LaLiga, the governing body of Spanish football, is set to introduce artificial intelligence (AI) technology to help schedule its fixture list as a means to drive attendances in the top flight.
Although LaLiga announces its full fixture list at the start of each season, the kick-off times for each match weekend are not decided until a matter of weeks before the games.
LaLiga president Javier Tebas hopes a new AI-led system will make it easier for the league to organise fixture lists, which will ultimately grow attendances and ticket sales, and maximise TV viewing figures in overseas markets.
“We are in the testing phase,” Tebas said, according to La Jugada Financiera. “The other day we presented it to the delegated committee of LaLiga. It is the application of artificial intelligence to football. It’s simple. Everyone talks about data. But we have already worked it into our Microsoft platform and our business intelligence department.”
Tebas added: “We have six mathematicians working on it. All the assistance data we have from the last 15 years, from all the stadiums, is put into a database. And then the audiences get in.
“We are now working with the national audiences of the last four years. We do not have more data. Then, a series of questions are asked to the data, in this case in the form of variables. They have chosen 27. They include, for example, the position in the league, what is the next match, what has been the previous match – up to a total of 27 factors that can influence attendance at stadiums.”