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Measures of academy productivity in English championship clubs

Measures of academy productivity in English championship clubs This study quantifies academy productivity within English football clubs that have competed in the second tier (Championship) between 2017 and 2020. Previous research has outlined that clubs situated underneath the top leagues have an important role in the development of elite professional players. This study aims to examine that level of the pathway further in England.Design/methodology/approachThe utilisation of academy players was conducted with data from 33 eligible clubs, from 2017/2018 to 2019/2020. Two measures of productivity are defined for comparison: “Utilisation” (the total minutes played by academy graduates) and “Starts” (the number of times an academy player started for the first team). To quantify these measures, players and clubs’ indices were also defined through two perspectives: “global” (proportion of all games played from 2017/2018 to 2019/2020) and “local” (proportion of games the player featured only). Nationality and position were also included.FindingsHeadline findings demonstrate large differences between clubs for the type and proportion of playing opportunities created. The data outlines that academy graduates have greater utilisation and starts in cup competitions, particularly the English Football League cup. Clubs in the sample being relegated from the Premier League into the Championship recorded weaker “utilisation” and “starts” compared to those that competed in the lower divisions. Academies are producing and using a greater proportion of defensive players (goalkeepers, defenders, defensive midfielders) compared to more attacking sectors of the pitch.Originality/valueThis offers useful insight for academy managers, allowing comparisons between clubs. It has implications for future strategies around the role of the academy and approaches to generating player opportunity. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Team Performance Management Emerald Publishing

Measures of academy productivity in English championship clubs

Team Performance Management , Volume 27 (3/4): 19 – Jun 8, 2021

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
1352-7592
DOI
10.1108/tpm-09-2020-0083
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This study quantifies academy productivity within English football clubs that have competed in the second tier (Championship) between 2017 and 2020. Previous research has outlined that clubs situated underneath the top leagues have an important role in the development of elite professional players. This study aims to examine that level of the pathway further in England.Design/methodology/approachThe utilisation of academy players was conducted with data from 33 eligible clubs, from 2017/2018 to 2019/2020. Two measures of productivity are defined for comparison: “Utilisation” (the total minutes played by academy graduates) and “Starts” (the number of times an academy player started for the first team). To quantify these measures, players and clubs’ indices were also defined through two perspectives: “global” (proportion of all games played from 2017/2018 to 2019/2020) and “local” (proportion of games the player featured only). Nationality and position were also included.FindingsHeadline findings demonstrate large differences between clubs for the type and proportion of playing opportunities created. The data outlines that academy graduates have greater utilisation and starts in cup competitions, particularly the English Football League cup. Clubs in the sample being relegated from the Premier League into the Championship recorded weaker “utilisation” and “starts” compared to those that competed in the lower divisions. Academies are producing and using a greater proportion of defensive players (goalkeepers, defenders, defensive midfielders) compared to more attacking sectors of the pitch.Originality/valueThis offers useful insight for academy managers, allowing comparisons between clubs. It has implications for future strategies around the role of the academy and approaches to generating player opportunity.

Journal

Team Performance ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Jun 8, 2021

Keywords: Management effectiveness; Development; Football; Transition; Utilisation

References