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Sports 2017, 5(1), 5; doi:10.3390/sports5010005

Soccer and Relative Age Effect: A Walk among Elite Players and Young Players

1
Physical Education Department, Teaching Training Faculty, University of Castilla-La Mancha, 16071 Cuenca, Spain
2
Physical Education Department, Teaching Training Faculty, University of Castilla-La Mancha, 45004 Toledo, Spain
3
Department of Physical Education Pedagogy, Faculty of Education, Catholic University of Temuco, 02950 Rudecindo Ortega, Temuco, Chile
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Filipe Manuel Clemente
Received: 5 October 2016 / Revised: 2 January 2017 / Accepted: 3 January 2017 / Published: 11 January 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Performance in Soccer)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [648 KB, uploaded 11 January 2017]   |  

Abstract

Grouping people according to chronological age is popular in fields such as education and sport. Athletes who are born in the first months of the year usually have cognitive and physical development differences in contrast to those born in the last months of the same year. That is why competitive teams tend to select older players more often than youngsters. Age differences between athletes born in the same year as well as an over-representation of older players are known as the Relative Age Effect. This effect is extensively described in young and elite team sports such as basketball, volleyball or, ice-hockey, as well as in soccer. The purpose of this study is to examine the state-of-the-art of the Relative Age Effect in youth and elite soccer players. This review summarizes recent research articles on the Relative Age Effect related to competitive soccer from 2010 to 2016. The systematic literature search was conducted in four databases: SPORTDiscus, Medline, EBSCO host and Google Scholar. Although causes and final solutions have not been clearly achieved yet, it is necessary to continue investigating this phenomenon in order to provide a starting point for future research. View Full-Text
Keywords: relative age effect; football; sport talent; young and elite football players relative age effect; football; sport talent; young and elite football players
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Sierra-Díaz, M.J.; González-Víllora, S.; Pastor-Vicedo, J.C.; Serra-Olivares, J. Soccer and Relative Age Effect: A Walk among Elite Players and Young Players. Sports 2017, 5, 5.

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