Now is the time for legends to be born

10:00am Wednesday 11th June 2014

By Michael Duberry

Finally the FIFA World Cup 2014 is here.

The long wait is over and we can now sit back, watch the world’s top teams and the best players fight for football’s ultimate prize.

The World Cup finals are the place where legends are born, reputations cemented and the pretenders found out.

Every World Cup so far has produced ‘that’ star, ‘that’ player to take the tournament by the scruff of the neck and just own it.

When people look back at a certain World Cup finals they remember the star player just as much as the winning team.

I took a look at some previous finals, and thought of a player that I associate with that particular World Cup, for being just simply the star of the show.

Starting off in Mexico 86, there is only one man that this World Cup will be remembered for.

Love him or hate him you have to give it to him.

This was his World Cup, he owned it and owned every team he played against including England.

Not without controversy, Diego Maradona came away from Mexico as the star of the show and enhanced his reputation as possibly the greatest ever player.

Oxford Mail:

Gazza as Oxford United fans will remember him in a Yellows shirt as Middlesbrough celebrated promotion to the Premiership after a   4-1 win over the U’s at the Riverside at the end of the 1997-98 season

Maybe I’m just biased, but Italia 90 is all about one man for me.

He didn’t win the World Cup and didn’t even get to the final, but this star shone the brightest in my eyes.

Gazza made himself a world star and won the hearts of a nation.

He was immediately elevated to hero status by young kids to grown men.

Even now he is still in the hearts of so many.

France 98 was about one man who carried his country to glory.

Oxford Mail:

Zinedine Zidane spearheaded France’s charge to glory in the 1998 World Cup

Zinedine Zidane took all the pressure that came with playing for the host nation, and the expectation of being the team’s biggest star.

Brilliant throughout and with his brace in the final against Brazil, he cemented himself as one of the all-time greats.

The golden goal was introduced in the 2002 World Cup in Korea and Japan, and it was the man with the golden touch who was the star of the show.

With eight goals to his name, including two in the final, it helped Brazil’s Ronaldo (the original one!) become the player of the tournament.

His unique haircut, so his son could recognize him on TV, was just one of the reasons that set him apart from the rest.

He is still the World Cup finals record goalscorer with 15.

Wouldn’t it be great if Brazil 2014 was the World Cup remembered for Steven Gerrard dominating the tournament like he does for Liverpool or for Wayne Rooney winning our hearts with outstanding performances just like Gazza did in Italia 90?

Let’s be honest, we would ultimately just like to remember Brazil 2014 for England winning the World Cup.

Every kid who has ever kicked a football has had that dream of scoring the winning goal in the World Cup final.

This summer in Rio, dreams will come true, and on football’s biggest stage a new legend will be born.

Let’s just hope that the legend is born with English blood running through his veins.

Come on England!

Oxford United's 'home' pre-season friendly against Coventry City to be played at Nuneaton

Oxford Mail:

4:30pm Friday 3rd July 2015

Oxford United’s pre-season friendly against Coventry City will now take place at Nuneaton Town on Saturday 1st August (3pm).

FOOTBALL: Wantage Town and Didcot Town to clash in FA Cup

Oxford Mail: football generic

11:31am Friday 3rd July 2015

Local rivals Wantage Town and Didcot Town have been drawn together in this season’s Emirates FA Cup.

Ian Lenagan: Oxford United are in good hands a year after takeover

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Friday 3rd July 2015

A YEAR on from stepping down as Oxford United chairman, Ian Lenagan is convinced he did the right thing in selling a controlling stake to Darryl Eales.

Departing Ryan Clarke humbled by goodwill messages from Oxford United fans

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Friday 3rd July 2015

RYAN Clarke has paid tribute to Oxford United's supporters after his six-year stay at the club ended yesterday by mutual consent.

TENNIS: Connor makes big impression in Norway

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Friday 3rd July 2015

CONNOR Ferguson lost in the quarterfinals of his first 14 & Under Tennis Europe event, held in Oslo.

ROWING: Gold rush for Oxfordshire crews at Reading

Oxford Mail: rowing image close up of oars and rowers arms

7:00am Friday 3rd July 2015

ABINGDON School and St Edward’s starred at the Reading Town Regatta, which saw ten wins for Oxfordshire boats.

GOLF: Par is just fine for Eddie Pepperell

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Friday 3rd July 2015

Eddie Pepperell dug in to begin his French Open campaign with a solid level par round.

CRICKET: Will Eason is rewarded with county debut as Oxfordshire eye victory

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Friday 3rd July 2015

WILL Eason will make his competitive Minor Counties debut for Oxfordshire against Wales this weekend.

RUGBY UNION: Darlington brothers make Chinnor switch

Oxford Mail: rugby generic

7:00am Friday 3rd July 2015

Chinnor have continued their summer recruitment drive with the signing of brothers Mark and Andrew Darlington from Dutch side RC ‘t Gooi.

WOMEN'S FOOTBALL: Oxford United Ladies skipper: Lionesses' World Cup has changed our game

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Friday 3rd July 2015

England's incredible run to the semi-finals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup has been inspirational, according to Oxford United Women’s captain Sahara Osborne-Ricketts, writes MATTHEW BRUCE.

Back

© Copyright 2001-2015 Newsquest Media Group

Oxford Mail: site_logo http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk

Click 2 Find Business Directory http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/trade_directory/