Magaths: Maybe the national team would appeal to me

Football
Magaths: Maybe the national team would appeal to me

Football coach Magath

Felix Magath, then head coach of Hertha BSC, speaks in an interview before the game. Photo: Andreas Gora/dpa/archive image

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Coach veteran Felix Magath considers the flood of data in modern football to be problematic. The 68-year-old, who is not the first to emphasize the experience factor of a coach, said in an interview with the Swiss tabloid Blick: “Football is so complex because it has to do with people. But in many clubs too much attention is paid to the data instead of the people.”

Coach veteran Felix Magath considers the flood of data in modern football to be problematic. The 68-year-old, who is not the first to emphasize the experience factor of a coach, said in an interview with the Swiss tabloid Blick: “Football is so complex because it has to do with people. But in many clubs too much attention is paid to the data instead of the people.”

As an example, Magath named a player who was taken out of training because of poor lactate levels. Roughly speaking, these provide information about the physical fitness level. “The psyche is often forgotten. For example, if a player’s girlfriend just ran away, then it could be that he doesn’t feel so good,” said Magath. “And it could be that he can’t achieve quite as good values ​​in training because he didn’t sleep much the night before. The reaction of many data analysts is then: something is wrong, we have to intervene immediately and reduce the training work. But the why is neglected.”

When it comes to the processes in a game, Magath is also rather reserved when it comes to data. These are there to help, but if he only works with numbers all day, “at some point I can’t see the forest for the trees anymore,” said the former professional and well-travelled coach, who recently defeated the Berlin Bundesliga club Hertha BSC before relegation had saved.

Also thanks to his experience. “I don’t think it does the game justice if you try to use data to plan in advance how everything should work,” emphasized Magath. A football game develops, “and situations arise in which the human factor is particularly important when decisions are made in fractions of a second”.

Magath left open whether he might take on another post as a coach himself. “I don’t know yet,” he replied when asked how long his wife could look forward to him staying with her? “Maybe a national team would appeal to me,” added Magath: “I have to recover from these weeks first. And then I’ll calmly think about how things should go on with concrete things.”

dpa

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