cup-winning goal - but he still dazzled defences and helped Barcelona to another La Liga triumph.
Phillip Lahm - Bayern Munich and Germany
Lahm guided his side to Champions League glory, and he is the first of six Bayern Munich players to be named this year.
Robert Lewandowski - Borussia Dortmund and Poland
The Pole has been in hot form for the past three years, and he has shown no signs of letting off this season despite his contract expiring at the end of the season when he is expected to leave the club. He showed Arsenal why he is one of the most sought-after strikers on the world.
Lionel Messi - Barcelona and Argentina
The four-time consecutive winner and current holder of the Ballon d'Or award, Messi would be many people's favourite to make it five in a row. However, he faces the prospect of missing out with the most competitive shortlist named in recent years.
Thomas Müller - Bayern Munich and Germany
The German forward was in rampant form throughout 2013, putting in a number of match-winning performances for both his club and country.
Manuel Neuer - Bayern Munich and Germany While Bayern's attacking exploits have been widely praised, Neuer has established himself as one of the most highly-rated goalkeeper's in the world.
Neymar - Barcelona and Brazil
He finally completed his £48m move to Barcelona from his childhood club Santos in the summer, and he has shot out of the blocks to score four goals and lay on three assists in nine appearances for the Catalans.
Mesut Ozil - Arsenal and Germany
Ozil has reignited the Gunners Premier League chances, but it was his form for Real Madrid - and the fans' desperation at his departure - which shows how good the attacking midfielder has been throughout 2013.
Andrea Pirlo - Juventus and Italy
The 34-year-old just keeps on ticking, and he added his fourth Serie A title this year with Juventus, as well as making the 2013 Confederations Cup Team of the Tournament.
Frankc Ribery - Bayern Munich and France
The winger has had a brilliant year that saw him prosper under Jupp Heynckes in their treble winning season. The Frenchman has continued his fine form under Pep Guardiola, and he also claimed the Uefa Best Player in Europe in the summer.
Arjen Robben - Bayern Munich and Netherlands
Robben has for years come out on the wrong end of a result, but 2013 was finally his year as he scored the winning goal in the Champions League final. He has continued to perform at his best, notching eight goals this season already.
Cristiano Ronaldo - Real Madrid and Portugal
Ronaldo has finished runner-up to Lionel Messi every year since his lone success in 2008, but he has if anything been playing far better than his Ballon d'Or winning year. However, this year he is only the third favourite behind his old Barcelona adversary and Bayern Munich's Ribery.
Bastian Schweinsteiger - Bayern Munich and Germany
The central midfielder won the German player of the year award last season and has already been praised by new manager Pep Guardiola this season, not to mention reached his century of Germany caps despite being just 29-years-old.
Luis Suarez - Liverpool and Uruguay
The controversial striker has been at times mesmerising on the pitch, although his moments of madness continued to haunt him this past year. Nevertheless, he remains one of the most dangerous striker's in the sport, displaying his ability to finish this season with six goals in just five games.
Thiago Silva - Paris St-Germain and Brazil
The central defender was being chased by Barcelona until he signed a new long-term contract with the Parisian club. He was a linchpin in their French title-winning defence, and also helped Brazil to the Confederations Cup.
Yaya Toure - Manchester City and Ivory Coast
The only African player to be nominated, Toure has been considered a slightly surprising inclusion on the shortlist. But his powerful runs from midfield has caused defences across England all sorts of problems, and if he can continue his good form on the European and World stage across the next year, there's no reason why he shouldn't be a more deserving candidate next time round.
Robin van Persie - Manchester United and Netherlands
The Dutch national captain joined United with the aim of winning silverware, and that's exactly what he did as he fired the Red Devils to Premier League success. He hasn't been as threatening during this campaign, but that may be down to the high standards he has maintained over the past few years.
Xavi - Barcelona and Spain
The brilliant Spaniard - like his colleague Andres Iniesta - didn't have the best of years, and defeat in the Confederations Cup final will have heart him. However, he was again was Mr Consistent in Barcelona successful La Liga campaign.
And the managers...
Carlo Ancelotti - Real Madrid/ex-Paris St-Germain
Ancelotti added the Ligue 1 title to his bursting collection of silverware last season, before making the expected switch to replace Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid. His start in Spain hasn't been the worst, but defeat in the first El Clasico of the season will have hurt.
Rafael Benitez - Napoli/ex-Chelsea
Perhaps he should have got more credit for guiding Chelsea to the Europa League title despite never really being wanted at Stamford Bridge, but his selection is just rewards for a job well done. He is now in charge of Napoli, who sit second in the Serie A.
Antonio Conte - Juventus
Conte guided to Juventus to another Italian league title, triumphing by an impressive nine points having completed his four-month ban (reduced from 10 on appeal) in December 2012.
Vicente Del Bosque - Spain
The Spanish national coach has seen his side claim the last World Cup as well as the past two European Championships, so the Confederations Cup defeat to Brazil must go down as a surprise failure. However, Spain have shown during their World Cup qualifying campaign, beating France in Paris along the way.
Sir Alex Ferguson - ex-Manchester United
What more can be said about the legendary Ferguson? Claimed his 13th Premier League title, a feat that no one else comes close to, and went out of the Champions League by the slimmest of defeats to Real Madrid.
Jupp Heynckes - ex-Bayern Munich
He instrumented the 7-0 aggregate defeat of Barcelona, and finished his Bayern career off with a Champions League crown that he has come so close to winning in the years before. Not to mention also claiming the Bundesliga title and the German Cup. Beat that, Pep.
Jurgen Klopp - Borussia Dortmund
The much praised Klopp has built a young, talented and entertaining side at Dortmund that came within a minute of taking the Champions League final into extra time.
Jose Mourinho - ex-Real Madrid/Chelsea
By Mourinho's high standards, it wasn;t a great year. The Real squad was split in half due to a disagreement on his managing methods, and he lost the La Liga crown he had fought hard to wrestle away from Barcelona the year before. However, a return to Chelsea could prove prosperous once again, though he isn't a front-runner for the award this time round.
Luiz Felipe Scolari - Brazil
Not so long ago he was under pressure with questions over his job. But a Confederations Cup triumph in which the Brazilians played some beautiful football has reinstalled confidence in him, and he will have eyes firmly on the 2014 World Cup.
Arsene Wenger - Arsenal
Does fourth-place win you trophies? Well, it could do indeed, although Wenger is quite considerably the outsider for this year's award. A strong start to the current season has put the spring back in the Gunners boss' step, and he could yet go on to claim silverware of one kind or another.