Video Analyst and Match Analyst – What differences?

Soccer is getting more and more competitive each day and most teams use similar methods and tools in their preparation. Collecting basic statistics, recording the match and making some kind of video analysis is also common nowadays, but most teams are still using Video Analysts instead of Match Analysts. The majority of teams already have someone on the technical team that takes care of video analysis. But is he a Video Analyst or a Match Analyst?

A Video Analyst is someone that classifies basic match moments and “cuts” the video, according to the technical team request.  Typically, the Video Analyst does not take part of regular technical meetings, neither in the game model delineation or planning sessions. A Match Analyst does a lot more than that. Yes, he also “cuts” the video, but he looks for play patterns, identifies the team and opponents’ strengths and weaknesses, and elaborates a report with facts and videos, including a qualitative interpretation and recommendations Usually, the Match Analyst integrates all the major meetings and contributes to the planning of the training sessions and the game model development.

Match analysis work is becoming more and more important, it’s a vital source of information and knowledge that allow technical teams to better prepare their training sessions and matches. In Videobserver, we strongly believe that technical teams should include Match Analysts instead of Video Analysts, as the first ones can add a lot more value and really have an impact on the team performance.

To perform a good match analysis one must understand the game and its different moments, the strategies and tactics, the team and player behavior and a lot of other different variables. Besides having a deep soccer knowledge, professionals on this area must also know what to observe and how to do it, as well as having the ability to pay attention to details and identify patterns. Those skills are not innate; they must be trained and developed, and it’s important for Federations, Associations and Clubs to promote education in this area. It is not only important for soccer analysts but also for the coaches and other technical staff, as it helps to improve game understanding and tactical awareness.

In Videobserver, we follow the Portuguese soccer coaching and match analysis school, which is nowadays considered the best in the world. A small country like Portugal, with the same population as Paris, had in the last years more coaches in Europe’s elite Champions League than any other nation, and currently has more than 400 registered coaches working outside of the country. The Portuguese national team and main Portuguese clubs compete at the highest level; Benfica and Porto are regulars in the later stages of the Champions League despite their economic handicap when compared to the other European clubs.

These achievements did not happen by luck. It all started in the nineties when Vitor Frade’s tactical periodization began to be adopted within the Portuguese soccer. Clubs acknowledged the value of sports science, tightened the connection with Sports Universities and incorporated Sports Ph.D.’s in their technical teams. The Portuguese Federation also started to include technology, tactics and match analysis in their UEFA Licenses Courses and have since been reinforcing these contents over time.

We believe soccer needs Match Analysts and people who understand the game. With this in mind, we started to organize Match Analysis Certification courses and in the last years, we have promoted courses in Portugal, Brazil, Italy, Qatar, China and Spain, educating more than 200 analysts from 15 different nationalities. Our mission is to help them develop a better understanding of the game, improve the quality of their work and allow them to achieve higher professional positions. Our courses are mainly practical, for small groups of 20 to 40 attendees. The courses are always lectured by Experts like Jorge Castelo, Daniel Barreira, Rui Oliveira and Gianvito Piglionica. 

We are looking to establish connections with Federations, Associations, Clubs or others who are interested in developing this knowledge area in their region, and also have the ability to organize and promote Match Analysis courses with the Videobserver seal. 

Contact us if you´re interested: