Using "anonymous" as a term of criticism


Sailor vee, this is a right off.
Apr 16, 2015
The stable
This is something that gets banded about on here and I might even be guilty of it myself. However, do people actually stop and consider whether this apt term for criticism or whether it's valid or accurate? And is it used too much?

When people use the word "anonymous" I assume that they mean the player was rarely involved in the play. Now perhaps this could indicate that the player wasn't playing well but it doesn't paint the full picture and it's becoming a sort of lazy criticism.

Perhaps it wasn't necessary for that particular player to be heavily involved in the play as other players might have seen more of the ball and done more with it or perhaps the player in question didn't take too many risks with the ball, instead opting to try and retain possession through simple passes.

In particular, in tight games it might be difficult to execute flashier, more noticeable passes and moves and when players do keep it simple, many fans simple switch off to what they are doing even if what they are doing is actually very helpful.


Arsenal supporter
Mar 17, 2008
The CL is a glorified FA Cup set to music
orderly disembarking on planes
Goes without saying but a lot work is done off the ball, trying to cut off passing angles, stretching the field to enable play elsewhere and so on. It's easy to say that a player that hasn't done much with the ball is anonymous, even though their overall contribution is crucial.