From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
WikiProject Football (Rated Start-class, Top-importance)
WikiProject iconThis article is within the scope of WikiProject Football, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Association football on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
Start-Class article Start  This article has been rated as Start-Class on the project's quality scale.
 Top  This article has been rated as Top-importance on the project's importance scale.

Poor article[edit]

This is one of the worst articles I've ever read. The opening paragraphs seem to have been written by a child, there is no history explaining how any of these positions evolved, for example; wing halfs in the british game being the early basis of defensive midfielders. In the Italian game the libero evolved from playing behind the defence to in fornt of it. There is a clear bias towards British based players or ex British based players, although I notice that has been rectified a little. There are not enough mentions or examples of historical players, I cannot believe Michel Platini is not mentioned as possibly the greatest exponent of attacking midfield play.

In short, there is little or no history involved in this article. I suggest someone who has studied the history of the world game re-writes this entire article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:26, 17 July 2008 (UTC)

I agree this is a mess, the terminology is a mess as well, it would be better to make a list of all used terms for roles and for characterise players. For example Rijkaard was an allround player, who played in his career; controlling midfielder, attacking midfielder, defensive midfielder, center back. Some positions might be out of style but had a function for example Libero the role Beckenbauwer played (if I am not mistaken a playmaker role before his defense) while a sweeper used to play behind his defenders.ArieBombarie (talk) 05:44, 18 February 2009 (UTC)

The entire article reads like a how-to for a football manager computer game, not an explanation of how the positions evolved and function in real sport. (talk) 06:30, 19 February 2012 (UTC)

Orthodox Wingers[edit]

Considering Total Football there is no real distinction of players who play on one side. I find that most wingers tend to switch sides: having the strong-side on the outside are for roles that include crossing and passing into the center; weak-side are mainly roles that include diagonal runs into the center and having shots on goal. These roles alternate throughout the game, depending on the situation of play. However, these players do not like playing central as compared to playing on either widths. Also many wingers are ambidextrous, ruling out the need to state that they are either orthodox or unorthodox. ( (talk) 10:35, 16 July 2008 (UTC))

I agree, it's over-complicated and probably unnecessary. Beve (talk) 08:06, 17 July 2008 (UTC)

even in total football of Michels there where specific typical positions, in fact he played with Ajax with real classical wingers in Zwart (RW) and Keizer (LW), main treats of total football was that players covered positions if others moved into an other and that strikers had tasks in defending as well as defenders task in attack (defend as a team, attack as a team), illustrated well by Cruijff 'the first player in an attack is the goaly and the first defender is the central striker' ArieBombarie (talk) 05:50, 18 February 2009 (UTC)

Mandel's comments[edit]

This page is pretty woeful and misleading.

"midfielders are sometimes refered to as 'midfield generals' for their ability to dictate a game." - alleges that all midfielders can dictate games.

"slow down a game to wear down the clock in a winning position" - alleges that all midfielders slow down games in a winning position, instead of going for goals.

"Midfielders require a vision" - alleges that all midfielders possess vision (which is pretty useless for a defensive midfielder)

"they must know when to dribble the ball upfield" - alleges that all midfielders can and would dribble

"just an example of the free kick ability of a good midfielder." - alleges that only midfielders, and not strikers or defenders, take free kicks.

The list of "complete midfielders" is debatable. Mandel June 28, 2005 17:16 (UTC)

So who, in your opinion, would constitute a complete midfielder? Lapafrax 12:41, 2 August 2005 (UTC)
"Complete midfielder" is a British manufacture and fetish. The best midfielders, Zidane, Platini, Figo etc are never "complete", nor do they need to be. You don't need headless chickens running all over the field doing everything, you need discipline and enterprise in their respective positions. Put in 10 Steven Gerrards, 10 Frank Lampard and England won't ever win anything. There's no such thing as a "complete midfielder", though there's such a thing called a more "all-rounded player in their position". However, it's arguable whether a more "complete" player is more devastating than a specialized midfielder playing at his height. In the EPL for instance, Gerrard and Lampard will never reach the guile or incisive passing of, say, Robert Pires. I've never seen Gerrard, Lampard dribble past anyone. Bryan Robson does everything else, but is hardly creative. Is he complete? Michael Ballack can drive with the ball, but he too is a runner rather than a passer. Only the British will be greedy and want their players to do everything. If so, you need only one player on field, not ten. 05:50, 6 September 2005 (UTC)
It may be chiefly a British term, but so what? The concept per se is not invalid. A complete midfielder simply means a player who possesses ALL traits needed by midfielders, including good tackling and passing skills, defensive play, etc. Granted there are few players in modern world football like this, but again, so what? That doesn't mean the notion of a complete midfielder is a pie in the sky BS ideal. Some strikers are considered "complete strikers" because they hold all the skills strikers need. You's say that Thierry Henry was a more complete striker than Ruud Van Nistelrooy, say. And what's wrong with players have complete skills in each position? Have you heard of "total football" before? If not, then you need to brush up on your footballing knowledge. Lapafrax

I'm trying to arrange 'famous midfielders' in alphabetical order, but have only moved about 1/3 of them. I'll try to do the rest later.Ondog 04:41, 13 January 2006 (UTC)

Removed Andrea Pirlo from the list of defensive midfielders, since he is simply not a defensive midfielder even though he does play deep. User:Rurikbird

Billy Bremner was the epitome of a "complete midfielder" with Gerrard and Lampard paling in comparison to his drive and dominance on the football field. There are a few examples of "complete midfielders" but only among the footballing greats which Gerrard and Lampard certainly are not. Nicander 10:05, 15 July 2006 (UTC)

Is Billy Bremner a "footballing great"? If so, then only in a British context. I doubt he ranks amongst the likes of Pele, Maradona, Cruyff, Di Stefano, etc. Someone like Alan Shearer is a British footballing great, but I wouldn't really state he was a world great. Lapafrax 17:18, 5 September 2006 (UTC)

Merge from Holding role[edit]

Most of what is described in Holding role repeats Midfielder#Defensive midfielder. Let's merge it back to the major article here. Holding role can remain as a redirect to Midfielder. --Pkchan 16:28, 21 April 2006 (UTC)

Yes please.--Dodo bird 19:20, 21 April 2006 (UTC)
Done, together with merge from Winger (sport). --Pkchan 11:35, 29 April 2006 (UTC)

Fact verification[edit]

Due to vandalism on other pages by the user who made this edit, I am requesting that this edit be cited. If it is not cited within 24 hours, it will be removed. -- backburner001 18:08, 15 May 2006 (UTC)

It's vandalism. Duly reverted. --Pkchan 07:44, 16 May 2006 (UTC)
Figures. Good call. -- backburner001 17:24, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

Why?Its ture Edu and Keane are not holding midfielders. (talk) 00:21, 19 January 2008 (UTC)

Different sports[edit]

I'd advocate splitting this article up into Midfielder (soccer), Midfielder (Australian rules) and Midfielder (rugby) (though this is unwritten, I'll cobble together a stub (section of this article?) for it), because despite the similar/same names and similar types of tasks, the actual jobs done are pretty different. Then, at Midfielder, we have a general description of what a midfielder does in sports, and a link to the associated subpage with a short blurb. Providing noone has —Preceding unsigned comment added by Sam Pointon (talkcontribs)

I don't know Rugby, but both Rugby league positions and Rugby union positions have no mention of the term 'midfielder'. There are midfield positions, but they are called 'centre' instead of 'midfielder'. As for the Australian rules football, Football (Australian rules) positions also suggest that 'centre' and 'wingmen' are used instead of 'midfielder'. Maybe we can just have a disambiguity link at the to of the article to Football (Australian rules) positions#Midfield. --Dodo bird 06:48, 18 May 2006 (UTC)
It is not the case that Centre or Wingman are used instead of midfielder in Australian rules football. It is much more likely that these players would be referred to as "midfielders" as, due to the evolution of the Australian game, these players are now required to roam much further from the positions of "wing" or "centre". --The Brain of Morbius 06:58, 18 May 2006 (UTC)
As things currently stand, this is a predominantly football-based article with a little bit about AFL tacked on the end. It seems a bit silly, so I've been bold and taken out the AFL stuff and added a disambiguation link at the start of the article. Tpth 04:27, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

Stanley Matthews[edit]

I linked to Stanley Matthews to exemplify the traditional winger who was part of the forward line, and I added a reference to the formal terminology for the position (Outside Right/Left). --pmr 20:41, 16 July 2006 (UTC)

POV tag[edit]

I added a POV tag to the section entitleed "Players inaccurately termed defensive midfielders" because it presents as fact that certain players are not defensive midfielders, when (although this may be true) such a statement is completely unverifiable and based on subjective observation. The only way one could make it verifiable would be to say that "So-and-so believes this person is incorrectly termed a defensive midfielder," followed by a citation to an article or something of that nature. Personally, I think the section should probably go completely (unless someone is willing to do the research and rewrite). --Loudsox 03:13, 6 August 2006 (UTC)


I think the whole "Players inaccurately termed defensive midfielders"- section shouldn't be in the page.

Poor Article diagrams[edit]

This is pretty poor, I'm gonna try and spruce it up with better diagrams. --Tiresais 20:15 (edit 20:17), 25 August 2006 (UTC)

Ok there are some different diagrams up to make it look a bit better--Tiresais 20:51, 25 August 2006 (UTC)


Other just as accomplished attacking midfielders include Totti, Nedved, Rui Costa, Kaká. Less accomplished but arguably as talented players of this position include Juninho Pernambucano, [b]Landon Donovan[/b], Pablo Aimar, and Tomáš Rosický.

Great joke:)))

Its not a joke.Donavan is an attacking midfielder,like Tim Cahill.Jean24.189.86.92 (talk) 23:55, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

Carrick Supported by Scholes in deep lying playmaker role[edit]

I dont think that this is a very good example of a deep lying playmaker being supported by a holding midfielder since scholes is if anything an out and out attacking midfilder (he is after all included in the attacking midfielder paragraph). He is well known for his inability to tackle properly. Though the united team is doing well at the moment, this central midfield is not ideally balanced as both are playmakers, one deep lying, the other central or advanced.


I've removed the following: Wingers are experiencing a revival today - for example Arjen Robben and Shaun Wright-Phillips of Chelsea F.C. Joaquín Sánchez of Valencia CF and Aaron Lennon of Tottenham Hotspur FC are such; they were relatively rare in the 1980s and 1990s. Firstly, its uncited, secondly three of the examples play in England, where every champion of the 1990s bar Leeds used at least one winger (Anders Limpar, Ryan Giggs, Stuart Ripley, Marc Overmars) Oldelpaso 22:01, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

Why?They are All WINGERS.For real.Look at their profiles. (talk) 00:17, 19 January 2008 (UTC)Jean.


This article needs to mention something about the classic centre-half (or center half) position. --ChaChaFut 15:36, 4 January 2007 (UTC)


The translation for the Brazilian Portuguese/Spanish term "volante" is mistaken. "Rudder" in Brazilian Portuguese means "leme" whereas "volante" would be "steering wheel"; but neither has anything to do with the original intended etimology. "Volante" as in defensive midfielder means "flying", "floating", as the classic "volante", evolved directly from the former 4-2-4 center-half, is supposed to "float" between defense and attack - (Alberto Helena Jr. is a reputable Brazilian football pundit). girco 02:06, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Box 2 Box Midfielders[edit]

Gerrard is, Keane and Viera were. The others have never been. Londo06 21:32, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

Isn't Deco a box 2 box player?

Deco is what we brazillians call a "meia-armador", a creative, but very offensive midfielder, just like riquelme, zico and diego(from werder bremem). I dont know if they can be called box-to-box, however, because i dont know how a box-to-box is like... Vermelhored 19:30, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

Just a small thing on attacking midfielders[edit]

Should Luka Modric really be listed as one of the best attacking midfielders in the world? —Preceding unsigned comment added by El Legend (talkcontribs) 19:45, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

I say no, if I had to look him up it proves it. Dump him. Jimbo online 20:18, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

Should we create a list of 5 players for each position and lock it.[edit]

To stop people adding stupid names to the list. My suggestion:

Defencive mid: Claude Makelele, Gennaro Gattuso, Owen Hargreaves, Javier Mascherano, and Gilberto Silva.

Deep-lying playmakers: Andrea Pirlo, Xabi Alonso, Xavi, Michael Carrick and Fernando Gago(couldn't think of anyone better).

Box to box: Patrick Vieira, Steven Gerrard, Roy Keane, Daniel De Rossi and Michael Essien.

Attacking midfielder: Juan Román Riquelme, Francesco Totti, Cesc Fabregas, Paul Scholes and Kaká. I'm not sure wether to include Ronaldhinio, as he does tend to play wide left, and since I said I'd only pick 5, I've left him out, but he does deserve a mention.

Winger: Cristiano Ronaldo, David Beckham, Lionel Messi, Franck Ribery and Ricardo Quaresma. I've included Beckham as he is an example (the most well known and therfore a good refference point) of the different type of winger who's ability wasn't in dribbling but in his delivery.

Feel free to Rip, Chop, Change and slate my list, or even just disregard it altogether. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ravhin (talkcontribs) 19:47, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

I think with what is happening to the article (rampant changes to reflect an editor's own leanings, revert wars, slurs, etc.) we should seriously consider not adding any examples at all. I don't even know how much they really add to the article, and they just set the fire off for uncivil arguments and fruitless POV debates. Vincent Valentine||talk to me! 14:54, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
i think some examples are good, however the fewer the better. Dead-or-Red (talk) 14:33, 24 March 2008 (UTC)
Don't get me wrong, some examples would be nice, but take a look at the history of the page. Pretty much the only edits are people adding players of the teams they support and removing rivals' players. It's getting pretty redundant. I thought maybe only using retired players might work, but then again if you dislike a particular team, you'll probably choose to substitute your own team's legend. It's a tricky situation. Vincent Valentine||talk to me! 15:00, 24 March 2008 (UTC)
personally one or two current players and one or two retired players are all that are needed, the lack of world class players from the past is a complete joke. Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:52, 25 March 2008 (UTC)
It's a bit Anglo-centric at the moment - mostly English Premiership players.
I went ahead and scrapped the whole list, as it's nothing but a source of POV and edit wars, and doesn't really help, I don't think. I wouldn't be surprised if my edit is reverted though, and the edit wars wage on. Everyone just wants their own examples, and thinks their particular player is a notable example. I don't think there's anyway to reconcile this. Vincent Valentine 17:00, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

What does everybody think about putting legends up there alongside current players, for all positions though, like players regarded as inventing/defining certain positions or being regarded as the best ever? It should have players from different era's anyway really, as people of all ages visit the site. It could also help with identifying certain abilities players need for certain positions as well though, as they moved about a lot less years ago. I have to apologise also as i have already put Franz Beckenbauer in the sweeper part, as he was the best and more or less made the role, so he has to be there really. Sorry if it's a problem though. This could help though in my opinion, even if only a little, but some true legends should be there, especially with some who are there currently. Because like Franz does, they can define some roles better than current players can. -- (talk) 03:10, 22 June 2008 (UTC)

David Bentley may be good example of a wide-midfielder, looks like the other areas have a few examples, however that one just has Beckham.Londo06 20:16, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Cesc Fabregas is NOT an Box to Box midfielder![edit]

He's a great attacking midfielder, probably one of the best, but he isn't a box to box midfielder and his defencive work is done by Gilberto and Flamini. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ravhin (talk) 20:14, 17 February 2008 (UTC)

hes not a box to box mdfielder, hes not even an attacking midfielder either to be honest. ive placed him in the central midfield section for now. Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:51, 23 February 2008 (UTC)

Deep lying playmaker[edit]

Probably deserves a separate section from Central midfielders, also "Due to their weaknesses in their defensive aspects, some have to be supported by holding midfielders." is a horrendous Generalisation. Many deep-lying play makers are also fairly good defensively as well. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Daniel11901 (talkcontribs) 01:08, 3 May 2008 (UTC)


reverted to a more descriptive version that explains wingers against wide midfielders.Londo06 13:00, 21 June 2008 (UTC) the term "winger" is an umbrella term that covers any wide midfielder. Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:02, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

rv to show the difference between hugging the touchline wingers and a wide midfielder, two different types of players.Londo06 13:03, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

yet both are wingers. end of story Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:03, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

In relation to using it as an umbrella term I have always heard coaches, commentators, journalists and players differentiate between the two.Londo06 13:06, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
I'm afraid I and other previous editors see a difference between the likes of Tony Daley, Stuart Ripley and Stuart Downing against the likes David Beckham, David Bentley, etc.Londo06 13:12, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

where is this discussion? please stop vandalising yet another article. Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:13, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

Reverted back to the version before any controversy. Please talk through any problems before engaging in an edit war over content. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 13:23, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

The article should remain as consensus before any more reverts. if anyone would like to put forward a case as to why we would need to duplicate what is already written i am willing to listen. Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:28, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
I am in agreement over that. Taking a brief look through I can't find the reproduction, could you point me in the direction of the repeated material. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 13:31, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
the fact that a "winger" is an umbrella term for any wide midfielder, and that the article already states how hey have evolved. Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:33, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
I'm sorry I don't see that in the body of text. Once again if we keep if before the controversial edit and then move forwards from there. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 13:35, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

its sourced, dont change again unless you have a valid rationale and sources. Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:38, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

I'm afraid I can see no references attached to that section, and as such it should remain as the version prior to the edit war, I can also see no discussion on the matter, ergo no consensus on a position you claim, thus returning to the previous version is the only logical step. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 13:41, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

the source is no.4 - the new version is the one which is controversial so should go until anybody provides a rationale for its change. Dead-or-Red (talk) 13:43, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

I'm afraid that source doesn't support either position, TBH it is worse than a throwaway comment; "Wingers, wide midfielders, call them what you like" doesn't really qualify a source for the changes. I am open to persuasion as a winger could be converted to a more laid back role and a right-midfielder could be turned into a flying winger, just not by that source. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 13:48, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
There seem to be some WP:OWN issues going on here. The article definitely needs more sources, that's for sure.Beve (talk) 15:10, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

CorleoneSerpicoMontata hit the nail on the head almost, as the main difference between them really is that wingers hit the byline and right or left midfielders don't. Wingers were far more attacking and "wingers" like Ronaldo still are. Right and left midfielders usually play a lot deeper and do most of their work far from the byline, like Beckham always has. Most are better passers than wingers too, so it's probably best to have them a bit deeper to get the most from that, because as we know, the more long balls you make/attempt the more you lose the ball(unless your Beckham with that right foot of his) but that's the main difference between them. Depending on tactics, formations etc, some also start out more deeper and become more of a winger when their team has possession. Bob. -- (talk) 20:33, 21 June 2008 (UTC) Source, but there should be far more than that.-- (talk) 20:49, 21 June 2008 (UTC) But we also have to remember that it doesn't really matter what abilities they have these days, it's more how the manager wants to utilise what he has available to him to who plays there. Bolton with big Sam even played Kevin Davies there sometimes, but that was more to cause problems with his heading/height with a long ball. A real winger is fast, can dribble, cross but not a must and/or finishing/shooting and obviously passing is always good for anyone. A right/left midfielder either lacks the pace or skill (sometimes both, Beckham) to be a true winger, so they are right/left midfielders. It is what the player has in his locker basically, but the manager does what he feels is best. -- (talk) 21:58, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

"wiki should reflect todays reality"
It does reflect today's reality, it also discusses the past as well as the present, and puts the present into context. Have a look at sources #3 & #22, also have a look at the striker article in which wingers are classed as forwards. There is crossover in the terminology, but there is also a difference.Beve (talk) 20:33, 22 June 2008 (UTC)
it reflects the reality of a vast minority of highly skilled players. most professional footballers who play as a winger would be classed as "right/left midfielders". wiki should not be written to support one pov of less than 0.001% of the football playing population Dead-or-Red (talk) 21:07, 22 June 2008 (UTC)
0.001% eh? Where do you get that figure from? And how come we have a graphic that shows LW/RW and LM/RM as different positions? Surely then that needs to go too, by your logic? Beve (talk) 21:22, 22 June 2008 (UTC)
reverted back to last version by Beve as it clearly a consensus here that there is indeed a difference between a winger and a right or left midfielder. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 21:31, 22 June 2008 (UTC)

We all know who the wingers are really, just look who scores more etc. That's why Ronaldo is compared so much with George Best, the best winger ever. Wingers are more like forwards than RL/LM. Right and left midfielders are better all round players usually, or at least better team players, as they can also be quick and skillful but they will also have other qualities, like defensive play, passing, work rate and team work, etc. Which is another reason they are so different, because wingers like to do it all themselves. They are 10 to 15 yards further up the pitch too most times and don't like getting back, some even moan when asked/told lol. Tireless (talk) 02:23, 23 June 2008 (UTC) Just incase people haven't realised, i'm the same person talking about Beckham further up. Don't want anyone thinking i'm doing anything daft like agreeing with myself lol. Also, true wingers lose the ball too much to be RM/LM, thats another way to look at them, as they are too risky to have there most games but they perform worse or are less effective there anyway.--Tireless (talk) 02:50, 23 June 2008 (UTC)

I think the most salient point being made here is that there is a clear difference between wingers and wide midfielder positions (left and right).Londo06 07:54, 23 June 2008 (UTC)

and the article demonstrates this, however any wide midfielder is a winger by its definition. take for example how scott murray [1], matthew etherington[2] or even peter hamosi[3] are described in football articles. my point is that all are ver different from the likes of ronaldo or messi, yet all share the same positional name. Dead-or-Red (talk) 12:30, 23 June 2008 (UTC)

If you take the narrow position descriptions of goalkeepers, defenders, midfielders and strikers then wingers would fit into that definition as a midfielder, but only because it is a limited group of four categories of players. Here we can be more descriptive; forwards, wing-backs, defensive midfielders, sweepers, etc. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 12:43, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
"any wide midfielder is a winger by its definition" - strongly disagree. Beve (talk) 13:24, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
That appears to be the overwhelming consensus here.Londo06 13:33, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

well lets stick to wiki policy. if reliable, verifiable sources can be found that explicitly differentiate between a wide midfielder and a winger than it can remain as is. other wise the fact that most wide midfielders are described as a wingers, the article should revert back to saying as much, otherwise the section would be clear OR. Dead-or-Red (talk) 17:15, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

I'm afraid everyone else seems to think there is a difference. I'll give you an anology; national tabloid and broadsheet newspapers both deliver information about the current affairs of the world, both written for the masses, on similar rolls of paper, and would be categorised as newspapers, however you would never describe the Observer as a tabloid, nor the Mirror as a broadsheet. Verifiability would need to be found to prove that there had been the shift.CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 17:31, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
you need to find sources that state that their is a difference between the two though, otherwise it would be original research. thats wiki policy regardless of consensus. Dead-or-Red (talk) 17:48, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
You realise you are saying the Earth is flat and asking everyone else to verify that it is round. What you could do is add the citations in and improve the references of this article. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 17:51, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

sources can be found for the earth being spherical, stop using strawman arguments. note: i am not asking for any content to be removed, just changing the name of the section. Dead-or-Red (talk) 18:11, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

The sources are already in there, #3 & #22. Glad we can put this one to bed now. Beve (talk) 18:24, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
Agreed. The sections are appropriately named, a consensus being reached and the matter can be considered closed. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 18:33, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
As before, there is an overriding consensus here. Thankfully this one can certainly be put to bed now.Londo06 20:14, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

i disagree. for a start both sources are terrible and probably should never, ever be used on wikipedia. you need to find reputable sources (newspaper articles, material from the fa/uefa/fifa etc to support your artifical terminology. Dead-or-Red (talk) 21:04, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Found a decent source that tells us they are different. : Tireless (talk) 03:09, 25 June 2008 (UTC)
Added ref to the article, thanks. Beve (talk) 08:50, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Re-add examples[edit]

I do think that a few examples add to the article and help to illustrate the point. That they may cause edit wars isn't really a good enough reason to remove them. Some of them were sourced and the others hopefully can be. I'm currently trying to improve the references throughout the article. Removing them all seems a bit drastic and probably shouldn't be done without some sort of consensus here. Beve (talk) 17:14, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

I can see your point. It's just that I've had the page on my watch list for several months now, and about 10 times a day, it seems, some fan of one team or another deletes their rival's players and substitutes his own. I think the sourced ones should stay, only. But that's just my opinion. Best, Vincent Valentine 17:16, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
It's a bit anglo-centric too, English Premier League players seem to dominate. Beve (talk) 17:26, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
Not saying that it's right, it's just not surprising given that this is the English wikipedia. I'd love to see a nice, cohesive, referenced list that has a general consensus. I just think that it'd be very difficult to achieve, and would still be subject to rampant IP tweaking. Vincent Valentine 17:28, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
I think examples are a way to describe the attributes and characteristics to the positions we are looking to describe. CorleoneSerpicoMontana (talk) 21:52, 22 June 2008 (UTC)

Defensive midfielder/holding player[edit]

Defensive midfielders can play anywhere in midfield, even in an advanced position. Like we see with Gattuso quite often, the role is exactly the same no matter where it is played really, the main position though obviously protects the centrebacks more and is also deeper than the other midfielders, so is far more associated with it, hence the name. Managers often place them wherever the oppositions main attacking threat is though if the defender/s can't/don't cover him (excluding CF, some wingers, and some forwards) to lessen the impact they can have. Gattuso often plays on the right of midfield but probably only ever gets slightly higher up the pitch than when he's in the hole between defense and midfield. He just holds his position and gathers any scraps that need gathering and the team attacks through the middle with Kaka or to the left or slightly to the left with Seedorf, with Pirlo usually finding them or the strikers when possible with his great passing ability. With some teams you only need to stop one player and you've almost stopped the whole team, so they are very handy players to have.

Milan are great to recognise several roles/player abilities and what they are used for or what the players are supposed to be good at for that position. Kaka is in one hole and is one of the best at it, if not the best, Gattuso or Ambrosini can go in the other and are top players and they also show DM's play in other positions sometimes, the same with CM's and AM's, Seedorf is a great attacking player from the left or centre and used to play on the right too and is often a little deeper, rather than getting right up, Cafu and others are some (or have been some) of the best fullbacks/wingbacks of recent times, Pirlo is one of the best deep lying play makers currently and that's before we even mention some strikers they have or have had, and their main defenders which is usually theirs and most other Italian teams best position/players!

It's a great squad to study players, positions and tactics etc, as the manager only needs to move a couple of players and he has a whole new system/formation. Just like Man Utd can with the high wingers and then changing to a more 4 4 2, or the other way round, and it's the main reason they are as successful as they are, because they can mix it up and change things when needed so are less likely to fail. Milan can change to a far more narrow formation with attacking fullbacks/wingbacks in a blink of an eye, to a more 4 3 1 2 or 4 3 2 1 and another one or two, from a 4 4 2, 4 5 1, 4 4 1 1 or even 4 1 4 1. They even go to a more 4 1 2 1 2 with their current squad sometimes and can do these with just their first team. You just need to consider opposition, oppositions tactics, who's playing against you and what they can do and your players can do before making decisions or changing things in-game even. Milan certainly have the players though as we have seen all the above take place or it's fact, and so the DM part needs a little added really to say they can play in other positions. Any ideas everyone or do you even agree? lol. Bob -- (talk) 05:25, 22 June 2008 (UTC)


Deco is listed as a deep lying play maker in this article and a BBC article is quoted as a source, while the article does say he is a playmaker it makes no mention of him playing in a withdrawn role, I'm removing him from the list. Futhermore a section for advanced playmakers should be made, although this is referenced to in the attacking midfield section it seems that any player who has been tagged a playmaker has been put in the deep lying section, I'm leaving Xavi in there for the time being but only because I've seen him play both roles. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:03, 24 July 2008 (UTC)

Page move[edit]

The (association football) should be added as the first line contains a disambiguator for Australian rules football. I think this page should not redirect here as this is not an encyclopedia centered around football per say. The page should reflect that more than one type of sport uses a midfielder and match up with goalkeeper and defender. I would also like to float the question as to why this is considered a controversial move?--Lucy-marie (talk) 12:52, 16 August 2008 (UTC)

No, not required. This is the common usage so doesn't need disambiguation. As you well know, if you make unilateral decisions like this, you should, at the very least, inform WP:FOOTBALL, even just as a courtesy. Thanks. The Rambling Man (talk) 14:58, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
Can you please expalin your POV in more detail.?--Lucy-marie (talk) 17:22, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
99% of people searching for midfielder will be after the assoc. football version. 99% of people who talk about assoc. football call it.... football. There's already a link to the Aussie rules version at the top of the page. Moving this to (assoc football) will just create a redirect which will always be used in preference to someone typing in "midfielder (association football)". Common usage. No move required. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:25, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
Do you have any statistical proof to back up this claim?--Lucy-marie (talk) 17:41, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
Are you kidding? Are you seriously suggested that Aussie Rules is as prevalent as football? Over 700 million people watched the last World Cup Final (according to FIFA) - how many people watched the Aussie Rules final? 3.3m according to the AFL). I think that speaks for itself. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:55, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
All I am also referring to the other sports which use the terminology and I am also attempting to match up the article titles, can you also explain how this is a controversial move?--Lucy-marie (talk) 17:59, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
Hmm, can you compete with 715m viewers for premium competition finale? Not a hope. Midfielder refers to football in most cases, this is irrefutable. So, the move is controversial because (a) it isn't required (b) a number of WP:FOOTBALL contributors disagree with your move (and methods) and (c) you didn't discuss it with anyone. Enough now. Move onto expanding the Wikipedia and being useful. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:06, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
I am all for that if you move on to better things aswell.--Lucy-marie (talk) 18:07, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
Sweet, so stop moving these pages without consensus and we'll all be happy. The Rambling Man (talk) 18:08, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
Who is this "we" you talk of it is just you and me and nobody else.--Lucy-marie (talk) 17:24, 17 August 2008 (UTC)

No, as I mentioned before, your moves have been discussed at WP:FOOTBALL on more than one occasion and in every case you have been wrong. The Rambling Man (talk) 17:26, 17 August 2008 (UTC)

Fine you can keep your views but you are wrong in this case just move on and let it go. I havn't "always been wrong" as you insist. Just shut up and move on.--Lucy-marie (talk) 17:42, 17 August 2008 (UTC)
I'm wrong? Can you substantiate that please? The project thought you were wrong, I thought you were wrong, your proposed moves have all been rejected, your "bold" moves have all been reverted. Get it? The Rambling Man (talk) 17:43, 17 August 2008 (UTC)
Please see this talk [[1]] regarding a merger and a page move.--Lucy-marie (talk) 17:49, 17 August 2008 (UTC)
Fascinating. So now head to the relevant project and discuss your moves. Chpprs! The Rambling Man (talk) 17:57, 17 August 2008 (UTC)


Could we not introduce left and right wingers as seperate positions? I do know wingers can be played on different positions and some can not be deemed typical left or right wingers but there are plenty of great and clear left or right wingers in football(history). The style of the player makes the difference I feel if a player is a wide midfielder rather than the so called formation, Lennon, Walcot, Giggs, Robben being classical wingers while Beckham seems a classical wide midfielder to me. ArieBombarie ArieBombarie (talk) 05:27, 18 February 2009 (UTC)

your sources say winger & wide midfieler = same thing —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:39, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

Have a look at the discussion further up the page - consensus was reached that this is NOT the case. Just as the "centre half" from old-style 2-3-5 formations dropped to a deeper role and became "centre backs" in a modern back four, "wingers", who were forwards in old-style 2-3-5 formations, have dropped to a deeper role in modern 4-4-2 formations and become wide midfielders - though some teams do play wingers in 4-3-3, 4-5-1, 4-2-4 etc, and there is plenty of crossover / grey area between the terms. If you want to re-open this debate and gain consensus to the opposite of what currently exists, you should do so before making the change to the page. Beve (talk) 08:26, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
consensus changes as new editors come. there is no such thing as a wide midfielder, no definition exists. the only thing close would be an outside midfielder but nobody uses that. the term winger comes from the position, ie out on the wing. ergo winger is "wide midfielder". as i say, your links say the same thing, that wide midfielder=winger. this is what wiki should say, anything else is OR. i believe you need to look at wiki policy OWN as well —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:44, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
I'm familiar with WP:OWN, thanks, neither one of us owns the article. I appreciate you were being WP:BOLD with your initial edit, but I reverted as per the existing consensus, after which, if you think there's a new consensus or likely to be a new consensus, I really believe you should seek to establish it here on the talk page before re-introducing the change. I disagree with you on the sources, they do say that there's a difference, but (as the article used to say), there's plenty of crossover in the terminology too. I'm not going to edit war and break WP:3RR by reverting again, let's see what others have to say, if anything. Beve (talk) 18:09, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

There is a quite distinct difference between a wide midfielder and a winger. A quite obvious example would be that David Beckham is (or was - I don't know what exact position he plays for LA Galaxy) a wide midfielder, while Cristiano Ronaldo is a winger. Both play(ed) on the right of midfield, but Ronaldo's role is quite different from Beckham's, in that the balance is shifted towards the attacking side in Ronaldo's case, whereas Beckham's role is much more evenly balanced. – PeeJay 18:15, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

you have no evidence, just opinion. find things that say so and so is a wide midfielder. you cannot, they do not exist. i can find thousands of articles naming players as wingers, all play similar to beckham. this section is complete OR —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:24, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
No, it has sources, and I've re-checked the sources, and they clearly say there is a difference. Beve (talk) 18:36, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

source 1: "The definition of a winger is not quite universal and it is not uncommon to refer to an outside midfielder as a winger."
source 2: is opinion piece
source 3: "The Winger is a position that mean almost same thing as the mentioned right or left midfielder." and is terrible source that should be no place near wiki —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:57, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

I understand. Sources that say what you want = good. Sources that don't say what you want = bad. Got it. Beve (talk) 19:06, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

I'll stick with my opinion from earlier on in the year; realiable sources must be found to support the distinction between a winger and a wide midfielder. Dead-or-Red (talk) 19:21, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

why you say that? you have no sources, none say there is a difference. the article needs change (talk) 19:32, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
Come on, you're going round in circles here - first you said the sources say there's no difference, then you say there aren't any sources, then you say the sources do say there's a difference but they're not good enough, now you're back to saying there are no sources and that the (non-existent) sources don't say there's a difference. Well they do:
#2 has separate sections for "outside midfielder" and "winger",
#5 talks about the "wingless wonders" being the basis for the modern 4-4-2 formation,
#6 says that the word winger "has now largely been replaced by wide midfielder"
#7 says "winger, wide midfielder, call them what you like" (yes there's some crossover and grey area, but this supports that the term "wide midfielder" does exist - and the graphic says LM & RM, not winger)
#8 Is the one that says a winger is almost the same as a left/right midfielder, but more attacking.
I'm sure I can find more references, but how many do we need? I get the feeling I could put 100 in there and you'd say none of them were good enough; demanding a burden of proof that's impossible to satisfy. Would it just be a waste of time? Beve (talk) 22:20, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
Not sure about the other guy, but my contention with the references is their poor, poor quality. Wikipedia is after all an encyclopedia, and therefore good quality, realiable sources should be used. Hence the sloppy ref should go, as should the ref. Who created these pages? Why are they an authorative source for Association Football? These are the questions that should be asked when using them on wiki.
The Nationalfootballmuseum source does not ditinguish between a winger & wide midfielder and the BBC link states they are the same thing with a different name. The FIFA article mentions a difference, but doesnt give enough detail to form a whole sub-section IMO.
As I have said before, any article about any wide player in the game at the moment would describe them as a winger. Be it Ronaldo, Beckham ( or even Craig Dobson (,19528,11750_4557569,00.html) Dead-or-Red (talk) 22:47, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
OK, I can't believe you'd question the validity of the sources and then quote the Daily Mirror! ;-) Beve (talk) 08:16, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
who are these wide midfielders, please name them please (talk) 23:15, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
Name them? No, that falls under "demanding a burden of proof that's impossible to satisfy". David Beckham is a fine example. Yes, the Mirror and others might call him a winger - but they're wrong to do so in my opinion. And I'm sure many other sources describe him as a right-midfielder instead. Beve (talk) 08:16, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

The Mirror was just one example, of many hundred. Naming a wide midfielder is "demanding a burden of proof that's impossible to satisfy"? In that case the section should be removed as it would fail wikis policy on OR and Realiable. Surely, you can see that examples of all other sub-sections can be satisfied and there is no dispute, whereas this one has none so there is? Dead-or-Red (talk) 17:39, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

I named "a" wide midfielder, I was asked to name "them". All of them? I've got no intention of having to compile a list until such time as you deem it long enough. Beve (talk) 17:46, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
...and you've changed it again. In which case you need to update the 4 graphics on the page, as these show LM/LW and RM/RW as different positions, with LM and RM on the halfway line and LW and RW in a more attacking position, almost in line with the attackers - now without any explanation. Beve (talk) 17:51, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
All of them? I think you named the only example you can think of. If it is such a well known position, and requires a sub-section of its own, than a number of well sourced examples should not be a problem surely? Dead-or-Red (talk) 17:56, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
What's the point? You won't accept it anyway. I can't be bothered to edit war. You should get the graphics redone ASAP, really - it's very confusing now there's no explanation as to why they show LM/RM and LW/RW as different positions. Beve (talk) 18:01, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

The "wingless wonders" is repeated twice in the Winger-subsection. I guess they should be merged by someone who is more competent in writing English than yours truly. mnivis (talk) 13:52, 13 June 2010 (UTC)

Winger should be moved to the Forward article[edit]

Time for the lecture, guys!

The position of winger was born with the 1-1-8, 1-2-7 and 2-3-5 formations.

1-2-7 formation


- 1 full-back (center-back)


- 2 half-backs (left wing-half and right wing-half): The play-makers.


- 2 wingers (outside left and outside right forwards): THEY WERE NEVER CONSIDERED "HALF-BACKS" (midfielders) because the played closer to the other forwards than to the half-backs. They would cross balls. A hard task as balls were heavier.

- 2 inside forwards (inside left and inside right forwards): THEY WERE THE "PASSERS". They would carry the ball and pass it to a striker.


2-3-5 formation


- 2 full-backs (left and right back)


- 3 half-backs (left wing-half, center-half and right wing-half)


- 2 wingers (outside left and outside right forwards): The balls were still too heavy.

- 2 inside forwards (inside left and inside right forwards)

- 1 striker (center forward): Yeah, center forwards, AT THIS TIME, did not have to pass the ball or, even worse, "create" opportunities to score!!!

2-3-5 Danubian School formation

The lone striker was re-located a few meters backwards (TO ALIGN WITH THE WINGERS) and was NOT only given the responsibility of scoring but if, possible, pass it to the inside forwards which were deployed as strikers.


George Rodney Maruri Game (talk) 23:57, 5 July 2019 (UTC)


volante is midfielder, Spanish wiki wrote these is defensive volante and offensive volante, may be the terms just oppose to winger but not all volante equal to holding midfielder. Matthew_hk tc 17:35, 17 July 2010 (UTC)

Centre vs Central Midfielder[edit]

Shouldn't centre midfielder be renamed to central midfielder? It seems to be by far the most common name (Centre vs Central). doomgaze (talk) 12:53, 25 July 2011 (UTC)

Yes. Change made. Cloudz679 16:39, 29 January 2012 (UTC)


Wingers = midfielders ??? This is crazy. For example C. Ronaldo is winger, which is also forward. Wingers are part of forward, not midfield. -- (talk) 22:05, 25 August 2012 (UTC)

BTW Where are side midfielders ??? -- (talk) 20:05, 10 September 2012 (UTC)

Adding notable players in a structured way[edit]

I believe having a modest number of example players at each position increases the usefulness of this article to a lot of readers. However, we need to have some rational way of deciding who deserves to be included. My suggestion would be for editors to add a comment after each player's name with a short note justifying why they should be included. Reasons for being notable could include:

  • playing in the most recent Champions League final
  • playing in the most recent World Cup final
  • being a past winner or multiple winner of the CL or WC
  • having first-team status at one of the world's most popular clubs (Man Utd, Barcelona, Real Madrid, AC Milan, Juventus etc)
  • having won or been placed highly in Ballon D'Or voting
  • having been voted onto the FIFPro world team of the year
  • having been named on the FIFA 100
  • being a star player in one of the big 5 European leagues

We should not shy away from including players whose fame exceeds their quality. The more recognizable these example players are then the more useful this article will be.

As this is the English Wikipedia, we could also make a case for including some English, US, Australian and New Zealand players, or players from any other countries with large numbers of English speakers. Including women players would also be a good move. RWyn (talk) 22:02, 22 July 2013 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified one external link on Midfielder. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true or failed to let others know (documentation at {{Sourcecheck}}).

As of February 2018, "External links modified" talk page sections are no longer generated or monitored by InternetArchiveBot. No special action is required regarding these talk page notices, other than regular verification using the archive tool instructions below. Editors have permission to delete these "External links modified" talk page sections if they want to de-clutter talk pages, but see the RfC before doing mass systematic removals. This message is updated dynamically through the template {{sourcecheck}} (last update: 15 July 2018).

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

Cheers.—cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 01:50, 4 May 2016 (UTC)

Merge proposal[edit]

I propose that Inverted winger be merged with Midfielder.

Inverted winger is a specilaised term within the context of Winger, which is actually described in both the Forward and Midfielder articles with the bulk of the text being in Midfielder. Regrdless of the debate on whether a winger is a forward or midfield position (short answer in my opinion: both/either), there appears to be no need for a fairly short artilce on a specific type of winger when this can easily be incorporated into the existing articles.

PS the overall 'what is a winger' debate is not helped by this article, which desribes the Inverted Winger position as that of a midfielder and states that Domenico Berardi is one of its best proponents - however a check of the player's article has him listed as a forward! Crowsus (talk) 13:43, 27 February 2017 (UTC)
Support merging into the topic of wingers generally. As you correctly state, wingers can and have been classed as midfielders or forwards, so there's perhaps a case for a separate article on wingers generally, but that's another argument... Jellyman (talk) 17:49, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

Female Representation on Wikipedia Association Football Pages[edit]

Please stop removing the sourced information and images of female footballers; there are reliable sources, the photo includes a player who plays in this respective position, and if anything we need more female representation in association football pages on Wikipedia. Thank you. Best regards, Messirulez (talk) 02:36, 30 July 2020 (UTC)