1 Day To Go: No Kane And Iniesta…Our Picks In World Cup XI

De Gea, Marcelo, Neymar, Lukaku and Messi make our World Cup XI

Neymar in action | Getty


The FIFA World Cup gets underway tomorrow (Thursday, 14th of June)! It is the most spectacular football fiesta on planet! And everybody can’t wait!

Top Media Nigeria have been taking a closer look at different memories and statistics from the history of the tournament each day. Today, ahead of the commencement of the tournament – even before a ball is kicked – we select the best XI!

Our projection see us pick players in different positions; players we feel would lit up football’s biggest party in Russia.

We choose the best eleven players to emerge from Russia.

GK: David de Gea

RB: Kyle Walker

CB: Sergio Ramos

CB: Raphael Varane

LB: Marcelo

DM: Casemiro

CM: Isco

LW: Cristiano Ronaldo

RW: Neymar Júnior

SS: Lionel Messi

FW: Romelu Lukaku

Like he has had a huge impact with Manchester United in the 2017/2018 season, De Gea should sustain that form to the mundial. For ‘Dave Saves’, there is no question of character; no question of ability; no question of status! With a successful team outing in Russia, De Gea will not only win the Golden Glove Award, but will also be crowned the Best FIFA goalkeeper. Up until now, no one comes near him!

Varane has enjoyed a sensational season. He was a key figure in Real Madrid’s European triumph and was ever-present in the key moments of the club’s season. Notably, Los Blancos match against Juventus in Turin was where the Frenchman put in arguably his best performance in the 2017/2018 season. He was solid that night!

A centre-back combination of Varane and Samuel Umtiti is not bad. Together, the pair should thrive in Russia.

Marcelo and Ramos are perched with the best in the world; they are in the best footballing nations on earth; they have performed ideally for club in the 2017/2018 season, they should stake claim to their position in the 21st FIFA World Cup.

England right-back, Walker can be one of the revelations of the World Cup – if Gareth Southgate plays him in his favourite #2 position. The City man is quick and very cunning going forward.

In a top-heavy 4-4-2 formation that allows plenty of widths, we opt for Real Madrid duo Casemiro [Brazil] and Isco [Spain], with Luka Modric [Croatia] and Andres Iniesta [Spain] not considered.

Seleção have a great team, and are the favourites for the cup. They have looked head and shoulders above every other team since Tite took over. Casemiro should have a good tournament in the team helmed by Neymar

Up top, Belgium’s all-time top scorer, Lukaku, is given the nod, to be supported by Argentina superstar, Messi. On the flanks, there is a blend of goal-scoring touch and flair, with reigning world’s best, Ronaldo [Portugal] and Neymar [Brazil] out wide.

Down the middle, prolific Harry Kane or Luis Suárez should have come instead of Lukaku. It is close between Kane and Lukaku, while Suárez’s Uruguay maybe lack real quality in midfield that can see the lethal Barcelona man flourish.

Question is: In Russia, can Rodrigo Bentancur continue from where he stopped in the last few rounds of World Cup qualification and help Suárez gel?

Lukaku boasts of an impressive goalscoring record for The Belgian Red Devils. It will be no surprise if they make it to the FIFA World Cup final, as this golden generation of the team is stocked with enviable talents. Lukaku, 24, is a massive goal threat to any team, anytime anyday!

Top Media Nigeria XI : David De Gea, Kyle Walker, Sergio Ramos, Raphael Varane, Marcelo, Casemiro, Isco, Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar, Romelu Lukaku, Lionel Messi


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