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Top 10 Best Centre Backs In The World 2023

  • Post category:Football
  • Reading time:17 mins read
  • Post last modified:November 3, 2023

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In this post, we will check out the top 10 best centre backs in the world in 2023.

In the ever-evolving world of soccer, the role of a center back remains vital. These defenders are the bedrock of any team’s defensive structure, combining strength, intelligence, and precision.

As we step into 2023, it’s time to take a closer look at the top 10 center backs who are setting the footballing world alight with their exceptional skills and game-changing performances.

From stalwarts with years of experience to young talents making their mark, this list showcases the best of the best in the heart of the defense. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the top 10 center backs in the world for 2023

Top 10 Best Centre Backs In The World 2023

10. Cristian Romero

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Cristian Romero, the Argentine powerhouse at Tottenham Hotspur, has gained international acclaim as one of the top 10 center-backs in the world for 2023.

His aggressive and tenacious style of play, as well as his rock-solid positioning, have earned him the title of an elite central defender. Even the legendary Lionel Messi has dubbed him “the best defender in the world right now.”

Yet, Romero’s disciplinary issues, with 17 yellow and three red cards since joining Tottenham, raise concerns. Still, it’s his fiery spirit that sets him apart, reminiscent of the rugged defenders of the past.

Romero’s no-nonsense tackling harkens back to the days of football’s glorious rough-and-tumble. While he’s often viewed as a hothead, there’s a belief that beneath it all, he’s a remarkable defender of the country’s rugged tradition.

His performances for Spurs have been a mixed bag, with some suggesting he lacks full focus. But with time, experience, and maturity, Romero is poised to further solidify his position as one of the best center-backs globally.

In conclusion, Cristian Romero, a rising star in football, has firmly established himself among the world’s elite center-backs in 2023, and his potential for greatness remains undeniable. Cristian Romero is number 10 in our list of top 10 best centre backs in the world in 2023.

9. William Saliba

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William Saliba, a young and promising center-back, has been taking the football world by storm. Renowned World Cup winner Emmanuel Petit has hailed him as one of the Premier League’s best center-backs, and he’s earned a spot among the top 10 in the world in 2023.

Saliba’s stellar performances have been instrumental in Arsenal’s impressive start to the season. On his debut against Crystal Palace, he was named Player of the Match and boasts a perfect record in aerial duels.

Despite his age, Saliba has proven his mettle, often partnering with more physically robust defenders. His extensive domestic experience, with 168 appearances and 118 full 90-minute matches at the top level, speaks volumes about his maturity.

In just eight games, he has solidified his status as one of the Premier League’s finest center-backs. In conclusion, William Saliba’s rise in the football world is undeniable, and his contributions to Arsenal’s success have firmly established him among the best in the league and the world in 2023.

8. Aymeric Laporte

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Aymeric Laporte, the center-back for Al Nassr in the Saudi Pro League, is undeniably one of the best in the world in 2023. Known for his standout performances during his tenure at Manchester City.

Laporte played a pivotal role in the club’s back-to-back title wins, forming a formidable trio alongside John Stones and Rúben Dias. His attributes include height, aerial prowess, and defensive strength.

What sets Laporte apart is his exceptional defensive acumen and a keen ability to read the game, making him a rock-solid choice for any team.

He’s not just a defender but a ball-playing center-back, adept at kick-starting attacks from the back. Laporte’s versatility extends beyond his role, as he can seamlessly adapt to left-back or defensive midfielder positions.

Laporte’s talent earned him a call-up to the Spanish national team, where he made his mark with a sublime piece of defending during his debut at Euro 2020.

His move to Al Nassr in Saudi Arabia raised eyebrows, but Laporte’s on-field performances unequivocally justify his place among the world’s best center-backs in 2023. Aymeric Laporte is number 8 in our list of top 10 best centre backs in the world in 2023.

7. Kalidou Koulibaly

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Kalidou Koulibaly, the center-back for Saudi Pro League’s Al-Hilal and the captain of Senegal’s national team, is recognized as one of the top 10 center-backs globally in 2023.

His imposing presence on the field, combined with his agility, strength, and elegant style, sets him apart. Koulibaly is lauded for his aerial ability, anticipation, tackling, and exceptional passing skills as a defender, making him a well-rounded player. While praised for his solidity and interception skills, he has faced criticism for conceding too many fouls.

Koulibaly’s journey began at Metz in France, leading him to Genk in Belgium and later to Napoli in Italy. At Napoli, he showcased his versatility by playing various defensive roles and adapting to different tactical systems.

His proactive approach on the field, constant imposition on opponents, and ability to play as a front-foot defender distinguish him. Although Koulibaly faced challenges during his time at Chelsea, Champions League squad rules offer a fresh chance to prove his worth.

Acquired by Napoli for €18 million from Fenerbahce, he quietly rose through the ranks to become one of the team’s best. His consistent mood and analytical approach to matches contribute to his regular, top-notch performances. Constantly evolving and learning, Kalidou Koulibaly remains a force to be reckoned with in the world of football.

6. Eder Militao

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Eder Militao, the Brazilian center-back for Real Madrid and the national team, has firmly established himself as one of the top 10 center-backs in the world for 2023.

He secured the 7th spot on ESPN’s FC 100 list, with ambitions to become a key figure for Brazil alongside Marquinhos in the upcoming 2024 Copa America.

In an interview with Managing Madrid, Militao exuded confidence, aiming to become the world’s best center-back. His journey with Real Madrid and future goals were part of the conversation. Carlo Ancelotti, the former Real Madrid manager, commended Militao’s skills, though not without a touch of humor regarding his looks.

Overall, Eder Militao’s talent and skills have positioned him as one of the best center-backs worldwide. His standout performances for Real Madrid and Brazil have garnered admiration and accolades from both fans and experts.

5. Antonio Rudiger

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Antonio Rudiger, the German center-back now playing for Real Madrid and his national team, has firmly secured his place among the world’s top defenders.

His standout performances during two brilliant seasons at Chelsea earned him recognition, ranking fifth in the world by FourFourTwo for the 2022-23 season. Rudiger’s on-field reputation is built on tenacity, physicality, and defensive versatility, making him an imposing presence.

His adaptability extends beyond center-back duties, with equal comfort as a full-back, a prized asset for any team. Rudiger’s defensive prowess is complemented by his ability to ignite attacks from the back, thanks to accurate long passes and exceptional vision.

Furthermore, his leadership qualities and unwavering work ethic make him a natural choice for the captain’s armband, both at the club and international levels.

Rudiger’s best moments at Chelsea came under his compatriot Tuchel, notably contributing to their UEFA Champions League victory in 2021.

His prominence has grown since the World Cup, and he played a key role in Champions League victories over Liverpool. The traits that have made him a standout figure at Chelsea are now shining through, particularly his leadership and infectious sense of humor.

4. Virgil Van Dijk

top 10 best centre backs in the world
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Virgil van Dijk, the Dutch center-back for Liverpool and the Netherlands national team, commands global recognition as one of the best in his position.

In the 2022-23 season, he secured the 7th spot in ESPN’s FC 100 list and the 9th position in FourFourTwo’s top 10 center-backs globally. Although not make the top 5, his qualities, including pace, intelligence, and defensive command, were duly acknowledged.

Van Dijk’s leadership skills have also earned him accolades, leading to his appointment as Liverpool’s captain in 2023. Embracing the added responsibilities, he remains a source of immense pride for the team.

Even during Liverpool’s challenging 2022-23 season, Van Dijk’s significance was evident, with a noticeable dip in form during his brief injury absence in January.

Looking ahead to the 2023-24 season, Van Dijk’s performance hinges on Liverpool’s team rebuilding strategies. Enhanced support for the backline from the central midfield and reduced turnovers could further elevate his prowess.

In sum, Van Dijk’s attributes, encompassing pace, intelligence, and leadership, solidify his standing as one of the world’s premier center-backs.

3. Ruben Dias

top 10 best centre backs in the world
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Ruben Dias, the Portuguese center-back for Manchester City and the national team, firmly cements his place among the top 10 center-backs globally in 2023.

His remarkable contributions helped Manchester City secure the joint-best defensive record in the Premier League. Dias excelled in the Champions League, showcasing impeccable defensive prowess with clean sheets against top-tier teams like RB Leipzig, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, and Inter Milan in the knockout rounds.

He’s cultured, composed in possession, and adept at breaking lines while providing invaluable leadership and tenacity. Since joining Manchester City, Dias has shown a steady improvement, earning numerous accolades in his debut season.

The accolades include FWA Footballer of the Year, Manchester City Player of the Year, Premier League Player of the Season, and UEFA Champions League Defender of the Season. His unwavering presence in the 2022/23 season’s triumphant run-in contributed to City’s historic treble.

2. Marquinhos

top 10 best centre backs in the world
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Marquinhos, widely celebrated as one of the world’s top defenders, boasts an impressive repertoire of skills and attributes. Primarily stationed as a central defender, he’s showcased remarkable versatility, having excelled at right-back and in central or defensive midfield roles.

Known for his anticipation, pace, intelligence, and technical finesse, Marquinhos is a commanding presence on the pitch. His confidence in possession allows him to disrupt opposition attacks and initiate offensive plays from the back.

Since the departure of Thiago Silva, Marquinhos has been the defensive linchpin for PSG, solidifying his reputation as a dependable force. His athletic prowess, including high jumping, speed, and impeccable balance, makes him an exceptional center-back.

Marquinhos’s ability to read the game shines through in his frequent interceptions, thwarting passes meant for rival strikers. His adaptability and footballing intelligence enable him to seamlessly transition between defensive positions, showcasing his versatility.

Beyond the field, Marquinhos’s impact extends to charitable initiatives and community outreach programs. His unwavering commitment to both his club and the broader community has endeared him to fans and solidified his status as one of the world’s premier center-backs.

1. David Alaba

top 10 best centre backs in the world
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David Alaba, in 2023, firmly establishes his place among the top 10 center-backs worldwide. This versatile Austrian defender has excelled in both center-back and left-back roles.

Recognized for his exceptional football intelligence, defensive acumen, and impressive versatility, Alaba’s standout feature lies in his ability to build from the back.

His precise passing and dribbling skills frequently initiate attacks, despite not fitting the traditional center-back mold in terms of height and physique.

Alaba’s complete skill set, combining speed, one-on-one prowess, ball control, and aerial ability, makes him a standout player. Vital to Real Madrid, he embraces the challenge of upholding the club’s defensive traditions.

His transition to Real Madrid marked a new chapter in his career, where he has become a pivotal player in the team’s success over the past two seasons. David Alaba’s adaptability and footballing acumen continue to shine brightly in the world of football.

Kamran Khan

A geek, who just loves to update sports, gaming, and tech updates from around the world to the other geeks out there. A passionate sports lover, a tech geek from the mind, and a gamer from the heart.

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