Soccer Positional Numbers and Responsibilities

What is a 9? a 6? the 3 and 8? what do these mean in a soccer setting? Keep reading and you will find out!

Position names and numbers


U.S. Soccer Federation Positional Numbering system.

By Running this system, it allows you to have 6 players (at least) defending the ball, and 5 (at least) when going forward.

This formation can be adjusted to a 5-3-2, a 3-5-2, a 4-5-1, and really anything else. Study these positions and you will further your soccer ability and increase your soccer I.Q.

#1 Goalkeeper
Technically proficient
Solid technical passing abilities
Strong distribution decisions
Gifted athlete
#2 & 3 Outside Backs (Right & Left)
Ability to play great long service
Strong at defending 1 vs. 1
Speedy player able to cover ground on the flanks
Solid technical passing abilities
#4 & 5 Center Backs (Left & Right)
Consistent players who are organizers and leaders
Tall and Strong
Ability to cover ground – especially laterally and vertically
Technically strong defensively
Strong tackler
Strong in the air
#6 Defensive Midfielder
High work rate
Ability to keep the ball (vision and technical passing)
Tactically astute
Strong in air
Strong tackler
#8 Center Midfielder
Endless work rate – speed and endurance
Good leadership and organization
Creative playmaker
Good in air
Long range finishing ability
Ability to provide defensive pressure
#7 & 11 Winger (Right & Left)
Very fit
High Work Rate
Ability to make long runs and recover
Strong 1 vs 1 attacking ability
Flank service
Long range shooting
#10 Attacking Center Midfielder
Finishing ability
Clinical passing in final third to create scoring opportunities
Strong 1 vs 1 in final third
Makes play predictable through putting pressure on defense
#9 Forward
Ability to play with back to the goal
Creativity and technical finishing abilities
Strong and tough

By studying EACH position and its responsibilities thoroughly. You will come to understand the strengths of not just individual positions, but the strength of a true squad. No team can compete with a squad that understands what each other are doing and can mold and shape throughout the game to support each other.


Author: coachbathletics

Coach Bouchelle has coaching experience in Soccer, Basketball, Golf and Volleyball. He has coached soccer for 10+ years and currently works as the Head Coach/Program Supervisor at American Leadership Academy Ironwood in San Tan Valley, Arizona. Coach Bouchelle strives to bring the beauty of European soccer to America while also continuing to build on the standards set up by the United States Soccer Association. He currently holds his "F" class license from the USSA. He resides in San Tan Valley with his wife Marisa. They have been married since August of 2014.

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