Top European Soccer Teams' Source of Talents

Lutfiadi Rahmanto

Visualizing top european soccer teams' source of talents, buying renowned players, under radar or nurturing their own.


This data visualization shows where teams that play in UEFA Champions League (UCL) get their players from, whether from stronger or weaker team. Holding the most tweeted sport event in 2012, UCL is one of the most celebrated sport event in the world. To draw a comparison, UCL is to Europe as Super Bowl is to USA. (Further explanation

The story behind this, is each football team have their own method to build their squad. Teams who are recently bought by ultra-billionaire tend to go on spending-spree luring well-established player from top teams. While there are teams who have scouts with keen eye to recruit talents under the radar. And there are teams who rely on their own academy, nurturing young talents. The order of strength of the teams is defined by UEFA Ranking ( that measures performance of teams who play in European continental competition.

The visualization will be depicted in 3D cylindrical coordinate, where each players are represented as spheres. The closer the sphere to the center means he comes from stronger team. There is also a circle on the plane to show the the difference in ranking between his current and previous team. The color of the sphere represents categorical variable (whether they come from stronger team, weaker team, or club's academy).

From this visualization, there are several stories that could be noticed. England clubs tend to buy players from strong teams. Top three teams (none are from England) trust their own academy and have several homegrown veterans in their squads.


Comm Lab: Networked Media