Egypt and Uruguay will begin their World Cup campaign at the Krestovsky Stadium on Friday, but who are the three players to look out for in the game?
Day Two of the 2018 FIFA World Cup will begin early, with Egypt and Uruguay completing matchday one proceedings for Group A, when they meet at the Krestovsky Stadium in Saint-Petersburg. But, who are the three players to keep a closer eye on? The Hard Tackle takes a look.
The jewel of Uruguayan football, Torreira has started becoming a household name beyond Italy, where he plies his trade with Sampdoria. The midfielder enjoyed a breakout season with the Serie A side this past season, producing the goods against the best of sides in the league as Doria finished 10th on the table.
While he is still not a guaranteed starter for La Celeste, the young midfielder will still be someone to look out for, with his ability to stifle opposition attacks in the middle of the park. The 22-year-old made the most recoveries in Serie A this past season, a showcase of his defensive abilities.
Additionally, he can also sparkle with his ability to score from distance, which would come in handy for Uruguay in easing off the pressure on Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez. Who knows, a stellar showing at the World Cup may see several other clubs join Arsenal in pursuit of the youngster in the coming weeks.
The spotlight and the adulation for Egypt’s return to the World Cup was bestowed on Mohamed Salah, and rightly so. After all, the Liverpool superstar had scored the last-gasp goal that clinched qualification for Russia 2018. But, Trezeguet’s contribution often goes unnoticed.
The Anderlecht man won the penalty that Salah had converted, and will be a key man for Egypt once again at the World Cup, starting Friday. Not a typical modern-day winger with all the tricks and flicks, Trezeguet is, instead, a clinical customer who can be deadly in front of goal.
Last season’s return of 16 goals and 8 assists in 33 appearances is testament to the same. And, with Salah a major doubt for the opener on Friday, Trezeguet will have to shoulder a lot of responsibility to help the Pharaohs to a win to kick things off at the World Cup.
Another midfielder who will be key to Uruguay’s fortunes at the World Cup. Bentancur is part of a well drilled midfield unit that can be deceptively effective, and will don the creative hat for La Celeste on Friday.
Coming off a superb campaign with Juventus, the 20-year-old is brimming with confidence, and has been a mainstay in the middle of the park for his national side for well over a year now. In addition to his creative abilities, Bentancur is also a handy customer off the ball, with his superb tackling abilities.
On it, his strength enables him to retain possession of the ball better, while also relaying it quickly forward. The lynchpin of a strong Uruguay side who will be key to his side’s fortunes all through their World Cup campaign.