By Tony Hughes
Dimitri Payet has expressed his pride after being named in the 30-man shortlist for the Ballon D’Or.
The West Ham playmaker has been nominated after an outstanding debut season in the Premier League was followed up by an equally impressive Euro 2016.
Payet spearheaded the Hammers’ against-the-odds seventh place league finish in 2015-16 and was then a key figure for France as they secured the runners-up place in the European Championships.
The 29-year-old revealed his delight at being named among the world’s best players on his personal Instagram account on Monday night.
Payet has not been quite as influential in his second season at West Ham but has still supplied five assists from seven Premier League matches in addition to two goals, including his wonder strike against Middlesbrough.
Here is the full 30-man shortlist for the Ballon d’Or:
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund)
Gareth Bale (Real Madrid)
Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)
Paulo Dybala (Juventus)
Diego Godin (Atlético Madrid)
Antoine Griezmann (Atlético Madrid)
Gonzalo Higuain (Napoli/Juventus)
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (PSG/Manchester United)
Andrés Iniesta (Barcelona)
Koke (Atletico Madrid)
Toni Kroos (Real Madrid)
Robert Lewandowski (Bayern)
Hugo Lloris (Tottenham Hotspur)
Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City)
Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona)
Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich)
Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich)
Dimitri Payet (West Ham United)
Pepe (Real Madrid)
Paul Pogba (Manchester United)
Rui Patricio (Sporting Portugal)
Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)
Luis Suarez (Barcelona)
Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
Arturo Vidal (Bayern Munich)
In other West Ham news, the club are in a three-horse race to sign a Scottish wonderkid.