It is said that attacking wins you games while defence wins championships. Any good team with championship pedigree has to have good defensive strategies in place. Modern football coaches spend a lot of time trying to find a winning formation that works. Deploying the right kind of players especially defensively has over the years proven to be vital. There are those players that crack under pressure with some thriving in similar circumstances.
Chelsea legend and former long-term captain John Terry was one of the best defenders of his generation. He was known to fully commit into challenges and put his body on the line to block goal-bound shots. For the fans, seeing players' successful last-ditch defending is comparable to a striker scoring a beautiful goal on the other end.
There are players who have come to their team's rescue by making timely goal line clearances. By doing so, they prevented what would ideally be a certain goal. These three players made it happen for their sides by pulling off these crucial clearances without time to consult any defending rulebook.
#3 Alderweireld vs England
On July 14, 2018, England faced Belgium for the second time at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in match played in the St. Petersburg Stadium, Russia. Unlike their dead rubber Group G match in June, they were battling it out for third place. Both sides fielded strong players for this one. As expected, Belgium dominated this match and carved England open at will. In the fourth minute, Thomas Meunier gave Belgium the lead from close range after a lovely Nacer Chadli cross.
In the 70th minute, England had a good chance to equalise. Eric Dier exchanged passes with Marcus Rashford. Vincent Kompany missed the return pass to Dier who was through on goal. Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois rushed off his line with Dier applying a clever dink over Courtois. However, the goal-bound ball was cleared off the line by the alert Toby Alderweireld.