Definition of defender in English:



  • 1A person who defends someone or something.

    ‘a determined defender of British interests’
    • ‘He is still healthy, articulate, has his defenders, is famous, and now he has nothing to lose.’
    • ‘No less solid is Landry's record as a defender of the interests of big business.’
    • ‘It also deprived local communities of many of their best defenders.’
    • ‘However, he proved to be an unscrupulous defender of bourgeois national interests.’
    • ‘He and his defenders, it seems, don't really deny much of anything that has been alleged.’
    • ‘His strongest opposition came from defenders of vested interest in his own party.’
    • ‘It is most unlikely that a determined defender of the cosmological line of reasoning would surrender even here.’
    • ‘The Charter required the Council to be the defender of the common interest.’
    • ‘His image as a defender of the national interest made him popular among the masses.’
    • ‘Human rights defenders say the trial is a farce and believe the defendants have been tortured.’
    • ‘His defenders may insist that he never outright claimed there was a tie.’
    • ‘On the other hand, he's a fierce defender of free trade and a champion of school choice.’
    • ‘So to a large extent, his critics and defenders have always talked at cross purposes.’
    • ‘The FDA and other defenders of aspartame quickly debunked the report as exaggerated and baseless.’
    • ‘I'm calling him on that, and he and his defenders have yet to respond to that.’
    • ‘So those who resist or protest against electoral fraud are in fact crucial defenders of democracy.’
    protector, guard, guardian, preserver, bodyguard
    supporter, upholder, backer, champion, advocate, endorser, sustainer, bolsterer, apologist, proponent, exponent, promoter, apostle, standard-bearer, torch-bearer, adherent, believer
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Bridge Either member of the partnership that did not win the auction.
      Compare with declarer
      • ‘In each hand one partnership are declarers and the other are the defenders.’
      • ‘If the defenders won the last trick, the eight cards discarded by the starter are exposed.’
      • ‘If there is a declarer, however, the two defenders should form a temporary partnership to defeat the declarer.’
      • ‘The defender beats some but not all of the cards played by the attacker.’
      • ‘After the declarer and defenders are determined, each has the opportunity to discard and receive new cards.’
  • 2(in sport) a player whose task it is to protect their own side's goal.

    ‘Owen surged between two defenders, then drove the ball out of the reach of the goalkeeper’
    • ‘Bizarrely it was the fifth time this season that Doncaster have cashed in on an own goal, although the defender knew little about it.’
    • ‘Schweinsteiger chases down Jorge Guaga, forcing the burly defender to concede another corner.’
    • ‘There shouldn't be any serious questions asked of the American stopper until he is given ample protection from his defenders.’
    • ‘As he entered the penalty area he was felled from both sides by chasing defenders.’
    • ‘I think you need a solid base at International level and these players are primarily defenders.’
    • ‘It was a clear foul - like when players ease a defender out the way in the wall at a free-kick.’
    • ‘If you want to go to the left, take a quick step to the side of the defender with your right foot.’
    • ‘Traps are most effective when the two defenders cover two sides of the offensive player.’
    • ‘He is one of the fastest and most direct forwards in the Premiership and a constant thorn in the side of opposing defenders.’
    • ‘If Grant learns to tackle better, he could be one of the Panthers' best defenders and a big playmaker.’
    • ‘As it was it took a goal from defender Grant Illingworth to clinch the points.’
    • ‘The team can't afford to have scorers or strong defenders go missing for long stretches.’
    • ‘Both of them drove straight at defenders to force fouls and earn free throws.’
    • ‘Obviously we try to concede as few goals as possible but we also want our defenders to play football and not just mark the strikers.’
    • ‘He is both a pure scorer and a persistent defender with the ability to alter the complexion of any game.’
    • ‘She ran half the length of the pitch to beat a couple of defenders before rounding the goalkeeper and slotting the ball home.’
    • ‘The ball is rolled back and the home side's defenders stroke it around between them for some early touches.’
    • ‘Ian Wright was one of those players that defenders must have hated to come up against.’
    • ‘Although it does say a lot for the tournament that its best player was a defender.’
    • ‘With his back to goal and two defenders smothering him, he somehow manages to turn and make room for a shot, which he fires narrowly wide.’
    full back, back, sweeper
    View synonyms
  • 3Scots Law

    another term for defendant