Football Technologies & Innovations: FIFA tracks player’s movement with the help of AI


As the world progresses towards an innovative approach, FIFA is choosing high-end tech too. However, there is always some negativity around such advances. As we all know this year the FIFA World Cup is taking place in Qatar. The plans include a variety of offers and packages from both Qatar and FIFA. Such as how FIFA is using the best football technologies and innovations along with multiple experiences.

They are using Robot Linesman Tech and Ball Tracking technology in the World Cup ball Al-Rhila. Qatar on other hand has introduced innovative cooling systems in its stadiums, such as Al Thumama, Education City Stadium, and Al Janoub. The million-dollar idea of providing services like affordable places to stay is also among Qatar’s plans.

With various experiences, the FIFA World Cup 2022 is just around the corner. Don’t wait up and grab your tickets. Have a completely enjoyable experience with the latest advancements and offers. Now let’s talk about how FIFA is planning to use artificial intelligence to track the player’s movement.

Football Technologies & Innovations: Tracking Players Movements


During the upcoming World Cup, FIFA will leave no room for debate about whether a goal was offside or onside. The International Association of Football Federation announced the use of semi-automated technology to assist referees in making more precise offside decisions during the FIFA World Cup.

How does it work?

This is how it will work: 12 cameras will be installed beneath the stadium’s roof to track the ball across the field, as well as 29 pieces of data for each individual player, including all relevant arms and legs, and extremities. The cameras will detect the position of the ball and the players 50 times per second, calculating their accurate position on the field.

The system will provide an automated offside alarm signal to video match officials inside the video operation room based on the data collected, indicating whether or not a player was in an offside position. An offside position occurs when any part of the player’s body is closer to the opposing team’s goal line than both the ball and the opposing team’s second-last player, usually the goalie.


The data will then be manually reviewed by the video match officials before being forwarded to the on-field referees. The data will also be used to create a 3D animation of the play, which will detail the positional play of the players involved at the time the ball was played and will be shown on big screens at the stadium. FIFA expects that this entire process will take only a few seconds, resulting in a faster and more accurate offside decision-making process.

Some benefits of using this technology

The use of Artificial Intelligence for the tracking of a player’s movement is a good initiative. However, there are multiple of pros for the usage of this tech. Let’s dive into those advantages.

1. Identifying actions by detecting body pose and limbs

Using an AI model based on current advances in AI and deep learning assists in detecting the body and poses of players so that their movements could be recognized and analyzed.

The technology analyses video footage to identify individual players and defines whether they are running, walking, or jumping, as well as which foot they are passing the ball with.
To train the AI system, the researchers used deep learning (a novel state-of-the-art machine learning technology) and computer vision.

Deep learning is the process of training a complex deep neural network to learn hidden patterns and extract features from large amounts of data in order to perceive them.

2. Monitoring players in order to gather individual performance data

Player tracking will assist in determining how a player’s position is relevant to others – information that is critical when analyzing team sports coordination.

3. Camera combination

When it comes to analyzing lower league or grassroots games, limited camera coverage (field of view) and low resolution have also been an issue. As only low-cost affordable cameras are often used to record a match.

This is problematic because it is difficult to record the entire field of view. So the players can move in and out of the image view, making it difficult to track them.

The researchers propose using two low-cost consumable level normal cameras (such as GoPros). Each recorded half of the football field, and a practical camera stitch method they developed. The technology generates a full field of view by using corresponding feature points from both cameras. It helps as it allows one to track a player’s movement and body movement.

Football Technologies & Innovations: Testing of AI for the upcoming World Cup 2022


The semi-automated offside technology process and connected ball technology have been successfully tested at numerous test events and live FIFA tournaments. Including the FIFA Arab Cup 2021 and the FIFA Club World Cup 2021.

During these matches, the new technology was able to assist video match officials. It was by assisting them in making more precise and repeatable offside decisions in less time.

The MIT Sports Lab analyzed and validated the data collected during online and offline tests. This was done with TRACK at Victoria University scientifically validating the limb-tracking technology. A research team at ETH Zurich is providing additional information and insight into the technical capabilities of such multi-camera tracking systems.

All details on the semi-automated offside technology setup and connected ball technology were presented to the FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifying teams at the Team Workshop in Doha on July 4 and 5 and then shared with the public.

Sophie is a sports broadcaster and journalist for VPN Sports. She has been reporting news on football for over a year now.