Harry Maguire and co make up the five surprise amazing players at Russia 2018

Harry Maguire and co make up the five surprise amazing players at Russia 2018

Russia 2018 has sprang amazing and memorable games. But the individuals on the pitch who have played out their hearts for their nations have made it possible. Some of the players were expected to rise to the occasion. Others were not.

YEN.com.gh brings you a list of five players who have surprised all with their performace at the tournament.

1. Benjamin Pavard

The VfB Stuttgart defender was not even expected to make France's squad to the World Cup. But injuries to and underwhelming performances from established pushed things into Pavard's way.

Surprise performers

The 22 year-old has taken to the role of first choice right back perfectly for France. Photo credit: Getty Images

France coach Didier Deschamps took a chance on him and it is paying off. Pavard has been playing at the World Cup as if he has been wearing the national shirt for long. And his goal against Argentina could only have boosted his morale.

READ ALSO: Mandzukic pays £3,000 for beer consumed by fans during win over Russia

2. Denis Cheryshev

In fairness, Cheryshev could be described as a Real Madrid flop. But the 27 year-old made sure that this World Cup was going to be about more than just a portfolio in failure.

Surprise performers

Cheryshev celebrating his wonder strike against Croatia. Photo credit: Getty Images

Cheryshev's talent is not doubted although he does not make the starting line-up at club Villarreal. The winger is blessed with pace and considerable skill. Of the four goals he scored, fans are already tipping two to make the list of goals of the tournament.

3. Yerry Mina

At 6'5 feet, Yerry Mina is obviously a danger to any side that is defending crosses. But as football will tell you, potential and reality are two different things.

Surprise performers

A goal scoring defender is someone any team could do with.Photo credit: Getty Images

However in the case of Mina, Mina is definitely a real threat. The defender scored three goals as Colombia made the quarter final stage. Two of the goals were winners. When the ball is to the ground, it is not as if Mina is bad too.

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4. Harry Maguire

Only two years ago, Maguire was with a group of friends cheering on England at the Euros in France. This year and at this tournament, the 25 year-old is at the centre of England's defence.

Surprise performers

Harry Maguire is Leicester City's second player to score at Russia 2018. Photo credit: Getty Images

Maguire's fairy tale story gets better because he has been one of the best defenders at Russia. Forget his goal against Sweden, Maguire has racked up numbers in clearances, interceptions and aerial duels.

5. Hirving Lozano

What we often do not see in football are players with genuine ability to use both feet excellently. Lozano is in this special minority. The Mexican winger plays for Dutch side PSV Eindhoven.

Surprise performers

Lozano is rumoured to have caught the eye of some of Europe's biggest clubs including Man United. Photo credit: Getty Images

READ ALSO: Russia's Ignashevich and teammate retire after quarterfinal exit at the World Cup

Having gone into Russia as his club's top scorer last season, the pressure to perform exceptionally was not the 22 year-old's shoulders. After all, the likes of Guardado, Chicharito and Herrera were more experienced. But Lozano went home taking much of the plaudits for Mexico.

FIFA 2018 Most Powerful Teams: Football Team Ranking For The FIFA World Cup:

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