Was Carrick better than Busquets defensively?

cyberman

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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?
Carrick had a better passing range though, he could get rid of it with a 40 yard cross field ball or a keep it flowing with passes on the half turn. Busquets cant do that. He cant spread the ball like Carrick could.
When Sergio is isolated he hasnt the quick little lay off passes to a teammate who is supernatural in tight spaces so has to be more careful with it. He cant do that to a high level.
Theres many, many examples of Barcas midfield getting overrun, I could give you plenty of said examples but all thats coming the other way is broad overviews. Theres a reason for that, Its simply not there on the pitch. The midfield is stretched more and theres no proof at all of Busquets being any sort of midfield lynchpin.
Follow that same decline in Barcas midfield getting overrun and set that against Spain and we have the exact same drop off. As soon as Xavi and Iniesta lost their legs to press it led to Sergio bringing little to the side.

Again he is 31. Id put Carricks performances from deep up against Busqets from 27 onwards any day of the week.
 

Jeppers7

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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?
So Andy cole was better than Shearer. Carrick was better than Gerrard ? Paul Gascoine too.
 

MadDogg

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Busquets was probably better 1v1 and actually winning the ball directly in tackles.

What Carrick was incredible at doing was positioning himself to stop attacks. It was amazing how many times he would stop opposition attacks by forcing the ball carrier to slow down or even turn back because Carrick would be in the perfect position to cut out any pass they attempted to make. And of course often they would still attempt the pass and Carrick would just intercept it and get us straight on the front foot again.

Overall I would say the one thing that gives Busquets the edge is that Carrick was guilty a few too many times of struggling to handle teams pressing him hard.
 

MadDogg

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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.
He was closer to Pirlo than he was Barry and Henderson.

The fact that his playmaking is talked about in comparison to the likes of Pirlo and Alonso says it all. He wasn't actually as good as them in that regard, but he wasn't actually playing the same position. They were at their best when played next to a main defensive midfielder, whereas he was the main defensive midfielder. A role he was very good at. He just had extremely good playmaking on top of that which made him a brilliant all-round player.
 

Champagne Football

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Yeah Messi's has a really bad 6 seasons now :lol:
You're clearly twisting my words to try and look funny, but Messi obviously does not have the explosivness that he once had.
It happens to most of the best players. They lose that explosivness eventually, adapt their game, and will still control most games despite not being quite at the level they once were.
 

Robertd0803

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Carrick was fantastic. Busquets however was something else altogether. Not a knock on Carrick by any means to say Busquets was another level.
 

Berbasbullet

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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.
True, but the way he picked us a part from his half and disguised his passes was incredible.

Hats off to him, great player albeit a bit of a plum.
 

Jeppers7

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He was closer to Pirlo than he was Barry and Henderson.

The fact that his playmaking is talked about in comparison to the likes of Pirlo and Alonso says it all. He wasn't actually as good as them in that regard, but he wasn't actually playing the same position. They were at their best when played next to a main defensive midfielder, whereas he was the main defensive midfielder. A role he was very good at. He just had extremely good playmaking on top of that which made him a brilliant all-round player.
He really wasn’t. Barry was a very good player kept Carrick out of the England squad and was a match for Carrick anytime we played against him, and Henderson has turned into one too and is an England regular, something Carrick never was due to his inconsistencies and weaknesses as a dm. They are very very good players, as was Carrick. Pirlo was world class.
 

Rish Sawhney

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He really wasn’t. Barry was a very good player kept Carrick out of the England squad and was a match for Carrick anytime we played against him, and Henderson has turned into one too and is an England regular, something Carrick never was due to his inconsistencies and weaknesses as a dm. They are very very good players, as was Carrick. Pirlo was world class.
Carrick wasn't not in the England squad due to inconsistencies or weaknesses at DM. England rarely ever played a 3 so it was usually just Lampard and Gerrard - and they'd get overrun because they didn't have anyone to build up play. The fact that Carrick was winning Premier leagues and appearing in 3 Champions league finals in 4 years while England were doing diddly squat shows how wrong the decision to not include him more was.
 

Jim Beam

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I would definitely rather have Carrick in that Fergie's 4-4-2 and wouldn't swapped them.

In the end, think they both played in teams that suited their strengths.
 

NotoriousISSY

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Busquets is a great player, and perfectly suited to what Barcelona want to do. Carrick for years was the perfect player for us, and complemented so many players in the squad in so many ways.

Carrick deserves credit for having to be our midfield legs and engine room as Scholes wound down, Anderson got fat, Fletcher's health issues took over, Schweinsteiger struggled, Schneiderlin failed, Fellaini fellaini'd etc etc.

Busquets is a better player all round, but the difference is marginal...and the quality of teammates certainly makes me appreciate Carrick's club career in particular.
 

Andersonson

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Carrick made Anderson look like a decent footballer. That says it all, he was pure quality
 

devilish

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I think this is a bit unfair. Busquets played in one of the finest squads the world had ever seen. Carrick came at a time when our CM was already in decline. Its one thing playing alongside Iniesta and Xavi in their prime and its another playing alongside a 32+ Scholes and the great Cleverley.
 

Dante

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Defensively? Yeah, Carrick was probably slightly better. He played in a United team that actually needed to defend and he was brilliant as the lynchpin in it.

Busquets was the better player overall. But he didn't need to do as much defensively for either Spain or Barca.

Maybe Carrick would have shown more attacking-wise in the Barcelona side. Maybe Busquets would have shown more of his defensive game playing for United. We'll never know.
 

Rish Sawhney

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Defensively? Yeah, Carrick was probably slightly better. He played in a United team that actually needed to defend and he was brilliant as the lynchpin in it.

Busquets was the better player overall. But he didn't need to do as much defensively for either Spain or Barca.

Maybe Carrick would have shown more attacking-wise in the Barcelona side. Maybe Busquets would have shown more of his defensive game playing for United. We'll never know.
What are you even taking about? Carrick had a miles better passing range than Busquets ever did. If Busquets is better than Carrick at anything its probably tackling and recycling possession. Busquets was hardly the playmaker in the Spain and Barcelona team, that was Xavi most of the time. His job was to link the play from the defense to his midfield partners and mostly keep the ball ticking from side to side and maybe short range passing between the lines during buildup.
 

Jeppers7

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Carrick wasn't not in the England squad due to inconsistencies or weaknesses at DM. England rarely ever played a 3 so it was usually just Lampard and Gerrard - and they'd get overrun because they didn't have anyone to build up play. The fact that Carrick was winning Premier leagues and appearing in 3 Champions league finals in 4 years while England were doing diddly squat shows how wrong the decision to not include him more was.
Are you talking about the period where Gareth Barry and Owen Hargreaves were playing regularly for England? And are you suggesting England wouldn’t have done diddly squat if they’d have picked Carrick, who did diddly squat the 30 odd times he actually did play.
 

Berbasbullet

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Are you talking about the period where Gareth Barry and Owen Hargreaves were playing regularly for England? And are you suggesting England wouldn’t have done diddly squat if they’d have picked Carrick, who did diddly squat the 30 odd times he actually did play.
I take your point and Carrick only had a handful of excellent games for England, however I do think that if he started more he would have improved.
 

cyril C

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Are you talking about the period where Gareth Barry and Owen Hargreaves were playing regularly for England? And are you suggesting England wouldn’t have done diddly squat if they’d have picked Carrick, who did diddly squat the 30 odd times he actually did play.
Good examples. Carrick was not as good as Hargreaves defensively, and not as good as Barry as box2box MF. Carrick was inadequate in big games although good enough for us in league games.
 

Jeppers7

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Good examples. Carrick was not as good as Hargreaves defensively, and not as good as Barry as box2box MF. Carrick was inadequate in big games although good enough for us in league games.
Carrick was a good player.....the jump from that in some of our fan base now is bizarre. Comparisons to Busquets and Pirlo ? Really...no one outside of being a Carrick fan and probably united fan would consider him anywhere near those two. He was what he was, a good player who did a job, like Barry did, like Henderson does. He wasnt a great.
 

Jeppers7

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Carrick made Anderson look like a decent footballer. That says it all, he was pure quality
Anderson was extremely talented as a young player. Touted as a world player of the year but injuries and lifestyles took their toll. He looked decent because he was, he bossed Gerrard and Fabregas because he was capable of doing that in a one off game because he was extremely talented but not motivated. It was nothing to do with Carrick. In fact he often played without Carrick. His best runs would place Carrick on the bench.
 

cyril C

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Carrick was a good player.....the jump from that in some of our fan base now is bizarre. Comparisons to Busquets and Pirlo ? Really...no one outside of being a Carrick fan and probably united fan would consider him anywhere near those two. He was what he was, a good player who did a job, like Barry did, like Henderson does. He wasnt a great.
Carrick was also one of the most consistent players in the league, always show up. He was criticised in some game, in particular big games, for being over-run. Then he was what he was, he was never a bulldozer or destroyer. I thought we were better defensively when Fletcher was partner with him, but then you have to sacrifice a slot for Fletcher instead of an attacking winger or a #10.
 

Teja

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For me Busquets is in the same boat as Pedro - players who had a role in a team and executed it to perfection but made to look better than they actually are because they played in a team that perfectly complemented them.

That said, Busquets is definitely the better overall player but Carrick edges it defensively for me.

Xabi Alonso vs Busquets for me is a more interesting comparison. Should split opinions a lot more at the very least.
 

norm87cro

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The hype sourrounding both is quite astonishing to me to be frank. If you have players like Scholes, Giggs , Xavi and Iniesta as team mates you are bound to look good (and Hargreaves during his short spell). Even as DFM there have been better players in history than both and we called one captain for a lot of years.
 

Adisa

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It's one of those topics that's almost impossible to answer. Busquets has largely played for better defensive units where he hardly got exposed to one v one situations or was hardly outnumbered.
 

Jeppers7

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Carrick being compared to Barry? Goodness me
It’s really not inconceivable....they competed for the same spot at international level and played for clubs at a similar standard throughout their careers. Barry took Carricks place in the England team for about four years....Only united fans that love Carrick will think this comparison is inconceivable.

Carrick being compared to Pirlo....what’s your thoughts there?
 

harms

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I'd rate them about the same in this regard, maybe with a slight edge towards Busquets. The main difference came from the way their teams had played. Carrick had to move more and was more often involved in 1-on-1's, even though naturally it wasn't really his game, while Busquets had the luxury of focusing on controlling the space for 95% of the time, which he did masterfully.
 

Jeppers7

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Carrick was also one of the most consistent players in the league, always show up. He was criticised in some game, in particular big games, for being over-run. Then he was what he was, he was never a bulldozer or destroyer. I thought we were better defensively when Fletcher was partner with him, but then you have to sacrifice a slot for Fletcher instead of an attacking winger or a #10.
Disagree, he was up and down in form except one season, was called a slow starter by Sir Alex, was in and out of the side often. It gets forgotten that Anderson and Cleverley kept him out of the team until injuries broke that up.
 

El Jefe

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Carrick was a good player.....the jump from that in some of our fan base now is bizarre. Comparisons to Busquets and Pirlo ? Really...no one outside of being a Carrick fan and probably united fan would consider him anywhere near those two. He was what he was, a good player who did a job, like Barry did, like Henderson does. He wasnt a great.
I'd say he was a very good player with an excellent career but yes this is only a discussion on this forum. Busquets is clearly a level above Carrick.
 

ghaliboy

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Carrick's defensive strength was when we had the ball in the opponents half. When we were in our own half I always thought he was pretty poor at marshalling and closing down. But our teams at the those times weren't really brimming with defensive maestro's in every position that knitted together as a unit. Easily a wider underrated player both offensively in general though.
 

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I’ve always thought Busquets was vastly overrated. He’s decent but I would think most semi decent holding midfielders would have looked worldclass in that midfield at the time. Carrick could have easily done Busquests job with the added benefit of being a better passer right or left foot over various ranges.
 

Cait Sith

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Busquets broke through with 20 years of age when he controlled United in the 2009 CL final and was pretty much considered the best DMF in the game for a decade (and still starts for Barca every game despite highly rated talents like De Jong). Carrick was never considered anywhere near that at any point of time.

This is one of those discussions restricted to a certain fanbase only like Liverpool fans ranking Gerrard up there with Xavi, Iniesta, Zidane with "if he played for those teams instead of our shitty one" type of arguments.

And on a sidenote. Pep over the top fake-praising all sorts of players is irrelevant. His over the top fake humility is well known.
 

KeanoMagicHat

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Busquets broke through with 20 years of age when he controlled United in the 2009 CL final and was pretty much considered the best DMF in the game for a decade (and still starts for Barca every game despite highly rated talents like De Jong). Carrick was never considered anywhere near that at any point of time.

This is one of those discussions restricted to a certain fanbase only like Liverpool fans ranking Gerrard up there with Xavi, Iniesta, Zidane with "if he played for those teams instead of our shitty one" type of arguments.

And on a sidenote. Pep over the top fake-praising all sorts of players is irrelevant. His over the top fake humility is well known.
Think Busquets is slightly overrated. Some people put Busquets in the all-time great category, but Xavi and Iniesta were much superior players and Barcelona have been overrun in midfield several times in recent years in Europe, when if Busquets is an all-time great, he should be taking charge. He never really has.

I think De Jong should be playing over Busquets, it's just Busquets is a club legend and hard to move. Their general play hasn't been amazing for a while now, Messi has been carrying them in recent times.

Carrick is also overrated by United fans but to answer the OP question, I think he is better defensively, but Busquets has better game awareness and understanding of how to run a game. Again Carrick left that a lot to Scholes for much of his United career and did it a bit towards the end of his career, but not to the level like Keane or later Scholes could, 12/13 aside maybe.
 

Andersonson

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Anderson was extremely talented as a young player. Touted as a world player of the year but injuries and lifestyles took their toll. He looked decent because he was, he bossed Gerrard and Fabregas because he was capable of doing that in a one off game because he was extremely talented but not motivated. It was nothing to do with Carrick. In fact he often played without Carrick. His best runs would place Carrick on the bench.
He was talented, but never fulfilled it. He had a good start to his career here, his first two years he played a bit and looked decent. He then faded and was mostly a cup player.

He looked decent in other games here and there because of the players around him. And Carrick dragged him alot in certain games. He was unfit and could barely breath at times.
At the age of 27 he was finished at as a footballer on the higest level because of lifestyle. without ever being a starting player for us. He had some handful games here and there that was good, but overall he's one of the most disappointing players we've had.


He was never good enough to justify being unfit and lazy at the age of 27. Not even close. Talented kid, who lived on that talent for too long.
 

Davicho

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Carrick was better than Pirlo as CDM. Pirlo always needed 1 or 2 midfield partners to do the defensive work, Carrick made everything on his own. Pirlo was better at passing, vision and ball control, but he would have not be able to carry our midfield on his own, alongside the likes of an aged Scholes, Cleverley, Giggs or Fellaini for about a decade.
Carrick was. Don't think it's even debatable.
 

Righteous Steps

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Carrick was better than Pirlo as CDM. Pirlo always needed 1 or 2 midfield partners to do the defensive work, Carrick made everything on his own. Pirlo was better at passing, vision and ball control, but he would have not be able to carry our midfield on his own, alongside the likes of an aged Scholes, Cleverley, Giggs or Fellaini for about a decade.
Carrick was. Don't think it's even debatable.
Yeah let’s just pack this thread in:lol:
 

Jeppers7

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Carrick was better than Pirlo as CDM. Pirlo always needed 1 or 2 midfield partners to do the defensive work, Carrick made everything on his own. Pirlo was better at passing, vision and ball control, but he would have not be able to carry our midfield on his own, alongside the likes of an aged Scholes, Cleverley, Giggs or Fellaini for about a decade.
Carrick was. Don't think it's even debatable.
oh no:houllier:
 

Jeppers7

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He was talented, but never fulfilled it. He had a good start to his career here, his first two years he played a bit and looked decent. He then faded and was mostly a cup player.

He looked decent in other games here and there because of the players around him. And Carrick dragged him alot in certain games. He was unfit and could barely breath at times.
At the age of 27 he was finished at as a footballer on the higest level because of lifestyle. without ever being a starting player for us. He had some handful games here and there that was good, but overall he's one of the most disappointing players we've had.


He was never good enough to justify being unfit and lazy at the age of 27. Not even close. Talented kid, who lived on that talent for too long.
I agree about Anderson, but Carrick wasn’t the reason he looked good at times. He looked best with Cleverly.