5 rising stars who have made their name at the 2018 World Cup
Aleksandr Golovin and Lucas Torreira are among those who have shone in Russia.
Good performances at the World Cup often put young, relatively unknown players in the shop window for moves to some of Europe’s top sides.
Press Association Sport takes a look at some of the players who have impressed in Russia.
Aleksandr Golovin (Russia)
The 22-year-old Russia midfielder has been in the spotlight since the opening game of the tournament when he provided two assists and scored the fifth goal against Saudi Arabia, one of the free-kicks of the tournament. A driving force from midfield, Golovin currently plays for CSKA Moscow but his World Cup performances have seen him linked with a number of Premier League clubs, including Arsenal and Chelsea.
Sergej Milinkovic-Savic (Serbia)
The Serbian playmaker became embroiled in the controversy which led to coach Slavoljub Muslin being sacked three weeks before the World Cup because of his reported refusal to play Milinkovic-Savic. The 23-year-old has made the most of his opportunity and impressed in Serbia’s opening game against Costa Rica. Manchester United, Barcelona, Juventus and Real Madrid are rumoured to be in the hunt for the Lazio midfielder, who scored 12 times in 35 Serie A appearances last season.
Benjamin Pavard (France)
The 22-year-old’s strike against Argentina, a sliced effort from the edge of the penalty area into the top corner, is one of the goals of the tournament. The defender plays his domestic football as a centre-back for Stuttgart but has operated as a right-back in the tournament. Stuttgart’s failure to secure European football for next season leaves the Bundesliga club vulnerable to approaches from some of the big names with Arsenal and Manchester United apparently interested.
Hirving Lozano (Mexico)
The winger’s goal against Germany in their opening fixture was the beginning of the end for the defending champions and immediately focused attention on the 22-year-old man of the match. He followed that up with an assist against South Korea. Lozano scored 17 goals with eight assists in his debut season in PSV Eindhoven’s title-winning campaign. Lozano has been linked with Premier League clubs Arsenal, Liverpool and Everton in addition to European heavyweights Barcelona and Juventus.
Lucas Torreira (Uruguay)
Torreira has enjoyed a rapid rise having only made his international debut three months before the World Cup. The 5ft 6ins defensive midfielder came off the bench in wins against Egypt and Saudi Arabia but started in the final group game against Russia and kept his place for the last-16 victory over Portugal. He made 42 appearances for Sampdoria last season and is reportedly set to sign a deal with Arsenal once Uruguay’s World Cup campaign is over.