By, Kyle Gibson
Four years of waiting (most of us have literally waited every day since Andres Iniesta won the final) is almost over and the World Cup is just two days away! To continue some of the lists I’ve been doing, I wanted to list the guys that I think are the top ten players at this year’s competition. Would you have a different list? Put it in the comments!
Honorable Mention: Michael Bradley, Wayne Rooney, Eden Hazard
10. Thibault Courtois- Belgium
On loan from Chelsea to Atletico Madrid, Courtois was able to shine in recent years and has established himself as what many call the best goalkeeper on earth. To top it all off, Courtois is only 22.
9. Arjen Robben- Netherlands
The Bayern Munich star can score big goals in big moments, really elevating his game. You can’t teach speed, which Robben has in abundance, even at 30. What he taught himself though, that deadly cutback, can break tired defenders late in games.
8. Vincent Kompany- Belgium
The anchor of the Manchester City defense will be tasked to do the same thing in Brazil this summer for a group of upstarts. He’s solid as a rock in defense and when he does make mistakes, he can make up for them with set piece goals.
7. Robin Van Persie- Netherlands
RVP would be higher on this list if his club form had been better for Manchester United this season. Still, Van Persie is a goal machine and will need to score when he wants for his team to advance in a tough group.
6. Phillip Lahm- Germany
Like Kompany, Lahm is the glue that holds a mega-talented team together, I would say Lahm is almost as vital to Germany as Lionel Messi is to Argentina. He can get forward and play in the midfield if required as well, so extra points for versatility.
5. Yaya Toure- Ivory Coast
Probably the most underrated player in World soccer, Yaya Toure is an incredible athlete to be so large. Yaya can make the short and long pass, score and play a deep or attacking position.
4. Luis Suarez- Uruguay
A force that never quits, Luis Suarez is a pint sized battering-ram that terrorizes the goal for 90 minutes. More than that, Suarez is always hungry for goals. In a few years he will be the world’s best player. For now, he’s just the world’s biggest and most talented pest around goal.
Neymar proved he could handle the big stage last summer, when he took the Confederations Cup by storm with four goals and a bevy of star-making plays. Watch him do the exact thing on Thursday.
2. Lionel Messi- Argentina
The best player in the world for the past few years, injury has hobbled Messi slightly this season. Luckily for us fans, he will be healthy for the Cup.
1. Cristiano Ronaldo- Portugal
The Ballon D’or winner is the terror of Group G, even among an amazing amount of star players. The United States most likely needs a tie against Ronaldo’s Portugal to stay alive. Say your prayers, America.
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