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Socceroos' World Cup opponents: The stars and young guns Australia will face in Russia

06:47 WAT 22/05/2018
Paul Pogba, Everton vs Manchester United, 17/18
It's not quite the group of death but the green and gold will face an array of talent in Russia

The Socceroos face a tough group stage at the World Cup where they will encounter France, Denmark and Peru over a 10-day period.

Their group C opponents feature several star players that will be looking to torment the Australian team.

Goal takes a look at each of the green and gold's foes - specifically their gun player, breakout contender and rising star.


Star Player: Paul Pogba (Manchester United)

The personality that is Paul Pogba is undeniably going to be one of the stars at the World Cup. The 25-year-old has had a decent season this year for Manchester United, finishing second in the league. It's fair to say much more is still anticipated from the former world record signing, and his form for his national team has been inconsistent, despite being a part of the side that made the European Championship final in 2016.

Breakout Contender: Nabil Fekir (Olympique Lyonnais)

Nabil Fekir may not be a household name at this stage but come Russia he may just be. The midfielder scored 18 goals this season - comparable with the likes of Neymar and Falcao. He may not start for Les Blues but will prove a valuable asset if in need of a crucial goal.

Rising Talent: Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain)

The youngster set the world on fire with his dazzling performances in 2017 for Monaco and PSG. He has been a little quiet recently, but there is no better stage than the World Cup to remind fans of his ability.


Star Player: Christian Eriksen (Tottenham Hotspur)

The Dane made his World Cup debut at the age of 18 in South Africa in 2010. He is now coming into his prime after several world class seasons for Tottenham in the English Premier League, often earning plaudits for his role as an attacking midfielder. There is no doubt he will be Denmark's playmaker and chief tormentor of opposition defenders.


Breakout Contender: Pione Sisto (Celta de Vigo)

The La Liga wide man has been seen as a rapid outlet for much of the season, popping up with nine assists. His dribbling and key passes in the final third will be keeping his opponents wary in Russia.

Rising Talent: Andreas Christensen (Chelsea)

The 22-year-old has started to find his feet at senior level keeping the likes of David Luiz and Gary Cahill out of the Chelsea side. This is his first major international tournament and may result in Chelsea facing a battle to keep his services seeing as they have no Champions League football next season.


Star Player: Jefferson Farfan (FC Lokomotiv Moscow)

The Peruvian veteran will feel right at home this World Cup considering he plays for a top flight Russian side. His 81 caps will make him Peru's most experienced player - with his leadership likely to be a vital element to their hopes of progressing.

Breakout Contender: Andre Carrillo (Watford)

Although playing in the Premier League, the wide man may not be known to many football fans. However, his dribbling and defensive contribution has caused havoc this year for EPL opponents and Russia may turn his loan move from Benfica into a permanent deal somewhere else in one of Europe's top leagues.

Rising Talent: Renato Tapia (Feyenoord)

The 22-year-old has been solid in defence this year for Dutch Eredivisie side Feyenoord. The defensive midfielder has been praised for both sides of his game being able to carry the ball out from the back yet also making crucial blocks while defending deep. The ability to pass the ball may also come in handy for head coach Ricardo Gareca, whose side without doubt will require both attacking and defensive qualities due to the strength of the group.