Heroes And Villains Of The World Cup: Matchday Four

Two shocks and a thunder bastard; another great day in Russia.

No event escalates individuals to the status of national hero or global villain as dramatically as the World Cup. The idolatry that follows success and the stigma that follows failure are woven into the fabric of history, and the repercussions will typically follow footballers for the rest of their lives. Daily, we’ll take a look at who played the role of hero and who played the role of villain at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

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Heroes and Villains of the World Cup: Matchday Four

Hero: Hirving “Chucky” Lozano (Mexico)

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An all-action, 66-minute display from the PSV Eindhoven wide man was highlighted by a confident and composed finish in the 35th minute, and the 22-year-old added three key passes and three tackles on the defensive end to dictate Mexico’s sustained period of dominance over the defending world champions. He put in a glorious shift on only his 29th appearance for Mexico.

Going head-to-head against Germany’s Joshua Kimmich, the right back who many consider to one of the world’s best at the position, Chucky underlined the fact that he’s one of the world’s most exciting players.

He was fearless on the ball and wholly committed to the cause. If Chucky and his teammates continue in the same vein, Mexico shouldn’t just settle for breaking its Round of 16 curse . . . El Tri should be aiming for it all.

Honorable mention: Aleksandar Kolarov (Serbia)

A thunder bastard from the captain to secure three points. That’s hero status.

Villain: Thomas Muller (Germany)

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The worry surrounding Muller’s form for Bayern Munich over the last couple seasons was largely dismissed since he’s German and thus guaranteed to bring it at the World Cup, but the scorer of 10 World Cup goals is clearly in a funk. 

Jesus Gallardo had Muller in his pocket, and after 90 minutes of action, the German had zero shots to show for his efforts. He was given a yellow card in the 83rd minute for his frustrations, and Germany now need a result against a Sweden side that’s already certified as giant killers.  

Honorable mention: Diego Maradona (Prat)

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For all the joy he brought us on the pitch, Maradona is usually an abhorrent clown off it. That's been the case in Russia. 

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