Lionel Messi scored twice and set up the winning goal as Barcelona started the season in dramatic style by beating Sevilla 5-4 after extra time to lift the UEFA Super Cup yesterday (Macau time). But he simply held his hands to his head in shock at the elastic, electric genius that brought Messi his slalom-goal against Athletic Club’s massed defenders.
The candidates for the individual award came from UEFA’s 54 members associations, who each listed their five best-ranked players, according to UEFA’s official website.
Ronaldo won the award last year while Messi topped the list in 2011.
Ronaldo won 2013-14’s award and led La Liga in goals in 2014-15, scoring an incredible 48, per UEFA’s report.
As for Ronaldo, the Portuguese star failed to raise any trophies with Real Madrid.
The victor will be determined by votes during the 2015-16 Champions League group stage draw in Monaco on 27 August.
He is up against Barca teammate Suarez who was also a key contributor to his club’s success – notably in the second half of the season following his return from his biting ban.
The Uruguay forward scored the final goal in Barcelona’s 3-1 win over Juventus in the Champions League final.
Behind the top three, Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon was fourth, Barca’s Brazil forward Neymar fifth and Eden Hazard of Chelsea sixth.
Messi and Suarez, meanwhile, formed a fearsome attacking partnership with Neymar that helped inspire Barcelona to the treble in Luis Enrique’s first season in charge.