Home > Journals > The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness > Past Issues > The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2017 April;57(4) > The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2017 April;57(4):369-79

CURRENT ISSUE
 

JOURNAL TOOLS

eTOC
To subscribe
Submit an article
Recommend to your librarian
 

ARTICLE TOOLS

Publication history
Reprints
Permissions
Cite this article as

 

ORIGINAL ARTICLE  EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOMECHANICS 

The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2017 April;57(4):369-79

DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.16.06093-X

Copyright © 2016 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Technical and physical determinants of soccer match-play performance in elite youth soccer players

Owain ROWAT 1, Jonathan FENNER 2, Viswanath UNNITHAN 1

1 Centre for Sport, Health and Exercise Research, Faculty of Health Sciences, Staffordshire University, Stoke-on-Trent, UK; 2 Sports Science Department, Wolverhampton Wanderers FC, UK


PDF


BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to evaluate whether physical performance characteristics could be a better predictor than technical skills in determining the technical level of county soccer players in a match situation.
METHODS: With institutional ethics approval, 25 male youth soccer players aged 16-18.5 years from a professional soccer academy in South East Asia were selected and height and body mass were recorded. Players were tested for sexual maturity (pubertal development scale [PDS] self-assessment), aerobic capacity (yo-yo intermittent recovery test level 1 [YYIR1]), repeated sprint ability (7 x 35 m sprints) acceleration (15 m sprint) and four soccer skills tests (dribble with pass, dribbling speed, passing and shooting accuracy). Players’ technical ability during match play was assessed in small-sided games of soccer (5 v 5) using a novel game technical scoring chart (scoring chart completed by coaches to assess technical performance in a match situation) developed from criteria (e.g., first touch, dribbling and two footedness) used by youth soccer coaches for talent identification.
RESULTS: A Spearman’s rank correlation showed the YYIR1 test and 15 m sprint test were limited in predicting technical match performance (r=0.03, P=0.88, r=-0.23, P=0.32 respectively). A Pearson product moment correlation showed that the repeated sprint test was also limited in predicting technical match performance (r=-0.34, P=0.14). A dribbling skill with a pass was found to be the best determinant of a player’s technical ability in a match (r=-0.57, P=0.00).
CONCLUSIONS: Talent identification and selection programs in Asian youth soccer should include a dribbling skill performed with a pass.


KEY WORDS: Athletes - Exercise tests - Soccer

top of page