The End....or A New Beginning?
Over the last few years Stratabet have been the Robin Hood of the football analytics community. Providing advanced data from a vast range of leagues they allowed bloggers and ‘fanalysts’ free access to information that would otherwise be completely out of reach to anyone other than large organisations and football clubs.
The analytics community in Scotland was able to take big steps with Strata’s help and they were a cornerstone when it came to the creation of Modern Fitba earlier this year.
In October Strata decided to close down their football operations. While luckily most of the staff involved was snapped up by another company and allowed to continue their good work there, the sharing of data has now stopped.
For us at Modern Fitba this is a key moment.
We could soldier on with the very limited amount of public information out there for Scottish football (pretty much restricted to a few basic stats on the BBC website after each game), unable to build on the work we’ve done so far.
We could simply cease the stat side of the site and try to find another hobby.
Or we can decide to make this not the end, but the start of something even better.
Over the last few weeks we’ve been in talk with providers about buying a level of data for Scottish football that would significantly surpass even what we had from Stratabet. It would give us an insight into every single action taken on and with the ball throughout a game. With it, we can take great leaps in the coverage of Scottish football through statistical analysis, including:
· Further development of advanced stats such as Expected Goals (xG) for both team and players.
· Expected Passing model (xP) measuring the difficulty and quality of each pass which would be the first public work on this for Scottish Football.
· Maps illustrating passing, possession and chance creation patterns.
· More complete goalkeeper analysis: shot-stopping, distribution and cross handling.
· Advanced set-piece analysis, detailing what teams do on corners, free-kick and throw-ins.
With this information we can keep translating raw data into original stories about the Scottish game, hopefully remaining a small but unique part of the Scottish football family.
Throughout January, we’ll be showcasing some of the things we’ll be able to do with this new data.
But purchasing this level of data on a permanent basis is not cheap.
That’s why we’re today announcing our crowdfunding and asking for your help.
We need to raise around £2,000 to get access to this data. If successful, we will then consider setting up a Patreon subscriber service to help contribute to the future purchases of data.
We want to make clear that our intention is to keep everything on the website free to all readers
If the initial funding drive is successful, we will detail the exact nature of any future Patreon content.
But first, we need to raise as much as possible.
This will exclusively go to the purchase of data and if we’re lucky enough to go above our initial £2,000 target we will put this towards covering future data cost.
As you can see when you access the link, you are free to donate whatever amount, small or large. We would be so grateful for anything you could contribute with.
At this point, the only ‘reward’ to those of you kind enough to donate is a free website that can keep adding something unique to the overall coverage of Scottish football and take the statistically analysis of the game in this country to a whole new level.
We would hopefully be able to do something for those of you who do donate at a later time.
But for now we’re just a bunch of nerds standing in front of the Scottish football family asking them to love us. And contribute some money. Please.