World Cup: 23 best players not going to Brazil


Americans are still trying to cope and wrap their heads around the idea that Landon Donovan will not be going to the World Cup for the United States men’s national team. While everyone has their blinders on focused on that, there is a whole list of players more talented then Donovan who won’t get the chance to attend. Most of these players won’t be in attendance because their teams didn’t qualify though, not because the national team coach left them off the roster.

More from World Cup

So in the spirit of the World Cup roster announcements, EA Sports — creators of 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil — released a list of the 23 best players not attending the World Cup and it is a pretty start studded list. It includes Real Madrid superstar Gareth Bale, whose Welsh team isn’t competing. It also includes Zlatan Ibrahimovic, whose Swedish side was sent home in a World Cup qualifying playoff against Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal.

Ibrahimovic famously said afterwards that a World Cup without him isn’t one worth watching.

You can check out the whole roster below, via Sports Illustrated’s Extra Mustard:

Starting XI

GK: Petr Čech – Chelsea FC (England) – Czech Republic
LB: Martin Olsson – Norwich City (England) – Sweden
CB: Mehdi Benatia – AS Roma (Italy) – Morocco
CB: Martin Skrtel – Liverpool (England) – Slovakia
RB: Seamus Coleman – Everton (England) – Rep. of Ireland
CM (CAM): Henrikh Mkhitaryan – Borussia Dortmund (Germany) – Armenia
CM: Aaron Ramsey – Arsenal (England) – Wales
CM (CAM): Mateusz Klich – PEC Zwolle (The Netherlands) – Poland
LW (CF): Gareth Bale – Real Madrid (Spain) – Wales
ST: Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Paris Saint-Germain (France) – Sweden
RW: Robert Lewandowski – Borussia Dortmund (Germany) – Poland

On the Bench:

GK: Samir Handanović – Inter Milan (Italy) – Slovenia
GK: Kossi Agassa – Reims (France) – Togo
CB: Marko Basa – Lille (France) – Montenegro
CB: Cédric Mongongu – Evian (France) – France
RB: Branislav Ivanovic – Chelsea (England) – Serbia
LB: Papa Souare – Lille (France) – Senegal
LM: Juan Arango – Borussia Mönchengladbach (Germany) – Venezuela
LM: Szabolc Huszti – Hannover (Germany) – Hungary
RM: Jefferson Farfán – Schalke 04 (Germany) – Peru
CM: Lasse Schöne – Ajax Amsterdam (The Netherlands) – Denmark
ST: Alfred Finnbogason – Heerenveen (The Netherlands) – Iceland
ST: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – Borrussia Dortmund (Germany) – Gabon