Analysing Performance at the 2010 FIFA World Cup

There will be many performance analysis projects that focus on the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. I tracked two performance parameters at this tournament:

  • The outcome of scoring the first goal in a game.
  • The relationship between FIFA ranking (May 2010) and game outcome.

These are the results:

Team that scores first (game count = 64):

Wins Draws Loses
46 8 3

Note: Game 58 Uruguay v Ghana ended in a 1-1 draw after extra time. It is recorded here as a draw.

Exceptions

0 – 0 Draws

Uruguay v France

Cote d’Ivoire v Portugal

England v Algeria

Paraguay v New Zealand

Portugal v Brazil

Switzerland v Honduras

Paraguay v Japan

Note: the Final between Netherlands and Spain ended in a 0-0 draw at full time. Spain scored the first and only goal in the second half of extra time. It is recorded as a win here.

Team that does not score first wins?

In the 64 games played three teams have scored first and lost. Nigeria scored first in Game 19 of the tournament. Greece won the game 2-1. It is interesting to note that: Greece was higher in the FIFA ranking; Nigeria had a player sent off in the 33rd minute; both of Greece’s goals were scored after the sending off. In Game 26 Cameroon scored first. Denmark won the game 2-1. Denmark was lower in the FIFA rankings than Cameroon. Both the teams to have scored first and lost in the Group Stage of the tournament were from the African continent and were been beaten by European teams. Cameroon was beaten twice by lower ranked teams (Japan and Denmark).

Brazil scored first in Game 57 and lost 1-2 to Netherlands in the quarter final game. Brazil was the higher ranked team.

Results from FIFA Rankings (game count = 64):

FIFA Ranking Wins Draws Loses
Higher Ranking Team 37 14 13
Lower Ranking Team 13 14 37

Note: Game 58 Uruguay v Ghana ended in a 1-1 draw after extra time. It is recorded here as a win for the higher ranked team, Uruguay, as a game outcome after the penalty shoot out.

Exceptions: Higher Ranking Team Loses

Greece (v Korea), Serbia (v Ghana), Cameroon (v Japan), Spain (v Switzerland), France (v Mexico), Germany (v Serbia), Cameroon (v Denmark), France (v South Africa), Serbia (v Australia), Italy (v Slovakia), Denmark (v Japan), USA (v Ghana), Brazil (v Netherlands)

Photo Credits

Players’ Entrance Tunnel

Opening Ceremony

The Australian Government's Response to the Crawford Report: Some Additional Information

I posted news on 12 May of the Australian Government’s response to the Crawford Report. This post adds to that post.

This is a Wordle visualisation of Australian Sport: The pathway to success:

Wordle generates word clouds. These clouds “give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text”. Here are some clouds formed by the separate chapters of the response.

Chapter 1: Sport in Australia

Chapter 2: Increasing Participation

Chapter 3: Strengthening Pathways

Chapter 4: Striving for Success

Responses to Recommendations

The Pathway to Success has three strands:

1. Increasing participation

  • Boosting child participation: delivery of a national sport and education strategy that embeds quality sport and physical education in schools.
  • Supporting NSO actions: funding to support NSOs to expand participation at a community level and requirement to deliver improved participation outcomes as part of their funding agreements with the Commission. Funding will also be provided to selected NSOs to deliver direct financial assistance to support their community clubs to implement participation programs.
  • Supporting people and athletes with a disability.
  • Breaking down barriers to women and girls participation.
  • Building places to play.

2. Strengthening Pathways

  • Building a bigger and better pool of volunteers, coaches and officials for sport to assist NSOs to build capacity to deliver.
  • Talent Identification and Development: support for aspiring Australian athletes.
  • Boosting Development
  • Athlete Contribution: volunteer at local community sporting clubs or junior sport programs.

3. Striving for Success

  • Boosting international competition.
  • Supporting and retaining high performance coaches and officials.
  • Supporting high performance athletes.
  • Reforming Australia’s high performance delivery system.
  • Boost research and innovation.

Postscript

Alexis Lebedew revisited the Striving for Success section of the Pathway Response and came up with this visualisation without the words ‘Australia’, ‘Australia’s’, ‘Sport’ and ‘Sporting’:

Talent and Giftedness

I have written a great deal in this blog about the impact CCK08 had upon my thinking and practice. Recently I had an opportunity to catch up with one of my on-line companions from CCK08, Carmen Tschofen. We came together to discuss talent and giftedness. Our conversation drew upon some exchanges we had during CCK08 and subsequently after I wrote this post about nature and nurture.

I was fascinated to learn from Carmen about the Lighthouse Program in Minnesota (some background information here). A Lighthouse Program student is:

  • In possession of an insatiable curiosity
  • Drawn to complex ideas
  • Comfortable with ambiguity in learning
  • Self–directed in learning
  • Eager to learn the practice of experts from discipline
  • Capable of working effectively with team members
  • Capable of a sustained focus to resolve questions
  • Recognized as highly able in performance, as well as, potential
  • Currently 7-18 years of age
The Lighthouse Program comprises:
  • Accelerated pace of learning
  • Non graded, multi-aged grouping
  • Integrated curriculum
  • Opportunities for On-line Learning
  • Opportunities to experience the practices of experts
  • Depth of study in complex Inquiry
  • Student focused learning
  • Teacher/facilitator focused on students’ learning
  • Connections to rigorous high school options
  • Collaborative and Competitive Opportunities

Meeting Carmen and her colleagues gave me a wonderful opportunity to explore and reflect on generic issues around talent and gift that had prompted me to write about performance and share some early ideas about the identification process.

Our conversation used Elluminate and this is a recording of our hour-long exchange that linked early morning Australia and lunchtime Minnesota.

During that time we discussed:

2:40 Supporting and defining talent on an individual basis

5:15 The role of personal volition/motivation/environment

8:30 The importance of allowing time for self-discovery and play

14:30 On being the same/being different

20:00 The meaning of growth potential and potential triggers for growth

23:10 Resilience, persistence, and the issues with electronic entertainment

27:50 Understanding personal talent development through biography and narrative

30:30 Who guides talent development?

33:40 Values and ethics in coaching and mentoring

36:10 The “Birth Year Effect,” the development of talent over time, and “the system”

40:00 Relationships and life lessons

43:00 The role of deliberate practice, the problem of instant gratification, and computer games

48:35 The difficulties of “elite performer” lifestyles, the problems with shallow praise

51:50 Extrinsic rewards and the issues of ownership and autonomy

54:00 Self-ownership and self-accountability

I really enjoyed the hour I spent with Carmen and her friends. It was quite difficult to go back to bed (4 a.m.) after such a stimulating conversation. I am hopeful that this is the start of a close link with the Lighthouse Program. Sport has a great deal to learn from innovative educators within and beyond its cultural contexts.

I am convinced that any approach to talent and gift must have a profoundly personal focus that celebrates learning biographies. I am keen to explore the interrelationship between context and opportunity that can permeate personal stories.

Photo Credits

Lighthouse

Girls skipping at an athletics carnival