The best wing backs of all time

It is only in modern football that the role of wing backs has come into appreciations. Otherwise, they were deemed as failed attackers or failed centre backs.

Yet, there are players down in the history who would argue otherwise!

In much recent time we have been treated to watch full backs like Trent Alexander Arnold and Joao Cancelo who are redefining what a full back can do!

Both these players have a bright future lying ahead of them and if they carry on, they can truly join the greats of the full back role.

So, let’s find out who these great full backs are that the modern-day players can look up to!

Here is a list of the best full backs/wing backs of all time!

Dani Alves

Dani Alves has a trophy-laden career as one of the greatest right-backs of the contemporary era.

The Brazil international rose through the ranks at Sevilla, where his skills earned him a €35.5 million move to Barcelona in 2008. Alves became one of Pep Guardiola’s most significant players, with his attacking play, creativity, and crossing abilities being key to Barcelona’s success.

Philipp Lahm

If you’re looking for someone who defines the phrase “versatile” in this century, look no farther than Philipp Lahm. Lahm began his career as a right-back, but his speed and strong passing skills saw him move to the left wing and defensive midfield.

His ball skills were among the greatest in both the Bayern Munich and Germany sides, making him a king of assists and a significant threat from set-pieces.

Lahm is also one of Europe’s most accomplished footballers, having won eight Bundesliga titles, a Champions League trophy, and the 2014 World Cup before retiring at the end of 2017.

Giacinto Facchetti

Italy’s obsession with full-backs, or defenders in general, is well-documented, with Giacinto Facchetti regarded as one of the country’s all-time greats.

Facchetti was a one-club man who spent his whole playing career at Inter Milan. Facchetti was a strong, intelligent, offensive left-back for Inter Milan, making 629 games in all competitions and scoring 75 goals.

His achievements were so good that he placed second in the 1965 Ballon d’Or, a rare feat for a defender.

Roberto Carlos

Despite being categorised as a defender, Roberto Carlos is best recognised for his attacking skills.

The Brazilian left-back possessed one of the most lethal left feet in the game, capable of striking a ball with incredible force and skill. His free kicks were among the most lethal ever taken, and the swerve formed on the ball during flight frequently defied the rules of physics.

With success in numerous top clubs, including Palmeiras and Real Madrid, very few players were spared Roberto Carlos’ destructive prowess, which once saw him hit a 105mph ball (170kph). No matter where he played on the field, he was a true legend.

Paolo Maldini

Paolo Maldini, arguably the greatest defender of all time, and was a one-club man during his playing career, like Giacinto Facchetti.

Maldini, an AC Milan academy product, spent his whole career with the Rossoneri.

Capable of playing as a left-back or a center-back, the Italy international’s game reading, technical abilities, dependability, and longevity were well praised.

His all-round skillset made him one of the most influential players of all time and helped captained AC Milan to both Serie A and Champions League glory as well as leading Italy to the 2006 World Cup final.

One of the finest defenders to have ever graced the game in any position and certainly one of the best wing-backs ever.

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