Auckland’s A-League expansion club hires player recruitment specialist

Auckland’s new A-League club have appointed former Socceroos and Sydney FC analyst Doug Kors as their head of recruitment as they prepare to reveal their inaugural squad.

Kors joined Sydney FC in 2014 as the head of football analysis, working with assistant coach Steve Corica, who is now head coach of the yet-to-be-named Auckland club.

Main photo: Doug Kors … one of the A-League’s first data analysts.

When Sydney’s head coach Graham Arnold became the Socceroos coach in 2018, Kors followed him to Football Australia, becoming their senior technical analyst.

Kors was one of the A-League’s pioneers, in terms of data analysis, becoming only the league’s third such appointee when he joined Sydney.

Leading a team of analysts, mostly university students, Kors amassed data and video footage from every A-League match, club and player, providing it for Arnold, Corica and their staff to develop game plans.

In a Sydney Morning Herald feature in 2016, Kors said he was entrusted with gathering data for all transfer targets, which included technical traits and their behavioural history.

“We generate reports on players we want to recruit to give our coaches as much information as possible,” Kors told the Herald.

“We’ve come up with a system that’s a multiple check system so we can start to shorten down the list of players we’ve sent through and we can give the coaches key information alongside video to make a judgement on the players.”

Meanwhile, the Auckland expansion club is expected to reveal its name, brand identity and playing kit in the first half of March.

Stuff football writer Andrew Voerman reports the club has already signed seven players and aims to have about 15 lined up by mid-March.

Pre-season training for the new squad will start on July 1.

This story first published February 19, 2024.

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