Who Wears Number 10 Shirt in Your Football Team?

Messi, Number 10

 There’s something subtle I want to draw your attention to. Perhaps, you haven’t thought of it like this before, but who wears the number 10 shirt in your football team?

In the traditional association football formation,which is 4-2-4, position are identified by numbers 1-11. A player who plays the inside left position usually put on the number 10 jersey. Although, there’s no rule to it.

In some teams, players are asked to choose their favorite number and anyone of them may just be the first to choose number 10. Indeed, some players insist on putting on a particular Jersey number and the team manager oblige them, especially when the player feels lucky with such number.

Neymar, number 10

But it’s different with jersey number 10. And I don’t know if you have observed it, but no average player ever wears the number 10 shirt for a team. This jersey number seem to be reserved for the star player. In some teams like the Brazilian national team, the player must be a top notch star before he may be allowed to wear number 10 shirt. This is the reason Neymar currently put on the jersey number , even though he plays from both right and left wings for the Brazilian national team.


Pele, number 10

 Most of the world’s best players, Pele, Maradonna, Zidane, Rivaldo, Kaka, Messi… got the number 10 jersey  specially reserved for them. The Jersey number is used to identify stars.

Perhaps, there’s another  angle to it. The fact may be that players that play the inside left position usually turn out to be the best because of the peculiarity of the position. The inside left is an attacking midfield position and the player in that position is usually given much liberty to express himself. The player can rove around, join attack as well as return to the midfield to determine the pace of his team. It seem like the player in this position, who wear number 10 shirt, out shine others.

Well, in modern football, teams no longer play the 4-2-4 formation. More technically orientated formations have been invented over the years. For instance, in a defensive formation such as 4-3-2-1, the inside left position may not be given such role to rove around. The player’s ball winning skills is more emphasized. In such formation jersey numbers bear little or no significance.

Maradona, Number 10

You may also understand that a team can switch from one formation to another and players do also switch from one position to another during a game. So it doesn’t matter whether a team is playing the classic formation, 5-3-2 or the center spread formation 4-4-2, any player can as well wear the number 10 shirt.

When a new player is signed into a team, it’s the jersey numbers available that he can choose from. It isn’t healthy to ask the player who already bears number 10 shirt to give it up for the new sign-on, just because he is a bigger star.

However, it all depend on the team culture. Some teams are particular about the number 10 jersey and strictly reserve it for the star player, while other teams are liberal about jersey numbers. But in as much as the team may be liberal, the manager may not allow an average player to put on the number 10 shirt for the team.


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