The continent is home to some of the world’s great clubs, some of the biggest rivalries in the modern game and, without a doubt, some of the most talented players we’ve ever seen lace up their boots.
It seems that hardly a week goes by that Lionel Messi doesn’t break another record. In the last month alone we’ve seen him score his 600th goal for Barcelona and pass the 50 goal mark for a second season. And always along with these records falling, the debate amongst pundits (professional and armchair alike) starts up again about who the greatest of all time really is. And that debate will always feature three South American legends, Pelé, Maradona and Messi.
We’re not here to add our voice to that debate, but rather to raise the question about how South America consistently produces the greatest players of their generation. It’s often suggested that it’s the passion that runs in every child’s veins that drives them to success. That the cultural DNA of the continent breeds footballing talent. As the old advert goes, they really eat football, sleep football, drink… well football as well actually.
Can this passion and drive and cultural love of the beautiful game continue to keep South American clubs and academies at the top? Possibly, but European clubs are fast catching up if not overtaking. The money now in Europena football often means that they are able to spend so much more on young player development that they’re overtaking the mercurial brilliance of their South American counterparts.
In the last month we’ve been with some of the biggest clubs in Chile and Argentina, helping to marry their raw talent with our technology systems. We hope to bring the most complete data to push them back to the top of the world.