Vlad Chiricheș

Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Vlad_Chiriche%C8%99_(5_Jun_2012).jpg

Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Vlad_Chiriche%C8%99_(5_Jun_2012).jpg

Romania enters the tournament in poor attacking form, but on the opposite side of the pitch they are quite strong. Vlad Chiriches is a center back for Napoli who alongside Razvan Rat form a formidable defensive line that has carried them this far. As a defender, Chiriches is well-known for his composure and tackling ability, specifically in the way that he meets the attacker when the ball reaches his feet for the steal. However, what makes Chiriches an interesting player to watch is that his abilities extend far beyond that of defender. Once he is in possession of the ball, Chiriches can initiate a counterattack either through his accurate long passes or his ability to dribble the ball up in a style reminiscent of an old school libero. The latter ability especially catches defenses off guard because he can explode into the oppositions half and overload them with his presence as an additional player. There is some concern about recovering on defense if possession switches while he is up but he has shown that he is also quick enough to return back on time, making his runs at minimal cost to defensive effectiveness. While Romania’s defense led by Chiriches has the potential to operate on both halves of the pitch, Romania will not go far without the emergence of a true attacking presence.

Other Players:


Forwards: Zlatan Ibrahimović

Midfielders: Cristiano Ronaldo, Luka Modrić, Dimitri Payet, Robbie Keane, Arda Turan

Defenders: Jordi Alba, Ashley WilliamsTaulant Xhaka

Goalkeeper: The Gianluigi Buffon


Forwards: Eden HazardJakub Błaszczykowski

Midfielders: Mesut ÖzilYevhen KonoplyankaGökhan Inler, James MilnerBalázs Dzsudzsák


Chronis, Evan. “Vive La Revolution: Why France Is Destined To Win Euro 2016.” The Sports Quotient. 16 April 2016. http://thesportsquotient.com/soccer/2016/4/16/vive-la-revolution-why-france-is-destined-to-win-euro (accessed on 29 April 2016)

“Euro 2016 Draw: Guide to the 24 Finalists in France.” BBC. 12 December 2015. http://www.bbc.com/sport/football/34496764 (accessed on 29 April 2016)

“How Vlad Chiriches will change the Spurs back line.” SpursFanatic.com. 6 September 2013. http://www.spursfanatic.com/blog/vlad-chiriches-change-spurs-back-line/ (accessed on 29 April 2016)


Written By: Austin Tran and Chris Arora


How to cite this article: “Euro 2016 Key Players to Watch” Written by Austin Tran and Chris Arora (2016), European Cup 2016 Guide, Soccer Politics Blog, Duke University, http://sites.duke.edu/wcwp/tournament-guides/european-cup-2016-guide/ (accessed on (date)).