A Complete Guide to the Different Positions in Soccer

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When you’re watching a game of professional soccer, the action can look almost like a well-choreographed dance. But if you’re not familiar with all the ins and outs of the sport (the offsides rule is confusing, OK?), it can be hard to figure out exactly what’s going on in each play. After all, there are 22 players on the field at any given time. That’s a lot of soccer positions and roles to keep track of. Well, allow us to give you a crash course in the soccer position names and purposes.

What Are the Positions in Soccer?

The 11 players on each team consist of a goalkeeper and 10 outfielders, typically comprised of four defenders, four midfielders, and two forwards. Each of these positions typically covers a particular area on the field, and within the broader positions, individual players may have a specific role.

Here’s a thorough guide to the different positions in women’s soccer and what each position entails. (And while you’re learning about the game, brush up on how long a match is to whether or not a game can end in a tie.)

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