As the Premier League continues one of its most exciting seasons, and the competition to secure the best in every position increases, one of the most underrated positions in the game is right back. But Manchester City’s Walker has made the position his own and made a huge impact on his teams performance thus far, but is he the best full back in the league?
There are a number of factors to take into account when analysing, as the playing styles of teams differ, some play with defence full backs where as others allow their players to play a more adventurous role in a wing back position. He has adapted to both so far, and seemed to have found that middle ground, getting two assists in his teams first five games with Manchester City as well as maintaining a successful tackle rate of 79% in the Premier League (152).
He is a constant attacking threat and produces an average of 1.2 chances per game, more than any other right back in the game. He is home grown, a factor in Pep Guardiola’s decision to make a move for the former Spurs defender.
Walker’s senior career started at Sheffield United in 2008 in which he was loaned out to Northampton Town making only 11 appearances before signing for Tottenham Hotspur the following year for £9 million as part of a deal that included fellow defender Kyle Naughton. Walkers Tottenham career got off to a poor start as he was loaned back to Sheffield United before making his debut in 2010 in a 2-0 victory over Portsmouth. He was however loaned out again the next season to Queens Park Rangers and after to Aston Villa in which he scored two goals in 18 appearances proving to be a vital part of the team.
The England international returned to the North London club in the 2011/12 season, starting the very first game. The highlight of the full back career would come in 2012 when he beat his teammate Gareth Bale for the PFA young player of the season.
Walker certainly lacks no experience and at only 27 he has only begun to peak, after becoming the most expensive defender in history, he has so far proved himself worth of his £50 million price tag.