GK: David De Gea (Manchester United) (63 million)
The Spaniard had a forgettable world cup with his fumbles and not so confident performances. Much of the criticism came out of the theory that De Gea does not play in the manner he so often does for his parent club, Manchester United, which may be right in some sense however, the standards he has set at United are so difficult to match for any player. For 3 of the last 2 seasons, De Gea has been awarded as the player of the year at Old Trafford which speaks volumes. Some of his 1saves have been atrocious and truly remarkable. He well stands above the rest though a fit Manuel Neuer would have surely given him stiff competition.
RB: Dani Carvajal (53million)
The Spaniard has been outstanding ever since he joined Bayer Leverkusen in Germany. He was voted amongst the top 3 defenders in the Bundesliga in his solitary season at the club before he rejoined Real Madrid. Since returning, Carvajal has established himself as the first choice for the full back position. Barring injuries which seems to have proliferated in his case, Caravajal is a player every manager would want in his lineup.
CB: Raphael Varane (72million)
Many would dream of achieving things in their entire career that Varane has already achieved at the age of 25. He has won 4 Champions league titles and this past summer, also won the world cup with national team writing his name in the history books. A calm and speedy defender, Varane is yet to enter his peak age. Let that digest in.
CB: Samuel Umtiti (63 million)
Signed relatively cheaply by Barca, Umtiti has surprisingly settled in well at Camp Nou. He first showed his talents at Euro’16 where he surprised people with his ability on the ball and has continued that trend since joining Barca. The Catalans too seem to have their prayers heard as the club finally have a centre half they can build around for the foreseeable future.
LB: Jordi Alba (54 million)
The reality is that Alba did not have the finest of the season last time but that is just a compliment to his quality. The bar he has set is always going to be a challenge. His future looked all but over under Luis Enrique but Ernesto Valverde seems to have revived his fortunes. He created 37 chances last season which is impressive.
CM: Paul Pogba (81 million)
The Frenchman showed his true self at the World cup with some commanding performances in the middle of the park. Unfortunately for him, the praises did not last long as United have already succumbed to 2 heavy defeats 3 games into the new season. And Pogba has been at the heart of the criticism with the likes of Sam Allardyce and Paul Scholes all claiming that he is far too inconsistent. But there’s one fact that just about everyone admits to is that Pogba is perhaps one of the best in the business. On his day, he is a match-winner just as he showed at the World Cup but if United fans will ever be able to see that Pogba on a regular basis is debatable.
Central midfielder: SergejMilinković-Savić (Lazio) – £81 million
Savic is the only player in our list who doesn’t play for a ‘big’ club at the moment. Though, he is regularly on their wish list thanks to his fantastic performances for the club over the years. The Serbian is a powerful midfielder with an eye for goal which is just another attribute which makes him a prized asset. Lazio though have been hard to convince as yet by any club. He reportedly was United’s top target while Real Madrid too were keen on bringing him in as rumours regarding Modric’s departure persisted.
Right Winger: Mohamed Salah (Liverpool) – £135 million
The dynamic Egyptian was the surprise package of last season when as most questioned his ability to adjust in the English league, Salah responded with mouth-watering 44 goals in the season. He was by far the most effective player for the Reds with his big game contributions and also nearly led the club to European glory before a lunging tackle from Ramos prematurely ended his match. He has carried his form into this season so far having already scored 2 goals in 3 games and will be central as Klopp’s men look to chase City down.
Left winger: Neymar (PSG) – £162 million
World’s most expensive player has to be amongst the most valuable in the world. The Brazilian did not have the most effective of the world cup as he would have liked but that did not stop his suitors, particularly Real Madrid in showing their interest. There has been a lot of talk about Neymar’s impending arrival at Real Madrid. Whether that does happen only time will tell but for the season ahead, Neymar would be keen on making things work under Thomas Tuchel and help lead PSG to the Champions league glory.
CAM: Lionel Messi (Barcelona) – £162 million
Barca’s overreliance on Messi was on display last season as shutting down Messi was key to stopping Barca. Case in point, the loss against Roma was the perfect example that Barca were a one-man show. To fair to Barca though, it is quite easy to get dependent on Messi with his brilliance and magical moments. The Argentine has claimed that he will give his all to help Barca regain grounds in Europe as they look to stop Real Madrid.
ST: Striker: KylianMbappe (PSG) – £135 million
The teenage sensation from Monaco has been on the rise ever since his breakthrough season two years ago. He joined PSG in a mega money move and did surprisingly well despite the heavy price tag on his young shoulders. He performed admirably in the World Cup slicing away Argentinian defence with a monstrous solo-run that was perhaps the moment of the world cup. Mbappe too was a reported target for Real Madrid as Los Blancos were on the lookout for a replacement for Ronaldo.