What is the midfielder telling the world about himself? He is the party host who fades into the background when the speeches are made, the hard-working office manager who is the first to congratulate those less talented than him on their promotion. Ill at ease with his own success, he is a facilitator, an enabler, with a strong sense of family. Many nurses are midfielders. On the pitch, he is Batto, Robbo, Wisey. Off the pitch, Umberto Eco, Dr Johnson, Vanessa Redgrave, Mark Knopfler, Saatchi and Saatchi.

The full-back. With a need at all times to surprise, the full-back ensures his interceptions in the game are made for maximum effect and at the last second. Solipsists on studs, full-backs frequently express their deepest feelings through practical jokes. On the pitch, he is Le Saux, Dorigo, Irwin. Off the pitch, Jacques Santer, Samantha Janus, Terry Christian, Tallulah Bankhead.

The goalkeeper. The key to his life is to be noticed. He would prefer to be blamed, to be booed off the pitch, than simply be ignored. While this can lead to heroics in the box, it can also provoke acts of comical self-destructiveness. When a party is being planned, he will be first on the team-sheet, but his restless need to dominate his area may mean that he ends up alone when the lights go down. On the pitch, he is Schmeichely (sic), Gob, Oggy Ogrizovic. Off the pitch, Edith Piaf, Paula Yates, Albert Camus.