Who Could Be the Best Player at the 2014 World Cup?
There are several men capable of greatness at this World Cup, and it would be an incredible site to see. The only time someone single-“handedly” stole the show was at the World Cup of 1986 when Diego Maradona strolled past 6 English players to score just moments after hand-balling a ball into the net! He sealed the deal with a championship trophy, and was forever cemented as a soccer legend. So looking ahead to our current potential mega-stars in Brazil, here are 5 players capable of becoming World Cup heroes:
1. Lionel Messi – What better place to start than the player who is heir to the Maradona throne? People say Messi had a down year, yet he scored 41 goals in 46 matches this season! He did this despite sustaining rough injuries at key moments in the season. He is quick, nimble, and difficult to tackle. He has an artist’s vision for passes and a great instinct to penetrate and shoot well. On his day, Messi can be simply mesmerizing to watch, and could definitely win it all!
2. Cristiano Ronaldo – He is Messi’s main rival, both for the world’s best player claim and for the shirts they wear in Spain. But Ronaldo currently has the upper hand for the recent UEFA Champions League victory last month. He has showcased his skills in the biggest of matches, netting a Champions League record 17 goals this year! He surely could do the same in Brazil, where the people speak Portuguese?
3. Neymar – The young Brazilian striker sensation was a boom at the 2013 Confederations Cup, but was a bit of a bust at Barcelona, where he managed to score just 9 goals all year. At 22 he is still very young and struggled as most players do at new clubs in a new country. In front of the vibrant Brazilian fans, adoring his every touch on the ball? Well if last summer gave us any inkling, then we are in for a show! He can absolutely abuse defenders with slinky tricks, and can power them in from anywhere in front of goal.
4. Luis Suarez – The Uruguayan star scored 31 times in 37 games for Liverpool last season and is really hitting his stride at the age of 27. He has a feisty temper and a dark history (see the handball in 2010!), but Suarez has made mincemeat of Premier League defenses all year and fights as hard as anyone on the pitch. He can go the distance if he can recover last minute from a minor knee injury.
5. Mario Balotelli – Every now and then you witness a moment of brilliance from this Italian superstar. I queue the footage of the EURO 2012 Semifinal display against Germany and his two special goals as evidence. His problem lies within his head, and his tendency to pout and make red-card challenges. Fortunately for him, Italy has one of the most suffocating defenses in the world and can aid him in his quest. Always one for the spectacular, Balotelli is a player to watch who could take on the world!