PFA Business School


Football Data Analytics

The use of data and analytics is an increasingly important part of any sport, and football is no different. From broadcasters using advanced stats like expected goals, to clubs harnessing bespoke algorithms for coach and player recruitment, to performance analysts harnessing tracking data to help players, every element of the game is using data.

This increased use, provision, and importance of data means that it’s more crucial than ever for players moving into roles within the professional game, from Sporting Directors to coaches to analysts to agents to broadcasters, to have a sound understanding of data.

This workshop will provide clear, practice-based insights into how data is used across the industry. It will target specific use-cases to explain how data are generated, analysed, and communicated. It will demonstrate how best to use data across a variety of scenarios, and how to integrate data use into day-to-day workflows in football. 

Analytics FC

Course Director: Jeremy Steele

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Course Objectives and Target Audience


  • Gain a comprehensive understanding of how data is used in football, what type of data is used, and why.Simplify what data is really relevant to make decisions for coaching, recruiting, scouting, rivals & performance analysis.
  • Simplify what data is really relevant to make decisions for coaching, recruiting, scouting, opposition and performance analysis.
  • Improve ability to understand data, interpret it, and communicate insights from the data.
  • Use clear, real-life examples to ground learning in practice.
  • Feel confident to use data in day-to-day life in professional football

Target Audience

  • Current players who want to analyse their personal performance using data.
  • Current and former PFA members.
  • Managers, Coaches, Sport Directors and Club Managers.
  • Football broadcaster and journalists.

Course Content

Module 1 - The Football Data Revolution

An Introduction to Data In Football

  • Why is data important for football - prediction vs. description
  • How has data (and data roles) in football grown
  • What jobs/roles are available in football which utilise data now
  • What do these jobs look like (profiles) on a day-to-day basis
  • What skills will I need and how can I incorporate data into my ideal role
  • On-boarding: Data visualisation tools and data coaching and scouting tool
Module 2 - Team Analysis

Data in Practice: Analysing and Explaining Teams

  • Game phases and style of play: How to measure and monitor
  • What’s your style of play? Using data to build your game model
  • Case study: Creating and scoring phase - ‘Where goals come from’
  • Opposition analysis: Identifying opposition strengths, weaknesses and strategic approach
  • Case study: Day in the life of an opposition scout
Module 3 - Probability, Prediction and Player Performance

Using Data to Scout Players

  • Moneyball 2.0: How data changed scouting forever
  • ‘Who would you sign?’ - How does more information impact player identification and selection?
  • Player profiling: Using data to build player / positional profiles and utilise data-scouting methods
  • Transfer committee - integrating data into the decision making process
  • Case Study: Champions League Scouting Department

Using Data to Coach Players

  • Identifying player technical and tactical performance strengths and weaknesses through data
  • Key Performance Indicators
  • Presenting data to players
  • Data-driven individual development plans
Module 4 - The 'Art' of the Deal

Using Data to Understand Footballing Value

  • Using footballing and other data sources to determine a player’s sporting and financial value
  • Using data workflows to identify market trends and manage restrictions and regulations
  • Case study: The boardroom - Signing a player
  • Case study: The agent - Getting your player to the right team with the right deal
Module 5 - Telling a Story

Using Data to Explain Football to Fans

  • How do you talk about data? How do we make it understable to our audience?
  • Adapting data for media - different methods and use-cases for different types of storytelling
  • Case study: The rise of social media - Tifo & YouTube
  • Case study: ‘Nerd nonsense’: Jamie & Gary
  • Transfer deadline day: Analysing a transfer, creating a narrative and communicating the what, where and why your of a player signing

Course Delivery

Course Length

Course Length

The length of the course is five months.                         



This course is delivered in English.                       

Date of Course


• Two cohorts per year, first starting in January/February and second in August, running for five months.

• One virtual session every two weeks, each lasting two hours.



Online - PFA Business School Virtual Campus



Students will receive certification issued by the PFA Business School in Advanced Studies in Football Data Analytics. 

Fees and Grants

Fees & Grants

The programme admission fee is £2,500. Current and former PFA Members can apply for a grant of £2,000 to enrol in the programme at a lower cost.

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