The Technology to End Injuries?

Welcome back to The Sports Road, ladies and gentlemen – the Newsletter that’s here to make sure that you don’t fall behind on the newest in sports and technology… With new changes being announced every day, you do NOT want to miss this. Enjoy!

Here's what we got for ya today:

  • Injuries…

  • Behind the Game

  • A BIG Deal

  • WOW

Most Valuable Sports Teams:

Let's get into it!

The Best Ability? Availability

Now this could be huge…

Injuries. I mean, there’s nothing worse!

 How many times have we seen talent go to waste, season’s ruined, or worst of all, careers ended due to injury?? Too many.

And for some weird reason, year on year, it seems to be getting worse 🤦‍♂️🤦‍♂️Failing to account for the increased game time and intensity placed onto players, many people have been arguing that not enough has been done to protect players. 

Until now… Let us explain:

In a groundbreaking partnership, FIFPRO, the PFA, Nike, and Leeds Beckett University have joined forces to FINALLY help reduce the prevalence of ACL injuries. 

Being one of the most common long-term injuries across Football, the occurrence can cause drastic changes to future player availability and performances.

Appropriately named ‘Project ACL’, the undertaking – which launched earlier this week – will see the groups work closely with the FA Women’s Super League (FA WSL) in an effort to gain a better understanding of the intricacies involved in injury detection.

Specifically doing this in response to the fact that ACL injuries are far more likely to occur in women than men, research will be planned according to the following steps…

  1. A review of existing literature related to the topic 

  2. An assessment of the current systems undertaken by FA WSL teams in injury reduction

  3. The technological tracking of workload, travel, and ‘critical zone’ appearances through FIFPRO’s new technology. 

Lasting a total of three years, FIFPRO plans to ensure that research reaches all ends of the world… 

“The players have rightly called for more research into ACL injury, and Project ACL is a response to both their needs and those of the industry more broadly. What makes this project stand out is it focuses on players in professional women’s football, and benefits from the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders coming together and collaborating.”

Dr Alex Culvin, FIFPRO’s Head of Strategy and Research for Women’s Football

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What You Don’t See…

There is SO much that goes into ensuring that professional sport can be played at the most elite level; most of which, we don’t even think about!

I mean, just take a second to think about everything that goes into making sure a stadium is ready for match day. From the maintenance of the stands,  to ensuring all the players have the right kit, and more, there is so much more than we could ever think of…

Why is that important, you ask? Today we’re talking about (drumroll please 🥁🥁🥁) grass!

Alright, alright. We know. Grass? 

Yes. What you may not realise is just how important the surface is when playing professional sport… 

Contributing to factors related to the played game, the level of a stadium’s playing surface can also work to streamline play and reduce injury. 

And when considering that teams literally have retractable pitches now, this becomes all the more important. 

Currently being the main provider of natural grass playing fields across sport, PlayGreen BV is currently responsible for the development and maintenance of surfaces for over 600 teams worldwide.

Using their unique technology, the firm has effectively managed to manipulate grass growing, nearly perfecting the craft for sport… Don’t believe us?

Well, guess who’s responsible for the Tottenham Hotspur stadium (winner of the World Football Summit’s Best Venue…)

Things could all be changing, though… With Bruin Capital buying a majority stake in the firm, some big things could be going down.

“From purely a financial perspective, athletes are extraordinarily valuable assets, and safeguarding them means providing the healthiest and safest turf… And now, team and venue owners and operators are maximising the number of events they host, putting even greater pressure on field maintenance. Against that, SGL is — by far and away — the best at using technology to control the growing environment.” 

George Pyne, Bruin Founder

Another BIG Deal

Look, we say it every single week, but sport is changing!

Becoming more and more dependent on data, to continue improving and ensuring the proper development of elite-level sport, teams need to know about the intricacies behind what drives performance. 

And hey, it makes sense. I mean, who doesn’t want to watch the best athletes in the world maximising their potential!

As such, over the last few months, we have seen some MAJOR data-centric deals, and incredibly interesting innovations.

Take the ‘Smart Ball’ in Rugby, for example. 

Having the ability to track the ball’s position in 3D, and provide real-time updates at up to 20 times per second, the innovation has been able to fix refereeing issues, while simultaneously offering coaches and staff a better understanding of player performances. 

Why are we mentioning it now? 

Well, aside from being a major success, the technology was also developed by Sportable – a sports technology firm that specialises in data analytics. 

Already being a leader in the industry, this week Sportable received close to $4 million in an investment made by Guinness Ventures.  

Representing a serious step for the firm, it looks like VERY big things are to be expected… Specifically planning to utilise their new capabilities by exploring new avenues in Football, AFL, American Football, and even further in Rugby, teams could be able to reach the next level…

“We are thrilled to announce Guinness’ investment in Sportable… We are excited about the opportunities ahead and grateful for the confidence Guinness has shown in our vision given their significant track record in supporting successful tech companies scale into category leaders.”

Dugald Macdonald, Chief Executive and Co-founder of Sportable

We Need to Talk About: The Premier League

Wow, the Premier League has seriously been on one recently…

In fact, it feels like it's all we talk about here at The Sports Road! And, to be honest, for good reason…

In the last few weeks alone, the league has announced a new VR game, a serious change to offside calls, and more.

But today’s news may just be the biggest yet…

Lock in, this could be HUGE!

As we’ve spoken about before here, one of the biggest issues currently facing the Premier League is a massive gap in team wealth…

With the ‘bigger’ teams tending to have far more resources than those below them, some people believe the league is at a standstill.

With Manchester City closing in on their fourth title in a row, it’s hard to disagree!

But, luckily, it seems like times are changing! That’s right. This week the Premier League announced the backing of a new spending cap.

Despite Manchester City, Manchester United, and Aston Villa voting against it, plans for a new ‘anchoring’ system would essentially place limits on wages, transfer fees, agent fees, and more…

While it seems like nothing is set in stone yet, this is most definitely one to watch…

“We will wait to see further details… we have always been clear that we would oppose any measure that would place a ‘hard’ cap on player wages. There is an established process in place to ensure that proposals like this, which would directly impact our members, have to be properly consulted on.”

The Professional Footballers Association

WATCH. THIS. SPACE!

Quick Bites

Meme of the Week

😂😂😂😂😂😂

Quote of the Week

“Yesterday he showed why Manchester United bought him and he showed he represents a high value for Manchester United, which is good. I’m happy for Jadon, for the performance yesterday and we’ll see what is going to happen in the future.”Ryan Garcia

Erik Ten Hag on Jadon Sancho

Picture of the Week

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Chat to ya next week! E