The World Cup can work miracles for a player’s reputation. Take Blackburn’s Lucas Neill: Pre-Germany he was a no-nonsense right-back, renowned only for breaking Jamie Carragher’s leg â€“ now, after four composed performances at centre-back for Australia, Neill is suddenly the Aussie Beckenbauer. If you’d have told me before the World Cup began that Barcelona would one day show an interest in signing Neill, I’d have questioned your sanity â€“ it’s like AC Milan wanting Robbie Savage to be its new playmaker. Neill almost certainly won’t end up at Barca, of course (Neill has recently said he’s ‘happy’ at Blackburn), but for Rovers’ fans it’ll feel like signing a new player. Mad world.