Mastery in Goal Scoring, T-Pattern Detection, and Polar Coordinate Analysis of Motor Skills Used by Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo
Anguera, M. Teresa
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Research in soccer has traditionally given more weight to players' technical and tactical skills, but few studies have analyzed the motor skills that underpin specific motor actions. The objective of this study was to investigate the style of play of the world's top soccer players, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, and how they use their motor skills in attacking actions that result in a goal. We used and improved the easy-to-use observation instrument (OSMOS-soccer player) with 9 criteria, each one expanded to build 50 categories. Associations between these categories were investigated by T-pattern detection and polar coordinate analysis. T-pattern analysis detects temporal structures of complex behavioral sequences composed of simpler or directly distinguishable events within specified observation periods (time point series). Polar coordinate analysis involves the application of a complex procedure to provide a vector map of interrelated behaviors obtained from prospective and retrospective sequential analysis. The T-patterns showed that for both players the combined criteria were mainly between the different aspects of motor skills, namely the use of lower limbs, contact with the ball using the outside of the foot, locomotion, body orientation with respect to the opponent goal line, and the criteria of technical actions and the right midfield. Polar coordinate analysis detected significant associations between the same criteria included in the T-patterns as well as the criteria of turning the body, numerical equality with no pressure, and relative numerical superiority.
Is part ofFrontiers in psychology, 2017, vol. 8, article 741
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