What is your position inside OFI Crete FC? What are your key responsibilities?
I’m the team’s Sport Scientist, working side by side with the head of performance with regards to GPS systems, players rehabilitation and nutrition, and supporting the coaching staff in the fitness side of the squad.
In professional football there is a tendency towards the usage of digital systems that support decisions with objective data. What has changed from the past in your area of knowledge?
Many things have changed not only in my area, but in all the departments of the club there is a tendency towards the usage of technology. With regards to the fitness and performance side, we’ve got access to more data thanks to the GPS systems and testing, which allows us to make better informed decisions.
How important and what are the main advantages in centralising, analysing and conserving information in a unique platform instead of single technologies?
The main advantage is that we can instantly share information between departments. This is a crucial aspect of our daily work as it improves our communication. It is scientifically proven that the lack of communication is one of the main causes of injuries in players, so being able to make this process faster and more efficient is allowing us to have a better understanding of the player’s wellbeing and prevent the risk of injury in the short and long term.
Athletes represent the club’s greatest asset. How do you utilise the information to manage the wellbeing of the team and reduce injury risks?
Collecting the wellbeing of the players thanks to the PlayerApp gives us a very valuable insight on the players’ health. This allows us to understand which players are more fatigued than others to then plan the training sessions ahead.
How has technology impacted your daily work?
Today, football clubs have tons of daily operations and tasks that require lots of people and time to execute. For this reason, having a platform such as Iterpro that can instantly communicate with all the staff members without the need of arranging a meeting can save us a lot of time to dedicate to the players. Thanks to the web app and the mobile apps, we’re able to share information instantly and without risk, about all the players’ activities and take better data-driven decisions.
What improvements in margins do you think technology can still bring to the sports industry, both in the daily work of the management team, staff and players’ performance?
I think in the future, technology will be a very crucial aspect for all football clubs, not only at elite level, but also in lower tier leagues. Technology will also be more affordable for these kinds of clubs and it will be a standard thing in all football clubs at all levels to have certain systems that can support the information sharing and their decision-making in training, players’ wellbeing and general operations.
Georgios Ermidis Lead Sports Scientist OFI Crete FC