Underrated Players To Watch Out For In The Champions League Final!
The UEFA Champions League Final is now looming closer than ever. Anticipation levels for the flagship event in Kiev are at an all time high, as they should be! Fans from across the world are busy analyzing possible tactics, discussing strengths and weaknesses and speculating- there is a buzz in the air.
While the spotlight during this time is sure to be on superstars such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Mohamed Salah, it should not be forgotten that in many instances, legendary finals were decided by the performances of unexpected dark horse players, who bided their time and took the world by storm on the biggest stage.
Here, we take a look at some of the underrated players who could use their talents and very well play a decisive role in the outcome of the game.
#3 Andrew Roberston (Liverpool Left Back)
Virgil Van Dijk has been on the spotlight for Liverpool at the defensive end this season. With him acting as an anchor at the heart of defense, Liverpool have come along way and have fixed the holes in their erstwhile leaking defense.
However, this should not take away from Andrew Robertson's contributions. While van Dijk enjoys the lion's share of media attention, Robertson has been operating very effectively on the quiet for Liverpool. He has paid back every single penny of the €8 million that Liverpool paid for his services at the start of the season with his solid performances.
Since he is still young at 24, he will undoubtedly turn out to be a solid investment for Liverpool in the long run. While Robertson started below Alberto Moreno in the pecking order, he established himself as first choice when given the chance to play after Moreno suffered an injury- since then, there has been no looking back.
Due to Robertson's presence, opponents are now unable to exploit the flank like they could when Moreno played. Thus, Madrid full backs Marcelo, Lucas Vasquez or Dani Carvajal will have their task cut out for them against the young Scot. Robertson thus shares the defensive workload with Van Dijk now, allowing him more freedom to express himself fully in central defense- elevating the level of the entire defense in the process. He has recorded 1 last man tackle, preventing a one on one goalscoring situation, and has blocked three shots by opposition offenses on goal.
However, Robertson is far from just defense, contributing regularly on the offense as well. In 22 appearances, he has recorded 5 assist, creating 8 "Big Chances" apart from that. In comparison, Marcelo, the Real Madrid attacking Left Back who is regarded as on of the best in the business, has recorded the same number of assists in 3 more appearances. Thus, Robertson is providing defensive stability as well as potency in the attack- establishing himself as a two-way threat in the process.
Come final day, while the Madrid defense focuses on the deadly trio of Mane, Salah and Firmino, one lethal assist from Robertson may well be enough to write history.