What Next for the World Cup's Young Stars?
Current sentiment holds that the recent World Cup 2014 was the greatest of all time.
With unexpected teams reaching the higher stages, there were shocks, there were dramas, and there were disappointments. Many unfamiliar names shone bright like a diamond, while many popular stars failed to deliver or live up to the hype.
Brazil had a famously disastrous World Cup campaign, but Oscar -- only 22 years old -- was the standout player amongst the Canarinho detritus.
The young playmaker scored two goals and bagged an assist. Although those numbers may seem to be less than that of his fellow footballer Neymar, Oscar made a greater overall contribution to the team. He's currently under the management of the special one, Jose Mourinho, at Chelsea. After his brilliant individual campaign at the World Cup, a starting position with the Blues seems fixed.
Germany are the World Champions now due to a brace of players who contributed to this fascinating result.
Die Mannschaft -- and is there a more appropriate moniker in the game right now? -- brought a very young side to Brazil and still managed to win. Mario Götze may be the name on everyone’s lips, but there are other unsung heroes as well. André Schürrle scored three goals and provided three assists overall.
It's remarkable that Schürrle was not a starting XI player in Brazil. He came on as a substitute and still managed to bag that scoring line. Only 23, he's also a Chelsea player. With the Blues having sold Juan Mata of Spain -- who plays a similar position -- to Manchester United, the chances of Schürrle starting alongside Eden Hazard of Belgium are odds-on.
The eye-opener in the tourney was James Rodriguez.
The 23-year-old Colombian star won the Golden Boot in impressive fashion, joining an impressive list of legends. James has numerous observing anointing him as the best youngster in the current footballing world because of his creativity, control, and decisions.
James sniped six goals and provided 2 assists for his country. Here's another one of them:
Some debate that Neymar of Brazil and Messi of Argentina were better than the young Colombian, but the fact that his accomplishments came on a side that isn't regarded as a strong footballing nation is remarkable. The only other footballer from there that has global recognition is Rademel Falcao, currently employed AS Monaco of Ligue 1, who seem ready to sell James to Real Madrid, the richest sporting club in the world. Valued at €90million by AS Monaco, Rodriguez appears to be on the cusp of a bright future.
Other players who shone at the World Cup included Juan Quadrado of Colombia, Arjen Robben of Netherlands, Sergio Romero of Argentina, Paul Pogba of France, Thomas Müller of Germany, Keylor Navas of Costa Rica, Xherdan Shaqiri of Switzerland.