It was a great World Cup and there were many great performances so I am here to pick the best 11 of the tournament. Unlike other best 11’s out there I won’t be playing six strikers across the midfield to try and squeeze everyone in just cause they score goals.
GK Manuel Neuer
Could it be anyone else? Arguably the best player of the tournament, he was an absolute rock in nets for the Germans. I could give you all his goalkeeping stats but I won’t (and I can’t be arsed looking them up) because I don’t need to as the thing which Neuer excelled at in this World Cup would not come up in his stats, that’s all the tackles outside the box and the excellent anticipation he required to get to all those balls before quicker attacking players. Quite simply put it was a remarkable display from Neuer.
RB Philipp Lahm
Germany had looked shaky defensively until Lahm was moved back to right back in the quarter finals and from there on in Germany were rock solid only conceding a last minute consolation to Brazil. Lahm is the best right back in the world which makes you wonder why both Germany and Bayern insist on playing him in central midfield. I’m not one to criticise though as in the end the right decision was made and Lahm lifted the World Cup as captain and put in a tournament performance to match that honour.
LB Daley Blind
I don’t think there was a truly outstanding left back performance in the World Cup so I have given it to Blind who I thought did very well. Blind was a big part of the Dutch backline and sometimes slipped into a holding midfield or centre back role, due to that versatility he just edged it for me.
CB Mats Hummels
He was the standout centre back in this World Cup, not only did he chip in with two goals Hummels was also a wall in the backline. Hummels was unreal against France and although he occasionally got out paced in the Argentina game his tackling was inch perfect. Hummels is arguably the best centre back in the world and he really showed up to this World Cup, made even more impressive when you consider he battled against injuries, what a player.
CB Ron Vlaar
Who would’ve thought that Ron Vlaar would even get a sniff at this team? The same Vlaar who concedes goals for fun at Aston Villa looked like a world class centre back in this World Cup. For me it was a toss-up between Vlaar and De Vrij but I gave it to Vlaar because I believe that he is the leader of a young backline and he performed incredibly well in Holland’s two biggest games against Spain and Argentina.
RM Juan Cuadrado
Cuadrado epitomised what Colombia did, high paced exciting attacking football. Cuadrado was a constant threat down the right as his pace gave left backs more than something to worry about and then best of all he had the end ball to boot, creating 4 assists in just 5 games and scoring 1 as well.
LM Arjen Robben
Did Robben have a bad game at this World Cup? I don’t think so. Robben was a constant threat for Holland and was their best player. He probably was the best player of the tournament but was never going to win the Golden Ball because he had been tarred with the diving stick and more importantly wasn’t named Leo Messi…Great player who seems to keep getting better with age.
CM Toni Kroos
What a player Toni Kroos is, he dictates a game like a young Paul Scholes and has the shot to match. Kroos played as part of a midfield trio and had the skill and passing ability to not only control games but set Germany off in attacks with precision passing and incredible vision, a deadly combination. Add to that Kroos’ two goals against Brazil and his 4 assists and you see why he made the team. Kroos was always a threat from set pieces and controlled the tempo of the game in an excellent German team, deservedly making the team.
CM Javier Mascherano
Mascherano was Argentina’s best player, putting in man of the match performances game after game. He is the sole reason they made it past Holland in the semis and was also their best player in the final. When Argentina needed someone to step up Mascherano took the task and was excellent in doing so. Mascherano was fantastic and if the rest of the Argentinian players had played to his level I doubt we are talking about Germany being World Champions.
AM James Rodriguez
If he had made it to the semis he almost certainly would have won the Golden Player but sadly for him he got kicked off the park by the Brazilians and Colombia crashed out in the quarters. Rodriguez did win the Golden Boot with his impressive 6 goals in 5 matches, scoring in every match which he played. Yes the so called “breakout” star of the tournament (you know the guy that moved to Monaco a year ago for £37m) was outstanding and deserved more than he got.
ST Thomas Muller
It could only be one man, Muller was outstanding once again and makes it 5/11 Germans in the team. Muller notched up another 5 goals and 3 assists to add to his impressive tally from South Africa. It is incredible to think that he is only 24 yet he has already cemented himself as one of the greatest World Cup players of all time, Klose must be worrying about his record. Muller played all along the front, beating defensive with his effort, pace and trickiness, the boy just knows how to score goals and make pivotal plays. I was quite shocked when he didn’t win the Golden Ball because if you were going to give it to a German (and they more than often give it to the winner) then it would have went to Muller.
If you are counting this list includes 5 Germans, 3 Dutch, 2 Colombians and 1 Argentinian. That’s right no Brazilians, that is because they were pretty shit and only one Argentinian because they were also pretty shit despite making the final. In terms of clubs we had 5 Bayern, 1 Ajax, 1 Dortmund, 1 Monaco, 1 Barca, 1 Fiorentina and incredibly 1 Villa player.
Seeing as the World Cup isn’t all about the first 11 and there were many other players who played well but just missed out, here is the rest of the 23 man squad (it’s essentially a second team with two keepers.
Tim Howard, Keylor Navas, Dirk Kuyt, Jan Vertonghen, Stefan De Vrij, Jerome Boateng, Mathieu Valbuena, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Marcos Rojo, Alexis Sanchez, Leo Messi (I didn’t want to put him in because I thought he was poor but there was no one better in his position) and Karim Benzema.
So there you have it the best 11 (and reserves) of the 2014 World Cup. I think it’s a pretty good list, but then I would because I picked it…Leave a comment about who you think deserved to be in the best 11 of the World Cup and share the love!