Soccer Players With The Number 2 (Super Full Backs)

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The number 2 jersey in sports has garnered quite a reputation. Across different sports, be it basketball, baseball, American football, or soccer, influential sportspeople have donned this number and created legacies with it.

In soccer, we have seen legends rise with this number on their backs. The number 2 is meant for defenders, specifically the right back. Some iconic players who have rocked this number include Gary Neville and retired Colombian soccer player Ivan Cordoba.

In this article, we shall learn more about these and more players. We feature their:

  • Club Careers
  • International Careers
  • Iconic achievements

Let’s go through the soccer players with the number 2 and get acquainted with how each, in their impressive unique way, shaped the game of soccer and put a mark on the number 2 jersey, making it one of the most revered jerseys to wear.

Best Soccer Players With Number 2

We list current players and history greats who have worn the number 2 soccer jersey. This list of the best number 2s contains mainly outside backs, also known as full-backs, which is the traditional number for a right-sided defender. There is also a center-back and midfielder who have worn the number; let’s find out who.

Cafu

Cafu is a legendary right back. He enjoyed a tremendous career with São Paulo, Roma, and Milan, winning many league and Champions League titles. Probably most known for his Brazilian national team accomplishments. With 142 international appearances, he is a Brazilian soccer icon.

Stats:

  • Date of birth: June 7, 1970
  • Nationality: Brazil
  • Teams played for:
    1. Nacional-SP (Youth club)
    2. Portuguesa (Youth club)
    3. Itaquaquecetuba (Youth club)
    4. São Paulo
    5. Real Zaragoza
    6. Palmeiras
    7. AS Roma
    8. Milan
    9. Garforth Town AFC
  • Positions played: Right-Back, Right Midfield
  • Trophies won:
    1. FIFA World Cup (2 times) – 1994, 2002
    2. Copa America (2 times) – 1997, 1999
    3. Confederations Cup (2 times) – 1997, 2005
    4. UEFA Champions League – 2006
    5. Serie A (2 times) – 2001, 2004
    6. Coppa Italia (2 times) – 2003, 2006
    7. Supercoppa Italiana (2 times) – 2004, 2005
    8. UEFA Super Cup – 2003
    9. FIFA Club World Cup – 2007
  • Other significant achievements:
    1. Named in the FIFA World Cup All-Star Team – 1994, 1998, 2002
    2. FIFA World Player of the Year – 2004
    3. FIFA 100 list of the greatest living players – 2004
    4. Brazilian Football Museum Hall of Fame Inductee – 2004
    5. UEFA Team of the Year – 2005
    6. Inducted into the Italian Football Hall of Fame – 2012
    7. UEFA Euro 2004 All-Star Team
Cafu Playing For Roma vs Newcastle United in 1999 enhanced image ○ Soccer Blade
Cafu Playing For Roma vs Newcastle United in 1999

Cafu helped Brazil win the 1994 and 2002 World Cups. His persistent energy and right-wing attacks helped Brazil win a record fifth world title in 2002 against Germany. In addition to his work ethic and stamina, Cafu was known for his ball skills. He played well defensively and passed and crossed to generate chances for teammates. It was Cafu’s trademark to charge forward from the back.

He played with exceptional elegance for a fullback. Cafu was a club and nation ambassador off the field during his career and upon retirement. He remains Brazil’s national team star and most popular player. He didn’t simply appear; he also impressed the crowds with his skills. In 1994 and 2002, he led his squad to two memorable World Cup victories. He was the captain of their 2002 World Cup campaign.

He is further regarded as one of the greatest fullbacks of all time, one of the greatest Brazilian and South American players of his generation, and one of the best defenders ever to play in Serie A. Deservedly, he was added to the Ballon d’Or Dream Team in 2020.

Marcos Cafu: Top Skills, Goals and Plays at AC Milan

Kyle Walker

Kyle Walker is a top Premier League right back. Before joining Tottenham Hotspur in 2009, the 32-year-old played for Sheffield United. Walker grew into an attack-minded fullback with quick defense recovery at Spurs. He helped Tottenham qualify for the Champions League for the first time.

Stats:

  • Date of birth: May 28, 1990
  • Nationality: England
  • Teams played for: Sheffield United, Aston Villa (loan), Queens Park Rangers (loan), Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester City
  • Positions played: Right-Back, Right Midfield, Centre-Back
  • Trophies won:
    • Premier League: 4 times (2017-18, 2018-19, 2020-21, 2021-22)
    • FA Cup: 2 times (2018-19, 2019-20)
    • EFL Cup: 5 times (2017-18, 2018-19, 2019-20, 2020-21, 2021-22)
    • FA Community Shield: 4 times (2018, 2019, 2021, 2022)
  • Other significant achievements:
    • PFA Team of the Year: 5 times (2011-12, 2016-17, 2017-18, 2018-19, 2019-20)
    • PFA Young Player of the Year: 2011-12
    • UEFA Champions League Squad of the Season: 2 times (2018-19, 2019-20)
    • Premier League Assist of the Season: 2016-17
    • FIFA FIFPro World XI nominee: 2 times (2017, 2018)
    • UEFA Euro Runner-up: 2020
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Kyle Walker Right. 2021 12 07 UEFA Champions League RB Leipzig Manchester City FC
Kyle Walker Right. 2021 12 07 UEFA Champions League RB Leipzig Manchester City FC

Walker joined Manchester City in 2017 and has won four Premier League titles, providing strong defense and flank offense. His excellent recovery speed lets him advance up the field without exposing City defensively. Walker has been a key England player since his 2011 debut.

Walker returned to the right back jersey and started every game for England in the 2018 World Cup semi-final and Euro 2020 final after a period of personal troubles. Walker’s agility and technical skills on both sides of the ball make him one of the world’s best fullbacks, despite his concentration issues. He is crucial to club and country.

Walker was instrumental in the 2009 Championship play-off final as he played for the Blades and saw his team defeat Burnley. Later, he moved to Tottenham Hotspur and was immediately loaned to Shefield United. After being loaned a few times, he earned his spot at Tottenham Hotspur, where he was impressive and saw himself being called up to the England national team.

Walker was then transferred to Manchester City after five seasons with Tottenham. Walker has helped his teams win various cups and championships in his career. He has been wearing the number 2 jersey since the 2013–2014 season.

Kyle Walker ▬ Manchester City ● Amazing Speed, Skills & Defending - 2018/19 HD

Antonio Rudiger

One of Europe’s best center-backs is Antonio Rudiger. Stuttgart was the 29-year-old’s first club before Roma in 2015. He flourished at Chelsea from 2017-2022, winning the FA Cup, Champions League, and Europa League. Rudiger, 6’3, is strong, agile, and fast. Individual marking and sweeping behind the defense are his strengths.

Stats:

  • Date of birth: March 3, 1993
  • Nationality: Germany
  • Teams played for: VfB Sperber Neukölln, SV Tasmania Berlin, Neuköllner Sportfreunde 1907, FC Hertha 03 Zehlendorf, Borussia Dortmund, VfB Stuttgart, Real Madrid
  • Positions played: Centre-Back, Right-Back
  • Trophies won:
    • UEFA Champions League: 1 (2022-2023 with Real Madrid)
    • La Liga: 1 (2022-2023 with Real Madrid)
    • DFB-Pokal: 1 (2016-2017 with Chelsea)
    • FIFA Confederations Cup: 1 (2017 with Germany)
    • UEFA European Under-21 Championship: 1 (2017 with Germany U21)
    • UEFA European Under-19 Championship: 1 (2011 with Germany U19)
  • Other significant achievements:
    • FIFA World Cup: Semi-Finalist (2018 with Germany)
    • UEFA European Championship: Round of 16 (2021 with Germany)
Antonio Rudiger 2021 Playing For Chelsea FC
Antonio Rudiger 2021: Playing For Chelsea FC

His aggressive play makes him a force on the ground and air. Rudiger joined Real Madrid on a free in 2022. He was crucial to their La Liga and Champions League victories.Since his 2014 international debut, Rudiger has been a key performer for Germany. Die Mannschaft won the 2014 World Cup thanks to his defense.

Rudiger has excelled under Joachim Low and Hansi Flick despite injuries. He organizes the defense from the center. Rudiger has become a top ball-winning defender for his club and country. Any squad benefits from his competitiveness and ball skills.

He has won the FA Cup, the UEFA Europa Cup, and the UEFA Champions League at Chelsea. He made his international debut for Germany in 2014 and was part of the 2018 World Cup squad.

Antonio Rüdiger 2021 ▬ Amazing Tackles & Defensive Skills | HD

Gary Neville

Gary Neville had a tremendously successful playing career at Manchester United, appearing in 602 games between 1992 and 2011. Neville, a right-back, was recognized for his tireless work rate and competitive nature. With United, he won eight Premier League titles and three FA Cups while serving as club captain for numerous years.

Stats:

  • Date of birth: Feb 18, 1975
  • Nationality: England
  • Teams played for: Manchester United
  • Positions played: Right-Back, Centre-Back, Central Midfield
  • Trophies won:
    • Premier League: 7 times
    • FA Cup: 3 times
    • League Cup: 2 times
    • UEFA Champions League: 2 times
    • FIFA Club World Cup: 1 time
    • Intercontinental Cup: 1 time
    • UEFA Super Cup: 1 time
  • Other significant achievements:
    • 85 caps for the England national team
    • Most games played for Manchester United
    • Currently the owner of Salford City Football Club
Gary Neville playing for Manchester United
Gary Neville playing for Manchester United

Neville also played in Manchester United’s historic Champions League final victory in 1999, completing the Treble. He gained 85 caps for England and was the country’s youngest captain. Neville has subsequently established himself as a respected analyst known for his tactical analysis.

Neville went into soccer coaching and management after retirement. He obtained coaching experience while working for David Moyes at Manchester United and Valencia. Neville was named head coach of the England women’s national team in 2016, but resigned after only 18 months in the position. Since 2014, he has shared ownership of Salford City with several former United players and is a pundit for Sky Sports.

Gary comes from an athletic family where his younger twin siblings are a former Manchester United and Everton soccer player (Phil Neville) and a retired netball international (Tracey Neville). When he retired in 2011, he was the longest-serving player at Manchester United, behind Ryan Giggs. He is also one of the most decorated players in Europe, having won 20 titles, including eight Premier League titles and two Champions League titles.

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Gary Neville - United Greatest

Clint Dempsey

Clint Dempsey was a prolific goal scorer, with club success in both the United States and England. After beginning his professional career with the New England Revolution in 2004, Dempsey relocated to England and spent time with Fulham and Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League. In England, he found the back of the net on a regular basis, establishing himself as one of the first American stars in the top division.

Stats:

  • Date of birth: March 9, 1983
  • Nationality: United States
  • Teams played for:
    • Dallas Texans (youth club)
    • Furman Paladins (college)
    • New England Revolution (2004-2006)
    • Fulham (2007-2012)
    • Tottenham Hotspur (2012-2013)
    • Seattle Sounders FC (2013-2018)
  • Positions played: Second Striker, Left Winger
  • Trophies won:
    • MLS Cup: 2016 (Seattle Sounders FC)
    • US Open Cup: 2014 (Seattle Sounders FC)
    • CONCACAF Gold Cup: 2005, 2007 (United States)
  • Other significant achievements:
    • Premier League Player of the Month: April 2012
    • US Soccer Male Athlete of the Year: 2007, 2011, 2012
    • Fulham’s all-time leading Premier League goalscorer
    • 141 caps and 57 goals for the United States national team
Clint Dempsey playing for Seattle Sounders FC
Clint Dempsey playing for Seattle Sounders FC

Dempsey also had a successful international career with the United States men’s national team, where he played in three World Cups and became the team’s all-time leading scorer with 57 goals in 141 appearances. His goal against Ghana at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil was one of the fastest in tournament history.

Dempsey had a good second stint with the Seattle Sounders after returning to MLS. As captain, he helped them win a number of trophies, including the Supporters’ Shield and the US Open Cup. Over the course of his career, Dempsey’s unrelenting work rate and scoring ability allowed him to succeed against both European and home competition.

Later in his career, he moved to Settle Sounders, where he led the club to win the 2014 Supporter’s Shield. He was capped 115 times and scored 47 goals. He, however, retired in 2018. He has been ranked as the greatest American soccer player in history by ESPN, FOX Sports, and NBC Sports.

He was instrumental in elevating the profile of American soccer and paving the path for future generations of USMNT heroes. Dempsey’s accomplishments for his national team and clubs cemented his status as the best American male soccer player of all time.

Clint Dempsey ● All World Cup Goals 2006-2014 ● Captain America

Ivan Cordoba

Iván Córdoba had a successful career as a defender in Europe, especially with the Italian team Inter Milan. Córdoba began his career at Deportivo Cali in Colombia before moving to Italy in 1995 and spending 13 seasons with Inter Milan, making over 350 games. Córdoba was a tall and physically strong center-back known for his aggressive tackling and aerial abilities.

Stats:

  • Date of birth: August 11, 1976
  • Nationality: Colombian
  • Teams played for: FC Internazionale (Inter Milan)
  • Positions played: Centre-Back, Right-Back, Left-Back
  • Trophies won:
    • Serie A (Italian League) – 5 times
    • Coppa Italia (Italian Cup) – 4 times
    • Supercoppa Italiana (Italian Super Cup) – 4 times
    • UEFA Champions League – 1 time
    • FIFA Club World Cup – 1 time
    • UEFA Cup – 1 time
    • UEFA Super Cup – 1 time
  • Other significant achievements:
    • Most games played for Inter Milan
    • 73 caps and 5 goals for the Colombian national team
Cordoba with the Scudetto 2008 league trophy
Cordoba with the Scudetto 2008 league trophy

Along with fellow defenders, he created a powerful partnership that helped Inter achieve local and European success, including five Serie A titles and a Champions League trophy in 2010. Cordoba also played for Colombia’s national team over 90 times, including appearances in the 1998 and 2014 World Cups.

Córdoba left Inter in 2010 and had brief spells with Bolton Wanderers and Racing Santander before retiring in 2012. However, he established his mythical status at Inter, where he was vice captain and his no-nonsense defending was key to their treble-winning season under Jose Mourinho.

Off the field, Córdoba was known for his leadership and humanitarian activities in Colombia. For his strong defending, he earned the nickname “Il Muro” or “The Wall” among Milan fans. Córdoba is still considered one of the top Colombian defenders in Europe.

Iván Córdoba • Skills & Goals • El Mariscal • (1994 - 2012)

Dani Carvajal

Dani Carvajal is a talented right-back who joined Real Madrid’s youth academy in 2004 and has spent his whole professional career with them. Because of his consistency and work rate on both sides of the ball, the 30-year-old rapidly established himself in the first squad, making over 300 appearances so far. Carvajal is a threat in the final third due to his great technique and crossing abilities.

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Stats:

  • Date of birth: January 11, 1992
  • Nationality: Spain
  • Teams played for:
    • Real Madrid (2013-present)
  • Positions played: Right-back
  • Trophies won:
    • La Liga: 2013-14, 2016-17, 2019-20
    • Copa del Rey: 2013-14
    • Supercopa de España: 2017, 2019
    • UEFA Champions League: 2013-14, 2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18
    • UEFA Super Cup: 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018
    • FIFA Club World Cup: 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018
  • Other significant achievements:
    • FIFA FIFPro World XI: 2018
Dani Carvajal playing in the Iran and Spain match at the FIFA World Cup
Dani Carvajal playing in the Iran and Spain match at the FIFA World Cup

He’s a fierce tackler who seldom gets beat one-on-one. Carvajal has won five La Liga crowns and four Champions Leagues with Real Madrid, solidifying his position as one of the best fullbacks of his generation. He has also played over 60 times for Spain, helping La Roja win the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012. However, a number of injuries have hampered Carvajal’s career, most notably a heart condition that kept him from playing for more than three months in 2019.

He is almost an automatic starter at right back for both Real Madrid and Spain when completely healthy. Carvajal’s quickness, defensive firmness, and offensive flair make him indispensable to his club and country. Carvajal, now in his late twenties, continues to strive for additional trophies with Real Madrid while still remaining an important element of Luis Enrique’s team.

Carvajal is such a Monster || Crazy Skills ||

He made his international debut in 2014, representing Spain in the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Diego Godin

Diego Godín is a Uruguayan soccer legend and a top defender of his period. The 36-year-old made his professional debut in 2006 and had nine great seasons at Atlético Madrid, winning La Liga titles. Godín, known for his combative play, led Atlético’s renowned defense. In 2019, he joined Inter Milan but played little.

Stats:

  • Date of birth: February 16, 1986
  • Nationality: Uruguay
  • Teams played for: CA Vélez Sarsfield, Atlético Madrid
  • Positions played: Centre-Back
  • Trophies won:
    • La Liga (1): 2013-14
    • Copa del Rey (1): 2012-13
    • UEFA Europa League (2): 2009-10, 2011-12
    • UEFA Super Cup (2): 2010, 2012
    • Supercopa de España (1): 2014
    • Liga Profesional (1): 2023
  • Other significant achievements:
    • Most games played for Atlético Madrid
    • Uruguay national team appearances: 161
    • Scored 8 goals for Uruguay national team
Diego Godin right Ronaldo left Portugal Vs. Argentina
Diego Godin right Ronaldo left Portugal Vs. Argentina

Godín rejoined Uruguayan club Nacional in 2022 before joining Vélez Sarsfield. He owns the Uruguayan international appearance record with nearly 150 caps. Godín played in the 2010 and 2014 World Cup semi-finals. Although not the fastest, Godín excels in positioning, anticipation, and strength. His aerial dominance made him rarely defeated. On the offensive, Godín scored crucial goals for both club and country.

He started playing for his country in 2005 and has represented Uruguay in three World Cups and six Copa America tournaments. He won the Copa America in 2011. Diego started his career with Cerro and moved to Nacional after three years. Later, he moved to Spain and joined Villareal.

Most of his wins were at Atletico Madrid, where he wore jersey number two. While at Atletico Madrid, he won eight titles, including La Liga. In Spain, he also played for Inter Milan and Cagliari, and he moved to Atletico Mineiro earlier this year.

His aggressive leadership and tackling encouraged Atlético and La Celeste. Beyond soccer, Godín led the Uruguayan national team for over a decade, retiring in 2022. He also supported philanthropic causes. He is a legend of Atlético Madrid and one of his country’s greatest defenders.

Diego Godin ● 2019/20 ● Best Defensive Skills Ever ● Inter Debut🔵⚫

No matter the position or era, each of these players demonstrated qualities of defensive solidity, work rate, leadership, and two-way play associated with the number 2 shirt. They served both club and country with distinction for many seasons. The number 2 jersey is something to hold onto, as many distinctive characters wore it.

Soccer Analyst and Publisher at Soccer Blade | Soccer Blade | + posts

Joel is a seasoned soccer journalist and analyst with many years of experience in the field. Joel specializes in game analysis, player profiles, transfer news, and has a keen eye for the tactical nuances of the game. He played at various levels in the game and coached teams - he is happy to share his insight with you.

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