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Encyclopedia > Defender (football)
The Bolton players in white are defending - the nearest player is trying to prevent the Fulham forward in cyan from crossing the ball. Those inside the penalty area are positioning themselves to 'mark' Fulham's attackers and clear any cross that comes in.
The Bolton players in white are defending - the nearest player is trying to prevent the Fulham forward in cyan from crossing the ball. Those inside the penalty area are positioning themselves to 'mark' Fulham's attackers and clear any cross that comes in.

In football, a defender is a player whose position of play is behind the midfielders and whose first and foremost purpose is to provide support to the goalkeeper. Their primary function is to prevent the opposition from scoring a goal. Image File history File links Question_book-3. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Fulham_on_the_attack. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Fulham_on_the_attack. ... Bolton Wanderers Football Club is an English professional football club based in Horwich, in the Borough of Bolton, North West England. ... Fulham Football Club are an English football team based in Fulham, in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. ... Cyan (from Greek κυανοs, meaning blue) may be used as the name of any of a number of a range of colors in the blue/green part of the spectrum. ... In football (soccer), a cross is a delivery of a ball from either side of the field across to the front of the goal. ... The penalty area (colloquiallly also known as the 18-yard box, penalty box or simply the box), is an area of an association football field. ... A player (wearing the red kit) has penetrated the defence (in the white kit) and is taking a shot at goal. ... The Midfield in relation to the football positions In association football, a midfielder is a player whose position of play is midway between the attacking strikers and the defenders (highlighted in blue on the diagram). ... A football goalkeeper leaves the ground to parry a shot on goal In many team sports, a goalkeeper (termed goaltender, netminder, goalie, or keeper in some sports) is a designated player that is charged with directly preventing the opposite team from scoring by defending the goal. ...


There are four types of defender - centre back, sweeper, full back, and wing back.

Contents

Centre back

The job of the centre back, centre half, central defender, or stopper is to stop opposing players, particularly the strikers, from scoring, and to bring the ball out from their penalty area. As their name suggests, they play in a central position. Most teams employ two centre backs, stationed in front of the goalkeeper. There are two main defensive strategies used by centre backs: the zonal defence, where each centre back covers a specific area of the pitch, and man-to-man marking, where each centre back has the job of covering a particular opposition player. The penalty area (colloquiallly also known as the 18-yard box, penalty box or simply the box), is an area of an association football field. ...


Centre backs are often tall, with good heading and tackling ability. An ability to read the game well is a distinct advantage. Sometimes, particularly in lower grades of football, centre backs concentrate less on ball control and passing, preferring to merely clear the ball in a "safety-first" fashion. However, there is a long tradition of centre backs having more than just rudimentary footballing skill, enabling a more possession-oriented playing style.


The position was formerly referred to as centre half. In the early part of the 20th century, when most teams employed the 2-3-5 formation, the two players at the back were called full backs and the row of three players in front of them were called half backs. As formations evolved, the central player in this trio, the centre half, moved into a more defensive position on the field, taking the name of the position with them. The right and left players in the trio were called the right half and left half respectively.


Centre backs usually remain in the half of the field that contains the goal they are defending, but tall defenders will often go forward to the opposing team's penalty box when their team takes corner kicks or free kicks, where scoring with one's head is a possibility. Good players of this position include: Rio Ferdinand, John Terry, Carles Puyol, Lúcio, Lilian Thuram, Rafael Márquez, Alessandro Nesta, Nemanja Vidic, Paolo Maldini, Kolo Toure, Walter Samuel, Fabio Cannavaro, Ricardo Carvalho, Philippe Mexès, William Gallas, Roberto Ayala and Daniel Van Buyten. In association football a corner kick is awarded if the defensive team is the last to touch the ball before it crosses its own goal line (goal line of the end of the field it is defending) outside of the goal itself (whether by kicking or off the hands of... A free-kick in football describes the situation where a player on the opposing team has committed a foul, and you are given the ball to play from the position where the offence took place. ... Rio Gavin Ferdinand (born 7 November 1978 in Peckham, London) is an English footballer of mixed St Lucian, Dominican and Anglo-Irish descent. ... For other persons named John Terry, see John Terry (disambiguation). ... Carles Puyol i Saforcada (born April 13, 1978 in La Pobla de Segur, Catalonia) is a Catalan footballer who is the current team captain of FC Barcelona. ... Lucimar Ferreira da Silva (born May 8, 1978 in Brasília) more commonly known as Lúcio, is a Brazilian football defender who plays for FC Bayern Munich. ... Lilian Thuram (born Ruddy Lilian Thuram-Ulien, January 1, 1972 in Pointe-à-Pitre, Guadeloupe, France) is a French professional football defender, the most capped player in the history of the France national team. ... This is a Mexican footballer. ... Alessandro Nesta, Cavaliere Ufficiale OMRI[2][3], (born March 19, 1976 in Rome) is an Italian World Cup-winning footballer. ... Nemanja Vidic(Born November 21, 1981) is a footballer from Serbia and Montenegro. ... Paolo Maldini (born June 26, 1968 in Milan) is an Italian footballer who plays for A.C. Milan. ... Kolo Abib Touré (born March 19, 1981), is an Ivorian footballer. ... Walter Adrián Samuel (born March 22, 1978 in Laborde, Córdoba Province) is an Argentine football (soccer) player, who currently plays for Internazionale of the Italian league. ... Fabio Cannavaro, Cavaliere Ufficiale OMRI[1][2] (born September 13, 1973 in Naples, Italy) is an Italian World Cup-winning footballer. ... Ricardo Alberto Silveira Carvalho, OIH (born May 18, 1978 in Amarante, near Porto), pron. ... Philippe Mexès (IPA: []) (born March 30, 1982 in Toulouse, France) is a French professional football (soccer) player, who currently plays as a centreback for Italian club A.S. Roma. ... William Gallas, (born 17 August 1977 in Asnières-sur-Seine), is a French international footballer of Guadeloupian descent who currently plays for and captains Arsenal in the English Premier League. ... Roberto Fabián El Raton Ayala (born 14 April 1973 in Paraná) is an Argentinian football player, who currently plays for the Spanish team Real Zaragoza. ... Daniel Van Buyten (born February 7, 1978 in Chimay) is a Belgian international footballer who currently plays as a defender and also as an emergency striker for Bayern Munich, following a June 2006 transfer from Hamburger SV. His father Franz was a popular catcher/wrestler in Europe from 1960 to...


Sweeper/libero

The sweeper is a more versatile type of centre back that "sweeps up" the ball if the opponent manages to breach the defensive line. His or her position is rather more fluid than other defenders who man-mark their designated opponents. Because of this, the position is often referred to as libero (from the Italian word meaning free). The sweeper's ability to read the game is even more vital than for a centre back. A sweeper is sometimes expected to build counter-attacking moves, and as such requires better ball control and passing ability than a typical centre back. However, sweepers are often merely defensive players. For example, the catenaccio system of play, used in Italian football in the 1960s, employed a purely defensive sweeper who only 'roamed' around the back line. Karl Rappans verrou Catenaccio describes a tactical system in football with an emphasis on defence and tactical fouls. ...


Franz Beckenbauer, Bobby Moore, Gaetano Scirea, Laurent Blanc, Tony Adams, Matthias Sammer, Ruud Krol, Franco Baresi, Paolo Maldini, Hong Myung-Bo, and Daniel Passarella are some of the best ever sweepers in football history. Their defending styles are considered to have more of an attacking mentality compared to the modern day centre-back. The best modern day examples include: Cristian Chivu, Kolo Toure, Lúcio, Rio Ferdinand and Rafael Márquez. For instance, Marquez is known for his ability to read and anticipate the attackers' moves. This allows him to intercept passes and get the ball off the opposition without needing to hurl himself into tackles. Others like Maldini will move forward and distribute the ball up-field. In modern football, its usage has been fairly restricted, with few clubs in the biggest leagues using the position. Franz Anton Beckenbauer (born September 11, 1945) is a German football coach, manager, and former player, nicknamed der Kaiser (the emperor) because of his elegant style, his leadership qualities, his first name Franz (reminiscent of the Austrian emperors), and his dominance on the football pitch. ... Robert Frederick Chelsea Bobby Moore, OBE (born Barking, England, April 12, 1941 - died London, February 24, 1993) was an English footballer. ... Gaetano Scirea (May 25, 1953 - September 3, 1989) was an Italian football player and one of the greatest defenders of all-time: Scirea is one of the very few players to have won all national and international trophies for football clubs. ... Laurent Blanc (born November 19, 1965 in Alès) is a retired French football defender, who scored the first golden goal in World Cup history. ... For other persons named Tony Adams, see Tony Adams (disambiguation). ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Rudolf (Ruud or Rudi) Jozef Krol (born March 24, 1949 in Amsterdam) is a retired Dutch footballer who was capped 83 times for his native country. ... Franco Baresi (born May 8, 1960 in Travagliato, province of Brescia) is an Italian youth team coach and former football defender with A.C. Milan, acknowledged as one of the greatest defenders ever to play the game. ... Paolo Maldini (born June 26, 1968 in Milan) is an Italian footballer who plays for A.C. Milan. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Cristian Eugen Chivu (IPA: []) (born October 26, 1980 in ReÅŸiÅ£a, Romania) is a Romanian footballer. ... Kolo Abib Touré (born March 19, 1981), is an Ivorian footballer. ... Lucimar Ferreira da Silva (born May 8, 1978 in Brasília) more commonly known as Lúcio, is a Brazilian football defender who plays for FC Bayern Munich. ... Rio Gavin Ferdinand (born 7 November 1978 in Peckham, London) is an English footballer of mixed St Lucian, Dominican and Anglo-Irish descent. ... This is a Mexican footballer. ...


Some observers consider the position of the attack-minded sweeper to have evolved into the position of the defensive midfielder / deep-lying playmaker in modern football.


Full back

The full backs take up the wide defensive positions, one on each side of the field. Their main task is to prevent opposition players crossing or cutting the ball back into the penalty area. In some defensive systems, full backs man-mark opponents. Most full backs are also expected to provide an attacking dimension by getting upfield along the wings and providing crosses.


In the traditional 2-3-5 team formation, the two players in the final row of defence before the goalkeeper were referred to as full backs. They were distinguished from the half backs (the "3" in 2-3-5). This formation is little used in the modern game, having been replaced largely by the four-man defence, but the term "full back" lives on — the full backs now occupy the wide positions in the defensive line, with the old centre half [back] doubled-up to fill the central defensive position.


The traditional English full back was a large, strong man who would make substantial use of "hacking" - deliberately kicking the shins of opponents, a practice that was acceptable as legal in Britain but not in other countries, and caused major controversy as the game became increasingly internationalised from the 1950s on. It is now effectively banned everywhere, and it is this in part that has given rise to a different set of defensive roles.


In contrast, the role of the full back often involves an attacking element: to some extent the full backs have replaced the winger and are expected to get forward to deliver crosses from a wide position. The modern full back is usually pacy, strong in the tackle and with good stamina to get up and down the field. Good examples of these include: Ashley Cole, Gianluca Zambrotta, Willy Sagnol, Miguel, Gary Neville, Maicon, John Arne Riise, Paolo Maldini, Eric Abidal, Patrice Evra, Philipp Lahm, Wayne Bridge, Gabriel Heinze and Michel Salgado. Ashley Cole (born 20 December 1980, Stepney, London) is an English footballer of Barbadian descent. ... Gianluca Zambrotta, Cavaliere OMRI[1] (born February 19, 1977 in Como) is an Italian World Cup-winning footballer. ... William Willy Sagnol (born March 18, 1977 in Saint-Étienne, France) is a French international Defender currently playing for Bayern Munich in Germanys Bundesliga. ... Miguel (pron. ... Gary Neville (born 18 February 1975 in Bury, Greater Manchester) is an English footballer who is Englands most capped right full back and Manchester Uniteds club captain. ... Maicon Douglas Sisenando, known as Maicon (born 26 July 1981 in Criciuma) is a Brazilian football player, currently playing for Internazionale in Italy. ... John Arne Semundseth Riise (born September 24, 1980 in Ålesund) is a Norwegian football player who currently plays for Liverpool F.C. Riise is renowned for the shooting power and accuracy of his favoured left foot, as well as his excellent physical conditioning, most notably his outstanding stamina levels. ... Paolo Maldini (born June 26, 1968 in Milan) is an Italian footballer who plays for A.C. Milan. ... Éric Abidal , (born July 11, 1979 in Lyon) is a football (soccer) player from France. ... Patrice Evra (born 15 May 1981 in Dakar, Senegal) is a French-Senegalese international footballer, who plays for English Premiership side Manchester United. ... Philipp Lahm (born November 11, 1983 in Munich, Bavaria) is a German footballer who currently plays as a defender for Bayern Munich and Germany at Euro 2004 and the 2006 FIFA World Cup. ... Wayne Michael Bridge (born August 5, 1980) is an English football defender, who currently plays left back for Chelsea. ... Gabriel Ivan Heinze (born 19 March 1978 in Crespo, Entre Ríos Province) is an Argentine footballer who currently plays for Real Madrid as a left-back. ... Míchel Salgado (full name Miguel Ángel Salgado Fernández), born 22 October 1975 in Las Nieves, Spain, is a footballer, who currently plays in the right back position for Real Madrid of Spain. ...


Wingback

The wingbacks are a modern variation on the full back with heavier emphasis on attack. The name is a portmanteau of "winger" and "back". They are usually employed in a 3-5-2 formation, and could therefore be considered part of the midfield. But they may also be used in a 5-3-2 formation and therefore have a more defensive role.


In the evolution of the modern game, wingbacks are the combination of wingers and fullbacks. As such it is one of the most demanding positions in modern football. Wingbacks are often more adventurous than full backs and are expected to provide width in a team without wingers. A wingback needs to be of exceptional stamina, be able to provide crosses upfield and defend effectively against opponents' attacks down the flanks. A defensive midfielder is usually fielded to cover the advances of wingbacks. The Midfield in relation to the football positions In association football, a midfielder is a player whose position of play is midway between the attacking strikers and the defenders (highlighted in blue on the diagram). ... The Midfield in relation to the football positions In association football, a midfielder is a player whose position of play is midway between the attacking strikers and the defenders (highlighted in blue on the diagram). ...


Some of the greatest wingbacks include Giacinto Facchetti, Antonio Cabrini, Andreas Brehme, Wim Suurbier, Manuel Amoros, Nílton Santos, and Carlos Alberto.[citation needed] Notable examples of recent wingbacks include Gianluca Zambrotta, Fabio Grosso, Massimo Oddo, Cafu, Roberto Carlos, Philipp Lahm, Javier Zanetti, Juan Pablo Sorin, Miguel, Daniel Alves, Maxwell, Maicon, Giovanni van Bronckhorst and Ashley Cole. Giacinto Facchetti. ... Antonio Cabrini, (born October 8, 1957) is a football (soccer) coach and former successful player from Italy. ... Andreas Brehme (born November 9, 1960 in Hamburg) is a German football coach and former football defender. ... Wilhemus L.J. Wim Suurbier (born 16 January 1945) is a former Dutch football player. ... Manuel Amoros (born 1961) was a French footballer. ... Nílton dos Santos (born May 16, 1927) is a Brazilian former football defender. ... Carlos Alberto Torres (born July 17, 1944, Rio de Janeiro) was a Brazilian football (soccer) player. ... Gianluca Zambrotta, Cavaliere OMRI[1] (born February 19, 1977 in Como) is an Italian World Cup-winning footballer. ... Fabio Grosso, Cavaliere Ufficiale OMRI[1][2], (born November 28, 1977) is an Italian World Cup-winning footballer, who plays for Ligue 1 team Olympique Lyonnais and the Italian national football team. ... Massimo Oddo, Cavaliere Ufficiale OMRI[1][2], (born June 14, 1976 in Città SantAngelo, Pescara) is an Italian World Cup-winning footballer, who plays for A.C. Milan and Italy in the role of right-back. ... Marcos Evangelista de Moraes (born June 7, 1970 in São Paulo), better known as Cafu, is a two-times Fifa World Cup winning Brazilian footballer, currently a defender for Italian club A.C. Milan. ... For the singer, see Roberto Carlos (singer) . Roberto Carlos, full name Roberto Carlos da Silva Rocha [2] (born April 10, 1973, Garça, São Paulo), is a Brazilian football wingback who currently plays for Turkish side Fenerbahçe. ... Philipp Lahm (born November 11, 1983 in Munich, Bavaria) is a German footballer who currently plays as a defender for Bayern Munich and Germany at Euro 2004 and the 2006 FIFA World Cup. ... Javier Adelmar Zanetti (born August 10, 1973) is an Argentine football player. ... Juan Pablo Sorín (born May 5, 1976 in Buenos Aires) is an Argentinian football player who, as of 2005, is playing for Villarreal in the Spanish Liga. ... Miguel (pron. ... Daniel Alves da Silva (born 6 May 1983 in Juazeiro), usually known as Daniel Alves, Dani Alves, is a Brazilian footballer who plays as an attacking right back or right winger for Sevilla in La Liga. ... Maxwell Cabelino Andrade, or simply Maxwell, (born August 27, 1981, in Vila Velha, Brazil). ... Maicon Douglas Sisenando, known as Maicon (born 26 July 1981 in Criciuma) is a Brazilian football player, currently playing for Internazionale in Italy. ... Giovanni Christiaan van Bronckhorst, nicknamed Gio (born February 5, 1975 in Rotterdam) is a Dutch football defender and midfielder, who currently plays for Feyenoord in de Dutch Eredivisie. ... Ashley Cole (born 20 December 1980, Stepney, London) is an English footballer of Barbadian descent. ...


See also

All the positions. ... In Association football, the formation describes how the players in a team are positioned on the pitch. ... Karl Rappans verrou Catenaccio describes a tactical system in football with an emphasis on defence and tactical fouls. ...

References

[1]


  Results from FactBites:
 
Defender (football) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1225 words)
In association football (soccer), a defender is a player whose position of play is behind the midfielders and first and foremost provide support to the goalkeeper.
The job of the centre backs or central defenders is to stop opposing players, particularly the strikers, from scoring, and to bring the ball out from their penalty area.
The taller defenders tend to move forward to the opposing team's penalty box when their team takes corner kicks or free kicks where scoring with one's head is a possibility.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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