From Academic Kids

In association football (soccer), a midfielder is a player whose position of play is midway between the attacking strikers and the defenders. Their main functions are to gain and keep possession of the ball, and to feed it to the strikers. However, some midfielders play a more defensive role, while others blur the boundaries between midfielders and strikers.

A midfielder's many responsibilities — to fetch the ball forward, to defend against or tackle the opposing team, to score or assist the strikers to score — make them amongst the most valued members of a team. In essence, a good midfield must possess the ability to be combative whilst being creative also. Even though most midfielders specialise in some of these activites in contemporary times, some midfielders combine all of these traits (and are known as 'complete' midfielders). Current examples of complete midfielders are Patrick Vieira, Roy Keane, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, and Michael Ballack.

Good midfielders are able to control a game, they can take a ball from a defensive position and turn it into a quick counter attack or slow down a game to wear down the clock in a winning position. Because of this midfielders are sometimes refered to as 'midfield generals' for their ability to dictate a game.

Good midfielders require a number of skills on top of ordinary ball skills and fitness. Midfielders require a vision, or reading of the game unlike that of the strikers or defenders, they must know when to dribble the ball upfield or when the right time is to pass, releasing a ball over or through the defense at the right time can be critical for avoiding the offside rule.

Some midfielders are adept at taking free kicks or have medium to long range shots which are reasonably effective. In a corner situation a midfielder with an effective long range shot may stand outside of the goal box ready to strike when a loose ball comes from the corner. Ronaldinho's long range free kick into goal at the Template:Wc against England is just an example of the free kick ability of a good midfielder.

Midfielders typically exhaust the most energy during a match due to the distance they cover on a pitch, this is because at times midfielders can be called back into defense or required to attack with the strikers. Midfielders are generally the fittest of all the soccer positions.

In Australian Rules football, a midfielder is a player who tends to play in and around the centre square. They tend to be slightly smaller players on average, the best midfielders tending to be those who have the greatest endurance. Current Australian Rules midfielders of note include Chris Judd, James Hird, Michael Voss, Simon Black, Nigel Lappin, Shane Crawford and Nathan Buckley.

Famous midfielders

See also

hu:Középpályás pl:Pomocnik


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