The defender on the style of Bonucci that has feet like midfielder to set the game or to throw long with the possibility of putting the strikers in front of the goalkeeper, like almost everyone. Guardiola has been in love with it for some time and tries every year to acquire him, at the moment without success.
Often hear the coaches that in their “desired” in terms of buying players, they ask for a central defender with “Bonucci” characteristics to indicate a defensive player who has delicate and elegant feet to start the game from behind. As if it were easy to find good ones and with those peculiarities.
The technical players who have sensitivity in the feet have always been extremely appreciated by me. A player who can do interesting and unusual things with the ball, I always look at him with sympathy because the technical gesture is always ready to appreciate it (Art.: What i look for in a player read here).
Often the ability to handle the ball with a delicate foot is not relevant to many players and, over time, I have changed my way of judging the defenders above all, not just focusing on the technical aspect, which I previously thought was basic, but looking at a series of qualities that a good defender must have.
What characteristics must a defender therefore have to capture my attention then?
A good defender needs to know how to defend!
This is the truth. There can be no exceptions. It must prevent an opponent from overcoming it or creating problems for his team. The construction of the game, the long throw, the verticalization, cannot be prioritized but must follow the evaluation of other parameters: that is, how the defender behaves in the one on one, how he plays on the defensive line, if he gives protection to the attacking partner the ball. I have to look then if he has the ability to intercept wandering balloons, if he has the intelligence to understand the outcome of the action and position himself accordingly, if he has strength in the contrasts, if he shines in the air game. And again, if you have a footballing intelligence and then implement the right choice between waiting or anticipating, not always favoring one instead of the other. If it is too impetuous, if it keeps calm in rough situations. How to put the body when it is pointed by the opponent, if it is explosive in the short term in order not to get caught by the fastest attackers
And then, he must possess important character qualities such as competitive ferocity and I also greatly appreciate the ability to lead a department, which is a “plus”.
When it has important success rates in the indicated parameters, I also look at the technical aspect, which may be irrelevant, if a player with poor defensive qualities emerges from the above parameters. I very much appreciate those strong players on the man, who are practically unbeatable in the duels, maybe they are not too technical and, aware of their limits in possession of the ball, they perform the simplest play. Along the lines of those old-fashioned markers that left little room for aesthetics because they were too dedicated to effectiveness.
At this time Chiellini has reached a truly incredible defensive maturity, even though it is not a fine narrator from a technical point of view.
But be careful, the defender must not do damage! Recently in the America Cup I saw (Art.: At least two matches per day read here) an unsurpassable defender, who combined excellent defensive skills with excellent athletic skills. Ball to the foot gave the opponents three balls in the defensive round-the-ball, putting them practically in front of their goalkeeper, as the best of the assist man, going to destroy the good he did in previous moments.
Going back in time, without fear of being denied, I remember Coulibaly that, with Benitez in the first year of Naples, he combined so many, ball and chain, going to frustrate the athletic power that distinguished him.
A really strong defender defensively who responds to a sort of pure defender is the new purchase of Verona Rrhamani, a Kosovar who, if he confirms the qualities demonstrated in the last year in Dinamo Zagreb and in the national team, can be a nice surprise for the Italian championship.