The World Cup in Brazil is coming into view and everyone is hoping this summer's carnival can take its place among some of the great tournaments of the past, but who will be the star of the show?
With 85 days to go until things kick-off, check out our latest instalment of 100 players to look out for at the competition below.
85. Daniele De Rossi (Italy)
The Roma midfielder is a seasoned veteran in the heart of the Azzurri’s midfield and will once again play a pivotal role for his country at a major tournament. He’s a rare breed in 21 Century football, being one of few players to play for a single club domestically. He’s made upwards of 300 appearances for the Italian giants, which has enabled him to become an integral part of the international set up as well.
His loyalty was rewarded with a new five-year deal in February 2012 – supposedly making him the highest paid player in the country – but his ability to defend and attack makes him worth almost every penny, depending on your stance on professional footballer’s wages. The Italian has already collected a World Cup winners’ medal after helping his country beat France in the 2006 final by scoring his spot-kick.
Like a lot of players, Brazil 2014 may well be his last appearance at the tournament, and given his fiery temperament, he will want to go out with a bang. If he does, it’s hard to say whether that ‘bang’ will be a winning goal, or an early bath like Zizou.
Did you know? In March, De Rossi was sent off against Inter Milan for punching an opponent
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