Last updated on May 24th, 2016 at 09:27 pm

adidas MiCoach Smart Football App

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Football, or soccer if you will, has been described many different ways throughout its lengthy past, most often by overly elaborate pundits attempting to instill a sense of pride and passion. One thing is certain, its never been called a “smart” game before. Yet, when Chelsea, of the EPL, invade the American MLS again, and take on their All-Star team, regardless of how scintillating a match it is, that will be all you hear about. What’s so smart about it? Well, it isn’t a reference to the obscure and unbelievable fact that Chelsea’s Frank Lampard has the highest IQ of any EPL footballer (unreported sources still say this is only double figures…). Rather that it will be featuring adidas’ new MiCoach soccer team tracking technology.

Football, or soccer if you will, has been described many different ways throughout its lengthy past, most often by overly elaborate pundits attempting to instill a sense of pride and passion. One thing is certain, its never been called a “smart” game before. Yet, when Chelsea, of the EPL, invade the American MLS again, and take on their All-Star team, regardless of how scintillating a match it is, that will be all you hear about. What’s so smart about it? Well, it isn’t a reference to the obscure and unbelievable fact that Chelsea’s Frank Lampard has the highest IQ of any EPL footballer (unreported sources still say this is only double figures…). Rather that it will be featuring adidas’ new MiCoach soccer team tracking technology.

The system brings a whole new dimension to the table, one that has previously been hinted at, but never really achieved much, and certainly not at a cost that ever seemed reasonable to a club. However, with the advent of the adidas F50 boots, and a little more technological wizardry, a system capable of delivering something more useful is finally here. Adidas has been testing and refining this system with clubs across the world, including national teams, in order to fine tune the details, and now a full-blown version is ready to drop in time for the All-Star game in July.

The MiCoach technology is capable of tracking a multitude of metrics. You may already be somewhat familiar with MiCoach, as it has existed for a while and we have previously used it for running and cycling. If you recall our news about the F50’s we said it was capable of more, and with the insertible chip in the heel, this new system, which also includes sensors in the kits themselves, and the software to back it up, there is now a way of measuring a whole team. What can actually be measured? Well, the better question is, what can’t?

Player position, power output, speed, distance covered, intensity of play, acceleration and GPS heat mapping are all going to be measurable in the All-Star fixture. This will all be available in real time to the coaches and managers. Adidas are being somewhat silent on whether there are any other dimensions to the software, but we imagine there are one or two more tricks up its sleeve. This all sounds delightful, and from a technology point of view, its nice to see that the game is being brought firmly into the 21st century. However, will this actually add to the game?

To be perfectly honest, it seems like opinion is split. Purists argue that, at the end of the day, football is played on the pitch, and regardless of what you measure and how, slick passing, dazzling skill and team work are what will make the game a success. Those more progressive folk out there think it will allow coaches to be more involved and in-tune with how the game is played, and able to more more informed decisions. Personally, I think this will enable better health and safety – having seen the horror at White Heart Lane, when 23 year-old Fabrice Muamba collapsed from a heart-attack mid-game – a faster response to such incidents can make all the difference.

One other area this may affect is match punditry and reporting. If the studios have got a hold of some of this data, you can be sure we will get to see some fancy new animations and analysis at full and half-time. Now we can get some statistics to state how sluggish Lampard really is, how quick Mata is off the mark, and precisely where John Terry spends most of his time on the pitch (and let’s hope it remembers to remove it before any extra curricular activity).

Adidas has always been known as a pioneer, an innovator and an industry-leader when it comes to the sport of soccer,” said MLS Commissioner Don Garber. Indeed, Patrick Nilson, president of Adidas America said that “their leading innovations help athletes and coaches on the field of play and we are finding ways to use these innovations to create more immersive sporting environments and experiences that will revolutionize the way we view sports and engage and excite fans.” I am excited, he’s right, but reservedly so until we know and can see a little more…

On a side note, I am bemused as to the statements of the MLS. Who are keen to see their All-Stars test themselves against the ‘best in the world’… why the hell are they playing Chelsea (this was penned before Chelsea smashing Dan’s beloved Spurs… – Joe)?!

You can check out new adidas miCoach Smart Football now.

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