Advertisement

The financial and performance cost of injuries to teams in Australian professional soccer

Published:November 25, 2020DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsams.2020.11.004

      Abstract

      Objectives

      To determine the relationship between injury incidence, player-salary cost and team performance in the professional Australian soccer league.

      Design

      Prospective observational cohort study.

      Methods

      Injury incidence, player-salary cost and team performance data were collected from the 10-club A-League competition (n = 27 matches/season) over 6 seasons from 2012/13. Player-salary cost of injury was calculated from the salary cap, injury-induced missed matches and player exposure, and trends were reported from Poisson regressions. Team performance was determined from ranking, points, goals (scored, conceded and difference) and match outcome (win, loss or draw) per season and analysed via a mixed-effects Poisson models to estimate association with injury.

      Results

      Nine-hundred-and-sixteen injuries resulted in 3148 missed matches. Injury incidence remained stable apart from a decrease in 2015/16 (p = 0.01). Missed matches were significantly higher in season 2013/14 (55.1 [50.7–59.9]; p < 0.01) and 2014/15 (71.4 [66.4–76.8]; p < 0.001) compared to 2012/13, without differences between other seasons. Player-salary cost ranged between AUD$187,990–AUD$332,680/team, peaking in 2014/15 (p < 0.01). Multi-collinearity was detected for team performance variables except for matches lost. Teams who finished the season with greater positive goal differences were associated with 1% less injuries (p = 0.003). Similarly, more missed matches were associated with 1% less league points and losses (p < 0.001).

      Conclusions

      Player-salary costs remained stable, concomitant with stable injury rates and missed matches. Despite injury being associated with goals difference, points and match losses; the magnitude of these relationships are small and team performance is more complex than injury occurrence alone. Injury prevention remains necessary for reducing injury-induced player-salary costs; however, additional services are required to improve team performance.

      Keywords

      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'

      Subscribe:

      Subscribe to Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect

      References

        • Parry L.
        • Drust B.
        Is injury the major cause of elite soccer players being unavailable to train and play during the competitive season?.
        Phys Ther Sport. 2006; 7: 58-64
        • Bahr R.
        • Clarsen B.
        • Ekstrand J.
        Why we should focus on the burden of injuries and illnesses, not just their incidence.
        Br J Sports Med. 2018; 52: 1018-1021
        • Eirale C.
        • Tol J.L.
        • Farooq A.
        • et al.
        Low injury rate strongly correlates with team success in Qatari professional football.
        Br J Sports Med. 2013; 47: 807-808
        • Hägglund M.
        • Waldén M.
        • Magnusson H.
        • et al.
        Injuries affect team performance negatively in professional football: an 11-year follow-up of the UEFA Champions League injury study.
        Br J Sports Med. 2013; 47: 738-742
        • Barros C.P.
        • Assaf A.G.
        • de Araujo Jr., A.F.
        Cost performance of Brazilian soccer clubs: a Bayesian varying efficiency distribution model.
        Econ Model. 2011; 28: 2730-2735
        • Ekstrand J.
        Keeping your top players on the pitch: the key to football medicine at a professional level.
        Br J Sports Med. 2013; : 723-724
        • Professional Footballers Australia
        The 2017/18 PFA A-League Report.
        Professional Footballers Australia, Melbourne2018
        • Gouttebarge V.
        • Schwab B.A.
        • Vivian A.
        • et al.
        Injuries, matches missed and the influence of minimum medical standards in the A-League professional football: a 5-year prospective study.
        Asian J Sports Med. 2016; 7: e31385
        • Carling C.
        • Le Gall F.
        • McCall A.
        • et al.
        Squad management, injury and match performance in a professional soccer team over a championship-winning season.
        Eur J Sport Sci. 2015; 157: 573-582
        • Fuller C.W.
        • Ekstrand J.
        • Junge A.
        • et al.
        Consensus statement on injury definitions and data collection procedures in studies of football (soccer) injuries.
        Scand J of Med Sci Sports. 2006; 16: 83-92
      1. A-League, Opertations, Sydney. https://www.a-league.com.au/salary-cap-system. Viewed 20 February 2020.

        • Team R.C
        R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing.
        2013
        • Venables W.N.
        • Ripley B.D.
        Modern Applied Statistics with S.
        4th ed. Springer, New York2002 (ISBN 0-387-95457-0)
        • Lenth R.
        emmeans: Estimated Marginal Means, aka Least-Squares Means. R Package Version 1.3.0.
        2018
        • Bengtsson H.
        • Ekstrand J.
        • Waldén M.
        • et al.
        Match injury rates in professional soccer vary with match result, match venue, and type of competition.
        Am J Sports Med. 2013; 41: 1505-1510
        • Lago-Peñas C.
        • Lago-Ballesteros J.
        • Dellal A.
        • et al.
        Game-related statistics that discriminated winning, drawing and losing teams from the Spanish soccer league.
        J Sci Med Sport. 2010; 9: 288
        • Dilger A.
        • Geyer H.
        Are three points for a win really better than two? A comparison of German soccer league and cup games.
        J Sports Econ. 2009; 10: 305-318
        • Hoffman D.T.
        • Dwyer D.B.
        • Bowe S.J.
        • et al.
        Is injury associated with team performance in elite Australian football? 20 years of player injury and team performance data that include measures of individual player value.
        Br J Sports Med. 2020; 54: 475-479
        • International Olympic Committee Injury and Illness Epidemiology Consensus Group
        • Bahr R.
        • Clarsen B.
        • et al.
        International Olympic Committee consensus statement: methods for recording and reporting of epidemiological data on injury and illness in sports 2020 (Including the STROBE Extension for Sports Injury and Illness Surveillance (STROBE-SIIS)).
        Orthop J Sports Med. 2020; 8 (2325967120902908)