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Variations of Network Centralities Between Playing Positions in Favorable and Unfavorable Close and Unbalanced Scores During the 2018 FIFA World Cup


Clemente, Filipe Manuel; Sarmento, Hugo; Praça, Gibson Moreira; Nikolaidis, Pantelis Theodoros; Rosemann, Thomas; Knechtle, Beat (2019). Variations of Network Centralities Between Playing Positions in Favorable and Unfavorable Close and Unbalanced Scores During the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Frontiers in Psychology, 10:1802.

Abstract

The purpose of this study is twofold: (i) analyze the variations of network centralities between close (difference of goals equal to one) and unbalanced (difference of goals equal to or greater than two) scores; and (ii) compare the centrality levels between playing positions. The passing sequences that occurred during the 64 matches played by the 32 national teams that participated in the 2018 FIFA World Cup were analyzed and coded. The network centralities of degree prestige and degree centrality were calculated based on the weighted adjacency matrices built from the passing sequences. The results reveal that higher degree centralities of midfielders occurred in unfavorable (lost) unbalanced scores (p = 0.046; ES (effect size) = 0.472). Moreover, in favorable (won) matches the higher values of degree centrality of central defenders (p = 0.014; ES: 0.458) and defensive midfielders (p = 0.004; ES: 0.715) were also found in unbalanced scores. The comparisons between positions revealed that the highest and significant degree prestige levels were found in defensive midfielders in both close (12.10%) and unbalanced scores (10.95%). In conclusion, it is possible to observe that winning by an unbalanced score significantly increased the centrality levels of the wingers and forwards in comparison to close scores. Moreover, it was also found that independent of the final score or the unbalanced score level, the defensive midfielders were the most prominent or recruited players during the passing sequences.

Abstract

The purpose of this study is twofold: (i) analyze the variations of network centralities between close (difference of goals equal to one) and unbalanced (difference of goals equal to or greater than two) scores; and (ii) compare the centrality levels between playing positions. The passing sequences that occurred during the 64 matches played by the 32 national teams that participated in the 2018 FIFA World Cup were analyzed and coded. The network centralities of degree prestige and degree centrality were calculated based on the weighted adjacency matrices built from the passing sequences. The results reveal that higher degree centralities of midfielders occurred in unfavorable (lost) unbalanced scores (p = 0.046; ES (effect size) = 0.472). Moreover, in favorable (won) matches the higher values of degree centrality of central defenders (p = 0.014; ES: 0.458) and defensive midfielders (p = 0.004; ES: 0.715) were also found in unbalanced scores. The comparisons between positions revealed that the highest and significant degree prestige levels were found in defensive midfielders in both close (12.10%) and unbalanced scores (10.95%). In conclusion, it is possible to observe that winning by an unbalanced score significantly increased the centrality levels of the wingers and forwards in comparison to close scores. Moreover, it was also found that independent of the final score or the unbalanced score level, the defensive midfielders were the most prominent or recruited players during the passing sequences.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Institute of General Practice
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > General Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords:General Psychology
Language:English
Date:6 August 2019
Deposited On:16 Aug 2019 07:38
Last Modified:15 Apr 2020 23:59
Publisher:Frontiers Research Foundation
ISSN:1664-1078
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01802

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