The Ballon d'Or winner faces the likes of Usain Bolt, Andy Murray and Mo Farah as he bids to become the first footballer to win the prize.
Cristiano Ronaldo has been named among the nominees for the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year.
The Real Madrid star enjoyed a stellar 12 months, winning both the Champions League and Euro 2016.
His form saw him awarded both the Ballon d'Or and FIFA's 'The Best' award, and he is now up for another prestigious prize.
The award - which is voted for by the world's media - pits the Portuguese up against basketball stars Steph Curry and LeBron James, athletes Usain Bolt and Mo Farah, and Wimbledon champion Andy Murray.
Ronaldo would become the first footballer to win the award since its inception in 2000 having previously been nominated on three occasions.
Both of Ronaldo's teams - Real Madrid and Portugal - have also been nominated for the World Team of the Year prize where they will take on Olympic champions, Br azil.
Other footballing nominees come in the World Breakthrough of the Year category, where Premier League winners Leicester City and the Iceland national team both figure.
The winners of the awards will be announced on February 14 in Monaco.