Born to Use Video: How SC Paderborn Use Analysis to Fuel Their Recent Success


Modernising game analysis, developing players and providing a coaching pathway: SC Paderborn 07 are using video analysis to improve every aspect of their club.

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2018 was a successful season for Paderborn, who achieved promotion back to the second tier of German football. Video analysis was an integral part of not only the team’s preparations for matches, but also the development of players and coaches of the pitch.

Paderborn sports director Markus Kroesche was first exposed to video analysis during his time coaching in the Bundesliga where he saw how much value it could bring to his club.

“I was familiar with video analysis and especially the Sportscode system, since my days in Bayer Leverkusen,” said Kroesche.

“I got exposed to it for the first time, and we had to transfer this to Paderborn.”

Before using Hudl and Sportscode for video analysis, Paderborn were simply playing video clips on a single screen which didn’t allow for coaches to personalise analysis for particular players and positions.

“Our situation was that only sometimes we got video material, or rather the video was simply played and shown using a start-stop function,” said Kroesche.

“That means the coaches were not in a position to prepare scenes to show to individual players and the resulting quality of analysis using video scenes was just not as high as it is now, where the most important elements are cut together and prepared accordingly. The message has become much better and more efficient, and that’s also decisive for us as a club.

“Naturally this system permits a much improved, more qualified analysis.” 

“People perceive more through video than when it’s just written down, and I think what we have now is a giant step forward.”

Paderborn’s captain, Christian Strohdiek, has been a Paderborn player for over a decade. Recently he’s seen the level and detail of video analysis grow.

“In the pro leagues, analysis is more important. We get examples of the opponent’s strengths and weaknesses,” said Strohdiek.

“We highlight these points which are shown to the entire team to ensure that everyone can prepare for them.”

It’s the specific aspects of analysis that impresses Paderborn’s captain the most, though.

“We can prepare specifically for the key players of the opponent, we look for things such what side of the pitch the opponent will come down, or certain movement sequences,” said Strohdiek.

“Does he turn to the left or right? Or does he commonly play with the inside of his foot or his outstep? People perceive more through video than when it’s just written down, and I think what we have now is a giant step forward.”

Assistant manager Danilo de Souza spent several years as a professional player in four different countries. His knowledge of video analysis honed during his playing years now helps him develop his coaching career at Paderborn.

“I always had a passion for video analysis. Before I even had this job, I collected and analysed over 1,000 matches myself,” said Danilo.

“Back when I was still playing, I watched every game where I thought I could learn something and analysed it to maybe draw some lessons to become a better player.

“That’s how I started doing this coaching job, and of course video analysis trained my brain and eyes to see better and notice things others could often miss.”

Hudl and Sportscode are an integral daily component of Danilo’s role as assistant manager, which is a hybrid role of coach and analyst rolled into one.

“We as coaches use Hudl and Sportscode daily to prepare for our next opponents, analyse our last match, and to prepare for training sessions,” said Danilo.

“We get a chance four to five times a week to show the players video on the Hudl platform, to show where they can improve a specific exercise in training. We use statistics from Sportscode to present findings to our team.”

“That’s how I started doing this coaching job, and of course video analysis trained my brain and eyes to see better and notice things others could often miss.”

Danilo is adamant that the video analysis tools at his disposal are essential to his coaching position.

“For me Hudl made my work so much easier and for time management it’s essential to analyse a match with speed, because we train and play several times per week,” said Danilo.

“A match lasts 90 minutes. But it takes a lot longer for a coach when you take the time for analysis into consideration.

“In terms of speed and time factor, Hudl is the best there is. It would take three times as long to do what we do without it.”

Not only is Danilo utilising video analysis to grow his own career, he’s also using it to nurture Paderborn’s talent of tomorrow.

Aside from senior squad, Paderborn are now using video analysis in their Under 21 and Under 19 programs. With plans for the Under 15 and 17 age group to come.

10 of Paderborn’s first team squad is under the age of 23 and currently there are three homegrown players in the team — Strohdiek, Sebastian Schonlau and Sergio Gucciardo.  

Gucciardo joined Paderborn’s academy in 2015 and at 19 years old has already made four appearances as well as picking up two caps for the Turkish Under 17 side.

“We want to see as many players possible so we have a better idea of how they’ll be when they graduate to the senior squad and how we can best integrate them. Through Hudl we can view footage of the players daily and produce a database of the best clips for each player.”

Danilo is quick to credit video analysis to the identification and training of the next generation of Paderborn players.

“It’s very important for us that the youth teams work with Hudl, firstly to keep everything uniform, and crucially to improve and facilitate the sharing of videos,” said Danilo.

According to Danilo, a key issue for youth coaches can be monitoring all their talent effectively, which is solved through effective sharing of video summaries.

“Truthfully, we don’t always have a chance to see these young players live, because sometimes we will have a simultaneous match or we train at different times,” said Danilo.

“We want to see as many players possible so we have a better idea of how they’ll be when they graduate to the senior squad and how we can best integrate them. Through Hudl we can view footage of the players daily and produce a database of the best clips for each player.

“These playlists are available for us to view in under 5 minutes, which has made our job so much easier.”

To learn more about how Hudl uses analytics to fuel the modern game, you can sign up for one of our online classes or take a look at our professional case studies from La Liga club Deportivo Alaves and Top 14 Rugby’s Stade Rochelais.