The football simulator that could save clubs MILLIONS in transfer fees: Norwich City become the first English club to fork out £750k on high-tech SoccerBot360, which tests players’ ability to make hundreds of snap decisions in a game
- Norwich City set to become the first English club to install SoccerBot360 technology at their training ground
- German-made device, which costs £750,000 to install, develops player cognitive skills and reaction times
- It is an 80metre square area of pitch surrounded by a 360 degree video wall onto which images are projected
- Projectors suspended above the pitch beam realistic training games and match scenarios onto the walls
- Coaches can talk players through match situations and use replays to discuss tactics and game plans
Norwich City are set to become the first football club in England to install the futuristic SoccerBot360 simulator at their training ground.
Costing £750,000, the German-made technology features a circular pitch surrounded by video walls onto which a series of projectors beam simulations of match scenarios.
A player stands in the centre and makes passes towards the video wall with a football, which bounces back at them, developing reaction speed and decision-making.
Norwich will next year become the first English club to install the futuristic SoccerBot360 machine at their training ground
Players stand on a grass pitch surrounded by a 360 degree video wall onto which training simulations are projected
The screens can be used to project realistic player-view simulations of scenarios within matches for tactical analysis
The idea is to replicate the exact conditions of a match, when players have to process the quick movements of team-mates and opponents before making the correct pass.
As revealed by the Financial Times, Championship promotion hopefuls Norwich are set to follow the lead of several German clubs and academies by installing the technology next year.
It comes after their sporting director Stuart Webber recommended investing more in training facilities rather than always blowing the budget on new signings.
Bundesliga club RB Leipzig and the Red Bull Academy in Salzburg are among those to have already installed the SoccerBot360.
The Canaries, who are hoping to win promotion back to the Premier League this season, will install the technology next year
With a 10 metre diameter, there is 80 square metres of playing surface within the circular machine for training exercises
A player takes part in a passing game in which he must kick the ball at moving targets at speed to simulate a real match
The develops of the technology say the SoccerBot360 develops player reactions, cognitive processing and peripheral vision
The circular training area has a 10 metre diameter and a 80 square metre surface, with the 2.5 metre high walls allowing 80 square metres of 360 degree High Definition projection space.
What is projected onto the surface is controlled by an iPad app and includes passing drills in which the player has to react quickly and play the correct ball to a moving target.
It’s also possible to create a simulation of a player-eye view of an unfolding match scenario in a simulated stadium so coaches can talk players through tactics.
‘We have pioneered new techniques not only to analyse a player’s cognitive skills and motor responses, but also to improve them,’ SoccerBot developer Daniel Held said.
In echoes of the FIFA video games, the technology has the licence to simulate all Bundesliga and Champions League teams and the clips can be replayed at will.
The machine is licensed to feature Bundesliga and Champions League match simulations, similar to the FIFA video games
The outer wall of the SoccerBot, which features a video wall 2.5 metres high and a staircase to gain access to the pitch
It’s also possible to beam a set of goalposts onto the wall for shooting practice.
Player anticipation, speed of response and peripheral vision are the principal attributes trained by the technology and Norwich clearly hope to gain an advantage on their opponents.
They will hope to be a Premier League club once again by the time their SoccerBot is installed.
Daniel Farke’s side currently sit top of the Championship table, a point clear of Brentford and five ahead of third placed Swansea.
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