Remember the days when left-backs were just failed wingers or wannabe centre-backs that didn't have the physical prowess to deal with a centre-forward? Yeah, those days are long gone.
The role of a full-back is rapidly developing into one of the most important jobs on the pitch, and subsequently your choice of left-back on Football Manager 2021 could have a huge bearing on whether you're donning your suit for cup finals, or trying to look smart as you head down to the job centre.
We've saved you the hassle of employing extra scouts to peruse the globe for the perfect left-back and provided you with a list of the best available options on the game.
The veteran Croatian isn't going to be a long-term fix at left-back, but he's a reliable defender who won't let you down as you search for a younger replacement.
At 33, Ansaldi is another who might only represent a short-term fix, but the experience that he can bring to your side for just £2.5m makes him a sound purchase.
The former Monaco man is too good to be playing a bit part role in France and can be purchased for far less than his £7.5m valuation.
The former Arsenal man is past the peak of his powers at 34, but if you need a solid, reliable full-back to plug a gap while you generate funds for a more youthful option, then he's a great bit of business.
Undoubtedly in the twilight of his career at 35 years of age, but can be snapped up for peanuts and has some brilliant stats.
The pacy full-back is available for just £3m with Club Brugge surprisingly open to start negotiations. With both attacking and defensive qualities in abundance, he's a great buy for anyone working within a tight budget.
Work permit issues could be a problem as you look to land the Udinese man, but for just £2.5m it's worth the effort to try and secure a solid left-back who can also fill in at centre-back.
Few left-backs as well-rounded as the Krasnodar man are available for a fee short of £5m. The Ecuadorian's pace and agility can be a huge asset to your team's left side.
Comfortable playing anywhere on the left, the 18-year-old can be snapped up for pennies and has plenty of time to mature and develop into a top defender.
Despite being valued at £4.4m, Spurs are asking just £2.2m for the England international. You can try squeezing them even lower - believe me, we've tried - but they're reluctant to budge. Still, a player with Champions League experience who's still just 30 years of age (yes, 30!) is a steal at that price.
Reasonable OptionsDouglas Santos
Zenit St Petersburg
The Brazilian is another who could encounter issues in obtaining a work permit, and you'll need to offer double his £4.5m valuation if you're to see your bid accepted, but he's worth the effort.
Of course, it's always cool to delve into the Brazilian lower leagues and pick out some hidden gem, but there's a lot to be said for buying a player who's tried and tested in the Premier League - especially for just £12.5m.
We cannot stress enough how much you NEED to sign this man. He doesn't come cheap and Rangers will try and squeeze as much as they can out of you, but the Glasgow giants will eventually sign off on a deal worth around £14m.
This lad is going to be a top player. You'll have to wait for his loan spell with Genoa to come to an end, but if you can persuade Juventus to part with the 21-year-old he could become a star for your team of choice.
If you're looking to shore up at the back and keep things tight then Schulz probably isn't the left-back for you. But, if you want a rapid full-back who's full of energy and is going to cause the opposition countless problems then he's your man.
£10m may seem like a significant amount of money to spend on a left-back, but if your team's style of play is dependant on crosses from the wide areas and full-backs who can stretch teams then this is your man.
The Serie A outfit will accept offers of around £9m for the Algerian, and he's a great option for anyone needing a left-back who can surge down the wing and deliver quality in the final third.
Cresswell has been an establish Premier League left-back for over six seasons now, and for little over his £9.75m valuation you'll be getting a top full-back with a wand of a left foot.
Dijks won't be the immediate answer to your left-back problems having been ruled out until the end of 2020 through injury. However, you can use this to your advantage when it comes to beginning negotiations.
Bundesliga side RB Leipzig are notoriously shrewd movers in the transfer market, and they won't let you take Halstenberg off their hands for cheap, but after some back and forth they'll eventually settle for a bid of £15m.
Expensive OptionsRenan Lodi
Now time for those of you who have been handed a transfer war chest by your lovely board. Lodi's statistics on the game are immense for a 21-year-old, and a bid of £17m will see Atletico Madrid part with their talented youngster.
For just £22m, you'll struggle to find many better left-backs for cheaper than Gosens. The German's bombarding runs can become a feature of your team's play and his defensive stats aren't to be sniffed at either.
Okay, we're just going to rip the bandage off and tell you - you're not signing Alex Sandro unless you've got upwards of £40m in your transfer kitty. There, we've said it. That's the bad news out of the way, now to the good news - the Old Lady will sell the Brazilian and he's one of the best left-backs on the game.
Mendy is the kind of player you expect Madrid to demand no less than £395m before they'll even consider letting him leave. However, offer his £21m valuation and Los Blancos hierarchy can't wait to say yes! There must be something going on here.c'mon Zinedine, what's wrong with him?
Despite being recognised as one of the best attacking left-backs in Europe, Everton will part with the 27-year-old for just a couple of million more than his £28.5m valuation.
You can pretty much ignore the Ajax man's £19.5m valuation, but surprisingly a bid of just £27m will land you one of the most solid left-backs in Europe.
Former Barcelona man Grimaldo can be snapped up for a fee of around £19m, and if you're looking for a left-back with bags of energy who can deliver great crosses in the final third then this is your man.
Comfortable at both left-back and left wing-back, the Dortmund man is a quality technician who can thrive in the right setup. He won't come cheap though with the German outfit demanding at least £30m.
It would be easy to put off by 30-year-old Yuri's lofty price tag considering you may only get two or three seasons out of him at his very best, but if you've got the financial clout and are looking for a top left-back then he's your man.
There aren't many better options than the Spaniard at left-back, and at just 27 years of age and £25m he's more than value for money.