Becoming a Premier League Opposition Analyst

When Joe Ure completed his BTEC Level 3 extended diploma at the age of 18, he set his sights on a Sports Coaching degree at Northumbria University.

By third year, the idea of becoming a PE teacher was appealing to Joe, that was until he saw a dream opportunity to work with his boyhood football club. Newcastle United FC were searching for an Intern Football Analyst and this was a role he wanted to access.

Responding to Setbacks

Unfortunately, Joe fell short in his initial application but took the feedback on board and went away to add further qualifications to his CV. His first step was to enrol on to a ProZone match analysis course and he progressed to a master’s in Performance Analysis at Chichester University; it was here that he reached back out to NUFC.

Joe started by volunteering at the Academy and in his own words ‘he gave a lot of hours’ doing roles such as; filming academy training and matchdays, some first team filming and data entry, and anything else that was passed his way.

Working in the Premier League

Volunteering led to a paid role at the club where he spent 2 years working alongside the first team. As is often the case in the sports industry if you develop good relationships with colleagues, doors of opportunity present themselves and this is exactly what happened for Joe when Tottenham Hotspur came knocking.

Describing what it was like working alongside Argentine Manager Mauricio Pochettino, Joe said:
“The biggest thing for him was training…a lot of his sessions were tactical…he would go through training footage in minute detail with the players”

Gaining Promotion

In 2019, promotion came in two forms for Joe; the first was a new role working specifically on Opposition Analysis at then Championship side Aston Villa FC; following his new appointment he helped his side beat Derby County at Wembley in the playoff finals. When reflecting on this as one of his career highlights he said:“We went on a 10 game winning streak between March and May … facing Derby County in the final, which a lot of people had seen as the John Terry, Frank Lampard game … both sets of coaching teams wanted to win!”


We asked Joe what LLS students will need to have if they wish to pursue a career in analysis and he said:
1. Good time management.
2. Be good with data.
3. Be passionate.

To learn more about the day to day role of a sports analyst and other analysis roles away from sport, check out our full interview on YouTube where Joe also shares some top tips:

If you’re aged 16 – 18 and keen to learn more about LLS’ sixth form sports courses, please contact a member of our student support team via email or telephone 0151 294 3229 ext. 1.

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