ISSN: 1899-1955
Human Movement
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2/2019
vol. 20
 
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abstract:
Original paper

Defensive positioning on the pitch in relation with situational variables of a professional football team during regaining possession

Pedro Manuel Santos
,
Carlos Lago-Penas

Human Movement 2019 vol. 20 (2), 50-56
Online publish date: 2019/04/24
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Purpose
To analyse how the quality of opposition, match location, and match status affect the positioning of the team during ball recovery.

Methods
Overall, 510 ball recovery situations from a professional soccer team were analysed with a tracking system (AmiscoPro). Five compound positional variables (team compactness [TC ], compactness behind ball location [CB ], compactness forward ball location [CF], team width [TW], and game centre index [GC]) and three situational variables (match location, quality of opposition, and match status) were considered in this study. Data were examined with the use of a linear regression model.

Results
The GC was reduced by 1.391 meters (p < 0.05) and TW was advanced by 2.204 meters (p < 0.05) when the team was winning and losing, respectively, as compared with when the scores were even. Playing against strong opposition increased CF by 3.055 meters (p < 0.05). No effects were detected on TC or CB.

Conclusions
The team modifies the tactics as a consequence of the match conditions. Different field positions emerge in relation with situational variables. This information can be used to better understand the positional behaviour during ball recovery.

keywords:

association football, notational analysis, performance indicators, compound positional variables, ball recovery

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