Group A is viewed as the weakest, and rightly so, with one team, Uruguay, in FIFA’s top 40. It’ll be an uphill battle for any of the qualifiers to make to the quarterfinals. Nevertheless, the group is host to some of the very best around. Who are the top five players from group A?
5. José María Giménez de Vargas (Uruguay)
Beating down the door to be a nailed on starter in the fortress that is Atletico Madrid’s central defense, the 23 year old rising light is a quintessential old school defender who is excellent in a tackle and willing to put himself on the line. It isn’t the prettiest but his effectiveness cannot be disputed. If his passing develops then the man reputed to be the subject of interest by city rivals is a potential star.
4. Edinson Roberto Cavani Gómez (Uruguay)
It’s all Uruguay at this point. El Matador is probably rated higher than he should be, owing to his almost uselessness outside of scoring. But scoring is the main goal and it is the way in which games are decided. One feels he needs an extra chance or two to scored, but when he scores, he scores. If Uruguay are to progress to the round of eight, the veteran will have to bring his brand of physicality and passion to the table to be laid bare. Luis Suarez cannot do it on his own.
3. Diego Roberto Godín Leal (Uruguay)
The best defender in the group, and arguably in La Liga over the last few years, Godin is Diego Simeone’s reign at Atletico summed up in a footballer. Possession light, organisation heavy, and physically unwavering, Uruguay could pull a surprise or two before they bow out. If they are two, Cholo’s best defender will be integral.
2. Mohamed Salah Ghaly (Egypt)
Fans the world over would have had their hearts in their mouths following the suspicious clash between Salah and Sergio Ramos in the Champions league final. A feel good story such as Egypt’s and Mo Salah’s threatened to be derailed at the last moment. After arguably the most impressive individual season in the Premier league era, the Egyptian Pharoah will be wanting to shuttle his name firmly alongside Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as the world’s most acclaimed and loved players in Russia. Let’s hope he gets himself right in time.
1. Luis Alberto Suárez Díaz (Uruguay)
Pipping the man of the moment, Salah, to first place is the class of the group, Luis Suarez, Never one far from controversy, the supremely talented and tricky former Liverpool man has racked up jaw dropping numbers in La Liga. They’ve been overshadowed so much by Messi that it’s easy to forget that his raw league output is the second most impressive since his arrival.