The Transfer Window: High-Profile vs Potential
In the MBP community of the Scouting Online course, the last weeks we have been discussing about how clubs must act in the transfer market and how to find the best player for our team. We think it is a very interesting topic that we would like to talk about.
When the transfer window approaches, it is always a good time to reflect on where the team is, and if it’s necessary to do some retouching in the team. These are decisions that are usually made by the president, technical director and coach, and the latter, backed of course by the work of tactical analysts or scouters.
Football has evolved a lot in the last decade, where in addition to signing players for purely football interests, they sign for other types of extra-football interests. Increasingly, club structures function more like companies in terms of asset management, marketing, partner services, merchandising sales, television rights, betting, etc.
These other types of interests mean that many times players are recruited from the perspective of the supporters, who is unaware of the process, not understand why this incorporation, or signings of players who are very good and show performance in their clubs, but when they arrive at their new teams they do not adapt and do not perform as expected.
Then, which factors are key to succeed with the incorporation of a new player to the team?
1. Be clear and differentiate between what the team needs and what the club needs
Before betting on a player profile or another, what is essential to know and study the real needs of the club. Football needs, or needs to grow and take a step forward at entity level. Or both. In any case, the responsibilities of the people who will decide it must be well defined.
If the need is going to be of extra-soccer interests, it does not compete with us (nor does it interest us as a technical team). In the case that the club gives us confidence to strengthen the staff at the football level, that’s where the role of the analyst or scouter comes into play.
2. Analyze in a detailed and specific way the profile of the necessary player
When the responsibility of the incorporation goes to the technical staff, and more specifically to the scouters or tactical analysts, the first thing that will be necessary is to have a formation and knowledge of the absolute game. The more powerful the experience and mastery over it, the more successful we will be in identifying what player profile we need. It is essential not only to know what type of player we are looking for at the fundamental level of the game, but also to be clear about the game model chosen by the coach and used by the team.
3. Decide between a media player and a young player with potential
Once the real needs of the team are identified and it’s clear that the type of player profile is needed, different options may arise depending on the available budget. Many times, there is a doubt between choosing a player with a higher profile due to his experience and his career, or a young player to be exploited. The first are those players that everyone knows, and that will surely cost you more. Then we believe that the interesting and difficult thing is to detect those young and unknown players who, due to their characteristics, believe that they will adapt quickly to the game model and in the medium to long term will give us a lot of performance at a lower cost. If we get him to be a young media player at a good price, it’s the best.
4. Know the player inside and outside the field
Once the player has been chosen, for the reasons we have been discussing, we believe that we are worth it, we must do something more so as not to miss the shot. The players are also people, who have their habits and customs that we need to know to be clear also as a person adjusts to the values of the club and what we demand. For a footballer not only what he does during training is important, but everything he does after is equal or more important. What we call invisible training. There are times when the shot can go wrong looking only at football aspects and avoiding extra-football.