The player with the most points will be awarded the Ballon d'Or, while the player with the most first picks will claim the prize in the event of a tie.
Ronaldo, now at Juventus, won the Champions League for the third season in a row with Madrid, while De Bruyne inspired Manchester City's Premier League and EFL Cup double before a strong World Cup showing.
During the turn of the decade FIFA and Ballon d'Or merged together and was presented as one prestigious award but that association came to an end in 2016.
"We are world champions, we're part of the best team in the world", he told France Football.
England only have one representative on the list in Harry Kane while Gareth Bale is also among the nominees.
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Manchester City's Sergio Aguero and Kevin de Bruyne are contenders while Liverpool's formidable top three Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino were all included.
The names are released in groups of five throughout the day, with the full 30-player shortlist eventually being drawn up ahead of the awards ceremony in Paris on 3 December.
Other nominees are Pernille Harder, Lindsey Horan, Fran Kirby, Sam Kerr, Lieke Martens, Megan Rapinoe and Christine Sinclair.
In another first, the best under-21 player will receive the Kopa Trophy. Kylian Mbappe, the Paris Saint-Germain striker who burst onto the global scene with his performances as France won the World Cup, is the favourite.
What is the Ballon d'Or?