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The Importance of Accurate and Reliable Sports Data

By: Paul Pettitt

My name is Paul Pettitt and I’m the Support, Delivery and Quality Manager at Stats Perform. I have worked for Opta, and now Stats Perform for over 20 years and seen a lot of change in the rapidly evolving sports industry, but one thing has remained consistent throughout, accurate and reliable data was and is the cornerstone of success for teams, athletes, and sports organisations alike. The availability and utilisation of precise sports data have transformed the way the game is played, analysed, and consumed by fans worldwide. This article delves into the significance of accurate and reliable sports data and how it has revolutionised the sports landscape.

1. Enhancing Performance and Strategy:

Accurate and reliable sports data has become an invaluable tool for enhancing performance and developing winning strategies. Coaches, trainers, and athletes heavily rely on data-driven insights to gain a competitive edge. Through the analysis of detailed statistics, performance metrics, and opponent profiling, teams can identify strengths and weaknesses, improve training regimens and devise effective game plans. This data-driven approach empowers teams to make informed decisions, optimise performance, and ultimately increase their chances of victory, or in some cases survival.

Professional rugby teams and federations use our RugbyHub tool to easily review game footage, analyse data and even manage match-day performance live.

2. Player Evaluation and Recruitment:

Data-driven player evaluation has become an integral part of talent identification and recruitment processes. Scouts and talent evaluators meticulously analyse performance statistics, physical attributes, and various other metrics to identify potential prospects. Accurate data enables teams to assess player performance objectively, understand their strengths and weaknesses, and make well-informed decisions when it comes to drafting, signing contracts, or making transfers. This data-backed approach minimises risks and ensures teams acquire players who fit their strategic objectives.


Our scouting management tool is developed in partnership with MyCoach, it allows teams to make Opta data-led recruitment decisions and manage squads with ease.

3. Fan Engagement and Experience:

Sports enthusiasts are increasingly hungry for real-time information and statistical insights. Accurate and reliable sports data play a pivotal role in enhancing fan engagement and experience. Whether it’s fantasy sports, sports betting, or simply staying up-to-date with live scores and player statistics, fans rely on accurate data to fuel their passion and interactions with the game. When there are frequent mistakes and inaccuracies with data from their chosen provider it can lead to a lack of trust from fans. When aiming to build brand loyalty it’s good practice to partner with a trusted provider.



Google use Opta data to power their One Box experience to ensure the highest level of accuracy and speed for their users.

4. Media Coverage and Broadcast:

Media coverage of sports events has undergone a transformation with the integration of accurate and reliable sports data. Commentary teams, journalists, and broadcasters utilise live data feeds to provide real-time analysis, statistics, and insights during matches, enhancing the narrative and depth of their coverage. With the advent of advanced technologies, such as augmented reality and virtual reality, sports broadcasts have become more immersive, enabling viewers to access a wealth of statistical information and analysis at their fingertips. Today’s fan expects accurate and reliable data and if broadcasts and media coverage are fraught with inaccuracies then there are plenty of alternatives for them to switch to.

Amazon Prime use Opta data to enhance their Premier League match broadcasts.

5. Sports Betting and Analytics:

The sports betting industry relies heavily on accurate and timely sports data. Bookmakers and sportsbooks utilise vast amounts of data to set odds, create betting markets, and enable informed wagering. Accurate data ensures fair play and transparency, enabling bettors to make well-informed decisions. If a sports book’s data provider is unreliable and inconsistent then bettors will move over to one of the many other betting providers in the market. Another interesting development is the use of Opta data for betting markets. Fans want to bet on shots, passes and tackles as much as they do on match winners and goal scorers – we’re seeing massive growth in that space and expect it to continue.

 Bet365 use Opta data to power their event pages.


The significance of accurate and reliable sports data in today’s sports industry cannot be overstated. From improving performance and strategy to enhancing fan engagement and fuelling media coverage, data has become the lifeblood of the modern sports landscape. The availability of precise statistics and insights has transformed the way the game is played, analysed, and consumed. The ever-saturating market means fans can pick and choose their favourite sportsbooks, broadcasters and content providers based on accuracy and reliability, often switching alliances if they feel the data isn’t up to scratch.
As technology continues to evolve, the reliance on accurate data will only grow, further shaping the future of sports and its industry. If you would like to learn more about Opta data and the data and services we provide then feel free to check out our interactive product finder and find the right products for you.