Samir Nasri (Manchester City) – France
The 26 year-old Frenchman was at the heart of Manchester City’s title winning squad this season. An astute playmaker with a knack of getting crucial goals – Samir Nasri would have been a key component of the French side in Brazil. However, French Boss Didier Deschamps decided not to include the former Marseille man who accounted for 11 goals and 12 assists this season in the blue of Manchester City.
Also Read : Samir Nasri’s exclusion – A good decision?
Giuseppe Rossi (Fiorentina) – Italy
27 year-old California born Italian striker Giuseppe Rossi has had tough luck with international football since always. The former Manchester United striker missed out on the World Cup 2010 due to technical reasons and was injured for Euro 2012. Having been included in the preliminary squad, Rossi was dropped out of the 23 man contingent Cesare Prandelli took to Brazil. The Fiorentina man failed to convince coach Prandelli despite racking up 17 goals and 5 assists this season in merely 24 appearances.
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Ashley Cole (Chelsea) – England
England’s Ashley Cole was perhaps the most under-appreciated player of his generation. Considered one of the best full-backs in the World in his prime, Cole held down England’s left back spot for the most part of the last decade. However, going with Roy Hodgson’s policy of form over credentials, the England boss picked teenager Luke Shaw over the veteran Cole citing lack of telling performances as a reason. With Leighton Baines as his first choice left back, it will be interesting to see whether Roy’s pick Shaw provides good enough cover for the Everton man.
Kaka (AC Milan) – Brazil
Once regarded as the Best Player on the planet, Kaka is far from the delightful playmaker he was in his prime. Yet the former Real Madrid man returned to his beloved AC Milan last summer and personally had a very stellar campaign in a side that struggled all season. 9 goals and 8 assists in 37 appearances playing from midfield is a decent turnover in the Serie A. However, Brazil boss Scolari didn’t think so. Scolari picked a 23 man-squad well in advance and left out the mercurial playmaker who was the heart-beat of the nation in the previous edition.
Jesus Navas (Manchester City) – Spain
Arguably, one of the fastest football players around, Jesus Navas played a crucial part in Spain’s World Cup triumph in South Africa. The speedy winger moved to England with Manchester City last summer and enjoyed a trophy-laden season. Once a fixture in the national team, Spanish Boss Vicente Del Bosque left the former Sevilla man out despite contributing 6 goals and 13 assist to Manchester City’s double-winning side. The 28 year-old – an old fashioned winger who loves hugging the touchline with a ore than decent delivery could’ve been Spain wing-man is he were on the plane to Brazil.
Radja Nainggolan (Cagliari) – Belgium
26 year-old Radja Nainggolan is a relatively unknown name in the football world. However, the Antwerp born central midfielder is one of the most talented and hard-working Belgian midfielders around. Having spent a season on loan at over-achieving Roma, Naingollan accounted for 4 goals and 3 assists. Despite all of his efforts the midfield workhorse couldn’t break into the Belgian side blessed with the flair of Dembele, Witsel, Defour etc. Whether his work-man like style of play will be missed is something Belgium Captain Vincent Kompany will not be hoping for.
Michael Carrick (Manchester United) – England
Manchester United’s Michael Carrick is another high-profile English player left out by Roy Hodgson as the former Fulham boss integrates youth into the national set-up. Suffering from a dismal season at Manchester United, Carrick lost out his England place as Hodgson opted for the in-form Ross Barkley ahead of the 32 year-old midfielder. Having Steven Gerrard as the only natural defensive midfielder in Brazil, Hodgson will be hoping that his choice to go with Barkley doesn’t back-fire.
Also Read : How can England make it big?
Alvaro Negredo (Manchester City) – Spain
Alvaro Negredo enjoyed a brilliant first half of the season at his new club Manchester City after he completed a 25 million switch from Sevilla. The 28 year-old scored 23 goals and assisted 8 in his 49 appearances for the English champion. However, ‘Beast’ as City fans call him was ignored from Spain’s national squad as boss Vicente Del Bosque decided to pick Fernando Torres instead. Having just completed a very successful debut season at the Etihad, Negredo would have hoped that the World Cup would cap off an excellent campaign. However, that wasn’t to be; Vicente Del Bosque will hope that Fernando Torres will be at his best and justify his choice.
Gael Clichy (Manchester City) – France
28 year-old Gael Clichy was part of Manchester City’s double winning team this season. Having appeared 31 times in City’s successful campaign, Clichy would be first choice to Brazil in the eyes of many French fans. However, French boss Didier Deschamps opted for Patrice Evra over Gael Clichy and the young Lucas Digne of Paris St. Germain as back-up. The pace of Clichy and defensive solidity might cost France in the heat of Brazil.
Lucas Moura (Paris St. Germain) – Brazil
Lucas Moura was one of the players expected to set the World Cup in Brazil alight. However, despite having a pretty good season in France with Paris St. Germain, Scolari decided to leave the pacey winger out of the squad. PSG’s workhorse – Lucas appeared 53 times for the French champions assisting a staggering 18 goals and scoring a handful of them. The 21 year-old who developed a telepathic understanding with Barcelona star Neymar as they represented Brazil through all age groups will have to watch the World Cup from home. Will Scolari miss the directness and pace of Lucas’ play ? He better hope not.
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