Regular indoor football, sport and other activity for working adults in Singapore

Line Ups: 26 August 2009

Posted by rajiv on 26 August 2009

The primary aim of FIOFAFI and the blog is to provide opportunities to participate in sport in general and indoor football in particular through a “pooling” effect.

Fixing line ups beforehand is entirely ancillary to the above objective.

The use of the blog to fix line ups well before the session only started in April 2008. How it came about is described in the following posts from April 2009:

Ultimately, line ups are determined well before the session so that we do not waste time at the session deciding line ups.  For routine sessions, the aim is to play for one hour flat out, without stoppages or unnecessary delays.  However, if one team starts to run away with game, the sides are free to swap players.  To allow for player swaps, participants are encouraged to bring both colours for the session.  The colours for each day are set out here.

On the other hand, give it some time before swapping players.  Quite often, the team that falls behind comes back into the game.   If after half an hour or so, one side is 10 or more goals behind, than of course, it may be desirable to completely re-work the line ups.  It is left to those playing the session to decide whether to swap players or re-work the line ups.

On the other hand, if you’re playing primarily for fun and fitness, does the margin really matter?

The use of rankings (now known as player table standings) to determine line ups for routine sessions was abandoned in the second half of July.  Although notionally objective, it often resulted in fairly arbitrary line ups.

A more subjective determination of line ups also gives rise to controversies.  Some participants get quite worked up over the perceived weaknesses of the players in their team or the perceived strengths of the players in the opposing team. It’s quite amusing how worked up some participants have gotten.  After all, it’s all for fun.

The line ups do of course affect a player’s chances of being on the winning side.

We all enjoy winning. Being on the winning side undoubtedly adds to the satisfaction we get from a FIOFAFI session.

However, only 5 of the 10 players at each session can be on a winning side.

After the players for a session are finalized, if there is sufficient time, line ups will be proposed without colours being assigned as a comment under the weekly “Session Previews” post.  Anyone can express their views on whether the two teams are balanced or not.  All views will be taken into account before the line ups are finalized 3 to 5 hours before the session, with colours assigned.

More important are FIOFAFI’s core values, and participating in the right spirit.  The aim is to have a mix of players in both teams:

  • A mix of ages, nationalities and races.
  • A mix of players in higher and lower positions in the table, and/or on a good and bad run of results.
  • A mix of playing styles and/or abilities (to the extend the information is available or provided).
  • Trying to place players who have played on the same team recently in opposing teams, and vice versa.
  • Where, in one session, there are several participants who haven’t played in the same session before, keeping those who have played together before in the same team, while trying to spread new or newer participants between the two teams.

On the other hand, I will try to keep new and newer participants in the same team as their introducer.  On such occasions, it can end up as an introducer and those he introduced against the rest.

Maintaining a mix prevents the development of “enclaves” within FIOFAFI. 🙂  If you play regularly enough, you’ll find that sometimes you’re on the same team as, and that other times, you’re on the opposing team to, any one other player.

In the longer term, we win some, we lose some.  With line ups based on rankings (as they were before), wins and losses tended to come in streaks.  Winning streaks risk leading participants to think they are better than they actually are, while losing streak risk being demoralizing. This was a significant factor in abandoning the use of rankings.

The current method is geared primarily towards both balance and socializing.  The discussion of line ups under “Session Previews” is part of the function of the blog.

As Damian Y pointed out recently, even if one side is perceived to be weaker, with good organization, good defending, and good finishing, they can still win.  How individual players perform on the day is also a significant factor.

Our sessions provide social football with a competitive edge.   Don’t get too worked up over line ups and results, or allow disagreements to linger.  Someone who is on your team this time may be on the opposing side next time, and vice versa.

Even if our sessions can sometimes get heated, don’t forget, it’s all for fun.


7 Responses to “Line Ups: 26 August 2009”

  1. […] Line Ups: 26 August 2009 […]

  2. […] line ups are no longer based on player rankings, I am maintaining a player table for the fun of […]

  3. rajiv said

    Line ups can be unbalanced. Sometimes, we won’t know it until the session itself, for example, players on exceptionally good or bad form, or new players performing exceptionally well or badly, or teams not gelling at all.

    If the game is one-sided, those playing can re-do the line ups. Often, it will be worth waiting until the second half hour before doing so, as the team that is losing manages to gel after playing together for a while, and to get back into the game.

    If the score remains one sided after half an hour, it is worth re-doing the line ups. To give the side that is in the lead an incentive to re-do the line ups:

    …, if after half an hour or more, one side is leading by a huge margin, then if the teams are re-done, it will be treated as two half-sessions, in the same way as a 4-team mini knock-out tournament. Players who are on the winning side on both occasions will score 2 points, those who are on the winning side on one occasion and the losing side on the other occasion will score 1.5 points, and those who are on the losing side on both occasions will score 1 point.

    If line ups are not re-arranged at any time during the session, and one side wins by a disproportionately large margin, the winning side will score only 1.5 points, as it would appear that the sides were unbalanced to begin with. The losing side will score 1 point as usual. There is thus some incentive to re-arrange line ups in the second half hour when, on the day’s form, the sides are clearly unbalanced.

    What is a “huge margin” or “disproportionately large margin” will depend on the particular session, including how high scoring the game is.

    Exercise common sense and good discretion.

  4. […] “Session Previews” post, which covers all routine sessions from Monday to Sunday, will be put up on Monday, unless there is […]

  5. rajiv said

    Those playing a session are free to swap players, as they did yesterday evening at Turf City, even if it was inadvertent. 🙂

  6. rajiv said

    The purpose of the “Session Previews” is to allow those who play regularly on a particular day to have a say on the line ups.

    I don’t know the players as well as those who play regularly. I have to rely primarily on past results, comments on previous sessions and player poll votes.

    The line ups can be changed either before the session or at the session itself. For player swaps to work at the session itself, everyone needs to bring both colours.

  7. […] to fill up sessions as much as I had been before the interruption.  Nor will I be doing line ups, unless it is a session I am playing […]

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