Physical outcome in a successful Italian serie a soccer team over three consecutive seasons

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Journal Article

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Elite football, Seasonal variations, Match play, Time-motion characteristics, Ball possession




The aim of this study was to examine the physical performance of a successful Italian Serie A team of more than 3 consecutive seasons. Twenty-five players participated in the study and were classified into 3 playing positions: defenders (n = 9), midfielders (n = 11), and forwards (n = 5). Activities match were studied by an analysis of multiple match camera SICS throughout the competition Italian Serie A matches played at home (n = 90) for 3 consecutive seasons (first: 2004/2005; second: 2005/2006; and third: 2006/2007). Total team ball possession and time-motion characteristics were examined. Results showed that total ball possession (52.1-54.9%) and the number of points accumulated at home (40/48) improved in the past 3 seasons, whereas the final rankings at home were stable. The total distances covered by minutes of play were significantly different between the 3 seasons (118.32 +/- 6.69 m[middle dot]min-1 to 111.96 +/- 8.05 m[middle dot]min-1). Distance running and high-intensity activities were similar in the 3 seasons, whereas the distance covered in moderate-intensity running decreased in the third (p < 0.05). Variations between playing positions were found during the 3 consecutive seasons, with midfielders covering greater distances than defenders (p < 0.05) and forwards (p < 0.01). This study showed how for 3 consecutive seasons a Serie A team of successful players reduced their distances performed at submaximal speeds, and increased ball possession, while maintaining the high-intensity activities and the number of points at home. It is suggested that this is because of a better understanding of roles and tactics team organization and to act collectively and individually on these parameters to reduce energy expenditure during the game to maintain a high-level performance throughout the season.

Source Publication

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research

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