The FIFA World Cup 2018 is almost upon us and the anticipation among fans is increasing with every passing second.
The most-awaited event inevitably has numerous things to look forward to. The 32 teams chosen for this edition are highly competitive and every game is expected to be tight and tense.
There will be a lot of talented footballers showcasing their goods and hence, here are 10 players who could set this tournament alight in the next few weeks.
Mohamed Salah (Egypt) – Forward
The Egyptian has been a revelation since his arrival at Liverpool last summer. He dealt with a major setback when his shoulder was injured in the Champions League final. Nevertheless, the 25-year-old is back for his country and raring to perform in Russia.
His tally of 44 goals in 52 appearances for the Merseysiders has helped elevate his status to the top. Plenty will be expected of him and we are sure to see some magic from Salah.
Harry Kane (England) – Striker
A lot is expected from the newly-appointed captain of England. The 24-year old deserves this recognition and is a great choice for leading his motherland in the World Cup. He has been an epitome of consistency over the past few seasons and is now regarded as one of the best strikers in Europe.
Kane scored 41 goals in 48 games last season and that’s a great return for a man who got injured in the latter half of the campaign. With Kane at the helm, England might get to a higher finish than predicted.
Antoine Griezmann (France) – Forward
The Frenchman is at his peak as a striker and is ready to deliver on the big stage. One of Griezmann’s biggest strengths is his ability to play across a variety of positions and that will serve him well in a France side filled with talent.
He scored 29 goals in 49 games last season, which is an impressive record. Expect goals and clever runs of the highest quality from him.
Luka Modric (Croatia) – Central Midfielder
Modric is one of the best central midfielders in the current generation of footballers. This might be the 32-year-old’s last World Cup, meaning he will do everything at his disposal to make his country proud.
Outrageous ball-control and passing abilities are some of his strong suits as a player. Having played for a side like Real Madrid, Modric will be a key player for Croatia.
Neymar Jr (Brazil) – Forward
This guy needs no introduction. Neymar is a Brazilian sensation and he will be looking to make up for lost time from the previous World Cup.
The 26-year old’s impeccable performances speak for itself. Neymar has played over 80 international games already and that’s quite an achievement for a player his age. Brazil are one of the favourites to win this competition and Neymar’s influence would help them to a great extent.
Diego Godin (Uruguay) – Centre-Back
The Uruguayan and Atletico Madrid centre-back is rock-solid. This is his third World Cup appearance and he must strive to lead his tenacious team to something special in Russia.
One of his many admirable qualities is that he is a fighter by heart and soul. He will never give up, regardless of the situation.
The 32-year-old has all the makings of a World Cup-winning centre-back and has shown his worth for a decade now. Furthermore, he can score vital goals from set-pieces and is always helpful.
David de Gea (Spain) – Goalkeeper
David de Gea’s resurgence to becoming one of the best goalkeepers is an inspirational story for any player. His worth at Manchester United is close to infinity and Spain will rely on him to deliver the goods.
The 27-year old is somewhat similar to what Iker Casillas was before the 2010 World Cup. He will be expected to make crucial saves and keep his team ticking.
Kevin de Bruyne (Belgium) – Attacking Midfielder
Kevin de Bruyne’s magical right foot will be in action at the World Cup. After a dream season with Manchester City, the player will aim to replicate the same form in Russia.
The 26-year-old is expected to lead the Belgian charge along with Eden Hazard. His goalscoring skills set him apart and given his creativity, the midfielder can be a deadly force.
Mesut Ozil (Germany) – Forward
Although Mesut Ozil’s club record often fluctuates, his form with Germany almost never wavers. The 29-year-old has been an integral part of the German team since the 2010 World Cup. His creativity and passing abilities will be on display in Russia.
He is a player with plenty of pedigree as far as the World Cup is concerned. The Arsenal man has been consistently been at his best and he will be an important cog in the German wheel this year.
Son Heung-min (South Korea) – Forward
Son Heung-min will be the main man to represent South Korea on the world stage. He has been one of Tottenham Hotspur’s shining lights and the Koreans will depend on him to take them forward.
The Spurs man is undoubtedly in his best form right now and that should enable him to overcome any obstacle in Russia. His propensity to score goals makes him a rounded threat for the opposition.