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English Premier League, Spaińs La Liga and Italýs Seriés A – What's Different?

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Our study aimed to understand which aspects are most important by coaches in the characterization of the three best European Football Leagues (English Premier League, Spaińs La Liga and Italýs Seriés A). The sample included 8 expert high-performance Portuguese First League football coaches. Semi-structured interviews were carried out and data were analysed through Content Analysis.

The interviewed coaches believe that what distinguished the style of play in the different leagues is due essentially to: cultural factors; strategictactical factors; and, specific players' skills. They considered that: the English league is characterized by a direct style of play; the Italian league continues to be characterized by the defensive tactical rigor; and, the Spanish league favors the aesthetic side of the game and having greater control over throughout the game.

Our coaches felt that what mostly differentiates these teams is culturally- influenced whereby distinct ways of playing have been created through history. In addition, they also referred to strategic and tactical aspects, players' characteristics and the coach's philosophy.

Appreciating the cultural aspects that contribute to the creation of distinct playing styles may be useful for coaches who work in new clubs/cultures and want their players to adapt to his methods and improve performance.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2013

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