Talent identification and development in soccer.
ABSTRACT In this review, we attempt to integrate the main research findings concerned with talent identification and development in soccer. Research approaches in anthropometry, physiology, psychology and sociology are considered and, where possible, integrated. Although some progress has been made in identifying correlates of playing success, it appears that no unique characteristics can be isolated with confidence. Both biological and behavioural scientists have indicated a strong genetic component in performance of sports such as soccer; nevertheless, the influence of systematic training and development programmes should not be underestimated. We conclude that the sport and exercise sciences have an important support role in the processes of identifying, monitoring and nurturing talented soccer players towards realizing their potential.
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ABSTRACT: The theory of deliberate practice postulates that experts are always made, not born. This theory translated to the youth-sport domain means that if athletes want to be high-level performers, they need to deliberately engage in practice during the specialization years, spending time wisely and always focusing on tasks that challenge current performance. Sport organizations in several countries around the world created specialized training centers where selected young talents practice under the supervision of experienced coaches in order to become professional athletes and integrate onto youth national teams. Early specialization and accurate observation by expert coaches or scouts remain the only tools to find a potential excellent athlete among a great number of participants. In the current study, the authors present 2 of the problems raised by talent search and the risks of such a search. Growth and maturation are important concepts to better understand the identification, selection, and development processes of young athletes. However, the literature suggests that sport-promoting strategies are being maintained despite the increased demands in the anthropometric characteristics of professional players and demands of actual professional soccer competitions. On the other hand, identifying biological variables that can predict performance is almost impossible.International journal of sports physiology and performance 12/2012; 7(4):390-3. · 2.25 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: D'Ercole, AA, D'Ercole, C, Gobbi, M, and Gobbi, F. Technical,Perceptual and Motor Skills in Novice-Expert Water Polo Players: An Individual Discriminant Analysis for Talent Development. J Strength Cond Res 27(12): 3436-3444, 2013-The 4 tasks (A, B, C, and Y) have the characteristic of containing one more element than the task performed before it. In fact, task B introduces the slalom which is not present in task A. Task C introduces the ball control that are not present in tasks A and B, whereas task Y introduces the slalom and ball control in a visual dual task situation developed in horizontal swimming over a distance of 20 m at maximum speed. This exercise not included in task C. These tasks were performed by a group of pre-adolescent players and national under 18 water polo players. The novice players showed that tasks B and C are predictors of task Y. Such characteristics were not present in the expert players. The novice players also had difficulty in performing task Y because of the visual-attention overload, a difficulty that was not present in the expert players. To improve the 4 skills, the coach of the novice players developed a technical-didactic program, which was checked 6 months after the pretest. The posttest was not significantly different from the pretest while the individual discriminant analysis identified the improvements in some novice players, which on elaboration proved significant, enabling us to distinguish 2 subgroups, one with higher learning rates and the other with lower learning rates. In the practical applications, we describe the didactic tools (task analysis) and the different levels of development of technical skills in water polo. Improvements in these skills are explained through computational models like the HMOSAIC (Hierarchical, Modular, Selection and Identification for Control) while the individual discriminant analysis enables us to do a longitudinal analysis that is not possible with cross-sectional models.The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 12/2013; 27(12):3436-3444. · 1.80 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Abstract This paper introduces a new sport and athlete development framework that has been generated by multidisciplinary sport practitioners. By combining current theoretical research perspectives with extensive empirical observations from one of the world's leading sport agencies, the proposed FTEM (Foundations, Talent, Elite, Mastery) framework offers broad utility to researchers and sporting stakeholders alike. FTEM is unique in comparison with alternative models and frameworks, because it: integrates general and specialised phases of development for participants within the active lifestyle, sport participation and sport excellence pathways; typically doubles the number of developmental phases (n = 10) in order to better understand athlete transition; avoids chronological and training prescriptions; more optimally establishes a continuum between participation and elite; and allows full inclusion of many developmental support drivers at the sport and system levels. The FTEM framework offers a viable and more flexible alternative for those sporting stakeholders interested in managing, optimising, and researching sport and athlete development pathways.Journal of Sports Sciences 04/2013; · 2.08 Impact Factor