It has often been discussed among the stakeholders of the Hyundai A-League how great the recruiting has been over the last decade. With teams such as Perth Glory and Central Coast Mariners conducting world-wide searches for coaches and players it’s been difficult to fault the ambition of the league. Now the search goes digital, with the A-League releasing a world-first mobile phone app called ‘Finder’ to help recruit players the world over.
The application provides profiles of current players in both Australia and overseas with a photo of the player, their age, their playing history and their current location at any given time using GPS technology. Users are able to filter profiles by certain statistics such as age, position, glamour rating, etc, to cherry-pick their dream matches.
The “glamour rating” system, based off the potential revenue a player could generate for their club, has been well received by users, who highlight its historical success as a measure for which A-League clubs are able to discover marquee status players. There will also be a “highlights” feature, which allows players to upload their footballing highlights in a quick 5 second video, to showcase their talents.
David Barker of Insite Technologies, the developer behind ‘Finder’, told FMF that, “In the past, Football Manager used to be the benchmark of recruitment, followed by real-life analysis. No longer do A-League staff need to waste considerable resources in scouting and attracting players, when a simple swipe right can begin contract negotiations”.
“This is the first of many apps which aim to make football a more streamlined experience, although we aren’t the first, with some clubs releasing their own apps to help their fans find seats, food, even love.”
Although the app is ground breaking when it comes to player scouting, it has not been without its faults. “In the development stage we had a couple of user issues where players were confusing ‘Finder’ with popular dating app ‘Tinder’, leading to several inappropriate highlights being posted to their profile pages.”
The Professional Footballers Association has expressed that this is a positive step forward for players in Australia, a sentiment echoed by FFA, as the app makes the process of attracting, negotiating and signing players a more simple and straight forward task. It is believe that this new app is being heralded internally as David Gallop’s legacy to Australian football.