What is a ‘False 10’?

“In recent seasons, and particularly at the beginning of the current campaign, a trend is emerging which could eventually see the extinction of the no.10 in its traditional role. Many have written about what they perceive to be the false no.10 position. Most of these pieces claim that the role comprises of a player who starts just off the main striker but ends up in the box to score. My argument is that this is either a mere misinterpretation of the second striker role or else it is simply a false nine playing behind a striker that drifts wide or drops off to create space for the false nine. The false nine position is based on the principle that it is better to arrive in a location of threat to the opposition than to start in it. My interpretation of the false no.10 is someone who starts elsewhere with the intention of arriving in the no.10 position. In doing so, they are running into a space where their threat is heightened, instead of beginning in this zone and having to leave it to find space.” Outside of the Boot


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