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Is Iterpro the way forward for Australian clubs?

UK-based Iterpro is the first company to provide a business intelligence solution in the football industry, that gives clubs, federations and leagues a centralised system for asset management.

Iterpro’s system aims to improve the communication between each football club department.

As the role of each department within a club continues to grow, so does the use of the accompanying technology.

For example, there are GPS businesses with accompanying software, medical and financial software specifically used for football clubs, tracking technologies, performance analysis tools and much more.

A range of athlete management software businesses also exist, which collect important information but are reliant on experts at the clubs to make sense of the data.

Because of the use of all of this specialist software, communication problems exist between departments.

Iterpro’s goal as a company is to simplify and display the most relevant information to the most relevant departments.

If a sports scientist within the organisation completes a detailed report on the squad, it makes sense to want the manager and other departments to have an easily readable overview of the report.

Showcasing the right information to the right people is extremely valuable.

Dr. Alberto Calicchio, Head of Medical at the AC Milan Academy said: “Iterpro has almost eradicated communication problems between staff members, and simultaneously expanded the opportunity to share data remotely with other departments. This, together with the possibility to analyse data and performance statistics, has been a huge step forward for us.

“What I like the most is that every step, from medical and rehab to the return to play process, is easily understandable by an external figure. It’s not only for doctors and sports scientists.

“In practical terms, the manager, or eventually the Director, can check the players’ status in every moment, even if he doesn’t come to our training ground in Vismara. This is vitally important for us.”

AC Milan renewed its partnership with Iterpro in December 2019 for a further three years.

Other clubs in partnership with Iterpro include Serie A sides Bologna FC and Torino FC, as well as Serie C side AC Monza.

Simon Barjie, Performance Manager at AC Monza said: “Since Iterpro was implemented at Monza we noticed that we became way more time-efficient: being able to collect and interpret data in order to give prompt feedback to the coaching staff – as well as individual players – has been something extraordinary.

“We now have a clear general overview, but at the same time a specific real-time snapshot of the squad, which allows us to effectively share information between departments (coaching, performance, medical).”

Iterpro’s focus on communication allows club partners to make better decisions, faster. This is a vital element in the football landscape.

Andrea Tedesco, Assistant Manager at UC Craivoa said: “Sharing information is progressively becoming crucial in football since important decisions need to be taken in a very limited amount of time. Iterpro has revolutionised the way we work.”

Iterpro continues to work with its partners and third parties to build new features to expand its system.

They have an integration with Wyscout, which gives scouting departments access to information from every professional league in the world.

Other features include a transfer dashboard on the Iterpro platform, which can be used to run simulations on the transfer window. This gives clubs the understanding on how these transfers will affect club budgets. Therefore, this data is of benefit to both the scouting and finance departments.

In the finance department, Iterpro’s system gives partners the chance to use data from player management to asset management. Every transfer and wage payment are a significant investment, with a player being the main financial asset for a club.

Player contracts are recorded on the Iterpro system, with a contract and clause builder functionality also incorporated. The finance department has the ability to receive alerts when a player is getting close to triggering a certain clause, such as an extra payment for a performance related bonus.

An app has also been designed for partners, which showcases the same data as the platform version. It is presented in a more condensed way however, with directors and key personnel at clubs finding it extremely convenient.

Finally, Iterpro offers clubs, leagues and federations further opportunities to expand revenue streams with their system. Recently, a league approached the company asking how their member clubs could reduce insurance premiums to focus on other financial benefits.

With a firm focus on product development and growth of the company, Iterpro has partnered with a significant player in football finance to enhance its offerings. The company has recently hired workers with experience in the financial side of professional football.

The time could be approaching for Australian clubs to consider Iterpro as a worthwhile investment.

 

 

Philip Panas is a sports journalist with Soccerscene. He reports widely on football policy and industry matters, drawing on his knowledge and passion of the game.

National Futsal Championships to return in 2022

Football Australia has announced today the return of the National Futsal Championships (NFC) in 2022.

Football Queensland (FQ) will host the 2022 championship, followed by Football Victoria (FV) for the 2023 edition.

Football Australia CEO James Johnson looks forward to growing futsal’s footprint in Australia after outlining a vision for a national program.

“As part of our clear strategic agenda, we outlined a vision to create a national program for futsal and beach soccer by working closely with our Member Federations in a unified, inclusive and collaborative manner,” Johnson said.

“With the culmination of this process, we are delighted that Football Queensland and Football Victoria will be hosting the National Futsal Championships in 2022 and 2023 respectively.

“There is a clear appetite throughout Australia for football to increase its imprint through futsal and beach soccer. Queensland and Victoria now have the opportunity to showcase this and bring it to life over the next two years, in a way never seen before.”

By granting the hosting rights to different cities, Football Australia believes the NFC will be a national tournament.

The Gold Coast Sports and Leisure Centre will host the relaunched tournament on the 5th-9th of January 2022.

“The National Futsal Championships are a highlight of the Australian football calendar, and we are excited to stage next year’s event at the state-of-the-art Gold Coast Sports and Leisure Centre,” FQ CEO Robert Cavallucci said.

Anthony Grima, Football Victoria’s Head of Futsal, believes the announcement was a step towards achieving FV’s futsal strategy.

“This is a huge win for Futsal in Victoria and one for me that should be dedicated to the many amazing individuals who are at the heart of the Futsal community here in Victoria,” Grima said.

“Hosting the NFC will leave a lasting legacy for Futsal and football in Victoria and inspire and enable more people to take up this amazing sport.”

The recently announced Home of the Matildas features a international sized futsal pitch, and it could host the championship.

Kimon Taliadoros, CEO of FV, said this news ensures that Victoria remains the home of sport.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating for the people of Victoria. By hosting the National Futsal Championships, we will further enhance the state’s ability to host events and tournaments and support the Victorian economy by bringing interstate visitors back to Melbourne to experience the wide range of products, services and experiences that this great state has to offer,” Taliadoros said.

“Futsal has been on the national agenda for some time now, with Football Australia recently having released the ‘XI Principles – for the future of Australian football.’”

The return of the NFC will allow a pathway for players to compete against the best talent Australia has to offer.

Ronaldo’s Manchester United return breaks social media records

With the summer transfer window complete for clubs across Europe, Cristiano Ronaldo re-joins Manchester United following 12 years away in a true homecoming moment for the Premier League side.

A household name, Ronaldo’s exceptional career has seen him return to a club that played a major part in his development towards becoming one of the greatest players we’ve seen.

Arriving from Sporting Lisbon in 2003, Ronaldo was a club-record signing for Manchester United at the time for a teenager in English football, and he certainly disappoint, netting 84 goals from 196 appearances.

His time in the game is most famously for La Liga’s Real Madrid, where in the 2009-2018 period he dominated with 311 goals from 292 games, and most recently spent the previous few seasons with Serie A’s Juventus showing no signs of slowing down in his veteran years by scoring 81 times from 98 appearances. Ronaldo’s lengthy international career dates back to his Manchester United debut year of 2003, with 179 caps and 109 goals to his name.

When you add his long list of trophies and accomplishments notably as a five-time Ballon d’Or winner, five-time Champions League winner, four-time FIFA Club World Cup winner, three-time Premier League champion, two-time Best FIFA Men’s Player and 2018 European Championship WInner it’s easy to see why he’s held in such high esteem and widely regarded as one of the greats of the sport.

It should come as no surprise to see the level of engagement on social media when the transfer was confirmed by Manchester United. There was a staggering number of people liking and sharing the huge summer transfer window move, as discovered by Global Head of Social Media at Manchester United, Nick Speakman.

He confirmed that Manchester United’s ‘Welcome home Cristiano Ronaldo’ posts for Facebook, Twitter and Instagram all reached uncharted territory, setting new records across each of the three prominent platforms. The upcoming figures have already grown from when Speakman updated, with Ronaldo having a significant impact even off the pitch.

Instagram’s 12.3m likes & 537k comments makes it the most liked Instagram post from a sports team, Twitter’s 1.9m likes & 850k retweets makes it the most liked Twitter post from a sports team, while Facebook’s 1.3m likes & 161k comments makes it the club’s most liked Facebook post.

“It’s often said that “nothing can surprise you” when working within sports. However, unexpectedly being presented with the opportunity, and arguably privilege, of announcing Cristiano Ronaldo returning to Manchester United after 12 years away from the club is a rare exception to the rule,” Speakman said.

“24 hours later, the announcement post has surpassed even our own predictions for social numbers cross-platform.”

It marked Manchester United’s biggest ever day for social interactions, which can extend further to other Ronaldo-related posts as the hype continues for a potential return in Manchester United colours at Old Trafford against Newcastle United in Round 4 of the Premier League, following the upcoming international break.

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