FIFA announced the list Friday selected by its technical study group.
Sneijder and Villa have each scored five goals and will go head-to-head in Sunday's final at Johannesburg's Soccer City.
Also nominated were Diego Forlan of Uruguay, Asamoah Gyan of Ghana, Andres Iniesta of Spain, Lionel Messi of Argentina, Mesut Oezil of Germany, Arjen Robben of the Netherlands, Bastian Schweinsteiger of Germany and Xavi Hernandez of Spain.
Media members will vote to determine the tournament's best player after the final, with silver and bronze balls also to be handed out.
Previous winners include Ronaldo of Brazil (1998), Oliver Kahn of Germany (2002) and Zinedine Zidane of France (2006).