Season Match Loads of a Portuguese Under-23 Soccer Team: Differences between Different Starting Statuses throughout the Season and Specific Periods within the Season Using Global Positioning Systems

João Barreira, Fábio Y. Nakamura, Ricardo Ferreira, João Pereira, Rodrigo Aquino, Pedro Figueiredo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study aimed to quantify the external match loads (EMLs) of a Portuguese u-23 soccer team, competing at the highest national level for the age group, comparing players with different starting status throughout a competitive season and specific blocks. Thirty-five outfield soccer players were split into three groups for the entire season analysis and for each 3-month block, based on the percentage of games played as a starter. The three groups consisted of “starters” (≥55% of the games as a starter), “fringe” (30–54%), and “non-starters” (<30%). EMLs were recorded using 10 Hz GPS technology throughout the whole season (26 matches). Differences (p < 0.05) were found for total distance (TD), exposure time, and the number of accelerations and decelerations between starters and non-starters throughout the season (d = 0.73 to 1.08), and within each block (d = 0.59 to 1.68). Differences were also found between starters and fringe players for the number of accelerations in Block 2 (p = 0.03; d = 0.69), and TD (p = 0.006; d = 1) and exposure time (p = 0.006; d = 0.95) in Block 3. Differences in the EML were almost always accompanied by large differences in game time. Our results highlight the differences in the EML of starters and non-starters, emphasizing the need for compensatory training, especially with players that obtain significantly less playing time, to prepare the players for match demands (e.g., high-intensity efforts such as sprinting, accelerations, and decelerations).

Original languageEnglish
Article number6379
JournalSensors
Volume22
Issue number17
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2022

Keywords

  • football
  • global positioning systems
  • match load
  • performance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Information Systems
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biochemistry
  • Instrumentation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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