Amazon Web Services (AWS) and the German Bundesliga will debut the first two Bundesliga Match Facts powered by AWS during tonight’s highlight match at 18:30 CET featuring Borussia Dortmund vs. Bayern Muenchen on broadcast television in over 200 countries. The two new statistics, Average Positions and Expected Goals (xGoals), will give fans deeper insights into a team’s intended playing style based on real-time analysis performed of data captured from tracking players’ locations on the field, and the probability of a player scoring a goal. Germany’s top national football league will leverage AWS’s unmatched set of cloud services, including machine learning and analytics, to introduce additional advanced statistics in 2020 and upcoming seasons. AWS and the Bundesliga are the first to deliver this unique combination of real-time advanced statistics and game analyses to football (soccer) fans around the world.
Bundesliga Match Facts are generated by gathering data from the live game video feeds that are streamed into AWS for analysis, and then provided back to broadcast viewers around the world in real-time as statistics. These statistics help audiences better understand things like the strategy involved in decision-making on the pitch and the probability of a goal for each shot. As of May 26, Average Positions will be available during future broadcasts of Bundesliga matches, while xGoals will be available during highlight matches.
A look at the two new Bundesliga Match Facts powered by AWS
Average Positions: Fans will now be able to see the positioning of a team’s players on the pitch and gain insight into the team’s intended playing style. Average Positions provides new insights based on analysis performed on data captured from tracking a player’s average location on the field, which is then displayed in real-time. This Bundesliga Match Fact allows viewers to identify the current momentum on the field and understand tactical changes. The new statistic will help pinpoint if a team is setting up in an attacking or defending style, pressing up the middle, or utilizing the wings. By displaying the average location and position of each player in real-time, Average Positions helps fans understand tactical changes as the game progresses.
xGoals: Using Amazon SageMaker, a fully managed service to build, train and deploy machine learning models, the Bundesliga can now assess the probability of a player scoring a goal when shooting from any position on the field. The goal probability is calculated in real-time for every shot to give viewers insight into the difficulty of a shot and the likelihood of a goal. To calculate the precision of xGoals, machine learning models were trained by analyzing 40,000 historical shots on goal in addition to an array of features derived from positional data, including distance to goal, angle to goal, player speed, number of defenders in line of shot, and goalkeeper coverage.
Andreas Heyden, Executive Vice President of Digital Innovations for the DFL Group, said, “We at Bundesliga are able to use this advanced technology from AWS, including statistics, analytics and machine learning, to interpret the data and deliver more in-depth insight and better understanding of the split-second decisions made on the pitch. The use of Bundesliga Match Facts enables viewers to gain a deeper insight into the key decisions in each match.”
Andy Isherwood, Vice President and Managing Director EMEA, AWS, said, “AWS is helping the Bundesliga enhance the broadcast viewing experience by delivering deeper insights into the game that didn’t previously exist. With AWS, Bundesliga is able to provide real-time statistics to predict future plays and outcomes. These two new statistics are just the beginning of what we’ll be able to deliver for football fans as we look forward to unlocking new ways to better educate, engage, and entertain viewers around the world.”