Sunderland Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman reveals key factors behind appointment of new head of analysis and data James Young

Sunderland have filled another key role behind-the-scenes with the appointment of James Young as the club’s new head of analysis and data.

Wednesday, 31st March 2021, 10:16 am

Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman has welcomed Young to the Stadium of Light and says the use of data will provide an ‘important role within our strategy’ with another key post filled since Kyril Louis-Dreyfus took charge on Wearside.

A graduate from Loughborough University, the club say Young has a ‘proven track record in performance analytics consultancy’ having held senior roles with Stats Perform and Delloitte prior to moving to Wearside.

He has operated within a number of sports since 2009, including football, rugby and a range of Olympic disciplines.

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Sunderland's Stadium of Light.

Young has also worked with Saracens’ during their Gallagher Premiership and Heineken Cup successes and with Team GB as they collected five Olympic gold medals.

Reflecting on the appointment, Speakman said: “The use of data is becoming more prevalent in our industry and our interpretation and application of it will play an important role within our strategy.

"It was key to identify the right individual to lead a combined domain across performance analysis and data and we are delighted to welcome James to Sunderland AFC.

"This appointment represents a significant change to our operational processes, introducing a new way of working that will support all functions within the football department to ensure they become more effective and efficient.”

Sunderland face another key weekend of League One fixtures with Oxford United heading to Wearside on Good Friday before the Easter Monday trip to automatic promotion rivals Peterborough United on Monday.

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