Penalty. Plan. Psy­chol­ogy

DNA Sunday (Mumbai) - - FRONT PAGE -

pro­fes­sor in sport psy­chol­ogy at the Nor­we­gian School of Sport Sci­ences. “One player told me that as he was in the cen­tre cir­cle, wait­ing to walk to the penalty spot, all he could think was, ‘ does it show on tele­vi­sion that my knees are shak­ing so much, I’m so ner­vous?’”

In­tro­duced nearly 123 years ago, a penalty at­tempt will re­sult in a score be­tween two- thirds and three- quar­ters of the time, ac­cord­ing to data from top- flight Euro­pean club foot­ball.

But this sta­tis­ti­cal ad­van­tage for the striker is a men­tal ad­van­tage for the keeper, says Jordet. If the keeper fails to save a penalty, he will get sym­pa­thy; if he suc­ceeds, he will be cov­ered in glory.

Ac­cord­ing to math­e­ma­ti­cians at Liver­pool’s John Moores Univer­sity, the per­fect penalty is a ball that is struck high and in the cor­ner at be­tween 90 and 104 kilo­me­tres per hour. Any­thing faster boosts the risk of in­ac­cu­racy and any­thing slower is eas­ier for the goal­keeper to in­ter­cept.

Goalies love “look- at- me” tricks to dis­tract the striker. For men­tal strength, strik­ers should be sup­ported by team- mates — the group hud­dle is im­por­tant — and coaches must be will­ing to talk about penalty dread.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.