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Heart Rate, Technical Performance, and Session-RPE in Elite Youth Soccer Small-Sided Games Played With Wildcard Players

Sanchez-Sanchez, Javier1; Hernández, Daniel1; Casamichana, David2; Martínez-Salazar, Cristian3; Ramirez-Campillo, Rodrigo4,5; Sampaio, Jaime6

Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research: October 2017 - Volume 31 - Issue 10 - p 2678–2685
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000001736
Original Research

Sanchez-Sanchez, J, Hernández, D, Casamichana, D, Martínez-Salazar, C, Ramirez-Campillo, R, and Sampaio, J. Heart rate, technical performance, and session-RPE in elite youth soccer small-sided games played with wildcard players. J Strength Cond Res 31(10): 2678–2685, 2017—The aim of this study was to compare heart rate (HR), rating of perceived exertion (RPE), and technical-tactical actions during small-sided games (SSGs) played without (CTR), with internal (IW), and with IW and external (IEW) wildcard players. A total of 22 young male soccer players (age 17.2 ± 0.9 years) randomly completed six 4vs4 SSG situations. The control conditions occurred with goals scored without goalkeeper (4vs4-NO) and with goalkeeper (4vs4-GK). During the experimental conditions, the situations incorporated 2 IW (4vs4+2IW-NO, 4vs4+2IW-GK) and 2 IEW (4vs4+2IW+2IEW-NO, 4vs4+2IW+2IEW-GK). Processed results did not include data from goalkeepers, IW, and IEW players. The HR was divided in intensity-zones (Z1, Z2, and Z3, for <80%, 80–90%, and >90% of maximal HR, respectively) and the analyzed technical-tactical actions were the pass, dribbling, collective success, and pause. The effects of IW and IEW were analyzed through repeated measures analysis of variance. During 4vs4+2IW+2IEW-NO, greater time was recorded in Z1 (p ≤ 0.05) compared with 4vs4-NO and 4s4+2IW-NO. During 4vs4+2IW+2IEW-GK, greater time was recorded in Z1 and less in Z3 (p ≤ 0.05) compared with 4vs4-GK. Greater RPE was reported in 4vs4-NO (p < 0.01) and 4vs4+2IW-NO (p < 0.01) compared with 4vs4+2IW+2IEW-NO, and during 4vs4-GK (p < 0.01) than 4vs4+2IW+2IEW-GK. Greater number of dribbling situations were recorded during 4vs4-NO (p ≤ 0.05) compared with 4vs4+2IW+2IEW-NO. In conclusion, compared with the control condition of 4vs4, the incorporation of IEW reduced HR, RPE, and dribbling actions.

1Research Group in Planification and Assessment in Training and Sports Performance, Pontifical University of Salamanca, Salamanca, Spain;

2Faculty of Health Sciences, European Atlantic University, Santander, Spain;

3Department of Physical Education, Sport and Recreation, University of La Frontera, Temuco, Chile;

4Department of Physical Activity Sciences, University of Los Lagos, Osorno, Chile;

5Research Nucleus in Health, Physical Activity and Sports, University of Los Lagos, Osorno, Chile; and

6CreativeLab, Research Center in Sports Sciences, Health Sciences and Human Development (CIDESD), Vila Real, Portugal

Address correspondence to Dr. Rodrigo Ramirez-Campillo,

Copyright © 2017 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.