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The recent World Cup captured the hearts of fans from around the world, thanks in no small part to the colour, vibrancy and passion of the Brazilian fans. With stunning goals, great team performances and shock results, the tournament was also the first where Argentinian forward Lionel Messi made a true mark on the opposition (despite much opposition to the player’s receipt of the best player award at the finals).
Some stars of the 2014 World Cup have endured mixed fortunes since the tournament, and while some have soared others have regressed significantly.
3 World Cup Stars: Where are they now?
With this in mind, let’s take a look at three stars that lit up the World Cup and see how their careers have progressed into the 2014/15 season…
Paul Pogba (Juventus and France)
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While Pogba was a star before the tournament, he cemented his reputation as one of the world’s best and most promising midfielders. Voted the tournament’s best player and blessed with the perfect combination of skill and power, Pogba was influential in an impressive French team and was unlucky to be on the losing side in the quarter-final against Germany. Incredibly, the Juventus midfielder’s stock has managed to go up even further since then, with his value now estimated at a staggering £60 million and the potential for a huge summer transfer there for all to see.
Thiago Silva (PSG and Brazil)
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Think back to the early stages of the World Cup: Hosts Brazil were soaring on a tidal wave of emotion, with the pace and skill of Neymar supported by the defensive work and leadership of the excellent Thiago Silva. The PSG defender even scored the opener in the quarter-final win against Colombia, and his absence through suspension from the humiliating 7-1 loss against Germany in the next round meant that he was the only Brazil player (aside from Neymar) whose stock rose after the World Cup. This trend has continued since the tournament, as he continues to shine in an improving PSG team and has led Brazil in eight unbeaten games since the semi-final debacle.
Andre Schurrle (Wolfsburg and Germany)
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Going into the World Cup, Andre Schurrle had showcased excellent form for his club side Chelsea. He continued this even as a substitute for Germany throughout the tournament, most notably scoring two excellent goals after leaving the bench during the record-breaking 7-1 win over Brazil in the semi-final. Despite leaving Brazil with a World Cup winners’ medal, however, Schurrle struggled to continue his form in West London and just six months later he was sold to high-flying Wolfsburg to fund a move for the Columbian Juan Cuadrado.
He is showing signs of recovery in the Bundesliga, although his story underlines how quickly fortunes can change in the world of football.