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Front. Psychol. | doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2018.00361

Passing Decisions in Football: Introducing an Empirical Approach to Estimating the Effects of Perceptual Information and Associative Knowledge

  • 1Institute of Sport Science, University of Bern, Switzerland

The importance of various information sources in decision-making in interactive team sports is debated. While some highlight the role of the perceptual information provided by the current game context, others point to the role of knowledge-based information that athletes have regarding their team environment. Recently, an integrative perspective considering the simultaneous involvement of both of these information sources in decision-making in interactive team sports has been presented. In a theoretical example concerning passing decisions, the simultaneous involvement of perceptual and knowledge-based information has been illustrated. However, no precast method of determining the contribution of these two information sources empirically has been provided.
The aim of this article is to bridge this gap and present a statistical approach to estimating the effects of perceptual information and associative knowledge on passing decisions. To this end, a sample dataset of scenario-based passing decisions is analyzed. This article shows how the effects of perceivable team positionings and athletes’ knowledge about their fellow team members on passing decisions can be estimated. Ways of transfering this approach to real-world situations and implications for future research using more representative designs are presented.

Keywords: Decision Making, Logistic regression, PASS prediction, Position data, team sports

Received: 03 Oct 2017; Accepted: 05 Mar 2018.

Edited by:

Joe Baker, York University, Canada

Reviewed by:

Itay Basevitch, Anglia Ruskin University, United Kingdom
David Mann, VU University Amsterdam, Netherlands  

Copyright: © 2018 Steiner. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Silvan Steiner, University of Bern, Institute of Sport Science, Bremgartenstrasse 145, Bern, 3012, Switzerland,