A pretty ridiculous start to the World Cup hasn’t been followed through by Manchester City at all. Simple transfers have been delayed, contract renewals haven’t been signed and City’s boys in Brazil have failed to shine in the opening round. I take a look at how each one got on so far.
Found himself in an unusual back five at the beginning of the game that didn’t really work out for anyone. Ran the by-line aggressively and was a fundamental part of Argentina’s build-up play from the right-hand side.
Very commanding across his box and claimed crosses and high balls with confidence. Not really tested throughout the night although he probably could’ve spread himself better for Balotelli’s header. Almost caught out by Pirlo at a free-kick which sparked this viral video of Hart being a bit of a d*ck:
Luv u m8.
A solid performance from the Belgium captain when others around him lost their heads. Galvanised Belgium to claw back a 1-0 deficit against Algeria to kick off their campaign with three points.
Didn’t get off the bench as Brazil nervously beat Croatia 3-1. Should be buoyed by another poor Paulinho performance. Could get his chance to claim his stake if Scolari’s midfield problem continues.
Will inevitably take a portion of the blame for missing the one-on-one chance that would’ve put Spain 2-0 up. Was probably Spain’s best performer in terms of chances and shots aswell as scoring an offside goal. However, such was the severity of the result (5-1 to Holland) that a lot of heads could roll by the time they face Chile. Still, Del Bosque is not one to bow to pressure and is loyal to his players. Silva should get another chance especially when you consider it was the high defensive line and shocking Casillas performance that cost them.
Disappointing in a pretty average Argentina display. Failed to connect with Leo and seemed fazed by the occasion. Hopefully he can pick himself up and light up the tournament.
Didn’t feature, even when Argentina started the game with five at the back. Looks destined for a tournament and potentially the coming year on the bench.
Virtually invisible which is has been unlike him these past few months. Still has the opportunity to rack up some numbers in this group with Argentina out of the way.
Didn’t get off the bench. Hodgson’s young attackers didn’t track Italy’s right hand-side throughout the game well which ultimately resulted in Mario’s winner. Someone like Milner would have and the Yorkshireman should expect to play a bigger role against Uruguay; a team that boasts fast wingers and full-backs unlike Italy.
Another good player seemingly (and wrongly) destined for a tournament on the bench by a manager who simply does not give a f*ck what anyone thinks anymore.
Captained the Elephants against Japan and produced arguably his worst display in months. Seemed dogged by the injury he sustained on the final day of the season and bar a late surge on goal couldn’t impose himself on the game.
written by Anis Bazza