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The Times - November 14, 2020

Forget positions – what matters now is a player’s role

By: James Gheerbrant

The sports data company Stats Perform recently unveiled a similar but slightly more various way of classifying players based on their actions during a game, called Role Discovery. This gives an additional layer of distinction: whereas James is considered a wide progressor, last season Alexander-Arnold and Trippier were classed as wide active playmakers, a role that recognises their greater creative involvement and tendency to attempt more dangerous passes. In all, Role Discovery identifies 18 different outfield roles, such as defensive distributor, midfield facilitator, attacking wide dribbler and link forward.

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