Competing together: assessing the dynamics of team-team and player-team synchrony in professional association football

Ricardo Duarte, Duarte Araújo, Vanda Correia, Keith Davids, Pedro Marques, Michael J. Richardson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

This study investigated movement synchronization of players within and between teams during competitive association football performance. Cluster phase analysis was introduced as a method to assess synchronies between whole teams and between individual players with their team as a function of time, ball possession and field direction. Measures of dispersion (SD) and regularity (sample entropy - SampEn - and cross sample entropy - Cross-SampEn) were used to quantify the magnitude and structure of synchrony. Large synergistic relations within each professional team sport collective were observed, particularly in the longitudinal direction of the field (0.89. ±. 0.12) compared to the lateral direction (0.73. ±. 0.16, p< .01). The coupling between the group measures of the two teams also revealed that changes in the synchrony of each team were intimately related (Cross-SampEn values of 0.02 ± 0.01). Interestingly, ball possession did not influence team synchronization levels. In player–team synchronization, individuals tended to be coordinated under near in-phase modes with team behavior (mean ranges between −7 and 5° of relative phase). The magnitudes of variations were low, but more irregular in time, for the longitudinal (SD: 18 ± 3°; SampEn: 0.07 ± 0.01), compared to the lateral direction (SD: 28 ± 5°; SampEn: 0.06 ± 0.01, p < .05) on-field. Increases in regularity were also observed between the first (SampEn: 0.07 ± 0.01) and second half (SampEn: 0.06 ± 0.01, p < .05) of the observed competitive game. Findings suggest that the method of analysis introduced in the current study may offer a suitable tool for examining team’s synchronization behaviors and the mutual influence of each team’s cohesiveness in competing social collectives.
LanguageEnglish
Pages555-566
Number of pages12
JournalHuman Movement Science
Volume32
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

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Football
Entropy
Sports
Cluster Analysis
Direction compound

Keywords

  • team synchrony
  • collective systems
  • interpersonal dynamics
  • cluster phase analysis
  • sports teams

Cite this

Duarte, Ricardo ; Araújo, Duarte ; Correia, Vanda ; Davids, Keith ; Marques, Pedro ; Richardson, Michael J. / Competing together : assessing the dynamics of team-team and player-team synchrony in professional association football. In: Human Movement Science. 2013 ; Vol. 32, No. 4. pp. 555-566.
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Competing together : assessing the dynamics of team-team and player-team synchrony in professional association football. / Duarte, Ricardo; Araújo, Duarte; Correia, Vanda; Davids, Keith; Marques, Pedro; Richardson, Michael J.

In: Human Movement Science, Vol. 32, No. 4, 2013, p. 555-566.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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AU - Duarte, Ricardo

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AU - Correia, Vanda

AU - Davids, Keith

AU - Marques, Pedro

AU - Richardson, Michael J.

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KW - interpersonal dynamics

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KW - sports teams

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