Millfield School – Performance Analysis in Football
Millfield School is a remarkable place. From its foundation in 1935, with six princes brought from India, Millfield is today one of the leading UK independent schools for boys and girls, aged 2-18 years.
The School has a long heritage and has seen some sporting greats progress through their system.
Successful Old Millfieldians from the Senior School include former British Lions and Wales rugby captain Gareth Edwards; England Rugby players Jonathan Joseph and Mako Vunipola; Ireland Rugby International Rhys Ruddock; Pam Cookey, former captain of the England Netball team; BBC chief political correspondent John Sergeant; Olympic Gold medallists Duncan Goodhew, Peter Wilson and Helen Glover; entrepreneur Richard Caring; entrepreneur and political advisor Michael Hayman and drummer of legendary rock group the Police, Stewart Copeland.
Millfield School is a valued customer of AnalysisPro, they use our consultancy to continually keep ahead of the game in way of video analysis.
Our aim at AnalysisPro is to spread the word, to advise and provide solutions to empower the teachers and coaching staff to take control of their analysis in an efficient and cost-effective way. We break this down into three categories;
Millfield are happy to share their practices with the wider world, inspiring schools and colleges to follow suit by enhancing their video analysis solutions. In this post, we will share some insight into the video analysis processes used by Millfield within their Football teams.
Millfield are lucky enough to have their own performance analyst, Jack Like. Jack joined the school this year, taking over from the previous analyst just after half term. He has come in off the back of working within a number of high profile teams and has shown a clear vision on how he believed performance analysis should be run at a school like Millfield. He has shown a clear interest in supporting athletes and coaches to achieve their full potential, and we have enjoyed supporting him to challenge the previous processes used in order to achieve this; so he can build a plan with the coaches and athletes about where they want to take analysis at Millfield. He is very enthusiastic about using analysis in schools and how useful it can be when used properly.
In order for me to achieve my vision of where I want the analysis to go at Millfield school, it’s vital I have the right people around me; this is why I work closely with AnalysisPro on a daily basis. AnalysisPro has had a big influence on how performance analysis at Millfield School has developed over the past 5 years, providing us with some of the latest PA solutions to keep us ahead of the game.
Jack works very closely with the coaches and athletes on a daily basis. They now have customised dashboards tailored to each sport and he provides each coach with the necessary information for them to give feedback and adapt their training sessions to suit.
We will now demonstrate how Millfield implement ‘SAS’ throughout their football program.
Millfield use a variety of filming equipment to capture their games, from handheld cameras and tripods to multiple fixed IP Cameras with our AP Capture software. For all these scenarios, height is important:
Predominantly, we will concentrate our filming to capture the whole team, looking at the movement and positioning of the players – off the ball movement is as important as on the ball – especially in football.
Jack will also zoom in on corners, free kicks, and throw-ins. They don’t tend to follow specific players unless there is a stand out player to watch and they want to analyse individual skill and the impact of that player, which is also time permitting.
Football is one of the most popular sports so divides his time mainly between Football, Rugby, Hockey and Netball, but will film individual sports too. Student involvement is encouraged – players who are keen on cameras and filming regularly get involved. Players who are injured also help with the filming.
The use of multiple cameras in sport is a good idea to get different perspectives and angles on the game. To help with this, Millfield use our AP Capture camera solutions.
These solutions give you IP Cameras (4K ready) to record high-quality footage for any activity. We provide a mobile tripod solution to get an elevated position for your filming wherever you go, and fixed installations like at Millfield, so you can have multiple cameras across a larger site that can all be controlled from one location (or different points onsite).
At the heart of these solutions is our AP Capture software, which we developed from the ground up. The solutions we provide are not a typical security-style IP Camera setup, but solutions developed specifically for video analysis and especially filming sport. The configuration of our software and solutions means that controlling the camera from the joystick gives an instant response and smooth movement patterns for simultaneous pan, tilt and zoom. This is ESSENTIAL for filming sport.
The AP Capture software interface has always been designed to be user-friendly, with only a few options for the user to press to ensure that their focus is on what they are filming, not how they are filming it. After selecting a camera to control and a sound source to record, Jack (and students/staff) only needs to press record to start capturing a single MP4 file of the footage directly onto the laptop, which is instantly mixed with the selected sound source too.
You can see more about Millfield School’s use of AP Capture in this previous blog. An important part in there is how all the footage can be instantly streamed live to YouTube. All from one person who is already filming with AP Capture!
Millfield predominantly use Nacsport for their analysis. There is a strong emphasis on live tagging from an iPad pitchside with the Nacsport Tag&go app. This enables them to have a 20-minute turn around after the match if needed. A few days later the coach will come back with what they found useful and what they may want to add in for next time.
Coaches and athletes are already starting to see the benefits of how Jack is now providing us with key match stats almost instantly post game; it’s amazing how much key information is produced in such a short space of time.
Terry Akhurst – Head of Football, Millfield School
The Nacsport Tag&go app is an easy tool for live analysis on the move, as they only need to start a timer, tag buttons on their personalised templates and then finish the event. All the data is then quickly linked up with the video inside Nacsport, so every moment and the related statistics can be reviewed, before creating presentations and sharing with others.
Initially, the coaches requested video clips from the teams passing – forward, back, left and right, and presented back on Keynote slides, which was extremely time-consuming. This has significantly evolved since then to what you see below!
Jack has created personalised templates for each sport and below you will see the statistical Dashboard in Nacsport that he created to show an overview of the match performance in Football. This links with the moments analysed on the template to give a visual understanding of performance that can be shared. When viewing the Dashboard inside Nacsport, the coaches can click on data to watch back the clips they relate to also.
Jack has built a structure where all football matches filmed are analysed using live dashboards, which means the junior teams are seeing match performance data for the first time!
Jake Mawford – Football Development Officer, Millfield School
In the bottom right of the above Dashboard, the graph displays ‘coach analysis’. These are specific moments from the match that the coach tags on their iPad during the match that he/she wants to talk about as soon as possible.
The Dashboards will display whatever you want to see from your analysis. Millfield wanted to see the Goal Area Entry Points, so Jack created a Dashboard for that too. Now the coach can click the number and instantly see the video for these moments!
They have another Dashboard to review throw in success also.
Ultimately, the coach could request whatever they want and Jack can easily adapt the tagging process to show those moments.
A coach in a particular match wanted the clips of every time the opposition hit the post, these were near misses and he wanted to analyse how the opposition got to that position.
Jack gives a nice overview of working as a performance analyst with Nacsport and how the Dashboards have impacted the coaching staff:
Working as a performance analyst in a school environment is hugely rewarding, the variety of sports and the easy to use nature of Nacsport has been embraced by the teachers/coaches, it has become a brilliant tool for the school.
The coaches get the ‘X-factor moment’ when they click the graph displaying the number of shots and then the video of every shot plays in front of the students, it’s powerful and impactful.
Millfield also use MyTPA (Team Performance Analyser) – an online analysis and review tool. They upload their game videos here along with the XML file of data from Nacsport so that the students and coaches can review the analysis Jack has provided. The coaches then add further analysis through their online Highlight Schemes in MyTPA. The synergy between both products allows them to export XML files and transfer data to and from whichever platform they use in different scenarios.
Millfield’s analysis is not just restricted to gameplay in matches. They sometimes want to capture an important training regime, so on occasions, they will use it in training too. At present, Millfield does not involve students in the tagging process but are introducing it as part of their MAP scheme, an extracurricular activity to enlighten students about performance analysis.
Jack and the coaches present the analysis in a classroom from their Nacsport machine. By doing this, they can demonstrate points visually and clearly. His files are organised to flick from football to any other sport easily, something essential in a multi-sport environment such as a school!
As mentioned in ‘Analyse’, Millfield also use MyTPA for sharing their video and analysis online, along with MyTPE (Team Performance Exchange), to make the communication more interactive with the students. Like many schools, Millfield has a WiFi network over most of the grounds, so students are always able to review their performances and analysis on their different devices.
So what’s next for Millfield?
AnalysisPro has a network of contacts so that our analysis community can share best practice (like this blog!). We have helped Jack acquaint with local Universities to construct ideas for student placements, giving the University students the experience to work in a high-level multi-sports school environment. Jack will also be linking up with some analysts from our professional clubs too.
KlipDraw is going to be used more by Jack and the coaching staff to add telestrations to their videos, helping them to better emphasise their points. Nacsport Tag&go is also going to be used more to increase the number of matches that can be analysed live by Jack and the coaches, enabling more Millfield students to benefit from performance analysis. Jack would also like to utilise the Nacsport Viewer versions and create a room dedicated to analysis, where students can review everything together in a controlled environment.
We want to thank Jack for sharing some insight into the PA processes at Millfield School within their football program and look forward to sharing details about his processes in other sports soon too!
What were some of the key points?
- Filming with height is essential. Keeping a wider perspective enables you to see team shape and player positioning better.
- High-quality footage is a necessity. Use good quality cameras or high-end IP Camera solutions to provide better analysis and feedback.
- With the AP Capture solutions, you can achieve both the above and stream live to YouTube, ‘killing many birds with one stone’.
- Communicating with coaches to establish what should be analysed and reviewed is the first thing an analyst should do.
- Involving coaches in the analysis process is easy when using mobile tagging apps like Nacsport Tag&go, which they can use live during a game to tag key moments for review later.
- Managing multi-sport programs is achievable. Personalised analysis templates and databases are created, stored and categorised in easy to access folders within Nacsport.
- Dashboards are a great way to visually represent analysis and provide a snapshot of performance. When they are linked to a video, the review process becomes easier and more interactive.
- Sharing analysis and feedback online is a great way to keep players engaged and constantly learning about their performances. Secure online platforms like MyTPA are a great option for schools and teams.
- Sharing analysis in a classroom environment will always provide more interaction and instant feedback, so should never be forgotten about, even if using an online platform.
How can video analysis help schools?
Video analysis opens the doors for schools to –
1) Raise your game – use video analysis to improve feedback, understanding and overall performance across all sports and activities.
3) Make your life easier – save time, especially when it comes to Moderation evidence and submission requirements.
4) Have fun! Make a show-reel of highlights to play at the end of term assembly and social media platforms.
5) Enlighten your students across the school about video analysis and the career pathways available.