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Soccer Player Positions

What are the player positions of a soccer team? Where do the goalkeepers, forwards, strikers, defenders, and midfielders stand? Get ready to learn the roles and positions in soccer.

Soccer Player Positions

Whilesoccer player positions can get highly specialized, they all fall under one of four main position groups:

  1. Goalkeepers
  2. Defenders
  3. Midfielders
  4. Forwards

Soccer is different from other sports in that there are not set units of players as is the case with American football. Players don't belong to a unit, but can be categorized based on what they do on the field. That's why we divide soccer teams into offense defense because a player is either defending against a score, providing support, or attacking the opposing team's goal. Soccer is an 11-on-11 game (including the goalkeeper). Each team has 11 players on the pitch that include:

  • 10 players (a combination of forwards, midfielders, defenders)
  • One goalkeeper

List of soccer positions

Here is a list of the many positions in soccer:

Forwards

A Forward is a player whose primary objective is to score. They take most of the shots and typically score the most goals for a team. Historically, forwards wear either the numbers nine or 11, but this nomenclature is not often used outside of national teams. Specific positions that fall under this category include center forward, striker, inside forward, and false nine.

Soccer Forward

Midfielders

A midfielder plays in the middle of the field, and their primary goal is to pass the ball around the pitch and create scoring chances for teammates. Historically, midfielders wear the numbers six through eight, with the best wearing the number 10 but this nomenclature is not often used outside of national teams. Specific positions include attacking midfielder, defensive midfielders, holding midfielders, and wingers.

Soccer Midfielder

Defenders

A defender is a player with the primary objective to prevent their team from being scored on. They typically play closer to their own goal, and are often absent in the attack. Historically, defenders wear the numbers two through five, but this nomenclature is not often used outside of national teams. Specific positions include centerback, fullback, and wingback.

Soccer Defender

Goalkeepers

A goalie, also known as a Goalkeeper, is a player who guards the goal and their primary objective is to prevent scoring. They are allowed to use their hands inside the penalty box.They are often the players who take goal kicks. Historically, goalies wear the number one, and is more often used by goalies over the other positional nomenclature.

Soccer Goalie

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