Pubcast XI: Right Back
It’s one of the most underrated positions in any football team, but it’s hugely important to the success of the side. It’s the right back position – and it’s one that had the Pubcasters in a heated debate on this week’s show as they pushed the claims of their respective nominations for the Pubcast XI.
Jim, Mike, Stu and Si all nominated a right back on the show, but the decision on who makes it into the Pubcast XI falls to you. Check out the nominees below and place your vote using the poll at the bottom of this article.
We’ll announce the results in next week’s show.
Cafu – Nominated by Jim
Cafu, or Marcos Evangelista de Moraes to give him his full title, is widely regarded as one of the greatest right backs ever to play the game. (FYI Mike; Garry Neville is not. By anyone. Even by Neville Neville.) He was known for his marauding runs and overlapping displays for Brazil down the right flank, and was a much better defender than often given credit for. He won titles and cups at every club he played for domestically, and chalked up a whopping 142 appearances for Brazil. This marks him out as the most capped Brazilian ever.
Still not convinced he deserves your Pubcast XI vote? Then I shall continue…
Cafu is one of the few players that have participated in four consecutive World Cup tournaments, as well as being the second player, after Lothar Matthaeus, to participate in three consecutive World Cup final matches. He has won two of these World Cups. His other achievements include 2 Copa Libertadores, 2 Intercontinental Cups, the UEFA Cup Winners Cup, 2 Seria A titles, 2 Supercoppa Italiana’s, the UEFA Super Cup, the FIFA Club World Cup, 2 Copa America’s, 2 FIFA Confederations Cups and the UEFA Champions League.
As if this weren’t enough he’s also a devoted husband and all round nice guy… after Brazil won the 2002 World Cup, he stood on the victory podium during the postmatch celebration and, as he raised the trophy, shouted to his wife, “Regina, I love you!” Well he actually shouted “Regina, eu te amo!” but you know what I mean.
Cafu is the only choice worth considering for the Pubcast XI; legend, role model, hopeless romantic and above all a bloody good full back.
Gary Neville – Nominated by Mike
If you support Manchester United, he’s a dedicated club-captain, an excellent defender and crosser of the ball, a red to the core and one of the finest servants our club has ever had (a total of 602 appearances sit him behind only Giggs, Charlton, Foulkes and Scholes). If you support most other clubs, he’s a petty, big-mouthed, over-rated mate of David Beckham who’s lost his pace. If you support Liverpool he’s a word I can’t write on this site.
But there’s no denying the facts – 8 Premier Leagues, 3 FA Cups, 2 League Cups, 2 Champions Leagues, 1 Intercontinental Cup, 1 World Club Cup, 5 appearances in the Premier League team of the year and England’s most capped right back.
He’s probably more hated than Robbie Savage and El Hadji Diouf combined but there’s no denying that he’s a fine defender and a man of principles (his face isn’t the only reason you don’t see him falling out of clubs with supermodels…).
And admit it, if he played for your club you’d love him.
Sergio Ramos – Nominated by Stu
After working his way through the youth ranks at Sevilla, Sergio Ramos has risen to world stardom at Real Madrid. At 19 Ramos was the youngest Spanish international to make his debut for 55 years, with Real Madrid paying a record fee for a Spanish teenager – 27million Euros – to bring him to the Bernabeu from Sevilla.
Having already played 178 times for Los Blancos with a goal return of 1 in 8 (better than a fair few strikers) Ramos brings the experience and quality you’d expect from a La Liga and World Cup winning right back (he won the Castrol Index Player of the Tournament in last summer’s World Cup).
On top of all that, he’d also make the perfect addition to Casillas in the Pubcast XI so look no further than Sergio Ramos for your vote at right back.
Javier Zanetti – Nominated by Si
Great going forward, superb defensively, a born leader and a club legend at Inter Milan, Javier Zanetti isn’t just a world-class right back, he’s a complete footballer and, in my opinion, the best natural defender of the bunch. Right back is a defensive position first and foremost, so that counts for quite a bit.
Scandalously omitted from the Argentinean squad for the last two World Cups, Zanetti has still managed to amass 138 international caps and is second on the Inter Milan All-Time Appearance list, behind another legendary right back, Giuseppe Bergomi.
The Argentinean is one of the most respected players in the world today and is renowned for his defensive ability, attacking flair and outstanding leadership qualities. With credentials like that, what clear-minded manager wouldn’t want a player like Zanetti in their side?
For my money he’s consistently been among the best defenders in the world over the last 15 years, so he’s my right back in the team. Cast your vote for “Il Capitano”, Javier Zanetti.
Gary Neville 58.51%
Sergio Ramos 13.83%
Javier Zanetti 6.38%