Top 3 Hardest Soccer Positions! +Needed Attributes for Each

what is the hardest position in soccer

I’ve personally played in most soccer positions under different formations! This has allowed me to experience the goods and the difficulties that come with every one of them …

… In this short article, I provide my thoughts on the hardest soccer positions that I’ve personally experienced!

Hopefully, this will be helpful for you.

What is the hardest position in soccer?

The three most difficult positions in soccer are the:

  • Goalkeeper
  • Fullback
  • Defensive midfielder.

The goalkeeper is a vital part of the team! Any mistake he makes is much more problematic than in the case of other players on the team.

His main role is to keep his goal safe and prevent opponents from scoring. In modern soccer, the goalkeeper’s role has changed …

… From a passive, defensive role, goalkeepers evolved into an active part of the team. Goalkeeper today not only have defensive, but also attacking tasks. Especially in counter attacks by providing the first pass to the right player to build the best possible attacking scenario.

The fullback is the most physically demanding position on the field. Players in these positions have huge energy consumption during the game, because of moving and running constantly along the line.

They have the task to stop all the opponent’s attacks on the flanks, and in the attack phase to make a run on the side and direct quality passing shots towards the attackers in the box.

These players are characterized by tremendous physical strength and endurance.

Quick Tip: Fullbacks usually have a playing style that requires a strong Grip to perform at the best of their abilities. One Tip to help improve this capability is to use Soccer Shoes with a good Grip. You can have a quick look at these quality soccer cleats to get an idea!

Defensive midfielders have the basic role of preventing opponent’s attacks and spoiling the flow of the opponent’s game. Their radius of movement is huge as they are involved in every defensive and attacking play of the team.

In addition, these players are constantly exposed to the duel game. They cover the opponent’s offensive midfielders and their goal is to gain possession of the ball.

In modern soccer, they play a role in transferring the ball from the defensive line to the attacking line.

For more, you can learn about these other soccer positions

What is the hardest thing about each position?

Goalkeeper is mentally the most difficult position in soccer. A goalkeeper should stay focused every second of the game because every mistake can be fatal for the team. They have to be mentally strong to react in the right way, and when a mistake happens to them, they have to stay calm until the end of the game and keep their focus.

This position requires good reflexes, skills, courage and athletic flexibility, so it requires not only mental, but a high level of physical preparation.

Defender is a position that requires concentration and focus. The most difficult thing for defensive players is covering the opponent’s attackers.

They must stop them to get into empty space to exploit and use that chance. A moment of carelessness and disregard of their duty will give your opponent an opportunity to score.

Fullback is one of the most demanding positions on the field. What makes it so much demanding is the fact that it requires physically impeccably prepared players.

As these are the players involved in both defensive and attacking tasks, their playing style requires constant running and covering huge areas of the field.

The hardest thing for fullbacks is to stay physically prepared at required level and to endure all the challenges their role demands.

Midfielders are a vital part of any team. They connect the defensive and offensive lines of the formation.

The hardest thing for them is to make right decisions regarding controlling and moving the ball down the field. These are the playmakers and often the whole team game is depending on them. How much possession of a ball will a team have directly depends on the midfielders.

These are the players responsible for chance creation and using the empty space on the field in a best way possible. They have a huge obligation in both defense and attack, as other teammates rely on their skill.

Playmaker is the one player, often a midfielder, which separates from others with his ability of space awareness and vision of a play.

He is the field leader, the game architect of the whole team. He must always be one step ahead of everyone on the field.

In addition to playing, he must also have the ability to lead. This is the hardest part of his obligations. Playmaker must keep a positive attitude and always look after his teammates and guide them through the game.

Wingers are an essential part of a team’s attack and the biggest challenge for wingers is the quickness of their reaction. They are expected to act on the flanks and create excess on the side.

This demands from them to dribble past their opponents, so it is highly dependable of the quickness of their first step and their running speed.

They have a goal to pull the ball towards the penalty area, send a through pass in the box or to send the ball into penalty area.

Often a fraction of a second makes the difference between being successful or not at this task, which increases the importance of the speed of their reaction.

Strikers are the ones from which performance depends the performance of the whole team. The success of their chance realization influences directly on the score of the game.

Striker’s greatest challenge is positioning. They are all the time on the pressure of defenders and must make use of small and limited space in front of the opponent’s box.

When positioned appropriately, strikers can receive passes from their teammates and create a chance to score. As this task has a large amount of responsibility, they must remain calm in these situations in order to realize the opportunities.

Positions that requires the most skills

The position of midfielder requires the most skill in soccer. The soccer match is often decided with a battle in the middle of the field.

These players have large responsibility, as the movement of the ball depends on them. Midfielders directly control the flow of the game, the pace of the game and are the ones creditable for creating scoring chances.

In modern soccer, which is characterized by the fast pace of the game and possession of the ball, the quality of the team is directly connected with successfully accomplishing the tasks in the middle of the field.

Not only offensive, but also defensive tasks are important here. They have to close all potential ways to the goal and do not allow opponents to impose their playing style. To implement all of these assignments, wide skill range is necessary:

  • Ball control
  • Passing
  • Shooting
  • Agility
  • Endurance
  • Positioning
  • Space awareness
  • Decision making

Positions that requires the most endurance & stamina

Soccer is one of the most physically demanding sports. Almost every position in a soccer team requires a high level of strength, stamina and endurance.

Modern soccer is characterized by a high level of playing intensity and players who do not have developed strength and endurance will lose themselves on the field after a few minutes.

The position in modern soccer that requires the most stamina and endurance is a fullback. They have a large radius of movement during the game moving along the sideline, in both directions.

The fullbacks must contribute to the attacking movements, as well as closing all approaches to the goal on the flanks at the same time.

During the game, both offensively and defensively, they participate in many duels that require strength and endurance. In addition to running at maximum speed constantly, they pass around a large number of short and long balls.

All of these are required to be performed at the same level of pace for the entire 90 minutes.

Because of all these things, the position of fullback is considered to be the most physically demanding, so they have to work on improving their level of fitness and physical preparation all the time. These kinds of drills must be an integral part of every training session.

Positions that requires the most speed

Winger are usually the fastest! Their task is to develop an attack along the flanks, not through the middle of the field.

Usually technically well-equipped players and the fastest players play in this position. They use their speed best by pushing the ball in the empty space and running over the opposing defensive players.

The world’s best wings are characterized by tremendous speed. Players like Cristiano Ronaldo or Gareth Bale are elusive for opposing defenses.

Their speed makes it possible for them to easily pass their defenders and create a surplus of players for their team.

Positions that requires the most awareness

The position of a playmaker in soccer definitely requires the greatest awareness. A player in this position should know where his teammates are at all times.

Playmakers must have a great vision of the game and know what to do with the ball before they receive it. They are characterized by creativity and original solutions in the game.

The play of the whole team and the movement of the ball towards the attackers depend on these players.

They are involved in every action of their team and act like an orchestra conductor on the field.

They need to play very concretely and react in a timely manner to make use of the cracks and gaps in the opponent’s defense.

For their balls, it is often said that “have eyes on them” and the rhythm of a team’s play depends on them. Playmaker has a huge radius of movement and is the main protagonist of all the attacks of a soccer team.

Final Thoughts …

In my humble opinion, a good position in soccer doesn’t necessarily mean the easiest! Indeed, aiming for an important position even if it is hard will be definitely rewarding …

… Especially if you want to turn to a professional player in the future!

Lastly, if you are a lefty then you probably should check those lefty friendly soccer positions … You’ll find those quite interesting!

Claressa Cormier

Claressa Cormier has over 15 years of soccer experience between playing the sport at a semi-professional level, following the biggest soccer teams & leagues out there as well as helping beginners to get started on the right foot.

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