The Hardest Position In Soccer? The Definitive Answer!

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What is the hardest position in soccer?

Soccer is a sport composed of several positions. However, many questions arise as to what the most difficult position is.

First thing first, if you ask any soccer player about the hardest position, they will always tell you their position. This is because all soccer players are important on the pitch, and every one of them greatly impacts the pitch.

However, if you look at it from a neutral perspective, you are going to find out that all positions are important, but only one seems to stand out from the rest.

So, is there the hardest position in soccer? The answer is yes.

Let’s find out.

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What Is The Hardest Position In Soccer?

The hardest position in soccer is the Central Midfielder. Not only does a midfielder has to get the ball from the defence and take it to the forwards to create a goal-scoring opportunity, but they also have to control the game by making sure their team has the possession.

Although each person can have their own opinion about this topic, I am going to explain to you in mere detail why I think the Midfielder is the hardest position in soccer-

Here are 5 reasons why midfielder is the hardest position in soccer:

  1. The midfielder is the heart of the game.
  2. The midfielder touches more the ball than other players.
  3. Midfielder’s great defensive job.
  4. A midfielder needs a great passing ability.
  5. Everyone can’t play as a midfielder.

1-The midfielder is the heart of the game

The midfielder, compared to other positions, has to make sure their team has the ball possession.

A team can not have possession with a poor midfield. Plus, the midfielder is a key element for a team victory.

If a team is beaten in the middle, they could lose the game.

So, playing as a midfielder has more responsibility and pressure.

2-The Midfielder Touches The Ball More Than Other Players

A midfielder is supposed to touch the ball more than any other player on the field.

This is because soccer/football is not just a game where you have to take the ball and run to the opposing side. Rather, soccer is a game that involves tactics to win.

This means each team has to build up the play. This often involves playing short passes, and the midfielders have to do it.

The midfielder has to make sure to build the play from the defence to the attack.

3-Midfilder’s Defensive Job

What is the hardest position in soccer - 4 players fighting for the ball in the midfield

Not only do midfielders have to touch a lot of balls and take them to the attacking, but they are also praised for their defensive efforts.

A midfielder is a link between the defence and the attack.

Midfielders will often help the defenders to get the ball. Once they have it, they have to think fast to find a forward in the space.

4-Great Passing Ability

You can not play as a midfielder with a poor passing ability.

Midfielders have to get the ball from defenders and be able to pass it to the forwards. This is usually done with long passes.

Midfielders are required to have a fantastic long passing ability. This is very useful when there is a counterattack.

Plus, long passes can easily break the entire opposing defence.

Some great examples can be T.Kroos and A.Iniesta.

5-Everyone Can’t Play In The Midfield

Everyone can’t play in the midfield. Everyone doesn’t have T.Kroos and Iniesta vision.

Yeah, that’s right.

Those payers don’t only have a great passing ability, but they also can know what to do next even before they received the ball.

Plying as a midfielder involves specific skills.

By the way, I have written an article titled “The midfield position in soccer“. You can read it a learn everything there is to know about that position.

When I am talking about playing as a midfielder, I’m not only referring to the central midfielder, but this can also be the number 6 Position.

However, If there is the hardest position, this means there has to be a 2nd hardest position in soccer. But what is it?

What Is The Second Hardest Position In Soccer?

The striker is the second hardest position in soccer. The striker has to make sure to score goals if they want to win the game. And the main purpose of soccer is to score goals. But this also involves several important skills which are not easy to master.

Unlike the midfielder whose main role is to get the ball from the defence and build up the play to create a goal-scoring opportunity, the striker has to find a way to receive the ball from the midfielders and score.

If you think it is easy to score goals, then you are wrong.

A striker is under constant pressure because if the team doesn’t manage to score, the striker will be considered as the main accountable as it’s his job to score goals.

Note that a striker can not always be blamed if there are no goals during a game.

What you should know is that some strikers have to wait for the ball on the opposition side. They don’t need to build up the play or dribble. Their role is to receive the ball and finish. But not all strikers do that. Others strikers are involved in the game construction.

So, if there are no goals in a game, it can also be because the striker has not been served properly by his teammates or the tactic imposed by the coach wasn’t good enough.

This is why I consider it the second hardest position in soccer.

Otherwise, it would be a disrespect for midfielders who have to do the dirty job.

What Others Think

As I said at the beginning of this article, each person can have their own opinion about the hardest position in soccer.

I have made some digging and found out several other opinions about this topic.

For instance, according to, the goalkeeper is the most difficult position in soccer.

What is the hardest position in soccer - A goalkeeper trying to stop a ball

Here is what they said: “the goalie is the only player with a unique skill set, the goalie has more competition than any other player, and because the goalie is under more pressure than other players”.

But is goalie the hardest position in soccer?

Although it is their opinion because it’s probably based on their own experience, I wouldn’t agree and here is why.

Let’s explore each idea and I’ll give my personal opinion.

A-“The Goalie Has A Unique Skillset”

“The goalie is the only player allowed to catch the ball with their hands. Hence they have this unique skill set that other players don’t have”.

Here is my answer to this: The truth is that each player can do well as a goalkeeper but not each player can do well as a midfielder or striker.

This is because playing as a midfielder and striker involve harder skills than the goalkeeper.

Of course, I am not underestimating the goalie job… But everyone can play as a goalkeeper.

We often see defenders playing the role of a goalie when the real goalie gets a red card and there’s no other substitution.

And they do really good as a goalie.

A great recent example has been seen during the African Cup Of Nations that took place in 2022. During the knock out stage between Cameroun and Comoros, something strange happened. The three goalkeepers from the Comoros team couldn’t play due to covid and injuries.

So, the left-back Chaker Alhadhur had to play as the goalie.

It was his first time to play as a goalie and guess what? He gave an outstanding performance. Although Comoros lost 2-1, the score could have been worst without Chaker Alhadhur who is a former left-back.

This player has been able to help his team in a position he had never played before.

This confirms once again that the goalie can’t be the hardest position in soccer. Instead, the goalie is the most important position but not the hardest.

B-“The Goalie Has More Competition Than Any Other Player”.

Once again, made that statement.

What I would say is that the defender has more competition than any other player.

If you play in a soccer team or maybe just a Sunday league game, you would notice that there tend to be more players willing to defend than attack. There always seem to be more people who want to play in defence.

This is because this position doesn’t require much like others.

C-“The Goalie Has More Pressure Than Other Players”

As I already mentioned earlier, midfielders and strikers have more pressure than a goalkeeper.

Although the goalkeeper is the one protecting the cages and has to stop every opposition shoot, this doesn’t mean they have more pressure than other players.

What about the striker who has to face strong defenders to score? What about midfielders who have to win the battle in the middle to ensure possession?

The goalkeeper doesn’t even have to run. All he does is stand in the cages and try to stop every ball coming his way.

It is easier to play as a goalie than any other position.

Wrap Up

The midfielder is the hardest soccer position.

Of course, each person can have their own opinion about the topic because we all have a different perspective.

But I gave all the arguments as to why I think playing in the midfield is harder than playing anywhere else on the pitch.

I hope you have gained value from this article.

According to you, what is the hardest position in soccer? Share your ideas in the comment section below.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask and I’ll get back to you ASAP.

You can also read the easiest position in soccer.

9 thoughts on “The Hardest Position In Soccer? The Definitive Answer!”

  1. Happy to found this post. I like how complex you went with your descriptions. I can also bet, that you are ex or present soccer player! I played myself highest level and now still relatively high. I play as second striker, or offensive midfielder and I can agree on what you here described. Those two have a special importance for a game as in attack as well as in defence. However I do agree that all positions have their importance, and you can argue which one has higher importance(just see how the impact on the team one red card can have, right?) Thank you for this piece of info

    • Hi, Julius. Thanks for sharing your point. I totally agree with you that it can highly impact the team if a player receives a red card during a soccer game.

      You play offensive midfielder. So, you can relate that this is the hardest position on a soccer pitch. As you said, you have to do both offensive and defensive jobs.
      Have a nice one.

  2. Which position do you think is more difficult, CDM, CM or CAM? In my opinion, I think all positions are difficult. I use to be a LB but I would sometimes play LWB. I absolutely hated playing left wing back as I was constantly running. But like I said, there’s not one hard position in soccer 

    • Hi, Daniel. I think CM is a more difficult position than CDM or CAM. Let me explain…

      The CM is in charge of linking the defence to the attack. A CM has to make a lot of runs and make sure the entire midfield is under control. This makes this position more difficult.

      However, the CAM main role is to assist the attack. And the CDM main role is to support the defence only. Of course, a CDM can also support the offensive players, but this is not their main role.

  3. Hmm, this is interesting and surprising! I would have guessed that the goalkeeper was the hardest position, but after further review, you make solid points about the central midfielder being the hardest position in soccer! The pressure that the goalie deals with is unique to that position, but it does seem more challenging to be an effective central midfielder!

    • Hi, Aly. I am glad you enjoyed the article.

      Each person can have their opinion about the hardest position in soccer. The goalie has more pressure only during a penalty kick. This is because he is going to face the penalty taker, and his entire team will count on him to make a save.

      But during the game, most of the time if the team concedes a goal, in most cases, it’s not the goalie’s fault but the defenders.

      Hence why I do not consider the goalkeeper to be the hardest position on a soccer pitch.

  4. Soccer is a unique sport and I enjoy watching it from time to time. I do notice how important each position is when it comes to making game-changing plays that can make a difference in winning a soccer match. Learning about each soccer player’s position is challenging but the more we get to know their role the easier we can understand the game entirely.

    Amazing post by the way. 

    • You are not wrong, soccer is a unique sport and each position has its importance. The hardest position can be the easiest for some. That’s what I love about soccer.

      Have a wonderful rest of the day


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