Superstars looking like they’re having one of those days.

Sometimes, being the focal point is challenging. So far in the Euros, the top performers have had a mixed experience. Luka Modric found himself entangled in Rodri’s tactics. Toni Kroos started his month-long stint with a memorable display against John McGinn. Memphis Depay tried to channel NBA legend Allan Iverson but was overshadowed by Wout Weghorst once the action intensified. Christian Eriksen had a moment of brilliance reminiscent of Lazarus but later faded, similar to his second season at Manchester United.

 

Jude Bellingham’s impressive header and confident demeanor during England’s match against Serbia have convinced many in his country that he’s not just a rising star but already among the greatest. Social media is abuzz with memes about Bellingham’s commitment to excellence. However, questions arise about Phil Foden’s subdued performances and the experiences of Oleksandr Zinchenko and Mykhailo Mudryk, who could only watch as Nicolae Stanciu sparked a Romanian comeback that echoed fictional tales of Florin Raducioiu’s shopping spree.

 

Even Kylian Mbappé felt the weight of expectations, struggling with finishing and enduring the embarrassment of a broken nose from Austria’s Kevin Danso. Disoriented, he later earned a booking for time-wasting antics as France barely held on. His plan to return with a protective mask akin to Michael Crawford’s in “Phantom of the Opera” symbolizes resilience, much like N’Golo Kanté’s return to peak form reminiscent of 2016.

 

Amidst all this, spare a thought for Romelu Lukaku, who wore a crestfallen expression after having two goals disallowed—one for offside under strict VAR scrutiny and another due to a controversial handball call involving Loïs Openda. Even VAR experts and football pundits questioned the decisions, highlighting the complexities and challenges faced by top-tier players like Lukaku and his teammate Kevin De Bruyne, who struggled to shine.

 

Navigating the superstar status in football proves tougher than it appears, with each match offering moments of triumph and frustration. The Euros have showcased both the brilliance and the vulnerabilities of these stars, reminding us of the unpredictable nature of sports and the resilience required to thrive under immense pressure.

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