Defenders are often the unsung heroes in the team as they silently go about doing their job and cleaning up the team’s mess. Their job is simple – stop all the shots being fired by the opponents’ from left, right and centre. They are pivotal in bringing a balance to the team. They may not be flashy and under the spotlight like goalscorers or playmakers, but they say the best offense is a good defence.
Having a solid back-line is the best insurance and catalyst to your team’s success. Here’s a look at the 10-best defenders in FIFA 16.
*Note: Rankings are based on Defensive Qualities only
#10 Diego Godin – Atletico Madrid
The Uruguayan defender is one of the most underrated defenders in the world and seems to be getting better with age. The 29-year-old is at the peak of his career and has played for two Spanish outfits in most of his professional career, but his success was mainly with Atletico Madrid where he has won six major titles with the club.
He is known for being a tough tackler and a big threat from set-pieces. This was evident from his display in 2014’s Champions League final against their cross-town rivals Real Madrid, when he gave Atletico Madrid the lead early on. But much to everyone’ s surprise, he was not included in UEFA’ s best team of the season in 2013/14 campaign.
#9 Phillip Lahm – Bayern Munich
“Lahm is the cleverest player I’ve coached,” said Pep Guardiola, who was full of praise for the former German captain when he first arrived at the Allianz Arean to take over as Bayern Munich boss. Phillip Lahm may be a tiny and not-so-intimidating figure on the football pitch, but he sure has got great footballing brain.
The 31-year-old has won almost everything that needs to be won as a professional player – the World Cup, Champions League, a handful of league titles and many more. He has spent his entire career with Bayern and is most likely going to retire a legend at the Allianz.
A versatile defender who keeps swapping both flanks and occasionally takes up a defensive midfield role if required, EA rightly rates him at 87 in FIFA 16.
#8 Sergio Ramos – Real Madrid
Following Iker Casillas’ departure, there was only one player who was capable of taking over the captain’s band from the legendary goalkeeper at the Santiago Bernabeu. It was no surprise Florentino Perez picked the 29-year-old as the deserved man to lead Los Blancos.
Sergio Ramos has grown in stature during his time at the Bernabeu, where he started off as a right back and gradually transformed himself into a commanding centre-back over time. He is arguably one of the best defenders in the world at the moment and his overall rating in FIFA 16 is 87.
#7 Jerome Boateng – Bayern Munich
German international defender Jerome Boateng has grown to be one of Pep Guardiola’ s favorite players in the squad. His string of consistent performances in the past few seasons for Bayern Munich has helped him develop into a rock solid defender.
He has the ingredients to become the best defender in the coming years and is at the peak of his career. Gifted with height, strength, tactical awareness and versatility, the 27-year-old has cemented his place at the Allianz Arena.
EA has honored the player’s growth and improvement over the years by rating him 87 in FIFA 16.
#6 Per Mertesacker – Arsenal
The Arsenal centre-back sits in the sixth position on the list and it’s hard not to question why. Mertesacker receives praise from Arsene Wenger for his ability to read situations in a game, for being tactically aware and his strong ability to lead the team from the back.
Unlike other defenders, the former German international may not be the quickest in the modern game but he has managed to deal with the intense pace in the Premier league over the years. His defensive partnership with France international Laurent Koscielny has grown to be one of the best pairings in the division.
The 6’6” defender gets an overall rating of 83.
#5 Andrea Barzagli – Juventus
Dubbed as the next “Fabio Cannavaro” of the Italian national team, Andrea Barzagli has the attributes and tenacity to become like the one-time Ballon D’Or winner. The 34-year-old forms a formidable partnership with Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci for the Turin outfit.
Barzagli and his defensive partners were pivotal in Juventus’ success in the Champions League campaign last season, where they went on to reach the final of the competition. However, his side were up against the best-attacking force in Europe in Barcelona and eventually lost out on the opportunity to win the coveted trophy.
Barzagli gets an overall rating of 84 by EA.
#4 Naldo – VFL Wolfsburg
Two seasons ago, the Brazillian defender was unknown to many of us. But Wolfsburg’s sudden rise in the German Bundesliga last season caught everyone’s attention, especially the tall defender. He was solid at the back for Wolfsburg, shutting down possible threats from the opposition while he relied on his teammates to do their job up front.
Naldo, along with his defensive partners, conceded 35 goals in 32 matches for the Bundesliga side. Not the best stat but patches of his solid and commanding performance for the team last season were enough to increase the rating of the defender to 85.
#3 Mats Hummels – Borussia Dortmund
Over the past two seasons, Mats Hummels has been linked with the elite clubs in Europe including Manchester United, Real Madrid and a few others. The German international has been a key figure at the Westfalenstadion and this was evident during his absence last season when Dortmund made a dreadful start to their season.
Besides sweeping up the mess at the back, Hummels poses a threat from set-pieces and has an eye for goal. He has the physique, agility and commanding nature to become Germany’s best defender in the coming years and has already helped his side to the top of the Bundesliga table.
The gaming company gives him a rating of 86.
#2 Giorgio Chiellini – Juventus
Chiellini is undoubtedly the best defender for the Italian national team and in the Serie A, too. He was immense in his side’s successful campaign last season when they bagged the league title, league cup and reached the final of UEFA Champions league.
The tall, left-footed centre back has shown consistency in his play for the past couple of seasons both in club and international level and it is no surprise he sits in the second position on the list.
#1 Thiago Silva – Paris Saint-Germain
Thiago Silva has established himself as one of the best defenders in the world since his time with AC Milan where he won the Serie A title in the second season with the Rossoneri side. He made an unexpected move to Paris Saint-Germain in 2012 and the transfer fee was rumoured to be in the region of €42 million, which made him the most costliest defender at the time.
Silva is currently the captain of Brazil and plays an integral role in the team. His absence was sorely felt in Brazil’s disastrous loss to World Champions Germany when the game resulted in a humiliating 7-1 loss on home turf.
Silva’ s overall rating is 88 in this year’ s edition of FIFA.