Juan Andres Samano is a Mexican entrepreneur and CEO of GolStats, a software company that analyzes, edits and classifies statistics of over 400,000 plays, all of them supported with videos.
Based in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, Samano's system is being used by several Liga MX clubs and is the official software of Mexico national team.
He talked about how this innovative technological system helps presidents, staff and professional footballers to achieve excellence.
Bleacher Report: How did you come up with GolStats?
Juan Andres Samano: We have been working on it for four years. There was a need to have detailed information to make decisions regarding the footballers' performances.
The managers liked it a lot because although it is very complex in its basis, it is user-friendly and you just need to make a couple of clicks to get all the information you want.
Little by little it became useful for the players themselves because they can consult their statistics on their phones, which is something that no other software in the world has.
B/R: How does it work?
JAS: We have a team of actuaries who work with predictive intelligence. They analyze the patterns of repetition and efficiency to determine the best ways to attack and defend. This is something we have been doing with Mexico national team.
The footballers know that talent and fitness is not everything and that they need to understand tactics and use technology to decipher the rival.
B/R: Does it work the same way with each team?
JAS: No, every staff looks for different characteristics. For instance, Herrera made emphasis in knowing which were the areas where his players could improve. The system has evolved. We have adapted it according to the teams' needs but we have also worked in some stuff we've found and we have made it easier.
B/R: How many people are involved in this project
JAS: We have around 65 people in the office but there are a lot more outside. We send consultants to the clubs so they can interpret data and explain it to the management.
B/R: Which was the first club that was interested in the software?
JAS: America, Guadalajara and Xolos were the first institutions that got involved. Nowadays, almost all of the Liga MX clubs use it. This system, according to the feedback we have received lately, is used on a daily basis to analyze not only the club's roster but also the rivals'.
B/R: One thing that seems particularly interesting is that it can help the clubs during the transfer window.
JAS: Yes, with just one click team A can send team B all the information of a certain footballer, so it's a fantastic tool to decide to sell or buy players.
B/R: Is there any league whose analysis has been more challenging?
JAS: It's very much the same. Of course it is complicated to get used to new players but after a couple of matchdays it's the same.
B/R: Tell us about the load of work.
JAS: The effort is huge. We are talking about 400,000 plays per tournament and we analyze the Argentinean Primera Division, Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A, Colombia's Liga Postobon, Ecuadorian Serie A, Chilean Primera Division, Liga MX, MLS, La Liga and Premier League. So we are talking about 400,000 (plays) times nine (leagues) times two (tournaments), that's over 7 million plays annually.
The information we get is completely trustworthy and it gives you a lot of reliability in order to make decisions.
B/R: How long have you been working with the Mexican Football Federation?
JAS: One year, maybe a bit more. At first it only tracked the players who were considered fit for the team according to the staff, now it has expanded and it gives information from all the players in the Liga MX.
B/R: There were doubts regarding Miguel Herrera's lineup, later he said he was using GolStats as a resource.
JAS: He has always been a very open guy and he has told the media that he uses this and there is a reason. The human eye can't register all. For instance, in baseball, a batter who has a record of .250 in 15 games has 40% more chances to make more hits than a guy who averages .300.
It happens the same in football. A scout can miss some things despite his experience; he will not recall all the plays of a certain footballer, he will register the most important play or the worst mistake but not all of them.
This is a tool that helps the scouts and the staff of a team, it doesn't replace all the work it just maximizes it.
B/R: Where is GolStats heading?
JAS: Right now we have been in talks with some leagues that are interested in our product and they want to implement it in all of their teams. We are not going to reach out any national teams before the World Cup because we are very focused in Mexico because the squad is going to know its rivals better than ever.
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