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5 2014 FIFA World Cup heroes who have lost their way

James Rodriguez has faded after his 2014 FIFA World Cup exploits.
James Rodriguez has faded after his 2014 FIFA World Cup exploits.
Abhinav Anand
ANALYST

The 2014 FIFA World Cup is remembered fondly for great fans and an excellent atmosphere throughout the tournament, which resulted in the competition being a huge success.

Some truly big names played at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, but as with any major football tournament, some new names emerged as well. A relatively unknown name in James Rodriguez was one of the best players at the tournament, while goalkeeper Keylor Navas caught the attention of top clubs with some stunning performances.

Not all 2014 FIFA World Cup heroes proved to be successful after the tournament, though. On that note, here's a look at five 2014 FIFA World Cup heroes who have lost their way.


#5 Mesut Ozil

Mesut Ozil - Arsenal FC vs Newcastle United - Premier League
Mesut Ozil - Arsenal FC vs Newcastle United - Premier League

Mesut Ozil was regarded as one of the best players in the world during his days with Real Madrid and his first few seasons with Arsenal.

A highly creative midfielder, Ozil made his name as a technically gifted and elegant player with excellent vision and passing. The Germany international played a pivotal role as his country won the FIFA World Cup in 2014, and enjoyed some good seasons with Arsenal soon thereafter.

However, Ozil's decline was sudden. The midfielder had signed a new contract in 2018 which made him Arsenal's highest earner, but Ozil only had a minimal impact after that.

Under Mikel Arteta, the former Schalke man barely featured, and was not included in Arsenal's 2020-21 Premier League squad. The 32-year-old subsequently joined Fenerbahce in January 2021 on a free transfer.


#4 Sergio Romero

Sergio Romero - Manchester United vs LASK - UEFA Europa League Round of 16: Second Leg
Sergio Romero - Manchester United vs LASK - UEFA Europa League Round of 16: Second Leg

Sergio Romero was in inspired form for Argentina at the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The goalkeeper will be remembered for his achievements with the national team rather than for his club exploits.

Romero's talent has never been question, but the Argentine has never truly settled at a club. Having made appearances for AZ Alkmaar and Sampdoria, Romero moved to Manchester United in 2015 on a free transfer as a backup to David de Gea, who was regarded as the best goalkeeper in the world at that time.

Romero was given limited chances at Manchester United, and he did well. He was the starting goalkeeper during the club's 2016-17 victorious Europa League campaign, and was an assured presence during domestic cup tournaments as well.

The arrival of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and the emergence of Dean Henderson saw Romero become third-choice goalkeeper last season, and he left the club this summer.


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Edited by Bhargav
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