Action valuation of on- and off-ball soccer players based on multi-agent deep reinforcement learning

Hiroshi Nakahara, Kazushi Tsutsui, Kazuya Takeda, Keisuke Fujii
Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence, Artificial Intelligence (cs.AI), Machine Learning (cs.LG)
2023-05-28 16:00:00
Analysis of invasive sports such as soccer is challenging because the game situation changes continuously in time and space, and multiple agents individually recognize the game situation and make decisions. Previous studies using deep reinforcement learning have often considered teams as a single agent and valued the teams and players who hold the ball in each discrete event. Then it was challenging to value the actions of multiple players, including players far from the ball, in a spatiotemporally continuous state space. In this paper, we propose a method of valuing possible actions for on- and off-ball soccer players in a single holistic framework based on multi-agent deep reinforcement learning. We consider a discrete action space in a continuous state space that mimics that of Google research football and leverages supervised learning for actions in reinforcement learning. In the experiment, we analyzed the relationships with conventional indicators, season goals, and game ratings by experts, and showed the effectiveness of the proposed method. Our approach can assess how multiple players move continuously throughout the game, which is difficult to be discretized or labeled but vital for teamwork, scouting, and fan engagement.
PDF: Action valuation of on- and off-ball soccer players based on multi-agent deep reinforcement learning.pdf
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