They may not often win the prestigious end-of-season awards, but defensive midfielders occupy a critical role in their respective sides.
No self-respecting major club can function effectively without a top-class defensive mid, though the requirements of the position have evolved over the years.
Though the old-fashioned destroyer still exists, the holding midfielders are more often than not expected to act as a fulcrum for their side when in possession, so passing and dribbling skills are hugely important.
An ability to read the game is also essential.
Here we power rank the English Premier League's best defensive midfielders at the present time.