One of the greatest central midfielders of all-time and the man who re-invented the modern day defensive midfielder position, Claude Makelele was born on 18th February, 19, 1973. Playing for the French national team and some of the giants of European football like Real Madrid, Chelsea and PSG, the modern day defensive midfield role is called the ‘Makelele position’ in his tribute. Makelele had a big impact on English football after he was discarded by Real Madrid President Fiorentino Perez, in favor of more glamorous players, a move which has been widely mocked and derided as a big blunder by his own players like Zinedine Zidane. Makelele then moved to Chelsea where he enjoyed the best spell of his career and established himself as arguably the greatest defensive midfielder of all-time. He finished his career at PSG.
On his birthday, relive some of his greatest defensive contributions: