Here is what the Hungarian press had to say about IPSO .

IPSO (International Professional Scouting Organisation- founded in the UK) held a course recently for scouts and analysts for the first time in Hungary. The company is well known worldwide and awarded by YMCA. 

The football news website was invited to the 2 day event. Long and intensive the course shows every deep aspect of scouting of how it works in real life at the highest level showing how you could become a professional football scout. This course was taught by Colin Chambers who is one of Middlesbrough FC`s first team scouts and an opposition analyst. He has also worked for Charlton Athletic and Bolton Wanderers both in the Premier League and Championship.

The Level 1 course was held in early June in Budapest, at Budapest Honved stadium. After the first day the students watched the Budapest Honved – Vasas Hungarian Championship game. The students had to analyse a player ‘Mate Vida’ during the game and make a full scouting report about him. This was the exam within the course.

The British scout taught the most important parts of this job and also gave the best tips to minimize any mistakes within the role. These experiences were built in the best-known English football leagues. Ipso helped with their own products (books and special work-books) for the students. The whole training concentrated on practical knowledge but it also helped the attendees with “inside” knowledge and thorough explanation within the books made the course very easy to follow.

Let’s see some example of the practical knowledge. 

  1. It was really exciting, when the students needed to find more than 10 attributes about a player during a 1 minute long video. 
  2. We were shown there are 4 key questions for a report to be detailed and effective.
  3. Chambers showed his old, detailed reports about Jamie Vardy, years before he was known to the public, before he signed to Leicester City. We could follow how this player evolved from match to match and how Chambers` opinion has changed about this player over a period of time.
  4. He showed the weakness of world known defenders such as Dejan Lovren (Liverpool) & Per Mertesacker (Arsenal) and what’s important that is needed to be found by an analysts to find the players weakness. Then showing how a team through one individual weakness can change all the tactics in the build up to playing them.

Of course, we heard a lot of advice as well as great thoughts, but these are a part of the course, so this is one of the reasons why we can`t mention them all, but here are a few of on the information about them.

  1. Never judge after only one game!

Colin Chambers has explained why this could be dangerous and misleading. He said the first time he saw a Polish championship game, he believed, it is on the same level as the top teams in the English championship. But after few games he changed his mind and aimed back to the top of the League one. He attended to the Honved – Vasas 3-1 game. Chambers liked the game and aimed the Hungarian championship as bottom level of the English Championship, but it was his first game in Hungary, so it wouldn`t be his final statement.

  1. Statistics and the analysis systems could be misleading

The scout said, lots of people like the use of statistics with In-Stat, Wyscout and other similar systems, but the numbers sometimes can’t give the full picture. These numbers and systems can be really helpful and are a must for a scout but you must tread carefully when using them. He showed an example of Joe Hart and Manuel Neuer summarisation ,if he only checks the “numbers “ of these players, the English goalkeeper seems to be better but in real life you can`t even compare the ability of the German player to the English one.

  1. Follow the player, not the ball!

He believes the hardest part in this job is this, because most of the people follow the ball during a match. However the main thing to look at in a player is there (attitude, movement, technical skills, physic etc.)

On the very first course the staff of Honved and other Hungarian clubs were there, but we also found lot of young talented individuals who were there for widening their knowledge. There was a special Hungarian guest as well, who had finished the course in England and now he is starting a scouting role at Preston North End Academy.

Tivadar Fekete, the scout of MTK FC was there. He was the scout who found Dominik Nagy in the small village, in Bolyo and later has become an international player. He shared his thoughts after the 2 days long course:

It was a meaningful 2 days. I’m confident to use all of the new knowledge that I’ve learned here, but I’ve heard a lot of information that can confirm my knowledge in this area as well. Scouting is a really new business in Hungary, except  for a few clubs. I know how the Hungarian academies work, but I believe they are looking for talents in a different way, even though this is the key ingredient to find young and sufficient players. Of course, everything is different on the first team, but they need to use real scouts continuously and this course gave me more confidence in this field and continuing my job in as high standards as it is possible.