Inside 1899: The camera doesn't lie

Watching football all day - quick passing, precise crosses, measured free-kicks and decisive goals - a dream come true for many young fans... and a few grown up ones too!

For Lars Kornetka, video analyst at 1899 Hoffenheim, it's a job. Of course he doesn't just get to chill out and watch football all day, far from it: Lars does an important job helping the squad prepare for matches, as well as helping the scouting team find the best talents from around the world. This week, Lars has been editing footage from the 2-0 victory over Hertha BSC, picking out the most important scenes from the TV footage provided at the Olympiastadion: "We only film training and friendly matches ourselves," said Kornetka. "We can get footage from other games from broadcasts all over the world. If we need particular camera angles, we can ask Sportcast, the DFL's production arm." The opposition are analysed in great detail, with "particularly important things" shown to the team during the week. The rest of the footage is watched by the squad the night before the match. "We tend to focus on the strengths and weaknesses of a team," explained Kornetka. "We want to find out how we can beat them and pass that information on to our players."

Video analysis is also a big part of 1899's tactical preparations. "Visualising situations helps the players to recognise and understand their mistakes. It makes it easier for the players to follow their own movements during a match and their tactical discipline. Sometimes players don't realise the mistakes they're making whilst they're playing, but watching it on video helps them to see. The camera doesn't lie!" The mistakes captured on video are then worked upon in training as the team attempts to improve as much as possible. Video analysis is also used extensively as part of the club's scouting system: "We can use videos to filter players and assess whether they might be interesting for the club. If so, the scouts can travel to wherever that player is to assess him in person." Video analysis is more than just watching football, then... A dream job for many, and a job which brings 32-year-old Kornetka plenty of joy, although he admits: "Watching so much football every day does detract from your enjoyment of the game in private, you're always thinking about tactics and technique!"

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