As Colombia and, unexpectedly, Costa Rica recorded victories as Groups C and D got under way in Brazil, Goal looks at an Arsenal star in scoring form plus two men on their way out
As Goal continues to run the rule on those players representing the Premier League outside of the Three Lions, we see an Arsenal striker in the spotlight as well as two men on their way out of English clubs this summer...
Sam Allardyce has been ordered to implement a more attacking style following an underwhelming second season back in the Premier League for West Ham – extending the loan of the buccaneering Napoli full-back would represent a decent start to addressing his side's style deficiencies.
Armero made just five appearances for the Hammers following his move in January but displayed no signs of ring rust during Colombia's opener against Greece and featured more as an auxiliary winger than conventional full-back. The highlight of his display was the seventh-minute goal, his nation's first at a World Cup since 1998, which in truth owed as much to a fortunate deflection as his sense of adventure and timing.
Manchester United were made only too aware of Campbell's eye for goal in their Champions League defeat against Olympiakos earlier this season and the Arsenal striker, who has spent the last three years out on loan, enhanced his reputation still further on an even bigger stage with an effervescent display against Uruguay.
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Campbell ploughed a lone furrow up front for most of the game but was always a threat with the ball at his feet and showed a maturity and composure beyond his years with a beautifully controlled finish on the half-volley to bring his side level shortly after the interval.
Thereafter, he revelled in the open spaces, utilising his electric pace, as Uruguay pushed for an equaliser and nearly added to his tally with a stunning second goal with another fizzing effort from distance that left Muslera standing.
Campbell rounded off his night by showing he can create as well as finish with a stunning reverse pass which allowed Marco Arena to seal the first genuine upset of this World Cup.
By the end Uruguay had been run so ragged by the relentless Campbell that their frustration boiled over. Maxi Pereira’s wild kick earned him the first red card of the tournament but it was worth noting Campbell demonstrating impressive restraint in not reacting to such a senseless act of violence.
Uruguay captain Diego Lugano is among a handful of players leaving West Brom this summer so will be looking to impress suitors at the World Cup but had a more difficult game than he would have been expecting against Costa Rica.
The centre-back won the first-half penalty from which Edinson Cavani opened the scoring after being rugby-tackled to the ground but was conspicuous by his absence as the Central Americans staged a shock turnaround in the second period.
The Manchester City star had a game to forget for Cote d'Ivoire, yet they still ran out 2-1 winners over Japan in their opening group game.
Toure didn't seem to be playing at 100 percent and was uncharacteristically lazy off the ball, letting Honda breeze past him far too easily for the first goal.
The imposing midfielder still managed to play a large role in attack, but couldn't find a goal - he will face sterner tests should Cote d'Ivoire progress in this competition.
The 25-year-old playaker may feel that after two seasons of struggling to adapt to lift at Old Trafford, he needs a new challenge to kick-start his career.
The Manchester United man will have to be more impressive than he was against Cote d'Ivoire to attract the interest of Europe's top teams, though, as he failed to impose himself on the game while Japan surrendered their lead and the points.
Kagawa was nowhere near clinical enough in attack, and despite some fine footwork and cute dribbling, none of it led to concrete chances as Japan wilted under the pressure.
The 25-year-old striker netted 16 Premier League goals for Swansea last season, and his finishing skills proved to be key for Cote d'Ivoire last night as he headed them level against Japan.
Bony met a fine cross from Arsenal target Serge Aurier to powerfully glance his effort into the net, and made some nice runs off the ball.
The Swans man lacked quality in front of goal in the first half, however, and will have to be more alert in the opening stages - better teams than Japan will not give up their leads so easily.
The Newcastle United midfielder had a game to forget for Cote d'Ivoire as his positioning play was simply not up to standard against Japan.
His scrappy play opened up space for the Japanese playmakers to hurt his side, and his inability to retain possession led to frustration until his side turned the game around.
The 27-year-old especially failed to deal with the trickery of Keisuke Honda, and though his team have three points, both Colombia and Greece must be licking their lips at the prospect of facing up against Tiote in this kind of form.
It may be all change at Southampton this summer, but Maya Yoshida put that to one side as he got his first taste of World Cup action last night for Japan.
The 25-year-old centre-back will be disappointed with his debut in the competition, however; despite a vital block on a Gervinho attempt, Yoshida struggled to cope as his side let their lead slip away in the second half.
A few careless tackles were unnerving, and while he was generally solid, a poor five-minute period in which his opponents scored two quick goals lost the points for Japan. There is no hiding place at this level of the game, and Yoshida was found wanting.