Best Left-Backs in the World in 2020
Stamina, speed, strength, agility and tactical awareness. These are some of the attributes that all footballers should have. But with the recent tactics in the modern day football, these attributes have turned into a must for players in a certain position. You might have already guessed what position we are talking about. Yes, the left-backs.
With all the new tactics that managers such as Zinedine Zidane and Pep Guardiola use, these players have become one of the key pieces of the chess board. As box-to-box players, they must have the required speed and stamina to quickly get up and down the pitch, whether to cross the ball or to cut off a through pass while defending a counter attack.
They must also possess the required strength to battle for the ball and win it with a fair but rough challenge, while also having the agility to get past rival players or hold on to the ball rather easily. Their tactical awareness is also a key attribute since it can help them implement their managers’ tactics and formations and play the ball to the right areas on the pitch as planned. That is why we have decided to rank the best left backs of 2020.
Top 10 left-backs in 2020
Here are our picks for the list of best left backs in the world in 2020.
10. David Alaba
- Club: Bayern Munich
- Games: 386
- Goals: 31
- Assists: 48
When we talk about the best current left backs in the world, one name comes to mind. David Alaba. For almost a decade, the Austrian international has always proven himself to be one of the very bests in the modern game. He joined the Bundesliga side Bayern Munich in 2008 and from the very beginning, he showed signs of great potential. His significance to his team is undeniable, especially because of his unbelievably immense versatility.
Alaba is so versatile that he has played in a multitude of areas and roles, including left and right wings, central midfield, and also central defence in which he has been playing this season due to Bayern’s struggle for center-back consistency. But he is most comfortable when he plays as a left-back. Even after playing mainly as a center-back all season, he is still a great enough player to be considered as one of the best left backs of 2020.
9. Raphaël Guerreiro
- Club: Borussia Dortmund
- Games: 120
- Goals: 23
- Assists: 21
Portugal are undeniably blessed when it comes to full-backs as they have no shortage of talented players to use in these positions, having some of the best left backs in football in 2020. Raphaël Guerreiro is one of those talented players. He plays for the German club Borussia Dortmund, and as a left-back, he has been phenomenal for the Bundesliga side this season.
He is also a versatile player and can play in various positions such as the left-midfield and center-back. This has given Dortmund’s manager Lucien Favre a wider roster while not having to add new players to his current team. Such an ability in modern times can certainly make a player one of the best left defenders in soccer of 2020.
Guerreiro joined Dortmund back in the 2016-17 season and has since played over 100 games, bagging 23 goals alongside 21 assists which are quite fantastic for a left-back in the modern game. The 26-year-old’s performance has earned him a place on our list of best left backs in the world in 2020, but he is yet to reach his potential and still has much more to offer, which we are eagerly waiting to see.
8. Ben Chilwell
- Club: Leicester City
- Games: 123
- Goals: 4
- Assists: 12
Benjamin (Ben) Chilwell might not have as many goals and assists to his name as Raphaël Guerreiro, but he has been an integral part of Brendan Rodgers’ team. He has been selected as number 8 on the list of best left backs in football of 2020 because of his impressive season with Leicester City.
The now 23-year-old is in fact a product of the Leicester City academy and has won their Academy Player of the Year award at the end of the 2014–15 season. He did spend a rather short loan spell at Hull City, but then immediately returned to his parent club, where he played for 5 years. There were rumors about his transfer to a new club in the recent days, which turned out to be true as one of the best left defenders in soccer in 2020 joined the London side Chelsea for quite a hefty fee of $65M, adding his name on The Foxes’ list of complete profits.
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- Club: Real Madrid
- Games: 509
- Goals: 38
- Assists: 97
The seventh player on our list of best left-backs in the world in 2020, is undeniably one of the best left-backs the world has ever seen. Marcelo Vieira da Silva Júnior joined the Spanish giants Real Madrid back in 2006 for a fee of $8M. The then 18-year-old may not have been considered as a Galactico at the time, but now he is certainly considered to be a legend and one of the greatest players to ever play the beautiful game.
For more than a decade, one of the best left backs in the world in 2020 has been an integral part of the Madrid side, which shows how consistent his performance is. The Brazilian alongside his Portuguese ex-teammate Cristiano Ronaldo used to the wreak havoc on the opposition’s defense, with Marcelo crossing the ball to Ronaldo to seal the deal with a beautiful header, a volley, a bicycle kick or any other way imaginable.
You might wonder why we have put such a talented player, with four Champions League trophies and 22 major trophies in total seventh on our list of best left backs in the world in 2020. After Ronaldo’s move to the Italian side Juventus, the now 32-year-old Marcelo, while still potent and quite integral, has seen quite a dip in form, usually being replaced by his 25-year-old French teammate Ferland Mendy, who was brought to the Spanish capital this season. But that doesn't mean that he is not one of the best left backs in football of 2020.
6. Alphonso Davies
- Club: Bayern Munich
- Games: 49
- Goals: 4
- Assists: 9
Alphonson Davies may not have been considered to be a left-back by many, let alone one of the best LBs in the world in 2020. But he proved everyone wrong when he was drafted into the position by The Bavarians’ manager Hans-Dieter Flick since he’s had to use David Alaba as a center-back this season.
The 19-year-old Canadian starlet was phenomenal for Bayern Munich in the 2019-20 season as he helped his club get their hands on yet another treble after winning the Champions League final against the French side Paris Saint-Germain. Davies was also integral for his side in the 8-2 thrashing of Barcelona, as he completed more dribbles than any other player on the pitch that memorable night, putting Nelson Semedo in his Pocket the whole game.
Davies’ market value has also seen a sudden rise this season, going from €10M to €60M in a matter of months. The young starlet may have already won a treble, but his journey is yet to begin. He has a lot of potential to realize and needs a lot of hard work and dedication to become one of the three best current left backs in the world.
5. Juan Bernat
- Team: Paris Saint-Germain
- Games: 73
- Goals: 6
- Assists: 10
Number five on our list of best left backs in the world in 2020 is the Spanish international Juan Bernat, who has found his true potential at the Ligue 1 side PSG, which he couldn’t find back at the German side Bayern Munich due to the full roster of full-backs The Bavarians had. The 27-year-old is also versatile enough to play as a left-winger, which is one of his attributes that helped his team to this year’s Champions League Final, but couldn’t stop his former team from beating PSG and winning the treble.
He might be considered as one of the best left backs in the world in 2020, but he has had a long road ahead of himself before realizing his potential. He signed for the Spanish side Valencia and began his career in La Liga, playing for his club for three seasons before moving to Germany in 2014.
The Spaniard has been phenomenal for his current team, which has earned him the fifth place on our list of best left-backs in the world in 2020. We might have to see whether his exceptional form will continue in the coming seasons as he is approaching his best years.
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4. Ferland Mendy
- Team: Real Madrid
- Games: 32
- Goals: 1
- Assists: 4
The French Left-back signed for the Spanish giants Real Madrid in the 2019-20 season, and he has already managed to replace Zidane’s former first choice Marcelo, one of the greatest players in Madrid’s history and has already won the La Liga and the Spanish Supercup. The 24-year-old has had a number of outstanding performances this season, scoring an exceptional goal against Granada to help his team in the title race against Barcelona. That's something only one of the best left defenders in soccer of 2020 can do, right?
Although he is one of the best left backs of 2020, he has still got a long way to go to be considered as one of the greatest left-backs in the history. For now, he still has some agility and technical issues that he must work on in order to reach his potential in the coming years. The Frenchman was brought to the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium on a six-year contract for an initial fee of €48M.
3. Jordi Alba
- Team: Barcelona
- Games: 336
- Goals: 17
- Assists: 66
There is no doubt that the Spanish international is one of the best left-backs of the decade and arguably one of the best left-backs in the history of his Catalan club Barcelona. But his remarkable performance in the 2019/20 season has also earned him the third place on our list of best left-backs in the world in 2020.
Unfortunately, his outstanding performance was heavily overshadowed by Barcelona’s disastrous season which has thrown the whole club into turmoil, with even Lionel Messi, one of the world’s legendary players handing-in his transfer request. The Spaniard has always been an integral part of his ever changing squad at his team, and is now the 31-year-old is at the peak of his career.
The 2012 European champion has won 15 trophies with Barcelona, including 5 La Liga titles, 4 Spanish Cups, 4 Spanish Super-cups, 1 FIFA Club World Cup and one Champions league trophy. It is safe to say that Alba has made quite a full trophy cabinet for himself. But we will have to wait and see if one of the best left backs in the world in 2020 can add to his trophy list in the coming seasons, considering the mess his club is in right now.
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2. Alex Sandro
- Team: Juventus
- Games: 198
- Goals: 11
- Assists: 26
We have reached the final two on our list of best left-backs in the world in 2020. The runner-up on our list is the Brazilian Alex Sandro who currently plays for the Italian side Juventus. Sandro has been sensational for his team in the 2019-20 season, but it hasn’t happened over night. He has slowly improved his play week in week out throughout the four seasons he has played for Juventus.
The ten time capped Brazil international used to play for the Portuguese side FC Porto from 2011 until 2015 when he joined Juventus for €26M on a five-year contract. His incredible performance earned both a contract extension until 2023 and the second place on our list of best-left backs in the world in 2020.
1. Andrew Robertson
- Team: Liverpool
- Games: 127
- Goals: 4
- Assists: 30
Considering the standards of modern day football, Andrew Robertson might be seen as a late bloomer. But he has finally bloomed alright. The 26-year-old joined Liverpool in 2017 reportedly for £8M. He has only gone up from that day forward, as he has been in a fantastic form ever since, helping his team to a Champions League trophy last season and also this season’s Premier League title which was the team’s first Premier League trophy in 30 years.
As the best current left-back, not only has the Scotsman been a source of creativity in the side, but he has also proven himself to be a solid defender, which has had an essential role in Liverpool’s defensive strength this season as they went a remarkable 44 games unbeaten. Robertson has taken the first place on our list of best left-backs in the world in 2020, and based on his performance will surely have a place on next season’s list as well. But we will certainly see a number of changes as there could be other late bloomers in the game as well, waiting to become the next best current left backs in the world. We will only have to wait and see.