Before Pep Guardiola came down from the mountaintop proclaiming the new age of the 4-3-3 with attacking width providing by the wide defenders, nobody knew what a full back was. Sure, Roberto Carlos once struck a football so hard that we all admitted their existence, but that was all anyone knew about the position. What did they do? Why were they there? It was hard to know and even harder to explain.
But then came Pep, sipping on a flute of champagne and teaching us all about the concepts of space and causing chaos by disrupting the traditional numerical balance between attack and defense.
Suddenly we all knew that Dani Alves was the lynchpin of the cosmos, that Philipp Lahm’s footballing brain made IBM’s Watson the equivalent of a potato and that spending $1 billion on full backs is a savvy piece of business.
The Pep Guardiola School for Gifted Full Backs has been in session for almost 10 years now, and many full backs have graduated summa cum laude. They bomb, they flank, they eat up yards, they whip it in real good.
In fact, it’s my opinion that a squad composed entirely of Pep Guardiola full backs would challenge for European competition in any domestic league around the world. Don’t believe me? Check. It. Out.
Substitutes from: Gael Clichy, Bacary Sagna, Danilo, Juan Bernat, Maxwell, Sylvinho, Martin Montoya
With 39 goals in his career and a left foot like a hammer, Aleksandar Kolarov is an obvious choice as striker. He's joined up front by Dani Alves (48 career goals and over 100 La Liga assists) and David Alaba (27 goals). In the midfield, $67 million Manchester City signing Benjamin Mendy operates next to skilled Bayern Munich full back Rafinha. Lahm is the obvious choice to anchor the middle block.
The full backs are actual full backs Adriano and Kyle Walker. The center backs are Eric Abidal and Pablo Zabaleta because they're experienced enough not to s**t themselves back there. Joshua Kimmich is in goal because that boy can do everything.
Tactically, it would look something like this (based on the teachings of The Pep Guardiola School for Gifted Full Backs):
Now we will attempt to assemble this team in FIFA Career Mode and run some simulations.