Top 5 Poker Players Today Blog

Unlike playing in a casino online, there is something special about sitting down at the poker table and getting into the heart of the action. Then again, you may find yourself in a sea of sharks depending on the game.

There are five poker players who transcend the popularity of online casino games and dominate the felt as only the best poker players in the world can.

Phil Ivey

Ivey may very well be the most famous and best poker player ever. He rose to prominence during the poker boom of the 2000s and has since become the face of Full Tilt Poker. The ten WSOP bracelets certainly don’t hurt his case, either. In 2022 alone, Ivey cashed almost $6 million, making him one of the most successful players ever.

Benny Glaser

Though he may not be the name that Ivey is, Glaser has become a mixed game specialist rather than getting involved in the traditional world of No Limit Texas Hold’em. He’s had success in person and online, winning four British WSOP bracelets. Since 2015, he has become one of the best poker players going, becoming arguably the best in the online realm.

Daniel ‘Jungleman’ Cates

A college dropout turned poker player, Cates had won more than $11 million in online poker by 2011. Cates has since moved into the live environment, winning the WSOP $50,000 Players Championship event in 2021 and 2022. With $11 million in live tournament cashes since, he’s easily become one of the top names in the world.

Jason Koon

Koon, an American, is sixth on the all-time winnings list, having accumulated more than $41 million just from live poker. He left Party Poker to represent GG Poker and has become perhaps the most consistent super high roller performer out there. Don’t let the one WSOP bracelet fool you, either. He won $18 million in high roller events a year ago and he defeated the legendary Phil Hellmuth in Poker Go’s High Stakes Duel III to win $1.6 million. 

Stephen Chidwick

The Englishman Chidwick is currently fourth on the all-time money list but often flies under the radar. He consistently finishes highly in tournaments but keeps a low profile. With one bracelet, more than 20 top 10 finishes, and a whopping 64 finishes in the money at the WSOP, it’s hard to argue with the resume Chidwick puts together.


Though the landscape has changed from the times of Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, and others who dominated the early 2000s poker scene, there are still dominant names running the show. With millions in winnings and consistent finishes at the WSOP, it is easy to see why these players qualify as some of the best in the world.

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All Soccer Positions Explained By Name & Number

3-5-2 soccer formation

Welcome to the definitive guide on soccer positions. In this guide, we’ll look at all positions in soccer, including the required skill sets, responsibilities, names, and associated numbers. We’ll also cover formations and any abbreviations you ought to know. Ready? It’s time for kick-off…

What Are The Positions In Soccer?

Players are grouped into four categories in a soccer roster (or squad). They are:

  • Goalkeepers
  • Defenders
  • Midfielders
  • Forwards
Image credit:

Within these categories, there are different specialist positions with a variety of roles, responsibilities, and names. While soccer positions are constantly evolving, and may vary from team to team, they are traditionally grouped as:

We will look at each of these positions and their different variations below, but it’s important to understand that soccer is a highly nuanced sport, especially at the professional level.


What they do: Goalkeepers are primarily responsible for preventing the opposition from scoring goals. They do this by stopping or ‘saving’ shots from opposition players, reading the game and clearing any balls that are played in behind their defenders, or catching or punching crosses.

If a keeper can stop the opposition from scoring for the whole game, this is known as a ‘clean sheet’, and in most major tournaments and leagues, there are awards for goalkeepers that achieve the most. In the Premier League, it’s known as the ‘Golden Glove’.

As well as their goal-stopping capabilities, goalies are also increasingly required to have high-level passing skills. Most present-day coaches try to play possession-based football, where the whole team passes around the opposition from one end of the pitch to another, and this all starts with the goalkeeper.

Key Skills: Shot stopping, catching, punching, organization, communication, agility, reflexes, anticipation, passing and kicking.

Famous players in this position: Ederson, Allison, Thibaut Courtois, Manuel Neuer, Oliver Kahn, Iker Casillas, Peter Schmeichel, Gianluigi Buffon, Gordon Banks, and Lev Yashin. 

Image of Manuel Neuer: Steffen Prößdorf, CC BY-SA 4.0

Full-back And Wingback

What they do: Full-backs play on either side of a defense. They work together with other defenders to stop opposition attacking players from creating chances and scoring goals.

Known as either a right-back or left-back, they often face one-on-one situations against opposition wingers or forwards, but must offer an outlet when their team has the ball, and provide offensive support for their forwards.

This traditionally unglamorous position has developed a lot over the past few decades, and modern full-backs are now often viewed as a key creative component of their team. Former full-backs like Dani Alves, Phillip Lahm, and Roberto Carlos helped revolutionize the position and showcased how effective full-backs could be in maintaining possession, building attacks, and carving opportunities out for offensive players.

Wingbacks do a similar job to full-backs but have more of an emphasis on an attacking play, supporting their forwards and attacking players to try and create chances for their team. Historically, wingbacks played a lot further up the field than full-backs, but many of the best current full-backs in the world, like Trent Alexander Arnold and Kyle Walker, are often expected to do both jobs and cover the entire flank, or even move into midfield spaces.

Key Skills: Tackling, positioning, tactical awareness, interceptions, passing, crossing, speed, stamina, dribbling, communication and versatility.

Famous players in this position: Trent Alexander Arnold, Kyler Walker, Achraf Hakimi, Dani Carvajal, Dani Alves, Phillip Lahm, Roberto Carlos, Javier Zanetti, Ashley Cole, Cafu, Nilton Santos.

Kyle Walker playing for Manchester City FC
Image of Kyle Walker: Steffen Prößdorf/Wikipedia Commons


What they do: Center-backs, also known as central defenders or center-halves, play at the heart of a defense, and their primary objective is to stop the opposition from scoring and creating goal threats.

Usually playing as a pair or a three, center-backs help to organize their team’s defensive structure, ‘mark’ opposition attacking players, build their own team’s attacks, and win both offensive and defensive aerial duels. Often center-halves are the biggest, strongest players on the pitch, and use this physicality to disrupt and dominate the opposition in both boxes.

Center-backs can have different roles within their team, depending on the team’s tactical requirements and the player’s skills. For example, John Stones (Manchester City) is known as a technical ‘ball-playing’ defender who is comfortable on the ball and starts attacks with clever passes.

On the other hand, Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus) was known for aggression, tenacity, and ‘no-nonsense’ defending which were skills that were more traditionally associated with center-backs.

Key Skills: Tackling, positioning, tactical awareness, blocking, interceptions, passing, strength, communication, leadership, heading, jumping, and anticipation.

Famous players in this position: Virgil van Dijk, Sergio Ramos, Gerard Piqué, Carles Puyol, Vincent Kompany, John Terry, Fabio Cannavaro, Paolo Maldini, Ronald Koeman, Franz Beckenbauer, and Bobby Moore.

Sergio Ramos playing for Real Madrid
Image of Sergio Ramos: Jan S0L0/Wikipedia Commons

Center Midfield

What they do: Central midfield is one of the most diverse and sophisticated positions in soccer. Center midfielders usually play one, if not a combination of the following roles:

Holding or defensive midfielder

Defensive midfielders protect their center backs and break up opposition attacks with interceptions and tackles. They are also responsible for offering an initial outlet to build attacks and need excellent passing skills.


Outstanding all-rounders, box-to-box players have to do everything on the pitch, helping their teams both offensively and defensively. Using a combination of physicality, hard work, and technical skill, box-to-box players are equally likely to be seen making a key tackle in their own half as shooting on goal or providing a key pass for a striker.

Number 8

Similar to a box-to-box midfielder, number 8s have outstanding all-round ability but are more focused on controlling the possession and tempo of a game and building their team’s attacks.

Playmaker or attacking midfielder

Also known as attacking midfielders, or “number 10s”, playmakers try to create chances and score goals for themselves or their teammates. They often play between midfield and attacking players. They require outstanding touch, vision, passing, and shooting skills.

Central midfielders need to have diverse skills and may be required to play different roles even in the same game. Real Madrid star, Jude Bellingham previously wore the number 22 which signified the fact he could be a number four (holding midfielder), eight (box-to-box midfielder), and ten (attacking midfielder) at the same time. It highlights the importance of versatility in this position.

Key Skills: Passing, awareness, vision, dribbling, control, tackling, interceptions, pressing, shooting, stamina, tactical awareness, communication, leadership, versatility, technique and playmaking.

Famous players in this position: Jude Bellingham, İlkay Gündoğan, Kevin De Bruyne, Pedri, Luka Modrić, Xavi, Andrés Iniesta, Andrea Pirlo, Clarence Seedorf, Paul Scholes, Steven Gerrard, Zinedine Zidane, Bobby Charlton and Lothar Matthaus.

Danil Krugovoy and Jude Bellingham
Image of Danil Krugovoy (left) and Jude Bellingham (right): Vyacheslav Evdokimov/Wikipedia Commons

Wingers Or Wide Forwards

What they do: Wingers (also known as wide forwards) are attacking players that play on the flanks. They try to create and score goals for their team. Traditionally, wingers operated in the wide positions of a midfield four, however, many modern coaches play with a 4-3-3 formation and use two wide forwards and one central striker.

Wingers are often the quickest and most skillful dribblers in the team and usually have lots of individual battles with the opposition full-back throughout a match.

Wingers either look to run past opposition defenders on the outside, and cross balls into the box for their teammates to attack, or they cut inside and look to shoot or play passes around the opposition in central areas. Both require excellent close control, attacking vision, and pace.

Key Skills: Speed, acceleration, dribbling, control, passing, crossing, shooting, tactical awareness, technique and playmaking.

Famous players in this position: Lionel Messi, Vinicius Junior, Mohamed Salah, Gareth Bale, Neymar, Rivaldo, Arjen Robben, Ryan Giggs, Stanley Matthews, George Best, and Garrincha.

Lionel Messi celebrating scoring a goal against Granada CF
Image of Lionel Messi: Lluís/Wikipedia Commons

Striker Or Center-forward

What they do: Also known as the ‘number nine’ position, strikers are primarily responsible for scoring goals for their team. Usually, they operate in central areas (which is why they are also known as center-forwards) and act as the goalscoring focal point of the team.

Strikers are matched up against central defenders, so have to have outstanding physical attributes. They either need to be able to hold off defenders and protect the ball so their team can build attacks, or to have the speed to run behind them. The best strikers in football history could often do both.

Prolific strikers can be the difference maker for their team. After all, goals win games. The best strikers can dig their team out of a sticky situation with a majestic piece of play or outstanding finish. This is why the striker position in soccer often costs more money than players in any other position.

Key Skills: Shooting, technique, control, positioning, tactical awareness, composure, passing, pressing, strength, speed, heading, jumping, and anticipation.

Famous players in this position: Cristiano Ronaldo, Erling Haaland, Harry Kane, Luis Suárez, Robert Lewandowski, Samuel Eto’o, David Villa, Alan Shearer, Gerd Müller, Pelé, Ronaldo, and Alfredo Di Stéfano.

Cristiano Ronaldo
Image of Cristiano Ronaldo: Jan S0L0/Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0


It’s also important to understand formations. Formations, tactics, and player responsibilities are constantly developing, and it is the coach’s job to get the most out of their team. There are no restrictions on where players can go on the field, or what they can do (within the rules). That’s up to them and the coach.

Soccer coaches or managers set their teams up in formations that dictate where the player will most often be on the pitch, and what their responsibilities are within the team. The most common formations in the modern era are:

  • 4-4-2
  • 4-5-1
  • 4-3-3
  • 4-3-2-1
  • 4-1-3-2
  • 5-4-1
  • 4-1-2-1-2 diamond
  • 3-5-2
3-5-2 soccer formation
Image of 3-5-2 formation: Jfd34/Wikipedia Commons

Each formation has its pros and cons, and a coach might want their players to be very rigid and disciplined within it, or give them more freedom and expression on the pitch. It’s the player’s job to understand what the coach wants, and then execute it in the game.

Soccer Position Numbers

All soccer players wear numbers on the back of their jerseys, and they often correspond to the position that the player plays on the pitch. Historically, players wore the correct number for their position, and ‘squad players’ were assigned a number above 11.

Nowadays, though, it’s not unusual to see a modern superstar wearing a non-traditional soccer number. Liverpool’s Trent Alexander Arnold wears the number 66, while Man City’s Phil Foden wears 47. Legendary Brazil striker Ronaldo Nazário also wore number 99 in his time at AC Milan because his favored number 9 was already taken.

But, most commonly, the soccer positions by number are:

  1. Goalkeeper
  2. Right-back
  3. Left-back
  4. Center-back
  5. Center-back
  6. Central defensive/holding midfielder
  7. Right winger/forward
  8. Central/box-to-box midfielder
  9. Striker
  10. Playmaker/attacking midfielder
  11. Left winger/forward
Midfielder Thiago Alcantara
Image of midfielder Thiago Alcantara: Rolandhino1/Wikipedia Commons

Soccer Position Abbreviations

All soccer field positions can be abbreviated down to two or three letters, instead of using the full name. If you’ve ever built your own soccer team online or played a soccer management simulation game, you’ve probably discovered this before.

The full list of abbreviations are:

  • Central defensive/holding midfield – CDM
  • Attacking midfielders – AM
  • Right winger/forward – RW
  • Left winger/forward – LW

Soccer Positions Summary

In this article, we’ve covered everything you need to know about the detailed world of soccer positions and numbers. Remember though, soccer number positions are just theoretical. Just because a player usually plays a specific position, or wears a particular number, doesn’t mean they can’t go into a certain area of the pitch, attack and defend, or even play multiple positions in one match.

As the game develops and coaches are looking for more innovative ways to beat opposition teams, traditional positions are becoming a thing of the past. Players are increasingly required to take on more responsibility on the pitch, so don’t be surprised to see star strikers working as hard defensively as they do in the attacking third, or for a full-back to be their team’s main creative outlet. Positions are just a guide. Coaches, players, and teams are all unique.

For more on soccer, check out our articles on the best soccer teams of all time and the richest soccer teams.

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Mike Tyson Inks Rabona Brand Ambassador Deal With Focus on Twitch, Kick Livestreams

Mike Tyson

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End of an Era as the Final ICE London Kicks Off

Icy London bridge

The last hurrah

The International Casino Exhibit (ICE) is always a highly anticipated event on the gaming calendar as people from all across the gambling industry coming together to take a look at the latest technologies, products, and services coming out of the sector.

calling the ExCeL London its home for the past dozen years

After calling the ExCeL London its home for the past dozen years, ICE will seek greener pastures when it moves to Barcelona next year. The city was chosen ahead of Madrid, Paris, and London following an intense six-month selection process; it will be held at the Fira de Barcelona for an initial five-year term. The 2024 edition kicks off on Tuesday and ends on Thursday.

A huge event

More than 45,000 people and a record 811 exhibitors are expected to attend ICE London 2024 Clarion Gaming, the organizer of the event, and its Managing Director Stuart Hunter noted that the final ICE London will use “every square millimetre of available space” in the arena.

Barcelona’s bid was preferred over the others because of its world-class facilities, great infrastructure for hospitality, ability to scale, logistics, and the potential return on investment for customers.

Some of the different areas of focus at ICE London include esports, payments, sports betting, and casino. Many of the exhibits will be manned by companies showcasing new games, betting features, and other emerging technologies.

Notable speakers

Among the headline speakers for the conference are MGM Resorts International CEO and President Bill Hornbuckle, as well as the chair of the Gambling-Related Harm All-Party Parliamentary Group MP Carolyn Harris.

an update from the UK Gambling Commission

Panels take place across the three days, covering a wide range of topics including looking at future trends and challenges for the industry. Regulators from around the world usually talk about shifting frameworks, with an update from the UK Gambling Commission providing interesting insights about its future plans.

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