As the group games come to an end we take a look at some of the players that have really impressed. Before the tournament all the talk was about Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi and all the other stars. There was also plenty of talk about the stars who were going to miss out on this year’s tournament including big names like Franck Ribery and Radamel Falcao.
James steps up
Falcao was particularly bitter loss for Colombia after firing them into the World Cup, having scored one-third of the team’s goals during the qualifiers. This would mean that players like Jackson Martinez and James Rodriguez would really have to step up their game. While Martinez has been in stellar form for his club he has not been as prolific for the national side, breaking a five year drought in the last match against Japan.
Rodriguez on the other hand has been a revelation in this World Cup. After a good first season at AS Monaco he has really step up his game for the national side in the absence of their star striker, leading them into the knockout stages of the competition.
Confidence is high
With three goals and two assists in their three group games he has been involved in everything good for Colombia. His confidence levels haven’t been higher as was showcased with his last goal against Japan which oozed pure class and drew comparisons to Messi, one of the highest possible honors that can be bestowed, which gives us an idea of the level of football at which he is playing at the moment.
At just 22 Rodriguez has a long and bright future ahead of him. Looking at the way he is going at the moment he could become one of the greats of the game and the next big thing.
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