Every soccer position has a significant role to play in a team. But there is one position that is more important than all the others. After reviewing all the positions, there is one that stands above the rest in terms of importance.
The most important position in soccer is the striker. Without a striker, the team would score fewer goals and reduce the team’s chances of winning the game. A good striker can be the difference between winning and losing a game.
Choosing the most important position on the soccer field is, to a certain extent, subjective. However, if you keep reading, I’ll explain to you why I believe the position of a striker is the most important and
To find out everything you need to know about the position of striker, have a look at my article – A Striker in Soccer – The Complete Guide.
What Makes the Striker the Most Important Position
Each position in a soccer team is there for a reason. They all add value to the team in a variety of different ways. And each of them is important in their own way.
For more information about every position on the field, check out my article on soccer positions – Soccer Positions: A Complete Guide.
But if a decision has to be made about which position is the most important, then there really is only one option – the striker.
In soccer, a player’s importance will ultimately come down to what the team is trying to achieve or what is of most value.
In fact, Lexico.com defines importance as:
Importance is about value.
So when we look at which position is the most important, we should be looking for the position that offers the most value to a team.
In soccer, there is one thing that is considered more valuable than anything else. That one thing is winning soccer games.
Winning games is the main reason every soccer team exists.
This is the reason every player steps onto the field to play each week. The reason billions of fans around the world tune in to watch their team play every week.
If a team wasn’t trying to win the games they are involved with, then there would be little reason for them even to bother playing.
And it is because of the value placed on winning soccer games that the striker has to be the most important position on the field.
A striker has the biggest influence on whether a team wins or loses a game.
Now, I’m sure many people are questioning why I would consider the striker, rather than any other player, to have the most significant influence on a game’s outcome.
Is the striker really more important than any other position?
Well, let me break my answer down into three reasons.
Reasons Why the Position of Striker Is the Most Important
There are three reasons why the position of striker is the most important.
The striker is the most important position in soccer because:
- They score the goals for the team
- They are responsible for creating opportunities for other players
- They are often the focal point of the team
Let’s have a closer look at each of these.
A striker is responsible for scoring goals for the team
The main aim of every team that plays soccer is to win the game. And the only way to win a game of soccer is to score more goals than your opponents.
If the aim of the game is to score goals, then it’s a significant advantage to have a player on the field that does this effectively and consistently.
Ultimately this responsibility comes down to the striker.
The striker is positioned closer to the opponent’s goal than every other player because they are more capable of scoring goals than any other player on the team.
When an opportunity to score is created, you want the player you most trust to score to be in possession of the ball at that moment.
The greatest strikers are so important to a team because they make the most of the opportunities to score when given a chance.
Because scoring goals is the most important aim in soccer, the player responsible for scoring the goals should be the most important.
For tips on how to improve your scoring ability in soccer, check out my article – How to score: 11 essential tips
They are responsible for creating opportunities for other players
Another reason that strikers are so important to a team is that they create opportunities for those around them.
In this instance, the value of a striker is based on the same reasoning as my previous point – that creating goals is the most important aim in soccer.
In this scenario, the striker creates opportunities for those around them rather than scoring the goals themselves.
Because the striker is positioned so close to the opponent’s goal, they often have the opportunity to make a decisive move or play an incisive pass to set up a chance to score a goal.
In these occasions where the striker does not have a clear shot at goal, they carry the responsibility of creating an opportunity for those around them.
A striker who can consistently do this effectively will have considerable value to the team.
They are often the focal point of the team
The third reason why strikers are so important to a team is that they are often the team’s focal point.
Because soccer teams want to create as many chances to score as possible during a game, the coach will often set up a team with the aim, of getting the ball to the striker as quickly as possible.
This is a significant responsibility for a striker.
They must always look and think about how to position themselves to receive the ball from another player on their team.
Being the focal point of a team obviously comes with a reasonable amount of pressure. The striker must be able to deal with this if they are to be effective in their role.
The best strikers can bear this role and demonstrate their importance to those around them.
Why Some Teams Play Without a Striker
At this point, I’m hoping that you’re beginning to agree that the position of striker is by far the most important position on the soccer field.
But one question that people often ask is – “if the striker is so important, why do some teams play without one?”
This is a valid question, as some teams do play without a striker. But let me give you an answer.
The truth is that a team can play without a striker.
The most famous example of this is Lionel Messi playing the “false 9” position for Barcelona.
In this setup, there was no one player positioned up front ahead of the others. The forward players held back from playing in the position that a striker traditionally would play.
This setup reinforces the difference between a forward and a striker, but you can read more about that in my article – Forward Vs. Striker in Soccer: what’s the difference?
Now, this formation worked well for Barcelona for many years, and they had incredible success with it, but there is a reason it’s so rare to see any other team use this setup on the field.
The truth is that it takes a lot of skill and practice, with the quality of players that are not available to 99% of teams around the world, to make this work effectively.
Barcelona had some of the world’s best players and one of the greatest coaches in Pep Guardiola, guiding them.
Although Barcelona had success without using a striker, very few other teams, including some of the world’s best teams, play without a striker.
And the fact that 99% of teams worldwide use a striker underlines the importance of the striker to a team.
They know they are better with a striker on the field.
Hopefully, you see why the striker is the most important position in soccer.
Their ability to positively influence a game and be the difference between success and disappointment for a team means they have a greater value than any other player or position.
This is one in a set of articles about soccer positions. Have a look at one of the other is the list below.