Focus on individual development
“Projekt 12” is the ÖFB’s top talent development model launched in 2009 and the successor to “Challenge08”. The project aims to provide Austria’s national teams with top-trained players. Each season, the respective national coaches work closely with the talent coaches to select the players who will then complete a varied program of individual talent development over the course of a year.
In 2019, the project underwent a realignment, which was largely driven by Sports Director Peter Schöttel and Project Manager Martin Scherb. Part of this realignment is the so-called “360° view of the player,” which was introduced as a new cornerstone in talent development. This holistic approach makes player development observable and measurable. For example, performance parameters are recorded in a central database. This is also where the new partnership with skills.lab comes in.
skills.lab complements the 360° view with objective data on the players’ basic technical capabilities. This valuable data is collected in assessments in the skills.lab Arena and processed by means of scientific data analysis. In addition to fundamental aspects such as passing and shooting accuracy and ball processing time, the parameters of technical speed and technical endurance can also be measured and objectively compared for the first time. While technical speed is a measure of how quickly a particular technical movement can be executed, technical endurance describes how well and consistently a technical movement is mastered over a longer period of time. The assessments in the skills.lab Arena are world leaders in this field. This objective assessment of technical performance is made possible by the measurement technology developed by Anton Paar -SportsTec GmbH and used in the skills.lab Arena, as well as intelligent algorithms that evaluate the measurement results.
In a pilot project, the ÖFB’s partnership with skills.lab will initially focus on team manager Oliver Lederer’s U15 national team. The players born in 2006 will come to Wundschuh in the coming months for an evaluation of their technical capabilities. Through the subsequent repetition of the assessments, the individual development of the players will be ascertained and documented. The results of the individual assessments enable targeted planning and control of individual training for each player. At the same time, the collected data also serve the ÖFB as important reference values in order to be able to better compare the individual years in the future.
Through the new partnership, the ÖFB and skills.lab set a strong signal for the future. The work in the skills.lab Arena, the most modern assessment and training system in world football, will create an important basis for supporting the top talents in the country in their individual development in the best possible way in the future and for helping Austria’s national teams to their next successes.
Images: (c) Austrian Football Federation / Österreichischer Fußball-Bund