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Department of Information Technology

FAQ: Mathematical Modelling of Football

What is this course?

This course is the most comprehensive education available in how to work with football data and understanding the game using maths and stats. It is taught by Soccermatics author David Sumpter, with guest lectures and tutoring from world-leading practitioners and researchers working with data in football.

You can audit the material used in the course here.

The course delivers state of the art of how mathematics and analytics are used on a daily basis within clubs and national teams. As such this course is unique. We believe it offers the technical competence you need to get a job as a data scientist at a football club or in the football industry. Students graduating this course have gone on to do Masters projects within football, and later found jobs working for clubs and in the football industry.

We designed the course contents and the learning goals on the basis of needs in modern football. The course utilises data from Wyscout, Statsbomb, Metrica, Skillcorner, Signality and other leading data providers.

It was first developed during the Covid-19 lockdown in April/May 2020 by a group of club analysts and leading academics. These include lead data scientists at Barcelona (Javier Fernandez), Benfica (Sudarshan "Suds" Gopaladesikan), Liverpool (William Spearman), Hammarby (Fran Peralta), The English FA (Alex Thomas) and the German DFB (Pascal Bauer), David Sumpter and Harvard researcher Laurie Shaw (who was recruited to Manchester City). We initially made this work available at the Friends of Tracking Youtube channel. The course builds on these videos.

Who is this course aimed at?

This is a late undergraduate/Masters level course. It is aimed at students who already have studied university level introductory courses in algebra, calculus, statistics and programming (see course requirements (Links to an external site)). There will be starter/refresher Intro to Python programming and statistics, but the learning curve will be relatively steep for those without this background. You are encouraged to watch some of the Friends of Tracking videos first to get a feeling for the level. You should also, of course, have an interest in football.
It will take 10-15 hours work per week. So it is possible to take as a self-study evening course. It will be challenging, but rewarding.

How do I apply?

Students already in Uppsala and Sweden can apply here

International students can apply through Swedish University Admissions. The course will is open for registration between mid-March and mid-April each year. Latest registration is here

Please rest assured that, if you follow the instructions on this site, upload the correct documents and submit before the deadline, then your application for the course will be assessed. The application process is however handled through Swedish admissions and there is no point emailing or sending a tweet to David Sumpter or other members of staff at Uppsala and asking questions about this process. Please simply follow the procedure and everything will arrive at us.

We accept a maximum of 80 students per year to the course. In previous years, all qualified students were accepted.

The course is free to all EU citizens. For those outside the EU the cost is roughly the €1,200, payable at the start of the course. Again, for eligibility see rules at Swedish University Admissions.

Can I access the course material without registering?

Yes. All the videos, lecture notes and exercises are available for free on this site. These will remain after the course finishes. If you are not registered you won’t have access to the tutorial sessions, project help and graded project work.

There is Slack group which you should join.

Updated  2023-03-18 16:09:08 by David J.T. Sumpter.