In this paper we examined the influence of opposing players constraining the decision-making of an attacker during shooting performance in futsal. Performance during 10 competitive matches was recorded and examined from the moment a shot was taken until the ball was intercepted or entered the goal in sequences of play: ending in a goal, a goalkeeper's save, or an interception by the nearest defender. The variables under scrutiny in this study were (i) the distance of each player to the ball's trajectory, (ii) the time for the ball to arrive at that same point (i.e. the interception point), and (iii), the required movement velocity of the nearest defender and the goalkeeper to intercept the ball. Results showed that values of distance from a defender and goalkeeper to the interception points were significantly lower when they intercepted the ball. The time of ball arrival at the interception point of the defender was also lower when the ball was intercepted. The required velocities of the nearest outfield defender and the goalkeeper to intercept the ball were significantly lower during plays in which they intercepted the ball, than in plays in which the ball was not intercepted. Our results suggest that researchers and practitioners should consider simultaneously both space and time in analysis of interceptive actions in team sports. The required movement velocities of the opponents to intercept the ball are reliable spatial-temporal variables constraining decision-making during shooting performance in team sports like futsal.
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