Research in sports: A case study on football

Football is a very popular sport. According to Yustika, football is one of the most popular sports in the world, with an estimated of 270 million people involved in it. Moreover, as reported by the, football is counted as the five most popular sports in the world, where this sport is in first ranked, then followed by cricket, hockey, field tennis, and volleyball. Football is like a thing that cannot be separated from human life. Like FIFA’s campaign, that is “Football Unites the World”, its presence seems to be a unifying tool and always attracts public attention. Last year, football fans worldwide were presented with a magnificent event, namely the world cup. This was held in Qatar from Sunday, November 20, 2022, to Sunday, December 18, 2022. Of course, this received a standing ovation and became the center of attention.

Source: FIFA

This 4th annual event is a party that all football fans around the world have been waiting for. Qatar, the country appointed by FIFA as the host, has opened the event (20/11/2022) with great fanfare. The opening ceremony was held at Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor, and was enlivened by various international artists such as BTS boy band member Jungkook and Indian singer, Nora Fatehi. Furthermore, there was a difference in the opening this time with the previous years, that was the presence of Ghanim Al Muftah as a world cup ambassador who was a reciter of Quran verses in the opening of the 2022 world cup.

In addition, speaking of football, the dynamics that occur are not only about the prestige of a match between countries or the tightness of competition but technology also plays a role in its ecosystem. With the rapid development of technology, this sport is also influenced by the increasing sophistication of existing technology. Thus, it will be easier for both the Official team and the players to implement various game and training schemes as well as the referee will also be easy in the decision-making process. In addition to technological developments, football is also inseparable from scientific research.

Various studies have been carried out to look deeper or to explore the other side of this sport. Over time, the diversity of research has also arisen because football is not just a game of 2×45 minutes on the field. Various variables or beats can also underlie research in the field of football. Here are five scientific articles that discuss perspectives on football:

Football players’ preferences for anti-doping education: A cross-country study

Issues related to doping in the world of sports are common knowledge. Skoufa et al. tried to review it in an article published by the journal Performance Enhancement & Health. This article discussed anti-doping education, which is one of the important things in eradicating doping. The sample of this study was 630 soccer players (456 male players; 72.4%) from Norway (n=302), Greece (n=186), and Lithuania (n=142).

The effect of birth month and seasons on athlete aggression

This article was published by the journal EduLearn in 2021. It discussed the level of aggressiveness of footballers, which was reviewed based on the month of the birth variable. According to the results, athletes born in December were more aggressive, while those born in January or winter tend to have a low level of aggression. In addition, when viewed from the place of birth, athletes born on the continent of Europe tend to have a high level of aggressiveness compared to Africa and Asia.

‘Welcome to the EPL’: analyzing the development of football tourism in the English Premier League

According to Felipe Tobar and Gregory Ramshaw article, they reviewed the dynamics of ‘football tourism’ that occurs in the English league. Apart from the increased exposure of a club, ‘football tourism’ also had a bad side, especially for the ‘health’ of local supporters. This article was published in 2022 by Soccer and Society.

Production, Efficiency, and Corruption in Italian Serie A Football

The Journal of Sports Economics published this article in 2014. This article reviewed the 2006 Serie A scandal or better known as Calciopoli which involved several big Italian league clubs.

Incidence and characteristics of COVID-19 in French professional football players during the 2020–2021 season

This article was published by Infectious Diseases Now in 2022. The study showed that half of the professional football players from the French league (572/1217; 47%) were infected with SARS-CoV-2. Even so, the symptoms shown were still relatively mild (without requiring hospitalization, there is no death rate).

With the existence of its ecosystem, it is undeniable that scientific review or research has value
in the sustainability of football. Football, which incidentally is only limited to 22 people playing on the field, can also “turn” into an aspect of research. To sum up, research is a medium for studying and expanding knowledge.

By: Milzam Adang Rusdianto