At the time Charlie Roberts was the very acme of the pivotal centre half, orchestrating his team's attacks. It was this playmaker role that Pozzo remembered when the rest of the world was drifting into the 'third back' game.
Roberts was an interesting man. A pioneer of the players union (the Association of Football Players’ and Trainers’ Union), his militancy and refusal to bow to his employers demands led to the Union being accepted by the FA.
In 1928 Roberts teamed up with his former Manchester United teammate and Union comrade Billy Meredith to coach Manchester Central. Charlie Roberts Jr, his son, played for Central.
Pozzo found his 'Roberts' in Luis Monti, who had joined Juventus in 1930. Monti was a vigorous and mobile centre half who retained the traditional play making role of the centre half,
rather than settling into a purely central defensive position.