Posted on November 19, 2018 by staff

Joint FIFA-Barcelona project to ‘improve’ football


FIFA has launched a new project alongside Liga giants Barcelona which it hopes will “improve football”.

In collaboration with Barca’s Innovation Hub, football’s world governing body announced a new system which “will change the way we understand the monitoring data that football teams collect during training and matches”.

At present the range of data providers used by clubs makes it difficult to compare information when players move clubs or represent their national teams.

FIFA hope the Electronic Performance and Tracking Systems (EPTS) will be used across the game and that it will help all clubs and national teams improve performance.

“What we’re trying to achieve is that we have a gold standard in place [to monitor player performance]. At the moment, it’s not clear if one system is better than another,” FIFA’s head of football technology innovation Johannes Holzmueller said.

“Right now the different data sources are using a different data structure. That means if you’re receiving data from one provider you can’t compare it with the data from another provider because it’s in a different format.

“For the first time at the World Cup we had the opportunity to provide the teams with software and communication equipment. Thirty-one of the 32 teams used the communication equipment to talk to their analysts; 27 used the provided technology and software for medical and tactical use; and 25 teams used our platform for post-match analysis.

“But technology will never change the game. It’s improving the game, not [changing] the game itself, the most popular game on the planet.

“Why would it be in anyone’s interest to change the game? Definitely not FIFA, we want to preserve the game. We want to protect the game.

“We want to improve the operations around it, so that the coaches, referees and fans get additional information.”