Soccer 2.0

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Photo: The Offside

In Soccer 1.0 the manager is king. But an Israeli football team is experimenting with a sort of crowd-sourcing, wisdom-of-the-Kop type approach, where fans monitor the game online and suggest starting line-up, tactics and substitutions.

Reuters reports from Tel Aviv that “diehard football fan Moshe Hogeg was so upset when star striker Lionel Messi was left off Argentina’s side for a World Cup match against Germany last year that he teamed up with an online gaming company to buy a club where fans decide over the Internet who will play and in what position.” Hogeg’s company, an Israeli social network for sports fans called Web2sport, teamed up with online backgammon website Play65 to buy Hapoel Kiryat Shalom, a team in Israel’s third amateur division.

Fans log on to the team’s website and make suggestions and vote in poll which are monitored by an assistant to the coach. Ahead of the season’s opening match some 6,000 people tried to log on to make suggestions. The team lost 3-2 to Maccabi Ironi Or Yehuda in injury time.

Needless to say, I have mixed feelings about this. I don’t think crowd-sourcing is going to replace the genius of Wenger, Mourinho or Ferguson. On the other hand, as a Spurs fan, I certainly think manager Martin Jol could do with some help.

Press Release: The First Web 2.0 Football Club in the World

25. October 2007 by jeremy
Categories: Innovation, Internet life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 comments

Comments (3)

  1. [Comment totally unrelated to post]

    So, I’m sitting in my living room in Montana. I’ve just decided to not respond to your recent twitter about @ messages with an @ message, because — why should you care what someone in Montana thinks about your twitter?

    A very interesting bit about words comes on to BBC News on PBS radio. I’m laughing, and thinking I must pay attention to who this is so I can find him — and the web references he’s making — on the web when he’s done.

    And guess who that is?

  2. I am not a big soccer fan myself, but what I can say is that in 1998 when France won the world cup, Ayme Jacquet, their coatch, didn’t start in his function with the love of the public. Far from it.

    Everybody commented his decisions as weird, and the fans where disappointed by his strategy.

    Against all odds, he persisted and finally won.

    This is why you have commanders and soldiers, ceo’s and employees, leaders and followers.

    The debate could get us very far, as far as discussing democracy and the wisdom of the masses, so I leave it here.

  3. I enjoyed your post about “publicly-owned” H. K. S. That would never work in the Barclay’s League. Can you imagine the chaos! Might be worth experimenting with it in the conference or 2nd division.