Spain's La Liga dominated the nominations for FIFA's coveted Ballon d'Or award recognizing the World Player of the Year.
Argentine Lionel Messi, Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo and seven members of Spain's national squad are among the 23 soccer standouts in contention for the award, France Football magazine said Monday.
The Spanish La Liga account for over half of the nominations with 12 Ballon d'Or hopefuls.
Of these 12 nominees, 11 come from Spain's top two clubs, Real Madrid and Barcelona, including Messi, Ronaldo, France's Karim Benzema and Mesut Özil of Germany.
The Spanish contingent comprises Iker Casillas, Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta, Gerard Pique, Sergio Ramos, Xabi Alonso and Xavi Hernandez.
Besides Messi, Latin America is represented by Neymar of Brazil, Colombian striker Radamel Falcao and Sergio "Kun" Agüero, another Argentine.
Five other contenders play for clubs in the English Premier League, among them Manchester City's Mario Balotelli, Robin van Persie - traded over the summer from Arsenal to Manchester United - and Man United stalwart Wayne Rooney.
The three finalists for the 2012 Ballon d'Or will be announced Nov. 29 and the prize will be awarded at a Jan. 7 gala in Zürich.
Just earlier this week, Messi was presented with his second Golden Boot award in recognition for scoring the most goals in Europe's domestic leagues last season.
The 25-year-old Messi scored a Spanish-league record 50 goals for Barcelona, beating fellow Spanish league star Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid by four goals.
Messi dedicated the award to his teammates, saying "it is a prize for scoring goals, but without my teammates I couldn't have scored them."
The Argentina international won his first Golden Boot in 2010 for his 34 goals that helped Barcelona win the league title.
With reporting by EFE & The Associated Press.