News: Since using the analytics software Wales has increased its win rate by 25%.
Against all odds the Welsh football team has reached the semi finals of Euro 2016 by topping its group, beating a star studded Belgium team, and now only Portugal lies between it and a place in the final.
The success of the team can be attributed to an unbeatable team spirit and the form of star players such as Gareth Bale, Aaron Ramsey, and Ashley Williams. Some of the credit can also be attributed to the use of sophisticated coaching and analytics software called Globall Coach.
Globall Coach, which analyses opponents’ formations, and delivers tactical information through visual animation has been by the coaching staff and manager Chris Coleman throughout the tournament.
Since using the system Wales has increased its win rate by 25%, Osian Roberts, Welsh FA technical director said: "Globall Coach has been essential for us in our preparation for matches at Euro 2016."
"It allows us as coaches to illustrate the details required to the players."
The system acts as a kind of data hub that acts as a central point for data to be pulled in from various sources such as Excel, data that is typically fragmented is accessed by the coaching staff via an application on Sharp’s BIG PAD.
Globall Coach uses Amazon Web Services to store the data, although Ciaran Skinner, Special Projects Manager at Globall Coach, told CBR that other cloud services can be used to store data.
The use of cloud plays an important role in allowing the Welsh analysts to relay information to the coaching staff.
Skinner told CBR: "Analysts sit in the stands with a tablet and sync their data on the cloud so that at half time the coaches can look at the data, how the opposition is playing, what is their formation." This information is then used to influence tactical decisions.
Clearly this is something that has paid off for the Welsh team and the ease of use of the hardware has played an important role. Sid Stanley, GM, Europe, Visual Solutions, Sharp, told CBR: "People generally are technophobes so the technology needs to be easy to use to unleash the power of applications."
If it isn’t easy to use and reliable then it won’t be used.
Skinnner said that the Welsh FA technical director first started using the app after he saw Rafa Benitez using it, now it has become a key part of their success.
The German national team has a history of using data analytics to improve its performances, having used SAP to help develop a "Match Insight" software system to analyse performances.
Skinner though said: "There isn’t really a competitor apart from pen and paper or a flip chart."
As the use of analytics becomes more widespread there could be more examples of how underdogs are using it to take on the big boys and beating them.