20 seasons - The Centre Back

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Pick the 2 greatest Premier League Centre Backs

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Total Votes : 72

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Post by Hero on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 9:45 am

It's the list of centre backs back now and this time please pick 2 that you feel were the greatest to have graced the Premier league since it's inception 20 years ago.

Tony Adams
Steve Bruce
Sol Campbell
Jamie Carragher
Marcel Desailly
Rio Ferdinand
Paul McGrath
Jaap Stam
John Terry
Nemanja Vidic

Also do you think there are any centre backs that should have made the list?

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Post by FIFA Diva on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 9:50 am

Sammi Hyypia was a great servant to Liverpool and a wonderful centre back he is very underated maybe because he didn't win the biggest prize at Liverpool but for me he has to go down as one of the best. Another CB I can think of is Ricardo Carvalho didn't get the plaudits he deserved when playing with Terry and I think he is better then Terry.
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Post by Stella on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 10:17 am

Went for big Sol

Quick, strong and scored odd goal.
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Post by westisbest on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 12:47 pm

McGrath & Adams.

Could of had shaun Teale on that list to.

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Post by MtotheC's Wrasslin Biatch on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 1:40 pm

Makes me want to be sick to say it - but John Terry

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Post by TopHat24/7 on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 2:11 pm

westisbest wrote:McGrath & Adams.

Could of had shaun Teale on that list to.

Did McGrath play Prem (in his peak)? Had a feeling he was at his best in the tail end of the old Division 1.

Think Stam would be up there if he hadn't left/fallen out with SAF as he was the somplete package. Rio is the most gifted British defender I've ever seen so for me it's him alongside and rock and born leader Tony Adams.

(PS: this is the toughest of all of these polls by far!)

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Post by dancingweeman on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 2:19 pm

Went Campbell & Adams.

Not sure if they ever played together at Arsenal, but if they had Arsenal could've been even more successful.

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Post by mystiroakey on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 2:21 pm

cambell and rio for me.

admas as close a 3rd as possible

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Post by The Womble on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 4:10 pm

Adams and Ferdinand. Rock solid
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Post by Mad for Chelsea on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 4:18 pm

Terry and Campbell for me.

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Post by Small Time on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 4:23 pm

I was always a big fan of Des Walker and was surprised he never really played for a top top team.

Anyhoo, I went for Adams, as solid as they get.

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Post by Duty281 on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 5:24 pm

Tony Adams and big Sol Campbell for me. Never-say-die attitude, fierce tackling, big presence and the odd goal as well and that is all you need.

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Post by Crimey on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 5:28 pm

Sol Campbell and Nemanja Vidic is what I chose.

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Post by GG on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 5:29 pm

Adams and Stam.

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Post by westisbest on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 6:25 pm

TopHat24/7 wrote:
westisbest wrote:McGrath & Adams.

Could of had shaun Teale on that list to.

Did McGrath play Prem (in his peak)? Had a feeling he was at his best in the tail end of the old Division 1.

Think Stam would be up there if he hadn't left/fallen out with SAF as he was the somplete package. Rio is the most gifted British defender I've ever seen so for me it's him alongside and rock and born leader Tony Adams.

(PS: this is the toughest of all of these polls by far!)


Signed for Villa in 89-96, had a good few seasons in the prem with us.

Awesome player, definatly have him as one of my centre backs.

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Post by Imperial Ghosty on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 6:36 pm

John Terry mentioned among some of those names let alone having some votes is fairly embarrassing.

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Post by mystiroakey on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 6:43 pm

why embarrasing?

good player- not my pick- but good prem player , certainly good enough to be a pick.

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Post by Imperial Ghosty on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 6:47 pm

He's a player who has always relied on his defensive partner whether it be Gallas, Carvalho, Alex or Ferdinand for England, similar to Carragher has the benefit of being an englishmen who throws himself about the pitch, more distinguished defenders have always got less recognition.

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Post by The genius of PBF on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 6:49 pm

Imperial Ghosty wrote:He's a player who has always relied on his defensive partner whether it be Gallas, Carvalho, Alex or Ferdinand for England, similar to Carragher has the benefit of being an englishmen who throws himself about the pitch, more distinguished defenders have always got less recognition.

John Terry is a excellent defender your rose tinted manchester united glasses getting in the way as usual.

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Post by The genius of PBF on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 6:50 pm

Voted for Rio Ferdinand the most talented defender I have seen has everything in his locker.

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Post by mystiroakey on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:02 pm

Imperial Ghosty wrote:He's a player who has always relied on his defensive partner whether it be Gallas, Carvalho, Alex or Ferdinand for England, similar to Carragher has the benefit of being an englishmen who throws himself about the pitch, more distinguished defenders have always got less recognition.

nope- he is/was a very good defender of high quality. He has had media issues which makes a certain set of fans rate him higher and another set of fans rate him lower, thats his only problem

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Post by Mad for Chelsea on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:07 pm

yeah Terry is so over-rated. by Ranieri, Mourinho, Scolari, Capello, Ancelotti, AVB. none of those guys knew anything about football Headscratch

more Man U bias I guess...

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Post by The genius of PBF on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:11 pm

Mad for Chelsea wrote:yeah Terry is so over-rated. by Ranieri, Mourinho, Scolari, Capello, Ancelotti, AVB. none of those guys knew anything about football Headscratch

more Man U bias I guess...

Ha true but every club has fans like that...Think all their players are world class and anyone that doesn't play for them is cack.

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Post by Imperial Ghosty on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:16 pm

So blinkered that I recognise that the finest centre back in premier league history is Tony Adams not a manchester united defender.

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Post by The genius of PBF on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:20 pm

Yeah well done ghosty

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Post by Mad for Chelsea on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:22 pm

fair enough but I find the anti-Terry bias somewhat annoying at times. He's a fine defender, at his best he was in the top 5 in he world (at least). The list of top class coaches who made him their captain is remarkable, and testimony to just how influential he is. The whole "others made him look good" is misguided: how well have Gallas and Carvalho done since leaving Chelsea. Gallas went backwards, Carvalho has done OK, but not nearly as well as he did at Chelsea. Maybe it was in fact the other way around...

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Post by mystiroakey on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:25 pm

i dont think its anything to do with him being a blinkered man u fan- just the type to go full circle on judging a player that has a very high media profile- as so many terry haters do.

people that say he was made to look good by others - straight away have failed.. football does not work like that. to say such things means you look at a defensive record and you have to overrate the other player to justify an opinion.

when you add the fact that terry has most of the time been a captain and very much a driving force makes it even more ridicluas.

trust me i am no massive fan of terry either- i dont want him in the england side anymore and i dont support chelsea- well offcourse i will be tommorow- gonna be the biggest test ever for him v this barca team!!

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Post by Imperial Ghosty on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:28 pm

Chelseas defensive record hasn't been the same since Carvalho left nor was it ever the same when he was injured, no offence to Terry but chelsea seemed to cope without him far better than they did without Carvalho.

Gallas left for Arsenal a team with a notoriously poor defence, they needed more than just him to shore them up, he was at one point playing alongside Silvestre which speaks volumes.

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Post by mystiroakey on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:29 pm

Imperial Ghosty wrote:Chelseas defensive record hasn't been the same since Carvalho left nor was it ever the same when he was injured, no offence to Terry but chelsea seemed to cope without him far better than they did without Carvalho.

Gallas left for Arsenal a team with a notoriously poor defence, they needed more than just him to shore them up, he was at one point playing alongside Silvestre which speaks volumes.

If you look at all prem teams you could say the same- its more about where the prem is going not terry!!

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Post by Imperial Ghosty on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:39 pm

If we look at man united for instance they have shaky spells in defence but have for the past few years been rock solid despite being a fairly attacking team, they kept what was it 12 clean sheets in a row with Ferdinand and Evans at centre back. Most wrongly in my opinion acknowledge Vidic to be the main man but Ferdinand looks less reliant on him than the other way round as there recent defensive record also backs up with again Evans and Ferdinand.

Not a premier league tie but the semi final against Barcelona highlighted Ferdinands brilliance as he managed to make O'shea, Brown and Silvestre look world class, a lot of what he does you don't notice but for a time his organisation of his defensive partners was second to none.

To me a world class defender makes his partner look good as well, Ferdinand, Adams, Maldini, Ayala, Samuel, Nesta, Carvalho and Cannavaro were all tactically brilliant, they could anticipate the attacks and set up the defensive line accordingly. The more eye catching defenders like Terry, Carragher and Vidic for example weren't as adept at doing it and relied more on strength and last ditch tackling than positioning, i've always felt that Terry is on the left side of defence for a reason because he has always had Cole there to cover with his pace.

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Post by mystiroakey on Tue 17 Apr 2012, 7:50 pm

ghostly!


you proclaim that terry had good partnerships with 4 players.

the 4 partnerships have worked in your eyes..

there is only one common bond- that is terry- its just common sense that if one makes the other looks good then its odds on to be the common player not the other 4!!

i am not saying that the 4 you mention are bad- far from it - however if we are gonna judge any of them then terry is the one to come up on top!

I believe that there are better defenders than terry and i didnt pick him- i have at least 3 above him- however he is very deserved on that list in my eyes. nothing embarrasing about it at all

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Post by Stella on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 9:21 am

Terry was a great defender imo no matter how big a jerk he is.

No mention of Keown. A very good defender who loved to tackle and get in CF's faces. Shearer rated him as one of the best he faced.
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Post by FIFA Diva on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 9:52 am

Carvalho has done OK, but not nearly as well as he did at Chelsea. Maybe it was in fact the other way around...
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Carvalho was one of the best defenders in his first season at Real if you think he was just ok then I'm sorry you don't watch La Liga and probably one of those biased Premier League fan who thinks we have the best League. This season he has been plagued with injury problems so hasn't played many games.

Terry is a very good defender but against the very best he struggles, a lot of fans may get seduced by the flying tackles, body on the line typical English heart on the sleeves stuff. Give me a defender who can read the danger before it happens rather then someone who reacts to the danger.
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Post by Stella on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 10:02 am

VivaPaulScholes wrote:Carvalho has done OK, but not nearly as well as he did at Chelsea. Maybe it was in fact the other way around...
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Carvalho was one of the best defenders in his first season at Real if you think he was just ok then I'm sorry you don't watch La Liga and probably one of those biased Premier League fan who thinks we have the best League. This season he has been plagued with injury problems so hasn't played many games.

Terry is a very good defender but against the very best he struggles, a lot of fans may get seduced by the flying tackles, body on the line typical English heart on the sleeves stuff. Give me a defender who can read the danger before it happens rather then someone who reacts to the danger.

Bit harsh on Terry. I've lost count at the amount of times I've seen him step in ahead of the forward. Always thought he was a good reader of the game myself.

***Slap to myself for sticking up for the egotistic prat**
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Post by Soldier_Of_Fortune on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 10:13 am

VivaPaulScholes wrote:Sammi Hyypia was a great servant to Liverpool and a wonderful centre back he is very underated maybe because he didn't win the biggest prize at Liverpool but for me he has to go down as one of the best. Another CB I can think of is Ricardo Carvalho didn't get the plaudits he deserved when playing with Terry and I think he is better then Terry.

I cant believe Sami isn't shorlisted!
- Practically unbeatable in the air
- Great reading of the game and positional sense (which made up for his lack of pace)
- Fanastic range of passing (which he doesnt get credit for in my opinion)

For all round ability, in his prime, my vote would goes to Ferdinand.



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Post by mystiroakey on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 10:15 am

i think people look at terrys strengths at last ditch tackling and forget that goals are scored against the best defenses however organised they are. And that terry is the driving force behind the organisation in defense.. there was nothing wrong with his forsight in football games. his positioning and play was fine.. its just his memorable momets are from awesome last ditch tackiling which is part of all great defenders make up

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Post by TopHat24/7 on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 10:27 am

Soldier_Of_Fortune wrote:
VivaPaulScholes wrote:Sammi Hyypia was a great servant to Liverpool and a wonderful centre back he is very underated maybe because he didn't win the biggest prize at Liverpool but for me he has to go down as one of the best. Another CB I can think of is Ricardo Carvalho didn't get the plaudits he deserved when playing with Terry and I think he is better then Terry.

I cant believe Sami isn't shorlisted!
- Practically unbeatable in the air
- Great reading of the game and positional sense (which made up for his lack of pace)
- Fanastic range of passing (which he doesnt get credit for in my opinion)

For all round ability, in his prime, my vote would goes to Ferdinand.



Agreed. I'd have him a long long way ahead of Carragher who is on the list for example. Very good defener Hyppia.

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Post by mystiroakey on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 10:29 am

Carragher is just an anfield loyal legend really. i wouldnt put him on that short list. even desaily who was a good defender possibly shouldnt be on there, well point is if people are arguing terry- there are way better shouts before him

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Post by Mad for Chelsea on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 10:37 am

Sella's right: Terry's real strength is his reading of the game. He doesn't have great pace, but because he reads the game so well he gets away with it. Yes he's struggled sometimes against top class players: name me a centre-half who doesn't...

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Post by Diggers on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 10:55 am

He's not on the list but Carvalho is for me as good as anyone Ive seen in the Premiership and has been great wherever he has been. I pesonally think he was the stronger of the two in the partnership with Terry.

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Post by Soldier_Of_Fortune on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 11:12 am

mystiroakey wrote:Carragher is just an anfield loyal legend really. i wouldnt put him on that short list. even desaily who was a good defender possibly shouldnt be on there, well point is if people are arguing terry- there are way better shouts before him

True, Carragher was quality on his day, especially during Benitez's reign. But ability wise, Hyppia surpasses him for me.

Terry doesn't seem to be getting a fair crack on here, I think he was quality back in his hey day aswell, but this season has shown he is regressing. I though it was funny when he threw himself on the floor against Arsenal when Van Persie ran through on goal, maybe he didnt want to showcase his distinct lack of pace?

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Post by Diggers on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 11:23 am

When Liverpool were getting battered Carra is/was at his best. He is a good, scrambling back to the wall defender. But in terms of looking assured on the ball, reading the game to make good interventions...not so great.
It is worth giving him credit for his versatility though, played a lot at full back for liverpool as well, maybe even the odd game for England, and considering yo uwouldnt think it was a natural fit for him he equitted himself pretty well.
I remember reading that he was seen as one of the better technical players to come out of Lilleshall........no wonder they closed it !!

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Post by Stella on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 11:26 am

Carragher was a central midfielder when he first came into the team. Not sure how good he was mind.
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Post by mystiroakey on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 11:28 am

i have allways looked at carragher as a utility player rather than a cb- good sub in a team like this- but not a chance for the top 11

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Post by dummy_half on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 12:35 pm

I'm not a huge fan of John Terry, but he probably merits being on the shortlist. My problem with him is that he does have a tendency to commit to a challenge (especially in the air) against the opposition attacking midfielder, which is fine when he wins the ball, but leaves a hole behind him if he is beaten - this is one of the reasons it often looks like his central defensive partner is bailing him out.

Carragher, for all his loyalty to Liverpool, is not in the same class as the others listed (at least as a centre back), as I think is quite clearly demonstrated by his stop-start international career. Gary Pallister definitely should have been listed well ahead of him (Hyypia as well, already mentioned, probably also Kompany of current players).

Of those shortlisted though, I'd say Donkey Adams was the best pure defender (and it is amazing that Wenger turned him into a good footballer as well), and Stam probably the best all rounder.

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Post by FIFA Diva on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 12:39 pm

I'm not saying Terry can't read the game but we're talking about the best defenders of the Premier League era so we compare the best against the best. An Terry reading the game is no where near someone like Ferdinand, if you check the stats for the past few years you'll see Ferdiand has a much higher interception record. With the tackles and blocks Terry is very good but as someone who can spot danger Terry is a bit behind the highest defenders.
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Post by Stella on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 12:47 pm

VivaPaulScholes wrote:I'm not saying Terry can't read the game but we're talking about the best defenders of the Premier League era so we compare the best against the best. An Terry reading the game is no where near someone like Ferdinand, if you check the stats for the past few years you'll see Ferdiand has a much higher interception record. With the tackles and blocks Terry is very good but as someone who can spot danger Terry is a bit behind the highest defenders.

You could be right but does Rio throw himself about and does he lead? Both have different qualities and are IMO with Sol the best three of the Premier era.
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Post by mystiroakey on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 12:49 pm

sol is my top pick

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Post by FIFA Diva on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 12:56 pm

Stella wrote:
VivaPaulScholes wrote:I'm not saying Terry can't read the game but we're talking about the best defenders of the Premier League era so we compare the best against the best. An Terry reading the game is no where near someone like Ferdinand, if you check the stats for the past few years you'll see Ferdiand has a much higher interception record. With the tackles and blocks Terry is very good but as someone who can spot danger Terry is a bit behind the highest defenders.

You could be right but does Rio throw himself about and does he lead? Both have different qualities and are IMO with Sol the best three of the Premier era.

We've seen Rio lead Manchester United countless of times and the big one in 2008 he still would be our captain if it wasn't for the niggly injuries he has been picking up. Rio does not need to dive into tackles or throw his body in the line because he reads situations before they can bring a threat whereas other defenders may react to the danger which leads to them putting in last ditch tackles or blocks.

I do think Terry is a very good defender but not the same calibre as others that have been mentioned and I can understand why some people would put him in the list. I just feel a proactive defender is a rare quality
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Post by Stella on Wed 18 Apr 2012, 1:02 pm

I like Rio but imo he's a bit of a sulker and not a good leader. He does read a game very well but like I say, both have different levels of ability in certain aspects.

They're on par for me.
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