2018, Volume 10, Issue 3
Time-motion characteristics of match-play in elite Polish youth soccer players of various playing positions
Bartosz Dolański1, Paweł Rompa2, Liu Hongyou3, Karol Wasielewski1, Andrzej Szwarc1
1Department of Team Sports, Gdansk University of Physical Education and Sport in Gdansk
2Department of Methodology and Statistics, Gdansk University of Physical Education and Sport in Gdansk
3School of Physical Education & Sports Science, South China Normal University
Author for correspondence: Karol Wasielewski; Department of Team Sports, Gdansk University of Physical Education and Sport in Gdansk; email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Background: The aim of this study is to examine and compare the distance covered with high-intensity running and to determine differences in maximum velocities achieved in a match by 15–19-year-old elite Polish soccer players depending on their age and playing positions.
Material and methods: The current study monitored and analyzed 528 matches of youth soccer players of six tactical positions (12 goalkeepers, 24 fullbacks, 24 central backs, 24 wide midfielders, 36 central midfielders and 12 forwards) from four age categories (U-15, U-16, U-17 and U-19) from three top Polish soccer academies, using a MinimaxX device.
Results: It was found that in every age category, central midfielders covered the longest total distance, while wide midfielders covered the greatest distance with high-intensity running. Maximum velocities of players of U-17 and U-19 were significantly higher than players of U-15 and U-16. The highest maximum velocities were achieved by the wide midfielders and forwards of U-19 players.
Conclusions: The selection of players for certain positions in the game must take into account the players’ ability to perform high intensity running, sprints and ability to repeat very high intensity running.
Key words: youth players, match analysis, performance analysis, motor preparation, physical load