Manchester United are planning to change their approach to transfers by hiring a team of data analysts.
Led by a Head of Analytics, it is intended that the analysts will use data in order to identify potential transfer targets, as well as making contribution to the club’s medical and academy teams.
This is something of a departure for the Premier League club, who have not used data much in their previous transfer dealings, instead employing the strategy of targeting high quality international players like Bruno Fernandes.
This is now acknowledged internally as having only limited success, with a number of high profile failures in recent years, such as the signing of Henrikh Mkhitarayan from Borussia Dortmund, or the recruitment of Angel di Maria for £59.7 million.
And then there is the example of Alexis Sanchez, signed from Arsenal on wages of £500,000 who barely played for the club before being sent out on loan to Inter Milan at the start of this season.
Andy is an exiled English football fan living in Cyprus. He loves all sports but football is his abiding passion, and he still has dreams every now and then about scoring the winning goal in a Wembley Cup Final, even though his playing days are long gone. He follows most major leagues, across Europe at least, and has a favoured team in each. When he’s not watching, listening, reading or downloading podcasts about football, he spend his time worrying about his beloved Arsenal.