The World Cup is the most popular and entertaining sporting event in the world. It is the only football tournament that welcomes players from all over the world.
Some major stars, on the other hand, stunned everyone by skipping World Cup tournaments.
Let’s take a look at some well-known footballers who have never competed in a World Cup.
- Ryan Giggs
If his teammates had a respectable degree of football expertise, Ryan Giggs might have qualified for the World Cup.
In 1994, he came within a whisker of qualifying for the World Cup, but a penalty kick was missed by one of his teammates, and the opponent won 2-1.
- Gareth Bale
He is regarded as Wales’ finest player, but he has never played in a World Cup. His teammates, including Ryan Giggs, lack the necessary qualifications. He does, however, have one more opportunity to qualify this year.
- Alfredo Di Stefano
Alfredo Di Stefano, although being Argentine, has never played in a World Cup. Due to several concerns, Argentina opted not to compete in the 1950 and 1954 World Cups.
He opted to nationalize Spain after realizing his chances of winning the World Cup were dwindling. Despite this, he and the Spanish national side were unable to qualify for the World Cup. That’s how he was able to retire without ever having played in a World Cup.
- George Weah
He never played in a World Cup event despite being regarded as the best African football player of all time. He was a representative for Liberia, a country that he had never been proud of.
Even so, he never ventured outside of his homeland in search of more enticing opportunities. Despite never playing in a World Cup, he won the Ballon d’Or in 1955.
- George Best
Another world-class athlete who has never played in a World Cup tournament is George Best. He was regarded as the best player in the world at the time, but his country (Northern Ireland) was unable to qualify for the World Cup. George had retired by the time they ultimately qualified in 1982.
- Eric Cantona
He never played in a World Cup competition despite playing for the French national team. His team just missed out on World Cup qualification in 1994.
They needed a draw versus Belgium to qualify, but the Belgians took a 2-1 lead due to a last-minute goal. In 1998, Zidane made his debut and quickly beat him in the process of being chosen for the national team.