Stars that’ll miss 2018 World Cup



Time catches up with everyone in the end and for a number of the World Cup’s biggest names their advancing years mean they have graced the for the last time.
Most players don’t get the to bow out at the top, but Miroslav Klose has waved goodbye to ’s grandest stage in style.
His goal in Germany’s 7-1 semi-final thrashing of Brazil saw him become the World Cup’s record goal scorer with 16 strikes, in a fitting end to what will be his last appearance in the at the age of 36.
Italy’s Andrea Pirlo continues to defy his years with his brilliance, but given he will be 39 by the time Russia comes around, he is unlikely to weave his magic in the again.

Another midfield star bidding farewell to the World Cup is Steven Gerrard. England were dumped out in the group stages in Brazil, and the 34-year-old is highly unlikely to have the to make amends in four years’ time.
Spain endured a miserable in Brazil, with their shock exit from Group B set to prompt a changing of the guard, as the veteran trio of Xabi Alonso, 32, Xavi, 34, and David Villa, 32 are replaced by a new breed in .
With four World Cups under his belt, Cameroon captain Samuel Eto’o has certainly had his fill of the game’s greatest , but the 33-year-old would need to display an astonishing durability if he is to appear at a fifth .
Fellow African icon Didier Drogba was used mainly as a substitute in Brazil and the Cote d’Ivoire star will almost certainly be retired in , when he will be 40 years old.

That could also be the case for Diego Forlan who, at 35 and now playing his in Japan, did remarkably well to be selected in Uruguay’s World Cup squad this time around.
Mexico captain Rafael Marquez became the first player to appear in five World Cups in Brazil, though the 35-year-old almost certainly won’t extend that record in Russia in four years.
And having failed to reach the at all, Sweden talisman Zlatan Ibrahimovic – who turns 33 in October – may not get another to grace the .
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