A Guide to the Various Positions on the Football Pitch
Football is a widely supported sport across the globe, and is even referred to as Soccer in different countries. Most young children will find themselves drawn to the game and long to give it a go. Although, some aspiring fans can be much older when they take an interest in the sport and it is still possible to take it up with your local club.
When it comes to playing football as a team, there is a range of positions which you can choose from. Depending on your skill set, you may find yourself siding more towards a certain role on the field. But to find out more about the position itself and the requirements to fit the post, we have put together this article discussing each role and all about them.
When it comes to the Goalkeeper, their sole purpose is to stop the ball getting into the net. Therefore, they use padded gloves as well as their shin pads to keep them fully protected as they dive to stop the ball. They are also able to be passed the ball by the players in the back positions for them to be able to kick it across the field to progress the game play towards the oppositions goal rather than their own.
To be a successful Goalkeeper you would need immense focus to keep your eye on the ball. And you would need to be good at trying to pre-empt a striker’s move so that you can cover all bases when it comes to catching the ball. You would also need to have excellent reflexes in order to prevent the football from making its way towards the back of the net.
There are three different areas where the defenders are found in, centrally in front of the goalkeeper, to the left and to the right. The main purpose of these players is to prevent the opposition’s strikers from getting near the goal to score. Defenders are also able to pass the ball to the Goalkeeper for them to start the game play off further down field towards the opposition’s end.
To be a superb Defender it would be ideal for you to be good at ‘attacking’. Which means that you are able to gauge where the strikers from the opposition are heading in order to stop them in their tracks. You would also require power and speed once the ball is at your feet to ensure that the other team does not have the opportunity to take it back and score.
However, you would need to have your wits about you, as most people in this position find themselves receiving a card from the referee for fouls if any action is taken that is against the rules, no matter how hard you want to take the ball off the opposition.
Midfielder position has both offence and defence capabilities, this means that they can help the Defenders by tackling the opposition as they get closer to the goal, and they can pass the ball to the strikers in order for them to score. You may also find that some players in this place on the pitch can also receive the opportunity to score goals as they almost act as a swing between both roles.
There are four different areas on the pitch where the Midfielder is located to play. Two are situated towards the centre of the pitch, with one on either side of them, covering the left and right flanks. They also sit perfectly in-between the Defenders and the Strikers.
Therefore, to excel as a Midfielder, you would need a fantastic combination of requirements that are needed for a Defender and a Striker. This means that they would need to be fast and accurate for scoring goals as well as skilled at transferring the ball between the positions. As they have the rights to assist either role on the pitch, they are almost enabled to ‘swing’ between what area they are needed to fulfil at the time.
Due to them being able to fit either mould of the positions, you would need to be head strong and focused in this role to make sure you keep to the guidelines of both specifications. As they are able to suit both areas, you will find that players in this specific role will have the most strength and speed when it comes to attacking and striking.
Also known as a Forward, a Striker’s main objective in the game of football is to transfer the ball as fast as they can towards the goal. Once they are in the correct area on the pitch, they are then able to strike the ball in the right direction towards the goal. However, by getting close to the goal they will come into contact with the opposition’s Midfielders and Defenders so would have to have their eyes focused on the main mission of scoring.
As they would have to navigate through the opposition’s defence, a Striker needs to be light on their feet and speedy. It is also essential for them to have a strong and powerful sprint and force when it comes to kicking the ball. Although, this is a must, this should not distract from the fact that they need to be accurate when it comes to striking the ball.
Which Role Do You Prefer?
Above we have looked into the positions played in the glorious game of soccer. Throughout the article we can see that each role has different responsibilities however, they all require speed and agility for a successful time in that position.
Now the requirements for the Goalkeepers, Defenders, Midfielders and Strikers have been covered, which area would you find yourself wanting to play? Let us know your thoughts on this topic and we will gladly chat with you about this over on our social media pages. We also stock a variety of soccer gear here at Sports Fitness to get you fully equipped for your journey into the wonderful world of football.
This article was written exclusively for Sports Fitness by Loren Astbury.