IMR Press / JOMH / Volume 18 / Issue 7 / DOI: 10.31083/j.jomh1807153
Open Access Original Research
Locomotor Demands in Professional Male Football Players: Differences and Variability According to Halves and Playing Positions
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1 Sports Science Department, Gazi University, 06570 Ankara, Turkey
2 Sports Science Department, Anadolu University, 26170 Eskisehir, Turkey
3 Department of Statistics, Yildiz Technical University, 34220 Istanbul, Turkey
4 Escola Superior Desporto e Lazer, Instituto Politécnico de Viana do Castelo, Rua Escola Industrial e Comercial de Nun’Álvares, 4900-347 Viana do Castelo, Portugal
5 Research Center in Sports Performance, Recreation, Innovation and Technology (SPRINT), 4960-320 Melgaço, Portugal
6 Instituto de Telecomunicações, Delegação da Covilhã, 1049-001 Lisboa, Portugal
7 Acıbadem Athlete Health Center, FIFA Center of Excellence, 34126 Istanbul, Turkey
8 Sports Science Department, Afyon Kocatepe University, 03030 Afyonkarahisar, Turkey
9 The Research Centre in Sports Sciences, Health Sciences and Human Development (CIDESD), 5001-801 Vila Real, Portugal
10 Department of Physical Education and Special Motricity, University Transilvania of Brasov, 500068 Brasov, Romania
11 Instituto de Telecomunicações, Delegação da Covilhã, 1049-001 Lisboa, Portugal
*Correspondence: (Georgian Badicu)
J. Mens. Health 2022, 18(7), 153;
Submitted: 2 March 2022 | Revised: 15 March 2022 | Accepted: 13 April 2022 | Published: 11 July 2022
Copyright: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by IMR Press.
This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license.

Background: The aims of the present study were three-fold: to (i) analyze between-position differences according to match activity; (ii) analyze within-position differences according to match halves; and (iii) test the variability of match activity according to both playing positions and match halves. Methods: This study followed an observational analytic prospective design. 21 elite football players participated in this study, where 25 league and 3 continental cup matches were analysed. The differences and consistency of all parameters in the two halves of the match were analyzed. The distances and metabolic power values of an elite football team were recorded using an optical camera technology during the observational period. Total distance (TD), walking, jogging, running and high speed running (HSR) measures were further analyzed. Results: Between-position differences for the overall locomotor measures per minute are present during both halves, except for walking intensity. Defenders (DF) and midfielders (MF) showed significant within-position differences between halves for TD (DF: p = 0.000; η2 = 0.127; MF: p = 0.000; η2 = 0.168), for jogging (DF: p = 0.002; η2 = 0.271, and for running (DF: p = 0.000; η2 = 0.067; MF: p = 0.000; η2 = 0.160). HSR and metabolic power (MP) had greater between-position variability differences. While, within-position differences were observed only for forwards (FW) during the 2nd half for HSR. Conclusions: The high-intensity locomotor measures produce higher between- and within-position differences between halves, and the HSR measure have higher between-position variability during the 1st half of a football match. For those reasons, coaches need to consider the variations that are present in high-intensity locomotor measures of each position to better adjust training.

match activity
athletic performance
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