It can be said that the role of defensive players has changed in the last few years. Preventing the opponent from scoring remains the basic principle of this position.
We certainly live in an era of defenders who can control the ball. At the same time, full-backs have suddenly become very popular for their contribution to the game, both in attack and defense, as managers look for tactical solutions to help their teams score goals and win matches.
Defenders today are creating their teams’ attacks and sometimes even creating goalscoring chances.
1. Alphonso Davies (Bayern Munich)
🔥 Highest rated left-backs in Europe's top five leagues this season (4+ apps):
🥇 Alphonso Davies – 7.68
🥈 David Raum – 7.49
🥉 Pervis Estupinan – 7.22
🥉 Andy Robertson – 7.22
🏅 Bradley Locko – 7.20 pic.twitter.com/c1WlOlFeT9
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) September 27, 2023
The best Canadian player, 22 years old, Davies, is one of the best defenders in the Bundesliga and the world. He was the main player in the Canadian team in the World Cup in Qatar. Although he is a defender, Davies is very important when the team is attacking, mostly because of his speed.
2. Josko Gvardiol (Manchester City)
This left-footed Croatian player is the most expensive defender in the world. He is only 21 years old, and from Dinamo Zagreb through RB Leipzig, he is now a player at Manchester City. This incredible defender can quickly anticipate the game and transform the play from defense to attack.
3. Willian Saliba (Arsenal)
Saliba is another young defender who knows how to be dangerous for the opposite goal. He passed all young categories of the French National team and is now part of the senior squad.
He is Arsenal’s player, but he was loaned for several years in France, in Saint Etienne, Nice and Marseille. He is undoubtedly in Artera’s plans for the future to become the main defender of the team.
4. Jeremie Frimpong (Bayer Leverkusen)
Frimpong was part of Manchester City academy, but he was rated as not good enough for that team, and now every big team in Europa wants him. He was part of the Netherlands national team in the World Cup in Qatar, and he is only 22 years old.
5. Antonio Silva (Benfica)
Benfica again has a diamond in the squad. This 19-year-old defender is among the best in the world.
Every manager wants him, as he showed impressive skills despite being very young. He was one of the youngest players in the World Cup in Qatar, and this Portuguese will undoubtedly become a legend among the defenders.
6. Jurrien Timber (Arsenal)
Another Dutch young defender who plays in the Premier League is Arsenal. Many teams wanted to sign with him, but he chose to come to Arsenal.
Timber impressed the world with his matches in Ajax, and he was noticed and included in the squad for the national team at the World Cup in Qatar. He is 22 years old, and together with Saliba, they can become the heart of the defensive line in Arsenal.
7. Nuno Mendes (PSG)
This young Portuguese player was part of every national team category and was noticed by scouts even when he was part of Sporting’s academy. Now Mendes is part of PSG, and with his movement and playing style, he looks a lot like Alphonso Davies from Bayern Munich.
8. Wesley Fofana (Chelsea)
Many will be surprised when they hear that Fofana is only 22. He was very young when he joined Leicester in the Premier League. He is now Chelsea’s player, but unfortunately, he is badly injured and even missed the World Cup in Qatar because of injuries.
9. Benoit Badiashile (Chelsea)
It seems that Chelsea has very good taste in defenders. This young Frenchman is also Chelsea’s player.
He is a very disciplined, hardworking, aggressive player who plays very smart and doesn’t rush in difficult situations or under pressure. He came to Chelsea from Monaco, where he was the best defender in the team.
10. Eric Garcia (Barcelona)
Garcia is a 22-year-old player with a very rich career and experience. Under Pep Guardiola, he made his debut when he was 17 years old.
He played three seasons in Manchester City before joining Barcelona. He has amazing skills to take the ball out of his half when under pressure, he doesn’t lose the ball easily, and his greatest skill is cutting opponent’s passes and actions.