Bronze is shortlisted for the women’s award with Lyon team-mates Ada Hegerberg and Amandine Henry.
The Lionesses right-back, 27, and the Netherlands’ Van Dijk, 28, are both in the final three for the first time.
Bronze helped England reach the semi-finals of this summer’s World Cup in France, after winning the Women’s Champions League with Lyon alongside Norwegian striker Hegerberg and French midfielder Henry.
Van Dijk, the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year for 2018-19, was an integral part of the Liverpool side that won the Champions League in June and lifted the Super Cup on Wednesday.
Barcelona and Argentina forward Messi has won UEFA’s individual award three times since 2009, while Ronaldo – of Juventus and Portugal – has been crowned as the continent’s best player four times since 2008.
Hegerberg was the 2016 winner of the women’s award, while Henry has now been nominated four times in five seasons.