The beauty of World Cup moments, and indeed of football moments as a genre, is their scarcity.
Football is a game of physical and tactical struggle, often mistaken as monotony. A game of slow builds, often coming undone, etched into history as quiet teases. And then … BOOM. The moment comes, its orgasmic release is unique, its instant excitement peerless. The slow teases – the scarcity – have made it so.
Toni Kroos’ free kick, for instance, was so unbelievable, so intoxicating, because at least nine times out of 10 it doesn't find the back of the net. Same goes for Cristiano Ronaldo and Marcos Rojo. At least nine times out of 10, their teams’ attacking raids had fizzled out. And decades of soccer watching had told us the possible plot was that they would keep fizzling out until a high-pitched whistle mercifully screamed no more.
That’s why the 2018 World Cup has been so unique. Moments have been remarkably plentiful. Put up against history, though; each has been no less exhilarating; no less memorable.
Here are the top 10 moments of the 2018 World Cup. Let’s have at it …
1. That Kylian Mbappe run
Have we ever seen anything like this at a World Cup?
Mbappe did not need the World Cup as a platform for his breakout. He was already one of the ten best players in the world. He was already the second-most expensive ever. There was still something mind-blowing about that Argentina game; something uniquely captivating about the run; something momentous about him doing that on the World Cup stage.
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