Football genius Lionel Messi will be in attendance for the Globe Soccer Awards in Dubai at the end of this month. The Argentine has been short-listed along with Real Madrid ace Cristiano Ronaldo and Juventus veteran Luigi Buffon and will appear for the first time at the Awards, dubbed the ‘Oscars of Football,’ to be held at the Madinat Jumeirah on December 27.

The sixth edition of the Awards gala, presented by Audi, is being held on the sidelines of the 10th International Dubai Sports Conference organized by the Dubai Sports Council.

And with just over a week until the Awards gala is hosted the names of the candidates have been announced and included in the respective category shortlists. Among the protagonist the representatives of FC Barcelona, led by its President Josep Maria Bartomeu and Lionel Messi, will attend and be celebrated in recognition of their exceptional 2014-2015 season.

The four-time winner of the Ballon d’Or, the only player to have won 4 consecutive editions, is set to conquer the awards in the UAE, following in the footsteps of Cristiano Ronaldo, who is also in the shortlist for the 2015 Award alongside the extraordinary Luigi Buffon, finally considered for what he is, a star among the stars.

This will be Messi’s second visit to the UAE after FC Barcelona had won the Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi in 2009. The European Club Association (ECA) had announced its five worthy candidates for the prestigious award, which has been presented in Dubai since 2010.

The confirmation of agent names, made by the EFAA, was also made known. The referees’ award, which saw the Italian, Nicola Rizzoli, win the inaugural edition, will once again go to one of the referees selected for the respective Champions League finals of the individual federations. The final choices will fall to the Globe Soccer jury, as will the assignment of the Career Awards and the award for Coach of the Year.

Voting is currently underway for the Awards which are decided by the public and among these is the exciting new entry of ‘Award for the best player in the Gulf’, launched in association with Kooora.com, the most popular football website in the Arab world.

Thousands of votes have already been cast where the best three players, out of a field of 66 candidates (11 for each country covering the UAE, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, and the UAE), have been selected.

The UAE’s Omar Abdulrahman and Saudi Arabian duo Mohammed Al Sahlawi and Yasir Alshahrani are the three players. The announcement of the winner and close of voting will take place on the evening of the Awards.

The International Dubai Sports Conference will be held on December 27 and 28… see more

source: Khaleejtimes