Video Analysis Helps Club Atlético Colón to Their First Argentinian Title

After 116 years, Club Atlético Colón became champions of Argentina for the first time ever in 2021. In a competition often won by traditional powerhouses such as Boca Juniors, River Plate, Independiente and Racing,

Colón came out on top in a truly historical season, with Independiente and Racing defeated consecutively in the semi-final and final stages.

In this article, we speak to Colón’s technical and analysis staff about reactions to the victory, their style of play, and how player and team development were affected by performance analysis tools

“When you start each pre-season you dream of taking your team to not only to be competitive, but to win and to be the best of all”. These are the words of Colón’s Technical Director Eduardo Dominguez, who has seen unprecedented success in his current role.

A key component of the team’s success was the playing style of the team, which relied on a strong defence and quick attacking raids.

“We looked to be a solid team defensively and with quick attacks, because we had two full-backs who were very good,” said Dominguez.

“We had very fast strikers and midfielders who ran from area to area with good technique, with deployment, with two inside players constantly stepping into the box."

A key aspect of developing a playing philosophy comes from analyzing the performance of your own team, but also the opposition. This is where Colón Video Analyst Bruno Oliveto comes into the picture. His job is to record, analyze and present key tactical information from daily training sessions and live matches played in the Tournament.

“The season was really incredible for us since we arrived at the beginning of the season, because the final result was kind of unthinkable,” said Oliveto.

“The aim for us is to always grow, to work, and I believe working on a daily basis to demonstrate that work. That is related to working with video analysis, where there is always something to work on.”

The work begins on the training ground, where the analyst and trainers carry out specific critique of team performance.

“We record the moments with a capture unit, capturing the training and from that we use a code window in Hudl Sportscode to be able to cut footage which the coach asks for,” said Oliveto. “At the trainer’s request, I add specific clips, or it will be left for us to decide what to compare with what might happen in a particular upcoming match.”

The next part of the preparation for an upcoming fixture is opponent analysis. Extracting the key points of analysis and presenting these points effectively are crucial in this process.

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“The aim for us is to always grow, to work, and I believe working on a daily basis to demonstrate that work. That is related to working with video analysis, where there is always something to work on.”
Bruno Oliveto - Colón Video Analyst

“The video analysis for the analysis of the opponent, is a very high percentage of the work within my weekly organisation,” said Oliveto. “I watch a number of the opponent's using Hudl Sportscode and according to the code window that I use, set up a specific analysis of the phases of play of that match.

We then make a summary of between 15 and 18 minutes, which is also arranged not by chronological order but by the order of the phases of the game.

This is presented to the coach, to the aide-de-camp and to all those who are available to see it - there are between four or five or six summaries, which are the matches analysed.

To complete the process, we make a final video, which is presented in a team breifing that can take up no more than five or six minutes, on what would be visualisation of the opponent that we are going to face at this moment.” If the Colón team can’t film matches live, they also have the option to view opposition film in the Wyscout library.

The library has footage from 900 competitions worldwide with over 210,000 matches, complete with statistical breakdown. Wyscout is compatible with Hudl Sportscode and the Hudl Pro Suite of analysis solutions.

The work on the training pitch relates directly to the business end of the week - match day. Where the capture and analysis workflows enhance live action insights for the Colón team.

“On match day, we again capture with the capture unit using two cameras,” said Oliveto. “But the difference I have is the width of the image - there is one image that is wider than the other.

I have a specific button panel for live matches, when it is much more extensive than what is cut in a training session, divided into phases of the game, divided into recoveries and losses.

We individualise the goalkeeper play, fouls and corners and certain actions which allows me to establish statistics that the Hudl Sportscode allows me from the report button in the same code window. We can generate statistical outputs live in the moment, at half time, or at the end of the match.”

After the match takes place, it’s down to the analysis team to extract key clips for each player and upload them to the Hudl online platform for player review. On the Hudl platform, coaches can add comments and drawings to videos to enhance feedback. The clips can also be divided into playlists for each position and game scenarios. Eg: Midfielders, defenders, attack, defence, transitions.

“Hudl offers an online cloud that allows us to upload video to and connects to our players,” said Oliveto. “Then, from the cloud, the players can visualise what we share with them, which was not possible before.

Before Hudl, there was no such thing as the cloud, we shared video manual means, such as a flash drive, or the players sat at the same table and shared and watched the same video from one screen.

But today, from the cloud, you leave their self review up to them to decide what they feel like looking at and whatever will be useful for them at the time of the match.”

Post-match is the time to analyze the performance of the team using the range of tools in the Wyscout platform.

“Wyscout allows me to monitor each player’s individual actions in each phase of the game,” said Oliveto. I can see offensive or defensive phases and go into more specific actions, like duels, shots, pass completion and pressing intensity.

The metrics that I use from Wyscout are closely associated with our tactics. For example, in defensive matters we watch the duels, tackles and interceptions. For a striker, we look at the shots, the runs and teammate supports. In a midfielder we look at passes, filtered passes to each teammate and passes in the last third of the pitch.”

The Wyscout Shadow Teams tool allows the ability to manage team tactics by entering players into potential team formations to compare effectiveness. Every player in the Shadow Team is linked with individual video and data.

“I use the Shadow Team function mainly for viewing the squad on paper and to understand which player has the certain attributes to go into the next game,” said Oliveto.

“For example, if our Wyscout stats determine how many shots, how many passes or how many crosses each player has had in a match, suddenly it's not something I have to worry about as Shadow Team can set this up automatically for me.

“Shadow Teams lets me know first of all, what margin of error the team could have, and which variables I could consider more important than others. And from that point on, the analysis is individual and, therefore, collective.”

Both Hudl Sportscode and Wyscout are ingrained in the daily analysis work at Colón, and it’s their ability to work in tandem that adds additional value.

“Integration between our analysis tools is crucial for our workflow,” said Oliveto. “This is because I download the games from the Wyscout library which I don't have access to, such as those of rival teams, then I analyze them by importing them into Hudl Sportscode.”

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“When you start each pre-season you dream of taking your team to not only to be competitive, but to win and to be the best of all”
Eduardo Dominguez - Colón Technical Director

I believe that integration of the applications is of 100 per cent importance and I would go so far as to say not only integration, but even the existence of the programmes because, for example ,it would be very difficult to access matches today if Wyscout didn't exist and it would be very difficult to be able to develop an elite-level analysis job that Hudl Sportscode allows us to do.”

Reflecting on the historic season just been,Dominguez looks back on the experience with pride.

“The sensations, the satisfaction of what we thought as a coaching staff, it's not just me, but it's my whole team, what we do every day, we see it reflected at the weekend in the player's belief,” he said.

“I thought that was fantastic, and all of this is constantly feeding back for what is to come ahead.”

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