The success story of Chidera Ejuke
How we helped sc Heerenveen find another sublime winger by using data analytics during the scouting process.
sc Heerenveen have been successful in bringing in valuable wingers for years. The secret behind their success is their combination of data, video and live-scouting when searching for new players. According to Technical Director Gerry Hamstra, data helps in separating the wheat from the chaff and giving direction to your scouting department. Just before the start of the 2018/2019 Eredivisie season, sc Heerenveen started working with SciSports.
In the summer of 2019, sc Heerenveen was looking for a winger with the ability to perform great offensive actions, a drive to win and in an age-category which enabled Heerenveen to sell him again. Head of Scouting Karel Brandsma came across Chidera Ejuke in SciSports’ database. The Nigerian winger checked all the boxes and was even considered a high potential player, outperforming in the Norwegian League. This was the start of a success story.
sc Heerenveen stated that the collaboration with SciSports was a way to professionalize their organisation and to support the scouting department. This support would enable them to outperform competitors and reach more successes. The main challenge was finding high potential players that were ensured to make huge money, double the investments and eventually enable Heerenveen to keep improving their first team.
By using SciSports’ football intelligence platform, the scouting department of the Dutch club was able to scan every region, country and competition worldwide at a glance. By flagging the players matching their criteria with this data-based approach, they have been able to focus their eyes efficiently on potential transfer targets. If we take a look at the example of Chidera Ejuke, Heerenveen were looking for a winger with the ability to perform great offensive actions, a drive to win and in an age-category which enabled them to sell him again. Using these criteria, Ejuke caught the eye of Heerenveen’s scouting department.
What sc Heerenveen has to say about SciSports
We use SciSports’ Platform among others to look at a player’s potential. This information is pivotal in our scouting process.
Because of high salary costs in 2018, Heerenveen decided not to buy any players outside of the EU. After analysing Ejuke, they decided to make an exception and hope that the Nigerian would be worth their money, time and effort.
Chidera Ejuke did not disappoint. The Nigerian winger shows an impressive growth of his skill level due to good performance in a league with higher resistance. Additionally, he is the most valuable winger in the Dutch Eredivisie 2019-2020 apart from the traditional top 4 players.
Ejuke’s success story at Heerenveen did not go unnoticed. CSKA Moscow was willing to pay €12million Euros for the Nigerian winger, and in the summer transfer window of 2020 Ejuke moved to the Russian giant. It will be interesting to see if his success story continues in yet another league.