Was Carrick better than Busquets defensively?

ti vu

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No.

Carrick overall is a flawed player in his position despite his best quality is at the highest level. Carrick can match Busquet in interception, sweeping of loose ball, but he lacks in getting involved in mud fight for first ball, tackling skill, smelling the danger and actively taking one for the team to commit foul. These quality goes hand to hand in a pressing game. Back to days, when Carrick was utilized in more traditional midfield 2, he was found lacking because of this. Carrick can't impose himself onto his opposition.

Carrick is better for the Pirlo role, lest burdening him to do much of the dirty work. However, Carrick is not on Pirlo level in term of passing. Pirlo is not just spread the play, but also making killer pass, penetration pass, the kind we associating more to Pogba than Carrick, those that direct to scoring chance. Carrick passing pattern is very predictable, while with Pirlo if you're leaving him free, it's a nightmare defend against. And Carrick is as good in press resistance as Pirlo. Carrick is easier To be disrupted. We have a very good ball playing backline & GK we talk for granted, but many time we ended up being pushed back.

So when deep playmaking plan doesn't work to its fullest, it's better for a more traditional set up, where the deepest position in the midfield should be focus on dealing with majority of midfield defensive duty. This allows the midfield partner more freedom. In this role, Busquet has been one of the best. At his peak, he's arguably the best. Busquet long passing ain't as crispy since he ain't required, but most of the time, he's capable to make all kind of pass. As he's not burdened to be the main play maker, this combine with his ability to beat pressing, he can look like very casual, only do the simple thing. Barcelona has been getting many different defensive midfielders to share, eventually replace Busquet, but ultimately they ain't filling this role as good as him. "Playing simple football is the most difficult thing" Cruyff
 

Infordin

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he wasnt great next season, included his worst performance (vs bayern at home) but he was very good in the next one in 2010/11, held the midfield together as the only consistent defensive option and was excellent in the CL run to the final. the highlights in the op are from the QF against chelsea, he also dominated the SF against schalke.
he faded a bit again next season when cleverley, anderson, fetcher were preferred at the start, but the one after that was his best especially in terms of forward passing.
Based on this, it seems like the reason why Carrick’s international career never took off is partially because he always had a shit season just before every tournament.

Has a bad 2009-10, doesn’t play in South Africa
Has a bad 2011-12, doesn’t play the Euros
His team has a bad 2013-14, doesn’t play in Brazil
 

berbatrick

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Based on this, it seems like the reason why Carrick’s international career never took off is partially because he always had a shit season just before every tournament.

Has a bad 2009-10, doesn’t play in South Africa
Has a bad 2011-12, doesn’t play the Euros
His team has a bad 2013-14, doesn’t play in Brazil
Ya that's plausible. The people picked ahead of him (Barry, Milner, Parker) all had really good seasons just before the tournament. But for sure England missed someone with both his positional discipline and/or passing, I think he would have been a clear improvement on all of them.
 

ti vu

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Based on this, it seems like the reason why Carrick’s international career never took off is partially because he always had a shit season just before every tournament.

Has a bad 2009-10, doesn’t play in South Africa
Has a bad 2011-12, doesn’t play the Euros
His team has a bad 2013-14, doesn’t play in Brazil
Not exactly. It's many different reason, just as why Scholes was pushed to left sided role instead of the nucleus of the midfield play in EURO 2004.

The coach's game plan. Coach's ability to build a team out of individuals. Team mates compatibility and ability. Players' own ability. Carrick's flawed. He's still more vulnerable than his best qualities' worth, especially in international set up ( harder to fill other roles in the teams), for example, Spain NT attacking ability ain't as good as Barcelona.
 

RooneyLegend

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To answer the OP, I'd say they were on a par defensively. He was an inferior player though, as was Alonso. I'd have him a smidge below Alonso as a total package. I'd have De Rossi ahead of all of them cause he could actually tackle.
 
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Ibi Dreams

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Busquets was better. Having said that, he had the advantage of his team being thoroughly coached and drilled on pressing, which made his defensive job easier than Carrick's was imo. I feel like Ferguson basically just put Carrick out there and asked him to do what he does, whereas the entire Barcelona team worked as a unit when they lost the ball
 

bp19992

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Carrick was a master defensively. His defensive contributions are probably even harder to spot than his "on the ball" contributions.
Closing down spaces and making it hard for the opponent to pass through is a bit of an underrated skill in football.
I remember the matches against Bayern Munich in 2014, Carrick was incredible.
 

mu4c_20le

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Busquets wouldn't be able to handle the PL, let alone a 2 man midfield.
 

OnlyTwoDaSilvas

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Carrick had great positioning and anticipation, similar to Rio in the way he just stepped in to the path of the ball and made interceptions look easy.

He was always a bit weak physically though. He'd get shoved off the ball with relative ease if he got caught out. When we went out of the CL to Bayern in 2010, it looked like we were on our way to knocking them out after going 3-0 up inside half an hour and 4-2 on agg. Then Olic scored before half time, he put Carrick on the ground like he was a child. That goal was more annoying than the Robben one for me, so soft and avoidable. A stronger DM wouldn't have just been ragdolled like that.

I liked Carrick a lot for us, he was one of the few good things about LvG's reign, when we typically dominated possession, he was joyous to watch in that role, but he wasn't someone you'd want shielding the back 4 when you're up against it. I'd much prefer Busquets in that situation, or a younger Matic.
 

RooneyLegend

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Carrick had great positioning and anticipation, similar to Rio in the way he just stepped in to the path of the ball and made interceptions look easy.

He was always a bit weak physically though. He'd get shoved off the ball with relative ease if he got caught out. When we went out of the CL to Bayern in 2010, it looked like we were on our way to knocking them out after going 3-0 up inside half an hour and 4-2 on agg. Then Olic scored before half time, he put Carrick on the ground like he was a child. That goal was more annoying than the Robben one for me, so soft and avoidable. A stronger DM wouldn't have just been ragdolled like that.

I liked Carrick a lot for us, he was one of the few good things about LvG's reign, when we typically dominated possession, he was joyous to watch in that role, but he wasn't someone you'd want shielding the back 4 when you're up against it. I'd much prefer Busquets in that situation, or a younger Matic.
I remember Dembele while at Fulham basically bullying Carrick into submission. These players have become fashionable these days but people have to understand that you can't intercept a drive or dribble through midfield.

It's also very difficult to deal with a quality attacking midfield with a player like Carrick patrolling the whole. Barca got away with it cause their defending was based on team pressing for most of Busquets years there.

Not sure why you'd much prefer Busquets in that situation given he's no better physically than Carrick. When Barca have been against it in recent years he's been pretty much as much a non factor as Carrick used to be.

It's why I'll always prefer the likes of De Rossi and Bastian Scweinsteiger to these types of players. Not only are they good on the ball with great passing, they can really defend any situation well.
 

sun_tzu

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Pretend inferiority and encourage his arrogance.
Busquets wouldn't be able to handle the PL, let alone a 2 man midfield.
If he can manage central midfield with Iniesta and Xavi I think he would cope perfectly well with a box to box type player alongside him ... I mean its not like we managed to overwhelm him with our midfield is it ... he always found time and space and moved the ball into the creative players
 

Maticmaker

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If you swopped Carrick for Busquets, I think there would be one major difference, Busquets was better coming out/carrying the ball, out of defensive positions; or lets say he did it more often and it was as a central element in his career. Carrick played many wonderful balls through to the front men, but only once or twice (to my knowledge) did he show that he could bring the ball out and on I think two occasions went all the way and scored himself.
However the big problem for Carrick was from day one of his career at OT he had to do all the things in midfield, and especially defensively, that Scholes couldn't (or wouldn't) do. That was one of Carrick's biggest problems in terms of developing his own career, he was placed initially amongst 'mid-field giants' especially Scholes and Keane and so he took the supporting role.

Carrick's defensive service was almost beyond compare, look at how many games we won when he played and how many we lost when he didn't. In their final years; Vidic, Rio and Evra, all had reason to thank Michael for his support, as their speed and their legs began to go he offered amazing cover in front of them when under direct attack, and when we were caught on the break by opponents Carrick often was the last man, behind the back four.

Given the teams both men played for I would say Busquets better going forward, but in defensive terms (which was the question) I would think Carrick just shades it!
 

OnlyTwoDaSilvas

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I remember Dembele while at Fulham basically bullying Carrick into submission. These players have become fashionable these days but people have to understand that you can't intercept a drive or dribble through midfield.

It's also very difficult to deal with a quality attacking midfield with a player like Carrick patrolling the whole. Barca got away with it cause their defending was based on team pressing for most of Busquets years there.

Not sure why you'd much prefer Busquets in that situation given he's no better physically than Carrick. When Barca have been against it in recent years he's been pretty much as much a non factor as Carrick used to be.

It's why I'll always prefer the likes of De Rossi and Bastian Scweinsteiger to these types of players. Not only are they good on the ball with great passing, they can really defend any situation well.
I'd prefer Busquets in a defensive situation than Carrick as that's the two players in question. Busquets wasn't amazing at that side of the game either, but he seemed to have a bit more about him physically than Carrick IMO. I'd definitely go with a prime Matic over the two of them, or as you have suggested, De Rossi or Basti
 

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Busquets fell off a cliff after Barca abandoned the press. Its not hard to be a CDM when youre covered and protected from every angle.
 

Skills

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Carrick was probably a bit better defensively. Not much in it and it's harder to evaluate players who play with their respective styles.
 

amolbhatia50k

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[/QUOTE]
Busquets fell off a cliff after Barca abandoned the press. Its not hard to be a CDM when youre covered and protected from every angle.
What a great way to fall off a cliff. He has been the DM lynchpin of the most successful team (s) of this footballing era. So no, he didn't depend purely on Pep and his press.

May as well put all of Carrick's good peformance to SAF making players look better than they actually we're, if we're making far reaching assumptions.
 

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What a great way to fall off a cliff. He has been the DM lynchpin of the most successful team (s) of this footballing era. So no, he didn't depend purely on Pep and his press.

May as well put all of Carrick's good peformance to SAF making players look better than they actually we're, if we're making far reaching assumptions.
Since Xavi and Iniesta retired he is the deer in the headlights as Barca gets mauled away from home time and time again. They just run through their midfield with ease.
He isnt continually covered, the professional fouling is gone when you can bypass the press so he is a lot more exposed.
Their attack has to work so hard to cover the midfield flaws and has done for a long time now.
Its not as if we are conparing 2 retired greats here, Sergio is 31. His mobility has been exlosed when he has more ground to cover. Its shocking how far he has fallen
 

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Carrick was a great, borderline world-class player (though maybe sucked for a season and a half around 2010). Busquests was an all-time great, one of the best to have played in that position. The list of midfielders (all positions) that were better than him in the last 20years includes Xavi, Pirlo, Zidane, Scholes and Iniesta. And probably that's it.
Busquets has sucked the last 3-4 seasons tbf. Everyone talks about Busquets under Guardiola and that was 10 years ago. After that he has never reached that level again. Bar some periods maybe.
 

romufc

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Busquets fell off a cliff after Barca abandoned the press. Its not hard to be a CDM when youre covered and protected from every angle.
Thats not entirely true, Busquets was one of the best CDM's. Both in their prime, he was much the bettter player. His composure was one of the best around, being press resistant as a CDM gives so much freedom to the rest of the team knowing they can make runs.
 

amolbhatia50k

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Since Xavi and Iniesta retired he is the deer in the headlights as Barca gets mauled away from home time and time again. They just run through their midfield with ease.
He isnt continually covered, the professional fouling is gone when you can bypass the press so he is a lot more exposed.
Their attack has to work so hard to cover the midfield flaws and has done for a long time now.
Its not as if we are conparing 2 retired greats here, Sergio is 31. His mobility has been exlosed when he has more ground to cover. Its shocking how far he has fallen
How have Barcelona managed to win as much as they have then? Is it just Messi making up for a bunch of clowns then? as Xavi left long ago and it's also been ages since Iniesta was genuinely great for them. Everyone goes through ups and downs. Especially given how poorly Barcelona are managed. But he's still a much better footballer than Carrick.

And yes we're not talking about 2 retired greats. We're talking about one great that's still playing and one very good player.
 

Adam-Utd

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How have Barcelona managed to win as much as they have then? Is it just Messi making up for a bunch of clowns then? as Xavi left long ago and it's also been ages since Iniesta was genuinely great for them. Everyone goes through ups and downs. Especially given how poorly Barcelona are managed. But he's still a much better footballer than Carrick.

And yes we're not talking about 2 retired greats. We're talking about one great that's still playing and one very good player.
To be fair that isn't wrong for a lot of the time. 75% of their games he wins by himself, they're gonna be so lost once he retires/loses his best ability.
 

Davicho

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Don't think Busquets would have been that brilliant in a counter attacking team, in a 2 man midfield alongside Scholes, Giggs, Cleverley or Fellaini.
 

cyberman

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How have Barcelona managed to win as much as they have then? Is it just Messi making up for a bunch of clowns then? as Xavi left long ago and it's also been ages since Iniesta was genuinely great for them. Everyone goes through ups and downs. Especially given how poorly Barcelona are managed. But he's still a much better footballer than Carrick.

And yes we're not talking about 2 retired greats. We're talking about one great that's still playing and one very good player.
Yes, it is mainly down to Barca and their front line. How long have we said Messi is covering up major flaws in that side? How many terrible performances do they have until Messi produces a bit of magic?
Busquets isnt mobile enough to cover the holes that the attackers leave behind them and protect the CB from direct attacks through the middle.
Someone like Casemiro and Fernandinho have been levels above him.
Its a common tactic now in CL, man mark Busquets because he hasnt the mobility to get around the press so their first point of reference in passing the ball out is gone. Hence the waves and waves of pressure they suffer through in CL.
Scott Mc T dominated him at OT a few years ago, it was a shocking performance and stuck with me ever since. Barca not being able to handle that United side press was embarassing. We just kept winning the ball high up but couldn't do anything with it and we were novices at it. Any other top English side would have rinsed them that night
 

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Like Messi, Busquests has not been the same player he once was for about 6 seasons now.

Busquests in his prime is arguably in the top 3 deep lying midfielders of all time.

Carrick is very underrated. He was good enough to play in any team in Europe. A succession of dodgy England managers stupidly picked players based on hype which wrecked Carricks England career, but Busquests in his prime was a level above for sure. The tiki-taka he used to play with Xavi and Iniesta made most teams and fans dizzy, such was the pace it was played at.
 

JPRouve

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Lampard
Gerrard
Yaya Toure
Fabregas
Nedved
Kaka
Schneider
Viera
Zidane
Scholes
Giggs
Keane
Xavi
Iniesta
Petit
Makelelee
Beckham
Ronaldinho
Pirlo
Veron
Riquelme
Davids
Seedorf
Modric
David Silva
Redondo
Cambiasso
zola
Ballack
Essien
Busquests

off the top of my head, although I’ll have missed some world class players off that loss from around 99-2013

Carrick was of a similar level to Gareth Barry, Jordan Henderson.
What is this list about?
 

Champagne Football

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you must be having a laugh right?

Messi has 24 goals 16 assist this season
18/19 - 51 goals
17/18 - 45 goals
16/17 - 54 goals
I don't think anyone is laughing. Giggs and Rooney had great stats in the latter part of their careers even though they were nowhere near the players they once were. That comes down to experience and adapting their game.

Messi of today is nowhere near the player he once was, even though he's still in the top 3 best players in the world today
 

romufc

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I don't think anyone is laughing. Giggs and Rooney had great stats in the latter part of their careers even though they were nowhere near the players they once were. That comes down to experience and adapting their game.

Messi of today is nowhere near the player he once was, even though he's still in the top 3 best players in the world today
Go on show us those stats then?

Messi was top 3 player 6 years ago and is top 3 6 years later....

Rooney was top 5 world on his peak but was not even top 10 in the league in his last few seasons.
 

Jeppers7

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What is this list about?
The long list is a list of world class midfielders over the past 20 ish years. I look at this and Carrick doesn’t fit into that.

The shorter list is where I think Carrick is comparable. It could be longer.
 

JPRouve

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The long list is a list of world class midfielders over the past 20 ish years. I look at this and Carrick doesn’t fit into that.

The shorter list is where I think Carrick is comparable. It could be longer.
That's a very random list then, a lot of them have nothing in common and aren't intechangeable. Also Zola was a forward.more than anything else.
 

amolbhatia50k

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Like Messi, Busquests has not been the same player he once was for about 6 seasons now.

Busquests in his prime is arguably in the top 3 deep lying midfielders of all time.

Carrick is very underrated. He was good enough to play in any team in Europe. A succession of dodgy England managers stupidly picked players based on hype which wrecked Carricks England career, but Busquests in his prime was a level above for sure. The tiki-taka he used to play with Xavi and Iniesta made most teams and fans dizzy, such was the pace it was played at.
Yeah Messi's has a really bad 6 seasons now :lol:
 

amolbhatia50k

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Yes, it is mainly down to Barca and their front line. How long have we said Messi is covering up major flaws in that side? How many terrible performances do they have until Messi produces a bit of magic?
Busquets isnt mobile enough to cover the holes that the attackers leave behind them and protect the CB from direct attacks through the middle.
Someone like Casemiro and Fernandinho have been levels above him.
Its a common tactic now in CL, man mark Busquets because he hasnt the mobility to get around the press so their first point of reference in passing the ball out is gone. Hence the waves and waves of pressure they suffer through in CL.
Scott Mc T dominated him at OT a few years ago, it was a shocking performance and stuck with me ever since. Barca not being able to handle that United side press was embarassing. We just kept winning the ball high up but couldn't do anything with it and we were novices at it. Any other top English side would have rinsed them that night
Such a simplistic analysis of a team sport. Mobility is one factor among many. While Casimiero is fairly mobile his quality on the ball is poor in comparison to Busquets. I mean, Carrick himself was fairly immobile and 'shat himself' when pressed on plenty of occasions as we well know. But merely picking on deficiencies of a team /unit to portray them solely on a player of that team is rather odd. Maybe Pirlo was also poor due to that one encounter against Park. Or more likely, in addition to having a formidable opponent, he also had the misfortune of being in the team whose tactics/collective was not as strong as their opponents on the night.

I do think Messi often carries Barcelona like no other footballer can. But it also has more to do with how poorly theyr run as a club and managed as a team than every individual there being poor other than him. Busquets is fantastic. The best I've ever seen in his role. Of course he's had his ups and downs like any other player and has been part of team failures but who hasnt?
 

Jeppers7

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That's a very random list then, a lot of them have nothing in common and aren't intechangeable. Also Zola was a forward.more than anything else.
It’s ok to have a random list. I’d have no problem with defenders or forwards being added. Carrick was a good player regardless of position but he belongs more with Barry and Henderson than the elites he is being compared with. Someone said he was comparable to Pirlo. It just got me thinking about how ridiculous it is to put him in that company. I don’t think there’s anyone who isn’t a united fan and huge Carrick fan who would have him in the top list.
 

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I think Carrick was every bit as good as Pirlo, Busquets and Alonso. And he's respected as such by coaches - both Mourinho and Pep talked about him being at that level so did Xavi in 2009 I think (might be 2011). The reason he's underrated here is because we saw him day in and day out so we remember the bad times as well. Also the fact that the entire team sort of fell apart in 2013 and he was basically the only senior outfield player left apart from a severely declining Rooney, so people blame him for not single handedly keeping us competitive (I hope I don't need to mention how dumb that is).

He was from 2006-2013 my hands down favourite United player. Don't get me wrong I loved Ronaldo, Rooney, Scholes, etc but the simple elegance of Carrick just impressed me. He always made winning the ball back and starting attacks look so effortless.

However I'll say this for a lot of United players in the SAF years. We were so dominant that people tended to underrate our players a lot and not realize the magnitude of their achievements and their qualities. The media is especially guilty of this, but I think our fans tend to fall into this as well. We always compared him to Keane when he first arrived and found him wanting but we didn't realize how immense and important he was. The guy has won 5 Premier leagues! AND he was pretty much our only midfielder in the prime of their career for a lot of them. Scholes' legs had started going, Fletcher was constantly ill and the less said about Ando and Cleverly the better. We got to a CL final with a midfield of Michael Carrick and a 37 year old Giggs for crying out loud.

Here's a video I recently saw that made me remember how much I loved him and made want to create a thread here but I don't have the privileges yet but here you go:

Great post.
 

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First off let’s all agree that busquests is not amazing defensively. Barcelona are solid as a whole because of their possessive system rather than individual players defensive capabilities. With that said I would also like to say none of Carrick or busquet are amazing defensive players. They both rely on good transition and positional play that encourages attacking more than bullying attackers off the ball. It’s very hard to determine which player is better defensively but I will say busquets was better for his team because he is a dirty player. He is willing to do more in regards to stifling the opposition than carrick. So I guess we could say busquet is the better defensive player.

To go off topic i think carrick is the better passer. Carrick is more influential in his passing and more direct. History will probably put busquet above Carrick but I’m sure Carrick would have done the exact same thing in Spain. I’m not biased :).
 

KennyBurner

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Busquets performance against us in the UCL final in 2011 was out of this world, honestly, what a player.
It’s very easy to have that performance when you have 3 or 4 players around you that you can make short passes too. Having a revolutionary system does wonders for players.
 

romufc

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It’s very easy to have that performance when you have 3 or 4 players around you that you can make short passes too. Having a revolutionary system does wonders for players.
It also makes it easy when you have the player who will happily make those passes and start attacks.

It gives the 3/4 players around him alot of freedom.
 

KennyBurner

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It’s ok to have a random list. I’d have no problem with defenders or forwards being added. Carrick was a good player regardless of position but he belongs more with Barry and Henderson than the elites he is being compared with. Someone said he was comparable to Pirlo. It just got me thinking about how ridiculous it is to put him in that company. I don’t think there’s anyone who isn’t a united fan and huge Carrick fan who would have him in the top list.
A player that has won 5 premier leagues belongs in a list with Barry and Henderson? Carrick belongs in the list with the best. It’s very typical of united fans to underrate him because he isn’t the usual destroyer like Keane. How does a player you think is at the level of Henderson maintain his place in one of the best sides United has ever had?