Dutch soccer player Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool holds the award of men's player of the year 2018/19 during the group stage draw at the Grimaldi Forum, in Monaco, Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole)

Van Dijk, Ronaldo, Messi finalists for FIFA player award

September 02, 2019 - 7:03 am

MILAN (AP) — Netherlands defender Virgil van Dijk has joined five-time winners Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi as the three finalists for the FIFA best player award. United States forward Megan Rapinoe is the favorite for the women's award.

The announcement of the final three in each category — including best coach and best goalkeeper — was made Monday at the San Siro. The winners will be announced in Milan on Sept. 23.

Luka Modric, who won the award last year after leading Croatia to the World Cup final, did not make the 10-man shortlist.

Van Dijk joined Ronaldo and Messi after helping Liverpool win the Champions League title in June.

Rapinoe is competing against World Cup-winning teammate Alex Morgan and England forward Lucy Bronze.

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