Long-term Barcelona legend Sergio Busquets is set to leave the Spanish club at the end of this season. After 18 years with one of the biggest teams, he ranks among, if not the best defensive midfielder of all time.
His departure could also mean imminent retirement, leaving football to determine the best remaining CDM. Here are the players who have or could reach Sergio Busquets status.
Casemelo – Manchester United
Casemiro’s move to Manchester United was conceivable but unexpected, as was his departure from Real Madrid. The Brazilian certainly proved his worth at Real Madrid, helping them win multiple Champions League titles.
His presence in midfield can be compared to Busquets and, in the opinion of many pundits, he is far better in attack. His trademark strike from distance has helped him win big games, and United fans will be hoping for one of those skills in the upcoming FA Cup final.
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Joshua Kimmich – Bayern Munich
Kimmich has been a versatile player for Bayern Munich, try a different location before entering the CDM. Despite being one of the best right-backs at the start of his career, the 28-year-old is arguably the best defensive centre-back.
He has also represented Germany on several occasions and won the FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia in 2017.
Rodri – Manchester City
Since arriving in Manchester City in 2019, Rodri has been an important part of Manchester City’s success. His style of play is similar to that of Busquets, but more elusive and quick. Like the Barcelona legend, Rodri was difficult to replace, which saw him make several appearances without a substitute.
He is also very flexible, so he has played many times as a central defender for Manchester City and the national team. Maybe that’s why Kalvin Philips couldn’t replace him.
N’golo Kante – Chelsea
The past two seasons have not been fair to Kanter, with injuries plagued him. Still, he’s shown to be at the top of his game.
As well as two EPL Cup caps, he was an important part of the national team, helping them win the 2018 World Cup.
There are plenty of good midfielders out there and the players mentioned are among the best in terms of form and achievements for their respective teams. Like Sergio Busquets, these players have been able to replicate their club form to their national teams, each winning a major trophy for their country.