The Spanish Liga players Leo Messi (Barcelona), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Radamel Falcao (Atlético Madrid) and Karim Benzema (Real Madrid) are among the 15 forwards nominated for the FIFA FIFPro World XI 2012. The list of attackers doesn't feature a single Spaniard.
Together with these four players, the other candidates in this section are Sergio Agüero (Manchester City), Mario Balotelli (Manchester City), Edinson Cavani (Napoli), Didier Drogba (Shanghai Shenhua), Samuel Eto''o (Anzhi), Mario Gomez (Bayern Munich), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris Saint Germain), Neymar (Santos), Robin van Persie (Manchester United), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) and Luis Suárez (Liverpool).
The lack of any more Spanish-born players leaves the total number nominated for the ideal team at eleven: Iker Casillas, Sergio Ramos, Gerard Piqué, Carles Puyol, Jordi Alba, Xabi Alonso, Xavi Hernández, Andrés Iniesta, Cesc Fábregas, Sergio Busquets and David Silva.
This is the eighth consecutive year that FIFPro, the worldwide professional footballers' body, has organised the award. Since 2009 they've done it in collaboration with FIFA. The team will feature a goalkeeper, four defenders, three midfielders and three forwards, irrespective of the exact position they play in each section.
Internet users can vote for the team on FIFA's website until the 4th January. Last year's FIFA FIFPro World XI was: Casillas, Dani Alves, Nemanja Vidic, Gerard Piqué, Sergio Ramos, Xabi Alonso, Xavi Hernández, Andrés Iniesta, Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney and Lionel Messi.