It is more difficult to evaluate the chances to succeed when there are teams, which prefer offensive football, which is built around ball possession. Frequently, their initial and main objective is to control a ball and start making their moments but someone prevails in achieving their own objectives more in a particular match. And in this case, the statistics after a pretty long period of the match, for example, after the first half, can show the unexpectedly low percentage of one of the sides. As a rule, it demonstrates that the opponent made this team play not its game, its players were weaker than the opponents at that specific moment. And not every team is capable of rebuilding its tactic and turning the match upside down.
There are the hidden aspects of a dry percentage of ball possession. For example, when the chances to prevail are evaluated, how and where the team controls a ball should be considered: how Barcelona controls a ball on the opponent’s side of the field or how Rostov controls on its own side. Obviously, it is way less possible to score a goal from your side. Or if a team controls a ball more than a half of the match but does not shoot a goal, its chances to succeed can hardly be called significant. There are no victories without the scored goals and ball possession will just mark the weak sides of the team.
There is another extreme: a team is dominating on the field, playing offensive football, does not give a ball to its opponent, reaching the enemy’s gates regularly, creates dangerous moments, and hits every few minutes but it just can’t score a goal. Probably, the team has no talented forward, or it has but it is absent due to his injury or disqualification, or it is just not their day, week, month, etc. And the opposing team dives into counterattacks, creates fouls, and has a master to realize it – and it wins the match with just one ball passing the goal line, having a minimum percentage of ball possession.
The other moment, which explains the high percentage of ball possession can be physiological characteristics of the football roster. If a team has more slim and short players, especially among forwards, there is no need to build your play around long passes, crosses, or wing passes in order to compete on the second floor, headers or passes to a partner. In such teams, moments are created with the help of short and middle passes, a ball is almost dribbled to the opponent’s goal line – ball possession will be more than 50%.
At the same time, football players need technical skills and an appropriate physical condition to possess a ball. If players are not good enough in these components, the chances to reach a high percentage of ball possession are low, a team will probably build a counter-attacking strategy.
Football is an unpredictable game, for which it is loved by millions. When evaluating the opponent’s chances, when considering the strong sides of every opponent, ball possession should be considered but its importance should not be overestimated. There are many examples of teams, which prefer offensive football with dominating ball possession and achieve nice results with its help, but there are lots of defensive teams, which have built their play in this way, not due to their weakness but to use their features and the weaknesses of their opponents. Such teams frequently reach the leading positions, leaving no chances to the top teams and moving to the ranks of favorites. Ball possession can’t guarantee a victory.
In addition, ball possession is the main indicator in the analysis of the chances of the competing sides. In football, ball possession is a very important factor. But such an important indicator should be analyzed in the right and comprehensive way.