The best starting XI of the 2018 World Cup

With the 2018 FIFA World Cup done and dusted, here's our team of the tournament.

Trippier, Mbappe, Modric

Kieran Trippier (L), Kylian Mbappe (C) and Luka Modric Source: Getty Images

Formation: 3-4-1-2

Goalkeeper: Thibaut Courtois

Courtois won the Golden Glove award for his performances in Russia, with his 27 saves the most of any goalkeeper. The 26-year-old was instrumental in Belgium's run to the semi-final and eventual third-place finish.

Advertisement
Centre-back: Yerry Mina

A towering presence at the back, Mina was one of Colombia's best players at the World Cup. The Barcelona defender found the back of the net in three consecutive games, including against England in their heart-breaking round-of-16 defeat.

Centre-back: Domagoj Vida

One of the biggest surprise players of the tournament, Vida excelled in defence alongside the more outspoken Dejan Lovren and even popped up with a goal and an assist.

Centre-back: Raphael Varane

France's success in Russia had a lot to do with Varane's impenetrable presence both in the air and on the ground. The 25-year-old is now just the fourth player to win the World Cup and Champions League in the same season.

Right Midfielder: Kieran Trippier

A constant threat down England's right-hand side, Trippier created 24 chances in Russia - more than any other player. His well-taken free-kick and ensuing scenes in the semi-final defeat to Croatia will live long in his memory.

Centre Midfielder: N'Golo Kante

Despite his underwhelming performance in the final, Kante was an omnipresent threat in defence for France. No player recovered more balls (61) than the 27-year-old, who was responsible for shackling both Lionel Messi and Kevin De Bruyne en route to Monday's success.

Centre Midfielder: Luka Modric

If there was ever any doubt, Modric confirmed his status as arguably the best midfielder in the world in Russia. His two goals and assist were a mere microcosm of the quality he brings, with a string of fine performances enough to see him become the first Croatian player to ever win the Golden Ball. 

Left Midfielder: Eden Hazard

So often criticised for disappearing in big games, Hazard well and truly delivered in Russia. With three goals, two assists and 40 successful dribbles, the Belgium star had a World Cup campaign to remember and finished second behind Modric in the Golden Boot voting.

Centre-attacking Midfielder: Antoine Griezmann

Playing in behind striker Olivier Giroud, Griezmann was central to everything France conjured up offensively. The 27-year-old never put a foot wrong and backed up his Euro 2016 heroics with four goals and two assists - including a 'Man of the Match' display in the final.

Right Forward: Kylian Mbappe

Not since the great Pele has a teenager came and conquered at world football's showpiece event. Mbappe dazzled defences with ease, with his four goals earning him the Best Young Player award. 

Left Forward: Harry Kane

Kane became just the second England player to ever win the Golden Boot award after his six goals went unmatched in Russia. Despite the majority coming from the penalty spot, the 24-year-old dispatched each with ease as he led the Three Lions to the semi-final.


Share
Watch the FIFA World Cup, Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, Vuelta a España, Dakar Rally, World Athletics / ISU Championships (and more) via SBS On Demand – your free live streaming and catch-up service.
Have a story or comment? Contact Us

Watch the FIFA World Cup, Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, Vuelta a España, Dakar Rally, World Athletics / ISU Championships (and more) via SBS On Demand – your free live streaming and catch-up service.
Watch nowOn Demand
Follow SBS Sport
3 min read
Published 16 July 2018 at 2:41pm
Source: SBS The World Game