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The Star of the 2018 World Cup in Russia

Noah Guyton

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This summer the 2018 FIFA World Cup was held in Russia. Before the event started there was plenty of hype around every player that had been a superstar for their club but now would be put to the test at the international level. One of these stars is 19 year old French soccer icon Kylian Mbappe. Both his critics and supporters were excited to see how he would perform on the world’s biggest stage after gaining recognition playing for Paris Saint-Germain.

Mbappe not only silenced his haters, he cemented himself as the best young player of his era. He made history multiple times during the tournament, becoming the youngest French player to score in a World Cup and being the only teenager other than soccer god, Pelé, to score two goals in one game. However, when compared to Pelé he modestly responded, “It’s flattering to be the second one after Pelé but let’s put things into context – Pelé is in another category.” Mbappe was handed the 2018 FIFA World Cup Best Young Player Award after clearly displaying he was not only one of the best young players, but among the top players in the entire world.

Going into the World Cup, I didn’t have a favorite player and admired many of the best players equally. I also did not know much about Kylian Mbappe. After watching a few minutes of his first game, I quickly became an avid fan. His speed and skills are awe-inspiring and watching him pace defenders with ease was a dream come true. Every time he gets the ball he put on a show for the millions watching. He is also an extremely aware and mature player especially for his age and has a bright future.

His play style of constantly going 1v1 against defenders and almost always winning the battle inspired me in my senior year of soccer. We play a very similar position and I pride myself on being speedy. While I am nowhere near his level, I feel watching him added a lot to my game and taught me the important skill of constant awareness both on and off the ball. Also, I wanted to do his iconic celebration, at some point during the season, but never had the chance.

Image result for kylian mbappe celebration

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The Star of the 2018 World Cup in Russia