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Soccer Talent Scouting Application Teams Up With Video Game Publisher 39

Posted by samzenpus
from the let-the-game-decide dept.
ClockEndGooner writes Professional club football in Europe, or soccer, as it's known here in the States, is perhaps the most expensive and costly professional team sport in the world. Yesterday, Spain's traditional powerhouse, Real Madrid, fielded a starting eleven roster that cost the club over $637 Million (£382 Million Pounds Sterling) to acquire and assemble over the past six seasons against rival club Sevilla in the UEFA Super Cup match played in Cardiff, Wales. With billions of dollars spent by the top teams in the world's most competitive leagues in Europe, and billions more at stake from TV royalties and commercial licensing rights, its crucial talent scouts, general managers or "gaffers", sporting directors and club owners and the rest of their back office staff do their homework before recruiting and signing new players. Prozone Sports Ltd. has turned to game publisher Sports Interative's popular Football Manager video game to include more player data and archived video footage of tens of thousands of players from across the world in its Prozone Recruiter application to help clubs make better and more informed decisions on player performances and strengths. Though not officially published, it is known that many of the top clubs in England, Spain, Germany, Italy, France, Holland and Russia rely on Prozone Recruiter.
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Soccer Talent Scouting Application Teams Up With Video Game Publisher

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  • Want to gamify your job?

    Shoot for performance gains and collect statistics. Maximize performance.

    I’m on a small team, the Architect and Developer, that’s me (I can’t get a business card with a title of “Hand of the Architect”, damn it). We can only do small, specific projects.

    Our most successful project involved moving Excel data to an AS400 and running programs to process it.

    The Architect wanted stats. So I broke the process down into measurable steps (7 or 8) and logged ev


  • One of these pro footballers can earn in a week more than the average university professor earns in a year.

    It's even worse when you hear what some of these professionals have to say. Let's not even scrutinize the behaviors often portrayed by a few of them...

    Countless hours of work, decades of teaching, contributing to the community and educating the next generation often falls short of even an amateur footballers' salary.

    Kicking/throwing a ball for a living can net you stupid amounts of money, is it
    • by Thanshin (1188877)

      It's a natural consequence of the underlying system.

      A slightly better soccer player can add millions of spectators to each match that team plays. So, the player is indeed causing a production that corresponds to his cost. It's not a player's "fault"; they are just a product. Arguing over a professional sports player price is like arguing about the price of a marketing campaign.

      A simple marketing campaign can cost more than the life's salary of an university professor, and yet it doesn't add any value to soc

    • Your comparison stands true for a lot of entertainment orientated people - singers, songwriters, actors, screen writers etc etc etc all get paid more than the average university professor.

      But the reasons are easy enough to uncover - a university professor can never come close to the audiences that pro or even amateur sports athletes can generate. When was the last 90 minute long lecture that commanded 50,000 seated attendees, a televised audience of tens of millions, and a further extended audience of hund

      • by mike1086 (188761)

        The problem is you are comparing the "elite superstar" entertainers against "average" university professors.

        The "average" entertainers, who are mainly waitresses, "Z" list wannabes, and amateur sports people relying on hand outs; are next to nothing when compared to the "average" university professor pay of 150K per year. Life time earning comparisons would be even less considering the short lived, less than ten year life span, of most pro athletes.

        Uni professors wins hands down at the "elite" end of the sp

    • by umghhh (965931)
      I thought the same for a long time and still do to some extent. But the last World Cup changed my view slightly. Consistent performance of Germany in recent tournaments show that not only the trainer was good and his strategy was OK but also that basics like team work, good local players that is not easy to get if most of your stars are from abroad as seems to be the case in England top league. If the main clubs have so much money then they buy their players in the whole world as that is easier than taking
  • Soccer has been sold out to the corporate sector. It's no longer about players and the love of the game, it's just about maximising profit.

    Germany, who just won the World Cup, don't tend to do it this way so much - instead they invest in youth soccer training and mentoring, spotting and nurturing young talent. As a result, most of the teams in the Bundesliga are "worth" far, far less in pure financial terms (though I'm not claiming that there isn't a great deal of corporatism there as well, it just hasn't
    • by Anonymous Coward

      The Netherlands produces lots of good players. The national team made the semi-final in the world cup. But the club teams just suck. Why? Because the experienced players get bought at a young age, and the clubs are permanently building a new team from scratch. Every year again, you end up cheering for some new players that you've never heard of.

      The competition, and the number of supporters is just too small to cough up the huge sums of money needed to keep the best players.

    • by edawstwin (242027)
      So don't watch top-tier league matches. There are plenty of teams made up of "working class member[s] of society" with very affordable ticket prices everywhere.
  • I should explain for those unfamiliar with Football Manager (nee Championship Manager): it's not really like a game. It's more like an enormous spreadsheet crossed with a fanatical religion. There was uproar when they added a little simulation of the matches playing out using coloured dots... in 2003.

    You kind of suspect that there's some huge archive of historical data about football in the back of a project like that, to parameterise the players and teams, but it never occurred to me that they had 1300 of

    • by jabuzz (182671)

      What do you mean add in simulation of the matches? That was an integral feature right from the ZX Spectrum version in 1982.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

      • by Molt (116343)
        That game wasn't part of the same series, as made clear at the start of the Football Manager [wikipedia.org] writeup. The CM/FM series only had text descriptions of matches to start with and there were a lot of traditionalists who complained when they announced there were to be graphics added.
        • by jabuzz (182671)

          I was just pointing out that the original football management game, the one that started the whole concept had graphical displays of the match almost from the beginning.

          • by Sockatume (732728)

            Sorry for the misunderstanding, I was referring to the game called Football Manager that used to be called Championship Manager, with the religious following.

    • by edawstwin (242027)

      You kind of suspect that there's some huge archive of historical data about football in the back of a project like that, to parameterise the players and teams, but it never occurred to me that they had 1300 of their own scouts performing observations.

      From what I've read on their own forums, they do have an enormous number of "scouts" that give them information, but most are volunteers, so the information is sometimes suspect. I'm sure that most of the players in the top leagues around the world have fairly accurate attributes, but when you're relying on one guy in Uruguay, for example, to give you info on every third-tier team, some of it naturally going to be way off. So teams that will be using this data hopefully understand that those 1300 "scouts" a

  • ...is nothing but a great waste of resources. If only all the energy devoted to such trivalities as sports were dedicated to science.

    • by Sockatume (732728)

      If my experience at conferences has taught me anything, it's that without football we'd have a lot more very sober and very grumpy scientists in Europe.

  • by Chas (5144) on Thursday August 14, 2014 @05:48AM (#47669411) Homepage Journal

    And I still have to turn it off after a couple minutes because it's putting me to sleep.

    • by OzPeter (195038)

      And I still have to turn it off after a couple minutes because it's putting me to sleep.

      So right there bro. That's why I'm drawn to the NFL. That is just so exciting to watch in comparison. The anticipation of spotting the 15 minutes totality of the ball actually in play over a three hour game is so addictive. That really keeps me on the edge of my seat every time. Its like an extended "Where's Wally?" game right there on my TV. /sarcasm

      Haters going to hate no matter what.

      You don't like the sport, then turn it off. No one is forcing you to watch it, and no-one is saying that you have to

    • by edawstwin (242027)

      And I still have to turn it off after a couple minutes because it's putting me to sleep.

      Not every game has to have a high score to be exciting (I'm assuming that's why you find it boring). Look at USA-Belgium in the World Cup: 0-0 after 90 minutes and one of the most exciting games of the tournament even before extra time. American sports fans have been unintentionally brainwashed by the major sports here to want score-score-score, but as more people watch the one true sport, more people are "converting", especially when they find out no ads for 45 minutes at a time.

    • by Chas (5144)

      You all need to step back and take a breath.

      It has nothing to do with scoring. Just the game itself puts me to sleep.
      I don't watch football for much the same reason.
      And, while I've enjoyed a few live baseball games, I don't go out of my way to go to them and never watch them on TV.
      About the closest I come is Hockey. And, even there, I don't usually pay lots of attention.

      All in all, I view the enterprise as a giant waste of time and money.

  • This, along with the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, etc., etc., are nothing more than big business. When players are bought and sold, the "team" with the most money normally wins. I'm very much in favor of seeing elite competition, but all of the chest thumping by teams like this is meaningless.

    • by OzPeter (195038)

      This, along with the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, etc., etc., are nothing more than big business. When players are bought and sold, the "team" with the most money normally wins. I'm very much in favor of seeing elite competition, but all of the chest thumping by teams like this is meaningless.

      I have a saying "Sport is something you do, entertainment is something you watch"

      But what is even more criminal is all these teams that have all that money to spend on their players, still force cities to build them stadiums and training facilities, or they threaten to walk. That is is a racket, plain and simple.

      • by dcw3 (649211)

        I actually have mixed feelings there. The cities make tons of extra tax money simply because of the teams existence. But yeah, I'm not in favor of them funding new stadiums and such.

    • Most large leagues, at least in the US sans MLB, have some sort of salary cap structure. This means one team can't spend beyond a certain amount on players in order to keep competition closer to parity, which makes the games/tournaments more exciting and hence drives revenue through more involved fanbases.

  • Although football is a still late in the numbers race compared to some other sports, it is rapidly catching up. For a nice view of the power of numbers in football, and what makes football unique as a sport, I strongly recommend reading The Numbers Game [theguardian.com].

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