5 Premier League stars who won't be featuring in the 2018 World Cup
Every player dreams of playing at the World Cup and every player dreams of lifting the Jules Rimet trophy. I'd go as far as saying at some point in their life, every boy growing up wanting to become a footballer would have dreamt about it, yet only a very select amount of players are lucky enough to take part in the most famed competition in World football.
In Russia next year what would have once been fantasies will be fulfilled and others will be crushed all in the name of the beautiful game; this is one of the last tournaments with the 32 team format before it extends to 48 teams.
With the playoffs for the 2018 World Cup currently ongoing, let’s take a look at the top five Premier League players who are already guaranteed to miss out on a place at the 21st World Cup and will no doubt be thinking what could have been come June next year when the prestigious competition kicks off.
#5 Andre Ayew
Club: West Ham United | Country: Ghana | Caps: 75 | Goals: 14
The ex-Marseille man will be disappointed Ghana didn’t reach Russia but, when you look at in black and white, they never really got going in this qualifying campaign. One win from five tells its own story as Egypt eventually ran away with the group. It could have been a lot different if Ghana had beaten Congo at home but the game ended in a 1-1 draw. They then thrashed Congo just days later in their own backyard, running away 5-1 winners, but by then it was a case of too little, too late.
More so than that, they failed to beat Uganda home and away, drawing blanks on both occasions and if you change those three draws to wins, Ghana would be going into the last round of games equal on points with Egypt meaning that there would still be a chance of qualification.
Ayew as an individual had a controversial campaign as he pulled out of the win versus Congo despite playing for West Ham just days earlier, citing a knee injury as his reason. He was then left out of the squad for the Uganda game by Ghana coach Kwesi Appiah. It remains to be seen if he will find a way back into the Ghana squad as he been left out for the last remaining qualifier, as well.