You are watching a World Cup game with friends, and you get edged out as your more soccer-savy friends take over the conversation, and there you are, left watching in silence, eating potato chips by the bag, wanting to put your two cents in, only to get shut down. Sound familiar? Well, we can help!

 

Here are five game changers and standout players you should look for in this year’s FIFA World Cup games in Brazil:

 

1. From the Brazilian Host Team:

Neymar of the Brazilian National Team (sportal.com.au)

Neymar of the Brazilian National Team (sportal.com.au)

Neymar (Neymar da Silva Santos)

Age: 22 years

Nationality: Brazil

Jersey Number: 10

Field Position: Forward – Left-Wing

Club Team: FC Barcelona

Fun Fact: Neymar was a soccer prodigy. He was paid one million euros at age fourteen to stay on with Santos FC until he got into professional soccer. He has gained a worldwide reputation as a very skilled footballer in recent years.

 

2. From the German team:

Captain of the German team, Philipp Lahm (sportsimply.com)

Captain of the German team, Philipp Lahm (sportsimply.com)

Philipp Lahm

Age: 30 years

Nationality: Germany

Jersey Number: 16

Field Position: Defender – Right-Back

Club Team: Bayern Munich

Fun Fact: This is Philipp Lahm’s fourth World Cup appearance and Lahm has claimed the title of captain of the national squad. Lahm is an excellent defender despite his small stature — he is only 5’7”.

 

3. From the Argentinian Team:

Lionel Messi in the 2014 World Cup (bleacherreport.com)

Lionel Messi in the 2014 World Cup (bleacherreport.com)

Lionel Messi

Age: 26 years

Nationality: Argentina, Spain

Jersey Number: 10

Field Position: Center Forward

Club Team: FC Barcelona

Fun Fact: Lionel Messi is the highest paid player in the 2014 World Cup at 292,000 euros per week — that is almost $400,000 US dollars! He is arguably one of the best soccer players of all time and one of the highest paid athletes worldwide.

 

4. From the Ghanian Team:

Kevin Prince-Boateng of Ghana (www.goal.com)

Kevin Prince-Boateng of Ghana (www.goal.com)

Kevin Prince-Boateng

Age: 27 years

Nationality: Ghana, Germany

Jersey Number: 23

Field Position: Center Midfield

Club Team: FC Schalke

Fun Fact: Kevin Prince-Boateng is the older brother of German national team starting defender Jerome Boateng. The two brothers will face off June 21st as they are both in Group G this year along with the U.S. and Portugal.

 

5. From the Netherlands:

Robin van Persie of the Netherlands (dailymail.co.uk)

Robin van Persie of the Netherlands (dailymail.co.uk)

Robin van Persie

Age: 30

Nationality: Netherlands

Jersey Number: 9

Field Position: Center Forward

Club Team: Manchester United

Fun Fact: Robin van Persie is the fourth highest paid player in the World Cup behind Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Wayne Rooney. He is the captain of the national team and is a strong, left footed forward. He is also the all-time leading scorer for the Netherlands.

 

Have you been keeping up with the World Cup? How do you think these players measure up? Leave a comment below or shoot me a tweet @JenksUOhMeASoda