Following the news of the AAFC’s plans for a national second division, Australian football seems to be moving into a new era, as the game manoeuvres around the challenges of the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Alongside the national second tier, FFA CEO James Johnson continues his push towards adopting the global standards of football in this country, flagging an integrated transfer system as a priority in the coming months.
In what will be a critical development, clubs throughout all tiers will finally be appropriately rewarded for developing young players.
The local football economy will grow and should lift standards across the board, with ambitious NPL clubs provided with an extra incentive if they are able to be promoted to the A-League.
Clubs will look to invest in resources to improve their operations overall and give them an edge, on and off the field.
Global football resource InStat, currently partners with the FFA, A-League and W-League clubs, as well as a handful of NPL clubs, providing statistical breakdowns of matches for performance analysis.
This improves factors such as game day preparation and player development, through the use of on demand video review.
Australian Manager for InStat, Oliver Civil, claims the product is suitable for many clubs around the country.
“Our mission is to enhance performance, save time, money and resources for professional, amateur and collegiate teams around the globe,” he said.
“Thanks to technology, there is no reason the ‘Moneyball’ concept of analysis, evidence-based scouting & on-field performance can’t also be applied to second division or semi-professional clubs.”
Football Tasmania Technical Director, Michael Edwards, believes platforms such as InStat are important if we want to lift coaching and player performance in Australia.
“I think if we are looking at more professional or high-performance type coaches to improve our leagues, we’ve got to actually support them with platforms, data and different learning opportunities,” he said.
“Not just for the coaches but for the players as well.
“Quite often, you can communicate with a player verbally about what’s happening, but they go ‘oh no, that’s not me, I didn’t do that’, but then to be able to instantly see it on a video clip associated with it, it provides a different aspect to that player’s development.”
Using another example, Edwards said: “You can look at an opposing team and make an analysis: Where are their goals coming from? Who’s the most influential player in their side? So those sort of insights into the way a football match actually pieces together, I think is really good.
“That’s where I see InStat’s value, the fact that it’s almost instantaneous, within a day you can have data available to you and your club, it just improves where we are heading as a sport.”
From a business standpoint, the company’s scouting platform provides users with the tools to support the buying and selling of football talent, a vital service if the game is to introduce an improved transfer system.
“Using our global database, we cover hundreds of leagues and 960,000 players,” Civil said.
“Via our video platform, using statistical analysis, we provide information on key skills, chemistry and characteristics of identified players.
“If your club would like our insight, we also offer current squad assessments, player recommendations and prospective newcomer analysis.
“We can also help support any football department with their scouting analysis & assessment of a player.”
Edwards explained there are a range of scouting options, depending on the outcomes the club using the service seeks to achieve.
“You can use a local only database if you like, or, if you’re at a club at a level that is looking for a quality international player to bring in, it’s there for you to assess in a worldwide database.”
The information gathered by the service is also effective for managers and agents wanting to highlight their player’s abilities, for possible future transfers.
“I think even for the individual player, to have that (information) out there to showcase the player to different clubs at different times, helps the process,” Edwards stated.
When quizzed on the affordability of the service, the Football Tasmania Technical Director claimed he “had been really impressed with the platform and to see this on a regular basis and have it in your club, is just invaluable.
“I think if you value it enough and say we want to progress as a football club, the platform is definitely affordable.”