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Key Players and Key Groups in Teams: A Network Approach Using Soccer Data


  • Sudipta Sarangi
  • Emre Unlu


This paper provides a way of evaluating a player's contribution to her team and relates her effort to her salaries. We collect data from UEFA Euro 2008 Tournament and construct the passing network of each team. Then we determine the key player in the game while ranking all the other players too. Next, we identify key groups of players to determine which combination of players played more important role in the match. Using 2010 market values and observable characteristics of the players, we show that players having higher intercentrality measures regardless of their field position have significantly higher market values.

Suggested Citation

  • Sudipta Sarangi & Emre Unlu, 2010. "Key Players and Key Groups in Teams: A Network Approach Using Soccer Data," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1053, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp1053

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    Social networks; team game; centrality measures;

    JEL classification:

    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D85 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Network Formation

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