Liverpool: 5 Reds that could shine at the World Cup

After a brilliant season that saw them secure a top four finish and reach the Champions League final, which Liverpool players will carry that momentum into the World Cup?


Reuters/ANDREW YATES

The Ramos drama, the Salah tears, the Karius howlers – they don’t feel like that long ago, really. 

Liverpool’s season only finished in Kiev on May 26, but many of the stars of that run to the final will be battling it out for their countries in Russia over the next few weeks.

Which of the Redmen can we expect to star at this summer’s showpiece event? RealSport takes a look.

  1. 1 Sadio Mane - Senegal


    Reuters/ANDREW BOYERS

    Caps: 47 Goals: 13

    After seeing his importance for the Reds slightly diminished by the signing of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane reminded everyone what a dangerous player he is with an excellent performance in the Champions League. 

    Mane equalised in Kiev, hit the post and caused Real Madrid all sorts of problems with his pace and directness.

    Senegal's hopes lie on his shoulders. By far the star attacking player in their team, Mane even wore the captain's armband in their last warm-up match against Croatia. 

    With Mane having scored 13 and assisted 13 in 47 caps, in top form, the Lions of Teranga will believe they can even win an open looking Group H containing Poland, Colombia, and Japan.

    Even with the Nabil Fekir deal having fallen through, Liverpool are constantly being linked to attacking players, Mane will be determined to show that he is still more than good enough to be relied upon in Liverpool's starting XI next season.

  2. 2 Marko Grujic - Serbia


    Reuters/HEINZ-PETER BADER

    Caps: 8 Goals: 0

    Jurgen Klopp has flirted at times with the idea of using Marko Grujic. After just 109 minutes of first team action in the first half of the season however, the Serb was cast out on loan to Neil Warnock's Cardiff in the Championship on loan.

    Despite the persistent rumours of a move away from Anfield, Grujic remains a Liverpool player going into the World Cup, and a strong showing could at the very least put himself in the shop window for potential buyers. 

    The 22-year-old will have his work cut out to displace any of Luka Milivojevic, Nemanja Matic or the breakout star Sergej Milinkovic-Savic. Opportunities are likely to come from the bench, though, and maybe the Liverpool cast off can remind people why the Reds brought him to the club in the first place.

  3. 3 Dejan Lovren - Croatia


    Reuters/ANDREW BOYERS

    Caps: 39 Goals: 2

    Dejan Lovren was much improved alongside Virgil van Dijk in the second half of the season and could take that form into the finals.

    Appearing alongside fellow brute Vedran Corluka at the back, these days the pair resemble a pair of snarling orcs, heading, kicking and galumphing their way to stopping opposition attackers by any means necessary.

    Mistakes have become a lot more infrequent for Lovren, but on this biggest of stage, and without the assuring presence of Van Dijk, there is still one there. 

    Croatia possesses a stunning midfield, but they will need their experienced defence to stand tall if the world is to see the best of them this summer. 

  4. 4 Roberto Firmino - Brazil


    Reuters/ANDREW BOYERS

    Caps: 18 Goals: 5

    After an amazing season scoring 27 goals and assisting 17 for Liverpool, most forwards would be assured a starting berth for their country.

    Incredibly, Firmino isn't. 

    Brazil coach Tite's affection for Gabriel Jesus' suitability for that role usually leaves the Liverpool star on the bench. It is thought that Firmino impinges on Neymar's space, while Jesus' relationship with the Selecao's number ten gives him the edge. 

    If called upon however, Reds fans will all know just how useful Firmino can be.

    A dogged worker, blending natural talent with hard graft, he won't let any setbacks keep him down. When called upon in Russia, expect the 26-year-old to shine for the Selecao.

  5. 5 Mohamed Salah - Egypt


    Reuters/MOHAMED ABD EL GHANY

    Caps: 57 Goals: 33

    And of course, we couldn't conclude this list without mentioning Mohamed Salah. 

    He's the darling of the Kop, he scored more goals in a Premier League season than anyone ever before, and he got crocked in a fall with Sergio Ramos.

    But no matter what, he'll be there. He is a talismanic figure on and off the pitch for Egyptians and the hopes of the nation rest on his shoulders. 

    Without him, Egypt are a very average side. But with him, there is belief. Belief that there's always a chance that Salah can conjure up a piece of magic.

    He may well not be fit to play from matchday one, but when he does feature, all eyes will be on Liverpool's Egyptian king.

    Listen to the RealSport football writers discuss Group D in Kremlins in the Basement: RealSport’s daily World Cup podcast.

  1. Poll: Which of these Liverpool players will do best at the World Cup?

    1. Salah
    2. Firmino
    3. Lovren
    4. Grujic
    5. Mane
    72 votes
    Share Your Result

Want to share your opinion? Why not Write For Us?


Etienne Fermie

Étienne Fermie is a writer for RealSport, specialising in football and tennis.

Having featured in the Guardian and on LoveSport Radio, Étienne also co-founded the 3pm Podcast. You can follow him on Twitter @etiennefermie 

0 Comments