After a nerve-wracking 29 days during which we witnessed unbelievable targets, unbelievable shock outcomes, fairytale journeys, underwhelming performances, and attention-grabbing shows, the 2022 FIFA World Cup has lastly ended. 
All of those had one factor in widespread, resolute defending. The defenders had been in no temper to make the attackers’ lives simple. A number of of the upsets had been primarily based on this strategy.
In truth, Croatia and Morocco’s semi-final journey had been closely reliant on the artwork of defending. Nonetheless, even the large groups resembling France and Argentina needed to defend for his or her lives. Then again, groups resembling Brazil and England had been solely knocked out as a result of they failed to shut out a sport by ensuring they didn’t concede.
So, listed below are the highest 10 defenders of the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Nayef Aguerd 
Morocco had been the fairytale journey of this World Cup as they made an unbelievable run that took them to the semi-finals. With this, they grew to become the primary African staff to achieve the ultimate 4 of the event. One of many key causes behind their success was their defence. 
And Nayef Aguerd was an integral a part of Morocco’s backline. The 26-year-old shaped a strong defensive partnership with captain Romain Saiss and helped the staff preserve three clear sheets (two within the group levels, within the spherical of 16 in opposition to Spain).
Whereas he didn’t play the quarter-final and semi-final as a result of damage, his alternative Jawad El Yamiq did a commendable job. 
Achraf Hakimi 
Within the Morocco squad, there isn’t a higher participant by way of ability, high quality, and expertise than right-back Achraf Hakimi. The defender plied his commerce for Paris Saint Germain and was underneath stress to ship. And ship he did.
Hakimi shaped a superb partnership with proper winger Hakim Ziyech which shaped the crux of Morocco’s assaults. He saved attackers resembling Joao Felix, Dani Olmo, Thorgan Hazard and Ivan Perisic at bay.

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His presence additionally had a relaxing impact on the staff, which ensured that different gamers additionally performed at their greatest. One of many examples of this was his spectacular Panenka successful penalty in opposition to Spain within the spherical of 16.
Theo Hernandez 
In 2018, when France gained the World Cup, Lucas Hernandez was the designated left-back. This time, although, his youthful brother Theo has taken up the mantle. The AC Milan man has been good, scoring one purpose and offering two assists. He has additionally shaped an explosive partnership with Kylian Mbappe on the left.
He was the primary opposing participant at this World Cup to attain previous Yassine Bounou in Morocco’s purpose. As well as, no defender within the World Cup has supplied extra assists on the event than the 25-year-old.

Romain Saiss
The third Moroccan on the checklist, Romain Saiss, has been the guts of the Atlas Lions’ defence. The 32-year-old made 57 clearances on the event, probably the most by any participant on the World Cup. This was the theme behind Morocco’s spectacular event run as they repeatedly pissed off their opponents.
And Saiss did all this whereas not being totally slot in a number of matches. In truth, he needed to be stretchered off throughout their win over Portugal within the quarter-finals. And whereas he did play within the semi-final, his damage resurfaced, and he was substituted within the first half.
Josko Gvardiol 
Croatia’s journey from minnows to a footballing energy serves as an inspiration within the sport. After reaching the ultimate in 2018, the Vatreni made one other unbelievable run reaching the semi-finals en path to beating favourites Brazil. 
And Josko Gvardiol was an integral a part of this. The 20-year-old is likely one of the greatest younger defenders on the planet and introduced his type to the World Cup. He was a rock within the Croatian defence, serving to them preserve two clear sheets within the group stage. 
His greatest efficiency by far got here in opposition to Brazil the place Gvardiol made 84 touches, seven clearances, 5 ball recoveries, 5 closing third entries successful two duels, and one sort out and interception. 

Dayot Upamecano 
France had arrived with the very best defenders within the World Cup. The French roster included Benjamin Pavard, Raphael Varane, Jules Kounde, William Saliba, Lucas Hernandez, Theo Hernandez, Ibrahima Konate, and Dayot Upamecano. Nonetheless, regardless of such defensive brilliance, Deschamps opted for Upamecano as certainly one of his beginning centre-backs. 
And Bayern Munich didn’t disappoint, serving to France preserve the opposition at bay. And whereas France solely saved one clear sheet within the World Cup, it was as a result of their high-pressing type of play that left their defence usually uncovered. The defender was among the many greatest on the World Cup by that marker.
Denzel Dumfries 
When the Netherlands arrived on the World Cup, they had been a staff that was heavy on defence. Nonetheless, underneath Louis van Gaal, the Dutch had been hoping to repeat their 2014 heroics underneath the identical coach. And the Dutch made a formidable run to the quarter-finals dropping to Argentina on penalties. 
Throughout their complete run, Denzel Dumfries was certainly one of their greatest gamers. Enjoying in his most popular proper wing-back place Dumfries created havoc on the suitable wing. He scored one purpose and supplied two assists which confirmed how instrumental he was to the nation throughout the event.
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Nicolas Otamendi 
Whereas most plaudits for Argentina’s unbelievable World Cup marketing campaign have been attributed to Lionel Messi, Nicolas Otamendi has been the silent murderer in La Albiceleste’s defence. He shaped a strong defensive partnership with Christain Romero that helped Argentina navigate the World Cup marketing campaign.
Otamendi has made seven profitable tackles, the third-most by any defender on the World Cup. As well as, he additionally made 46 clearances, the fourth-most by any participant, which exhibits simply how essential he was to the staff.
Dejan Lovren 
Dejan Lovren might not have the very best of membership careers. Nonetheless, for Croatia, the defender was a beast. The previous Liverpool man was the guts of Vatreni’s defence for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. On the age of 33 years, Lovren cast a robust partnership with Josko Gvardiol that helped Croatia preserve two clear sheets within the group stage.
He made 46 clearances, the fifth-best within the event. As well as, he made 5 interceptions, second solely to his companion Gvardiol. And whereas all of the praises of Croatia’s unbelievable journey went to gamers resembling Luka Modric, Ivan Perisic, Dominik Livakovic, and Gvardiol, Lovren was the silent chief of the backline.
Christian Romero 
Earlier than the World Cup, there was intense hypothesis about whether or not Lisandro Martinez would begin after his spectacular performances for Manchester United. Nonetheless, Lionel Scaloni opted for Christian Romero and Nicolas Otamendi as his beginning centre-backs. Romero misplaced his place within the subsequent match after their shock loss to Saudi Arabia.
Nonetheless, since then, he has performed each match and has been a prime performer. The Tottenham man has performed 360 minutes, far lower than many defenders however nonetheless ranks among the many prime. He ranks sixth amongst profitable tackles, sixth amongst dribblers stopped and fourth amongst interceptions displaying his significance to the staff.

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