As part of a multi-year collaboration with Liverpool FC, Google DeepMind has developed a full AI system that can advise coaches on corner kicks.

Google DeepMind, a British-American artificial intelligence research laboratory which serves as a subsidiary of Google, has introduced TacticAI, an AI system that can provide experts with tactical insights, particularly on corner kicks, through predictive and generative AI.

The technology builds on a multi-year agreement with Liverpool, which was signed three years ago. Under the agreement, Google DeepMind published Game Plan, which explored the reasons why AI should be used in assisting football tactics, highlighting examples such as analysing penalty kicks.

This paper was then followed by Graph Imputer in 2022, which showcased how AI can be used with a prototype of a predictive system for downstream tasks in football analytics.

TacticAI is now the next step, combining predictive and generative models and has been built to address three core questions, which are answered in the firm’s latest blog:

  • For a given corner kick tactical setup, what will happen? e.g., who is most likely to receive the ball, and will there be a shot attempt?
  •  Once a setup has been played, can we understand what happened? e.g., have similar tactics worked well in the past?
  • How can we adjust the tactics to make a particular outcome happen? e.g., how should the defending players be repositioned to decrease the probability of shot attempts?

The technology was developed and evaluated by both Google and experts from Liverpool, with recent results showing that the AI’s suggestions were preferred by human expert raters 90% of the time over tactical setups seen in practice.

Liverpool has not only been using AI to gain an on-pitch advantage, the Premier League club signed a deal with Google Pixel, making it the official mobile phone partner of the club. One of the most notable features of the mobile phone is its use of AI, which the football club planned to use to ‘enhance the matchday experience’.

Looking away from the Merseyside club and football, earlier this year Infinite Athlete joined forces with Gemini Sports Analytics to create an AI sports platform, which aims to help sports teams and organisations make more in-depth and accurate decisions on and off the field.

Previous articleLos Angeles Rams ticket sales to be powered via Shift4
Next articleMcDonalds takes on three-year French Ligue 1 title sponsorship