As Germany prepares for Sunday’s World Cup final against Argentina, it will have Big Data on its side.
To gain a competitive edge, the team partnered with German software giant SAP AG to create a custom match analysis tool that collects and analyzes massive amounts of player performance data.
The tool, called Match Insights, analyzes video data from on-field cameras capable of capturing thousands of data points per second, including player position and speed. That data then goes into an SAP database that runs analytics and allows coaches to target performance metrics for specific players and give them feedback via their mobile devices.
A focus for the German team this year was speed, said Nicolas Jungkind, SAP’s head of soccer sponsorships. Using Match Insights, the team was able to analyze stats about average possession time and cut it down from 3.4 seconds to about 1.1 seconds, he said. The tool allowed them to identify and visualize the change and show it to coaches, players and scouts. “That then goes into the game philosophy of the German team. What is apparent is the aggressive style Germany plays.”