Differences Between Official And Non-Official Matches In Worst-Case Scenarios In Elite Futsal Players

Spyrou K., Freitas T.T., Marín-Cascales E., Herrero-Carrasco R., Alcaraz P.E.

This study aimed to compare the worst-case scenarios (WCS) between official (OFF) and non-official (Non-OFF) matches, in different time-periods in an elite futsal team.

Material and methods: Twenty-six games were divided into OFF (n = 13) and Non-OFF (n = 13). The WCS were calculated using two methods, rolling averages (ROLL) and fixed-periods (FIX); four-length epochs (30-s, 1-, 3-, and 5-min); and player load per minute (PL·min^-1).

Results: Considering ROLL, significant and small differences were found in PL·min^-1, with higher intensity in 30-s (p = 0.001; ES = -0.53) and 1-min (p = 0.001; ES = -0.47) in OFF when compared to Non-OFF, but non-significant and small to trivial changes in 3-min (p = 0.060; ES = -0.23) and 5-min (p = 0.605; ES = -0.06) were observed. Regarding FIX, significant and small changes were obtained, with higher intensity in OFF in all time-periods when compared to Non-OFF. Significant differences were found between the two methods (ROLL vs FIX) in 30-s, 1- and 3-min, but not in 5-min. Significant differences, with lower PL·min^-1, were observed with increasing time-windows from both methods (p = 0.001).

Conclusions: In summary, OFF matches present higher WCS than Non-OFF ones when considering short time-periods, and the FIX method could underestimate the “actual intensity” of the match compared to ROLL.

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