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THE JOURNAL OF SPORTS MEDICINE AND PHYSICAL FITNESS

A Journal on Applied Physiology, Biomechanics, Preventive Medicine,
Sports Medicine and Traumatology, Sports Psychology


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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2017 Sep 22

DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.17.07500-4

Copyright © 2017 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Variability of GPS-derived running performance during official matches in elite professional soccer players

Hani AL HADDAD 1, 2, Alberto MÉNDEZ-VILLANUEVA 1, 2, Nacho TORREÑO 2, Diego MUNGUÍA-IZQUIERDO 2, 3, Luis SUÁREZ-ARRONES 2, 3

1 Aspire Academy, Doha, Qatar; 2 Master de Fútbol, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Seville, Spain; 3 Department of Sports and Computer Science, Section of Physical Education and Sports, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Seville, Spain


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AIM: The aim of this study was to assess the match-to-match variability obtained using GPS devices, collected during official games in professional soccer players.
METHODS: GPS-derived data from nineteen elite soccer players were collected over two consecutive seasons. Time-motion data for players with more than five full-match were analyzed (n=202). Total distance covered (TD), TD >13-18 km/h, TD >18-21 km/h, TD >21 km/h, number of acceleration >2.5-4 m.s-2 and >4 m.s-2 were calculated. The match-to-match variation in running activity was assessed by the typical error expressed as a coefficient of variation (CV,%) and the magnitude of the CV was calculated (effect size).
RESULTS: When all players were pooled together, CVs ranged from 5% to 77% (first half) and from 5% to 90% (second half), for TD and number of acceleration >4 m.s-2, and the magnitude of the CVs were rated from small to moderate (effect size = 0.57-0.98). The CVs were likely to increase with running/acceleration intensity, and were likely to differ between playing positions (e.g., TD > 13-18 km/h 3.4% for second strikers vs 14.2% for strikers and 14.9% for wide-defenders vs 9.7% for wide-midfielders).
CONCLUSIONS: Present findings indicate that variability in players’ running performance is high in some variables and likely position-dependent. Such variability should be taken into account when using these variables to prescribe and/or monitor training intensity/load. GPS-derived match-to-match variability in official games’ locomotor performance of professional soccer players is high in some variables, particularly for high-speed running, due to the complexity of match running performance and its most influential factors and reliability of the devices.


KEY WORDS: Monitoring - Male soccer players - Playing position - Time motion

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Publication History

Article first published online: September 22, 2017
Manuscript accepted: September 13, 2017
Manuscript revised: August 28, 2017
Manuscript received: February 22, 2017

Cite this article as

Al Haddad H, Méndez-Villanueva A, Torreño N, Munguía-Izquierdo D, Suárez-Arrones L. Variability of GPS-derived running performance during official matches in elite professional soccer players. J Sports Med Phys Fitness 2017 Sep 22. DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.17.07500-4

Corresponding author e-mail

ljsuamor@upo.es