Journey to cutting-edge sports analytics: From hockey rinks to green fields

 

2021 has kicked off and with that we bring you the fifth part of our blog series. Fitting to the new year, in this part we talk about how Wisesport expanded its data analytics platform into football.

Football is considered to be the most played sport in the world with more than three billion fans worldwide. Football has long roots in the history of sports, and with the impressive number of dedicated fans watching the sport, football has delivered many memorable moments. Though football has been around for a long time, it has seen little to none evolution, especially during the fast digitalization of the 21st century.

As discussed in our previous blog post, gathering data and turning it into information has been done mostly manually. Things changed last summer.

The Wisehockey platform had been used in Liiga and the KHL for a whole season, and it was time to benchmark the platform in another sport. What better fitting than football?

A quicker setup

The Wisehockey platform had evolved during the spring 2020. With the new portable Quuppa locators, the final test could be completed in just one day. This is how Wisehockey gained yet another advantage: we could now implement the system in almost any venue quickly compared to the current systems used in different football leagues across the world that require heavy installations.

The stadium chosen as the test ground was one of the most well-known football stadiums in Finland, Tehtaan kenttä in the city of Valkeakoski. Bringing in locators and other setups took a couple of hours, and then it was time to play some football! The test became a success, and we found our platform to be more than suited for football.

Take a look behind the scenes of that day:

New digital services

Wisehockey’s Head of Sales Miska Kuusisto and Head of Product Management Mika Hulkki were satisfied with the outcome. Kuusisto recalls how easily things proceeded:  ”We already knew that our platform is well suited for sports other than ice hockey, but it was still great to see how easy it was to adapt to football. There are already a lot of analytics about players’ physical performance but no other digital tools that could automatically analyze thousands of tactical and team level elements.

Providing services around the sport is becoming more and more important in today’s world. Kuusisto believes that Wisehockey offers unique tools for new digital services: ”Our reliable and fully automated platform with flexible real-time API for service providers creates a disruption point to the market. When matches are in digital format, creating new services is up to your imagination, not technical capability. In addition, our superior set of AI-based analytics brings a whole new layer to coaching and player development.

After successful testing, it was time to put on the next gear and continue the development of our analytics platform even further. Wisehockey’s earlier, solid reputation and the newly proven Wisesport football analytics had already sparked wider interest.

Setting up portable locators

 

This is the fifth part of the series. Join us on the journey through the story of fully automated real-time sports analytics!

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4