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Influence of Aerobic Power on Youth Players’ Tactical Behavior and Network Properties during Football Small-Sided Games

Sports Department, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte 31270-901, Brazil
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Sports 2019, 7(3), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports7030073
Received: 1 February 2019 / Revised: 14 March 2019 / Accepted: 19 March 2019 / Published: 25 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Training Process in Soccer Players)
(1) Background: This study aimed to compare the incidence of tactical principles, the percentage of successful tactical principles, and the network properties between higher and lower aerobic power in young football players during small-sided games. (2) Methods: Eighteen Under-17 Brazilian players were recruited. Firstly, they performed the Yo-Yo Intermittent Recovery Test Level 2, which was used to split them into two groups with higher and lower aerobic power. In the sequence, they played three vs three small-sided games within each group. The System of Tactical Assessment in Soccer was used to analyze the tactical behavior demonstrated by measuring the incidence of tactical principles and the percentage of successful principles, while the macro variables, density and clustering coefficient from social network analysis for team sports was used to analyze players’ interactions. (3) Results: No differences were reported for the incidence of tactical principles (p > 0.05, small or small-to-moderate effect sizes), the percentage of successful offensive principles (p = 0.122, small-to-moderate effect size), or the network variables (p > 0.05; small effect sizes). The lower aerobic power group demonstrated a higher percentage of successful defensive tactical principles (p = 0.043; small-to-moderate effect size). (4) Conclusions: We concluded that aerobic power has a limited impact on player behavior, indicating that players’ actions within a small-sided game are mostly constrained by other parameters. View Full-Text
Keywords: small-sided games; football; social network analysis; tactical behavior small-sided games; football; social network analysis; tactical behavior
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Praça, G.M.; Sousa, R.B.; Greco, P.J. Influence of Aerobic Power on Youth Players’ Tactical Behavior and Network Properties during Football Small-Sided Games. Sports 2019, 7, 73.

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