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Soccer Defenders

What is a defender in soccer? Get ready to learn about defenders in soccer.


The defenders are a group of players responsible for playing defense and defending their team's goal. While it may not be as glamorous, defensive soccer is just as important to a team's success

Soccer Defender

The Defensive Half And Defenders

The Defensive Half is the half of the field where a team is playing defense. You will be able to identify defenders as they are the players spending more time in this half rather than getting forward and attacking.

Soccer Defensive Half

Goals and Job of Defenders

The defender's jobs on the pitch will change depending on the location of the ball on the pitch and the defensive strategy being used. However, a defender's core jobs are to:

Defender Strategy

Defenders, do exactly what you think they would do. They defend. They play close to their team's own goal, attempting to thwart the opposition's attack. They typically play in a straight line parallel to the endline. There's a strategic reason for this, which we'll explore more in future tutorials.

Defender Jersey Numerals

Historically, defenders wear the numbers two through five, but this nomenclature is not often used outside of national teams.

Defender Types

There are quite a few variations on the defender playing position in soccer:

Defender Key Statistics

There are few important statistics that define a good defenders:

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