Football Manager – What makes a good full-back?

Whether you decide to play with full-backs or wing-backs, having two quality players on either side can be vital to your team as a defensive unit. And if you happen to have Cristiano Ronaldo playing on the wing for you, it is clearly imperative that your full-back is a capable defender.

Although there is so much more that a tactical system that utilises two full-back’s can offer you – and particularly as an attacking outlet. In this sense think Dani Alves but while a free-roaming, attack minded full-back is great at times, it is important that your right or left sided defender doesn’t shirk their defensive duties either.

5 Key Attributes


As much I have said that it’s essential for a full-back to be defensively conscious as well as more forward thinking, crossing will become crucial for those players that come anywhere near the opposition’s half. Whether you are looking for your full-back to deliver from deep or more towards the byline, the better their crossing attribute the more effective they will be at delivering into the box.


I believe it is hugely important that your full-backs are both quick off the mark and over a distance too. A right or left sided defender that is slow will clearly struggle to track back effectively in defensive situations and he will lack the speed to beat a man in more advanced positions too.


While I appreciate that full-back’s will not be expected to make crunching challenges on a consistent basis, being strong in the tackle will no doubt prove useful. A high tackling attribute will result in it being a much tougher proposition for the opposition wide man to get beyond your full-back which will help prevent your opponent from creating chances at will.


The dribbling attribute can work particularly well with the acceleration/pace and balance and agility rating of your player where dribbling refers to a player’s ability to run with the ball at feet. If you’re hoping to have an attacking full-back who makes plenty of marauding runs forward then you won’t go too far wrong by concentrating on the dribbling attribute.


The chances are that if you are employing a formation that comprises of two full-backs, you’re going to be expecting them to get up and back. This is where the stamina attribute will become fundamentally important as your full-backs attempt to cope with the demands of consistently getting forward and back with little time for recovery.

For more detailed information on mental, technical and physical attributes, head over to the ‘FM Player Attributes’ post.

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