This Thursday the World Cup starts! After four years of wait, the greatest football tournament is back and a month of incredible football is upon us. Here, we are taking a look at the 11 players Manchester United will have at this World Cup, how they could fare and what should be their roles in their national teams.
England – The Quartet
Manchester United will have four players representing England. Marcus Rashford, Jesse Lingard, Phil Jones and Ashley Young are part of the 23-man squad and two of them are expected to have bigger roles than others. Jesse Lingard could be amongst the starters against Tunisia, playing in central midfield as part of 3-5-2 formation, with Ashley Young rumoured to be starting on the left flank ahead of Danny Rose. Rashford could also start alongside Harry Kane after some great performances, while Phil Jones will be the backup for whoever starts in the back three.
Argentina – Marcos Rojo
Marcos Rojo will be one of the more experienced guys in Argentina’s squad. He was part of the 2014 side that lost in the final to Germany and he will have a big role this time around as well. Too bad that Sergio Romero got injured, as the goalkeeper was one of the most important and most consistent parts of that team.
France – Paul Pogba
Paul Pogba will be expected to lead France to glory. The midfielder did not have his best season at Man United, but France are one of the favourites at the World Cup. They could also have an easier draw after the group stages and Pogba is duly expected to shine bright at the biggest stage. Anthony Martial is not part of the final squad.
Spain – David De Gea
David De Gea is always expected to be at the highest level possible and Spain could really use that now. Julen Lopetegui got fired just 48 hours before Spain’s opening match against Portugal after it was announced that he already decided to take on Real Madrid job after the tournament. Now De Gea will have to be one of the calming factors in this strong side that could be well shaken up.
Sweden – Victor Lindelof
Sweden already made a big result by qualifying at the expense of Italy and Victor Lindelöf will now have the chance to prove to everyone why Mourinho signed him last summer. In a group of Germany, Korea Republic and Mexico, Sweden can definitely fight for the second place.
Belgium – The Duo
Romelu Lukaku and Marouane Fellaini are part of Belgium’s squad. The striker will be expected to start banging goals right away, as Belgium open their group against Panama. He will be the focal point of the team, while Fellaini will have a smaller role.
Serbia – Nemanja Matic
Serbia are back at the World Cup and one of their true leaders will be Nemanja Matic. The midfielder could prove one of their key players as Serbia try to get past Switzerland and Costa Rica in a group that also sees Brazil in it. Matic will be expected to bring a lot to the table, as one of the senior players.