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Meet the Coaches: Performance Analyst Oliver Blitz

20240125_Preaseason_Training_WN_1562Heading into 2024, the Angel City coaching staff has three new members—Oliver Blitz, Omar Zeenni, and Lee Nguyen—and one coach, Eleri Earnshaw, who has moved up from an assistant role to first assistant.

This week, we get to know Performance Analyst Oliver Blitz.

Angel City: What's your role with Angel City?

Oliver Blitz: I basically am in charge of all the video for the team—so cutting all the film for the coaches, cutting all the film for the players, scouting for upcoming games. Scouting on potential new players. Any kind of film or data stuff that involves the soccer side to help the coaches and players is what I handle.

There's a billion different things you can analyze in a soccer game, because the game never stops. So I think it's important to get down to what you actually want to see. For me it's about working with the coaches to see what they value in the game and seeing how Angel City actually plays on the field.

During games, my job is to be up in a booth with a radio to the coaches talking about what's going on. So [First Assistant Eleri Earnshaw] or [Head Coach Becki Tweed] could have the radio and ask me, "how's this team pressing?" and I can just give my opinion on that, or I could send a video clip. And then at halftime I'll show clips to the team as well.

ACFC: How did you learn to do this work and get to Angel City?

OB: I went to the University of Missouri and worked for their women's team there. I did a lot of operations stuff, but we actually had a graduate assistant analyst and he showed me how to do some things. I stopped working for the team my last year of college because I wanted to be a coach. So I started coaching club, which was a really great experience, and then I went on to be a graduate assistant at Florida State this past year and a half, where I was for two seasons. I did my master's degree there and was a full-time video analyst.

ACFC: Which part of your job excites you the most?

OB: I love working with coaches at a high level. FSU is a very high-level college environment, and I got to work with a lot of coaches who were at the top of their game—and here it's the same situation. So the best part of my job by far is being able to see inside of these football geniuses' [heads] that I've been lucky enough to work with.

Plus there's the football side, but also the personal side. At FSU, there's a lot of high-level players and I was so lucky to be around that. Before I got there, I thought, "I'm gonna learn a lot from the coaches"—I did, but then also I learned so much from the players. Seeing their personal traits made me step my game up and I hope being here is going to be the same thing.

ACFC: Can you give an example of something you learned from a player?

OB: There's this FSU player, [Jordynn Dudley]. She was a freshman this year and a first-team All-American—so she's incredible. Becki coached her with the U20s. She's 18, and every day at practice, she's the top player. Very quiet person, just working super hard. I look at her and think, "am I even as mature as Jordynn?"

So things like that—just seeing how the players are at that level. Being around those kinds of people makes it way easier to do your job at a high level.

ACFC: What's exciting about Angel City for you?

OB: My dad coached college [at the University of Missouri] for about 25 years and I worked in college for six years, so I've been around the women's game my entire life. The college level used to be the biggest thing. And now, seeing teams like Angel City, the professional game is turning into something that was not thought possible until very recently, which is awesome.

Being a part of something that's growing like that is very huge for me. It's a very unique combo of, it's already at a very high level, but it has the potential to go somewhere that I can't even think of right now. The league's in such a good place, but it's only going to go up.