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In search of the Holy Grail
What would a Premier League team pay for software that allowed it to optimise performance while reducing injuries? There are emerging data that would allow such software to be developed (and indeed, some software companies who already claim they can predict injuries before they occur), but no product is ready for prime time yet. In this editorial, we briefly direct the reader to data showing how workload is associated with injuries, highlight the challenges in training and match load monitoring and call for a consensus meeting to agree on the variables to be used to assess training and match load in football (soccer).
What we know
To date, few studies have assessed the effect of decreased recovery days between matches (ie, fixture congestion) as an index of match load on injury and performance. Running performance itself appears unaffected by fixture congestion,1 ,2 but injury rates may be higher1 or similar2 when playing two matches …