To control the player on the shaft it needs to be move in a linear direction as well as rotate. I've seen other robotic table soccer systems, they are attach to the end of the shaft and are about as large as the table soccer itself.
This design leaves the shaft's ends free and the drives are 60mm wide and can be embedded in the sides of the table.
If the drives rotate in the same direction the shaft rotates. If the drives are opposite, the shaft moves side to side. Uses custom PSOC4 brushless controller from a previous project.
Custom magnetic rotation absolute encoder (linear independent) with 4 hall effect sensors and CORDIC controller.
Custom multi-pole magnetic linear encoder (rotation independent) with 4 hall effect sensors and CORDIC controller.