Success on the pitch is determined by various factors such as talent, work ethic, fitness, team chemistry and squad depth. However, with technology providing access to ever-increasing amounts of information, the way that a club makes use of its data can also make a game-changing difference. Earlier this year TSG Hoffenheim opened the SAP Interactive Data Space at its training ground in Zuzenhausen, Germany, to encourage better data use throughout its operations. The high-tech collaborative meeting room allows its users to access all of the sports and business data generated by the Bundesliga club as well as the tools required to capitalise on it.
The meeting space boasts a number of features designed to put data at users’ fingertips. A seven-metre-wide glass screen spans the room to encourage collaboration, while each of the space’s 16 seats is equipped with a touch-operated screen that facilitates individual analysis. These screens make various tools and solutions available and also display content from other devices such as smartphones. The SAP Interactive Data Space was developed in collaboration with TSG Hoffenheim’s technology partner, SAP, which has provided the club with its leading enterprise software tools. The meeting space is designed to support the side both in the boardroom and on the pitch. It is available to the club’s coaches and players to facilitate interactive meetings, where a data-driven approach can be applied to tactical analysis and matchday planning.
The SAP Interactive Data Space has been placed among Hoffenheim’s other facilities to make it accessible to all who need it. It is located near the achtzehn99 Reha GmbH sports medicine and rehabilitation centre, the club’s management offices and the training centre for the senior and under-23s teams. TSG Hoffenheim managing director Dr Peter Görlich says, ‘The SAP Interactive Data Space is part of a newly constructed complex at our training centre in Zuzenhausen and is in exactly the right place to optimally support our day-to-day operations at both the sporting and management level.’ The innovative centre is also located in the same building as Hoffenheim’s Footbonaut – a $3.5 million training machine, another technology-driven tool being utilised by the club to get ahead of its competition.
By launching the SAP Interactive Data Space, TSG Hoffenheim has further strengthened its position among the world’s most innovative football clubs. ‘We are constantly working to build on our role as a technology leader in the Bundesliga,’ Görlich says. ‘The SAP Interactive Data Space is the latest example of our strategy to focus on tailored innovations and cutting-edge technologies to optimise our performance.’ TSG Hoffenheim, a trendsetter in the use of data analytics in sports, has been gathering data for years, which has enabled further scientific research and optimisation of the club’s operations. By opening the SAP Interactive Data Space, the Bundesliga side has reaffirmed its commitment to pioneering innovative uses of data analytics in the sports industry. ‘The SAP Interactive Data Space will allow TSG to follow this strategy going forward,’ explains Christian Klein, chief operating officer and member of SAP SE’s executive board. ‘SAP is proud to witness the huge contribution its technology can make to success in top-flight professional football.’