Fantasy Football: Our expert shares his personal XI for the start of the World Cup

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Our Fantasy writer picks out the 11 best players and values on offer in the Goal game including stars from Portugal, Spain, Germany, France and more

Throughout the run-up to the World Cup we’ve offered plenty of advice on how you should build your team. We are now just days away from the start of the tournament and it’s time to put the tyres to the road.

So today I offer you my personal XI, with a quick sentence on why I selected them. Good luck to you and your Fantasy team and, if you haven’t signed up yet, be sure to do so here.

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GK: Alisson - Brazil, £6.1m, owned in 9.25% of teams

He has been phenomenal for both Roma and Brazil over the last year and sits perfectly at the nexus of ability and matchups.

DEF: Joshua Kimmich - Germany, £6.4m, owned in 13.79% of teams

Kimmich is, without doubt, the best defender in the Goal game having led all players in assists during qualifying whilst part of a top five defence at this tournament.

DEF: Thomas Meunier - Belgium, £6.1m, owned in 8.85% of teams

Only five players contributed towards more goals (goals+assists) than Meunier’s 12 and Belgium should have little trouble keeping clean sheets against Panama and Tunisia.

Thomas Meunier Belgium

DEF: Sime Vrsaljko - Croatia, £5.8m, owned in 1.39% of teams

He’s being slept on at the moment but Vrsaljko picked up three assists and six clean sheets in qualifying and will not face a top 10 attack in the group stage.

MID: Mohamed Salah - Egypt, £7.3m, owned in 15.9% of teams

Obviously this depends on his fitness, but he scored 63 per cent of Egypt’s qualifier goals is in the easiest group, and starts the tournament with a double gameweek.

MID: David Silva - Spain, £6.8m, owned in 8.77% of teams

Silva found his shooting this boots this season for both club (nine) and country (five) and is as close to a guaranteed starter as you’ll find this summer.

David Silva Spain

MID: Mile Jedinak - Australia, £5.6m, owned in 0.37% of teams

The Aston Villa man notched five penalties for Australia en route to Russia and, considering his heinously low cost and ownership, he’s a gamble I’m willing to take.

MID: Christian Eriksen - Denmark - £7.2m, owned in 10.3% of teams

He led all midfielders in goals during qualifying (11) and both scored and assisted in Denmark’s final tune-up against Mexico, just to firm up his standing as an elite option in the Goal game.

FOR: Olivier Giroud - France, £7.3m, owned in 3.15% of teams

Giroud had just as many goals as Griezmann on the road to Russia and, if he doesn’t start, you can always replace him midweek with someone who will.

Olivier Giroud France 2018

FOR: Edinson Cavani - Uruguay, £8.0m, owned in 5.22% of teams

He led all of South America in scoring during South American qualifiers (10) and will get plenty of opportunities to score as no opponent in Group A has a top 20 defence.

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FOR: Cristiano Ronaldo - £8.2m, owned in 27.06% of teams

Ronaldo has a surprisingly tough group, but he had more combined goals (18) than any other player in qualifying and, you know, is Ronaldo.

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