World Cup 2018: 5 Barcelona stars who will be key for their teams at the Mundial
After seeing arch-rivals Real Madrid deservedly win its 13th UEFA Champions League title over the weekend, the attention of Cules and the entire world will switch to the World Cup in Russia with a lot of sub-plots and action expected.
After a stellar campaign where the Blaugrana won the major domestic titles; La Liga and Copa Del Rey, fans will be shifting allegiance to the teams their favourite players play in.
The World Cup has always been about the big names stepping up, the underdogs causing upsets and going deep into the competition while certain favoured teams drop by the wayside.
Russia 2018 is expected to follow along the same lines and a lot of Barcelona players will be in the thick of the action.
Here is a look at 5 Barca players who central to their national teams’ chances at Russia 2018.
#5 Jordi Alba (Spain)
The number one left back for the Blaugrana and La Furia Roja, Alba has regained his best form under Ernesto Valverde this season and will be looking to continue to impress at the World Cup.
Spain’s undisputed first-choice left back since he replaced the beloved Joan Capdevila, the 29-year-old will be confident about starting for the team ahead of Arsenal’s Nacho Monreal given the Spanish team’s unique playing style.
Julen Lopetegui’s team are blessed with some of the best midfield talents in the world and also have a host of exceptional young wingers but the manager has chosen to go with a team heavy on central creativity but light on pace down the flanks.
As a result, Alba will be expected to provide the width and pace for stretching the opposition down the left flank, a role which fits him perfectly given his pace and fast running style of play. His work on the left flank will be vital in deciding how far the team goes at the World Cup.