Schooled! A lesson in MATH

Posted: November 25, 2010 in Schooled!

They say the best players wear number 10. Lionel Messi has certainly been working to support this adage as he takes over Ronaldino's number at Real Madrid.

By Kim DeRaedt

It’s soccer by the numbers.  Facts, stats, and records that don’t make the media cut…

 Basic
–20 hexagon panels + 12 pentagon panels = 32 panels on a soccer ball
–Circumference of a soccer ball= dπ
27.161 in.=8.65 in.*π
–4 out of 5 soccer balls are produced in Pakistan
–1-0:  The top score line in EPL games over the last five seasons (11.1%)
–A player covering 10 km/game (6.2 mi.) runs the length of an NBA court (94 ft.) roughly 350 times.

Intermediate
–90 min. – 22 min. = 68 min.  During World Cup 2010, the average actual playing time (APT) was 68 minutes in games where there was a winner/loser.  Matches ending in a draw averaged 67.2 minutes.  So much for 2-3 minutes of stoppage time added to each half. 
–Winners and losers in the 2010 World Cup both took shots at nearly the same frequency, every 2.5 min. and 2.8 min. of APT respectively.  However, winners took only 5.8 minutes to land a shot on goal, whereas losers managed a shot on goal every 10.2 minutes.    
–Spain’s Xavi covered the greatest distance over the course of World Cup 2010.  In seven matches, he covered 49.7 miles.  His top speed reached was 14.1 mph.
–Michael Bradley won the award for the most distance covered per match.  He averaged 8.0 miles per game, which equates to an 11:15 pace per mile over 90 minutes of play. 

Advanced
World Records
–Heading a soccer ball, doubles passing:  Kosovo’s Agim Agushi and Bujar Ajeti headed the ball between each other 11,111 times in 3:55:20 hours on November 9, 2003.
–Juggling a billiard ball with feet:  Paul Sahli from Switzerland kept a billiard ball up for 51:55 minutes on February 10, 2002. 
–Walking while keeping up a soccer ball:  Leave it to Brazilian Ricardo Silva Neves.  He covered 448 miles in June of 1992 and arrived in Brazil after traveling for a remarkable 12 days!

Countdown
5
—World Cup championships for Brazil, more than any other nation (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, 2002)
4—MLS Cup titles for DC United, the league leaders (1996, 1997, 1999, 2004)
3—Domestic titles won by Inter Milan during the 1964-1965 season as the club became the world’s first   and Italy’s only club to-date to complete a domestic treble
2—Instances in which a European country was not represented in the World Cup final (1930, 1950)
1Only one team will be able to claim recognition as the SPSL’s inaugural champion.  Who will it be?! 

Resources for math nerds (incorporated within this post):
An excellent, in-depth blog dissecting soccer statistics and statistical trends:
http://soccerbythenumbers.blogspot.com/
More World Cup statistics than you could possibly want:  http://www.fifa.com/worldcup/statistics/index.html 
A step above soccer blogging, it’s soccer from a detailed journalistic perspective:
http://usa10kit.com/ 
A list of untouchable soccer juggling achievements:
http://www.recordholders.org/en/list/ball.html

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