Rafa Benitez is a very good manager, but he also uses the latest software technology to help him identify areas of the team that need to be improved.
Rafa makes notes during each game and it’s this information he enters into the software programs he uses that allow him to better understand how Newcastle are performing in each game.
Rafa Benitez – Newcastle manager
And for that matter with information he also gets from technology used in games he can tell how each player is performing and have performed in each game.
This information from the software helps Rafa to know what areas of play he should be concentrating on during training sessions after games – and even the training sessions before we meet specific opponents.
This is what Rafa has said today about the technology he uses:
“We have a lot of information and we try to manage this information to put the strongest team on the pitch. We’re not improvising,”
“We also have our software – after every game you will see me taking notes, well it goes into the software.”
“It’s about the strengths and weaknesses of the team in those games and we can return to it after 10 games and revisit it. We start working on that.”
“After maybe ten games he will say ‘We need to improve the counter attack’ so we put on more sessions on that. But we don’t change after every game, we work in the longer term.”
“The idea is that little-by-little we are improving things as we go along.” Of course, the system, like any, is not without faults.” “Maybe I’ll make a mistake, but we’ll only know after the game.”
And with artificial intelligence (AI) making great gains over the last five years – more progress has been made since 2011 than in the 50 years before that in this field – we wonder what things will be like in say 10 years down the road.
Maybe managers will be hiring IBM’s Watson computer to help them win games by then?
There was an excellent 60 minutes piece on IBM, Watson and Artificial Intelligence on Sunday night.
Here it is if you can watch it in your part of the world – it’s fascinating – wonder if Rafa has seen it?