23 January, 2013 - 13:37

Top-5 defenders in the world according to FootballTop.com reader's voting

Top-5 defenders in the world according to FootballTop.com reader's voting

Can you name the best five defenders in the world? In fact it is a really difficult question to answer. The game has been gradually transforming and so have the criteria by which defenders are judged. 30 years ago a decent central defender might have been someone who cleared the ball in any potentially dangerous situation and struggled with his elbows till the last breath. The tactical competence has been beyond their area of responsibility.

Nowadays top defenders should be tactical-wise and be able to pass the ball as well as midfielders do. Any defender is expected to link effectively defense and attack lines and kicking the ball into row Z is simply not enough to succeed in the top clashes. The anticipation of the opponents’ actions along with the timely interceptions and last-ditch tackles are considered to be other qualities crucial for any top-quality defender. Taking into account all the above-said is becomes clear that our footballtop.com readers faced really difficult choice while voting on the best defenders. Further we will briefly consider the strong sides of the players featuring in the Top-5 defenders according FootballTop.com reader’s voting.

1. Carles Puyol (Barcelona)

Carles Puyol has been voted the best defender in the world. This is not surprising, as his experience and versatility (he can play anywhere across the defensive line) along with impressive work-rate, concentration and leadership qualities are the invaluable asset for his team. Even pacey and skillful strikers find it hard to beat Puyol. Although injuries and age have undoubtedly lessened his powers, he is still considered a key member of Barcelona squad. He has won 18 La Liga titles and let his national team to win in both World Cup and European Championship.

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2. Daniel Agger (Liverpool)

Daniel Agger is massively underrated player, with all the necessary qualities to be considered one of the world class defenders. Agger has established an excellent partnership with Skrtel with the pair constantly putting in impressive performances. He is a composed man on the ball and incredibly concentrated in the dangerous situations which allows him to held at bay the attacking players of the rival teams. To a great extent Liverpool remain in the top half of the Premier League thanks to his calm and reassuring presence at the heart of the Reds’ defense. Daniel Agger can be considered the defensive foundation upon which Brendan Rodgers is building the new Liverpool team.

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3. Thiago Silva (Paris Saint-Germain)

Although Brazil is best known for producing the attacking talents, the South American country has also given birth to a fair amount of excellent defensive players. Thiago Silva, who has recently been recognized as a best Serie A defender (which is quite a remarkable achievement in the country obsessed with catenaccio) completed a big-money transfer move to Paris Saint-Germain in 2012. Currently Thiago Silva is a rock at the centre of Parisian side’s defense which is currently battling for the French title. His combination of power, speed and technique along with the excellent tackling ability make him one of the best defenders in the world.

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4. Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)

19-year-old Ramos has joined Real Madrid from Sevilla for a staggering €27 million. However his hefty transfer fee began to repay almost immediately as he quickly developed into the world-class player. His ability to play in multiple defensive positions with equal efficacy, along with physical strength and outstanding aerial ability are among qualities that make him top-class defender both at Real Madrid and the Spanish national team.

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5. Adil Rami (Valencia)

Adil Rami has made a name for himself since joining Valencia in 2011 for €6 million from French side Lille. His solid display demonstrated throughout the season in one of the best football leagues in the world has built up his reputation as one of the world’s best defenders. Rami’s strengths lie in the combination of physical presence, pace and technical ability. He is comfortable with the ball at his feet and really good in the air, can be counted on in pressure situations.

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Author: Basil Naumov

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