Newry-based StatSports has scored another multi-million dollar deal with a leading sporting organisation in the United States.
The sports tech company, which previously struck up a landmark partnership with the US Soccer Federation, has now agreed a new deal with US Youth Soccer, one of the largest sporting organisations in the world for young people, with nearly three million players.
Founded in 2008 by Alan Clarke and Sean O'Connor, StatSports has developed advanced performance wearable technology that is used by more than 800 elite clients across multiple sports, including soccer, American football, rugby, baseball and basketball.
Among the many teams to use its Fifa-approved GPS trackers are leading football teams such as Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Juventus and PSG. International squads including Brazil, England and Belgium, are also users of StatSports' technology, as are the likes of the New York Yankees and the Miami Dolphins.
StatSports closed a five-year deal with the US Soccer Federation in 2018, believed to be worth up to $1 billion (€870 million). The new partnership with US Youth Soccer sees the company rolling out its technology to all the clubs and players in the newly announced National League Elite 64.
StatSports has developed a customised product for US Youth Soccer, with a mobile app that will be available for Elite 64 participants to access and track data.
Additional benefits for players and coaches will include US Youth Soccer-specific performance leaderboards, and coaching seminars with professional staff, and StatSports brand ambassadors such as World Cup winner Megan Rapinoe.
“The collaboration between US Youth Soccer and StatSports will create an elite soccer experience that will help players take their games to the next level,” said Ms Rapinoe.
Launching later this year, National League Elite 64 features competition in six age groups and includes year-round competition for the top 64 boys clubs and top 64 girls clubs in the US.
Mr O’Connor, the company’s chief executive, said making StatSports’ technology available to young players will help raise the standard of play in the US.
“The fact that US Youth Soccer is putting StatSports data at the forefront of player development is a huge statement of intent,” he said.
StatSports’ flagship solution is the Apex device, which is worn in a vest and positioned between the shoulder blades during training and matches. It captures thousands of datapoints per second during training and matches to help teams maximise player performance and reduce injury risk.
Information gleaned via the device can be streamed directly to a phone, tablet or smartwatch, making it easy for coaches to respond in real-time.
The company secured a near $20 million (€17.4 million) investment in April 2019 with Premier League stars Raheem Sterling and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain both putting in more than £1 million (€1.1 million) each.
It has since followed this up with a further undisclosed investment from among others, English soccer stars Harry Kane, Steph Houghton, Harry Maguire and Phil Foden.