The best football players never to play at the World Cup

The World Cup is a stage where we get the chance to witness the creme De la creme of Club Football on arguably the biggest stage representing their national teams all under one big umbrella  once every four years. But even then there is always room for more and every once in a while some do end up unfortunately slipping through the cracks for one reason or the another. But that gives us the reason to dive deeper and talk about such talents and that's what is going to be the effort to do so. 

Massimo Bonini (San Marino) 

Massimo Bonini (Credits - Juventus Official)

Starting off strong with someone from a nation which is yet to win a competitive match at a FIFA recognized tournament. You all might think that I am taking the biscuit for tipping someone from the lowest-ranked FIFA-affiliated national football team to be World Cup quality but that's exactly what former Juventus defensive midfielder Massimo Bonini was. He actually couldn't play for them for most of his career prime in the late 70s and 80s but he still managed to appear 19 time for them as well as a 9 Caps for Italy U-21 but never at a major finals. 

Yossi Benayoun (Israel) 

Yossi Benayoun (Credits - Liverpool Official)

Staying on the topic with nations who aren't traditional footballing  powerhouses, he was part of an Israel youth team which surprisingly came third in the 1996 UEFA European Under-16 Championship. And as a result he got an year at the fames Ajax academy and went on to represent the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool among others along with over 100 senior Israel Caps but never got the privileged to Don one at a World Cup Finals even though they came Close in 2006 and only missed out on GD. 

Fernando Peyroteo (Portugal) 

Fernando Peyroteo (Credits- These Football Times)

Now if I tell you that someone who has scored over 500 Goals in just about over 300 games and never played at World Cup. You might think that I am talking about my FIFA career mode but this was the case for someone who did earn 20 senior Caps and scored a respectable 14 goals. But all of them were in exhibition games and this can be largely attributed to the fact that his career coincided with the 2nd World War which hindered many a great careers, his being one of the though. This is an extrapolation of my own and I couldn't find any concrete proof of this theory being the case of his non appearance in any major finals for Portugal. 

Dixie Dean (England) 

Dixie Dean (Credits- These Football Times)

Staying put in the black and white era, we now move onto a player long before the era of Messi and Ronaldo who once managed to score 60 goals in a single season in English top flight football. But he never managed to play at the World Cup as England didn't participate in the inaugural edition but he did manage to score 18 goals in 16 matches for their senior side, so at least something to write home about on the International  stage for Dixie Dean. 

Dener (Brazil) 

Dener (Credits- Vavel)

This inclusion is a surprise one as I have only included it based on an eye test of some grainy YT compilations. But if you were there that time between 1989-1994 before his tragic demise in a car related accident, you must have also agreed that he definitely had the talent to go far beyond  2 measly Caps. He had the flair that only Ronaldinhio or Neymar possessed as a Winger and pure entertainer type carnival football all the while doing it for Portuguese of all teams. 

Cover Credits - Khel Now

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