Get the latest news and insights from 21st Club


Currently browsing: Heuristics
  • 01 Mar 2018

    Attack, attack, attack

    Last Wednesday, Roma led 1-0 at half time against Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League. Their coach Eusebio di Francesco urged his team to continue attacking; not only had they outshot the Ukranians 9-4, they’d created by far the better chances. Roma had an opportunity to put the tie to bed.

    Within seven second half minutes […]

  • 21 Dec 2017

    That winning feeling

    There’s the story of a football club that wanted to learn more about their supporters’ matchday experience. After each game, they asked a selection of match-going fans what they thought of the atmosphere during the game, the view from their seat, their ease of buying food and drink, and so on. They asked the fans […]

  • 29 Jun 2017

    Definitely probably

    In 1964, the CIA’s Sherman Kent tried to bridge the gap between ‘poets’ and ‘mathematicians’ when discussing the likelihood of certain events. He proposed that a phrase like ‘probable’ should represent an event with a 75% chance of taking place, while a phrase like ‘we doubt’ should be around a 30% chance.

    His study inspired a […]

  • 24 May 2017

    Because thinking is hard

    Back in January we wrote about some of the cognitive biases that can hinder our better judgement when recruiting new players. For example, we might overvalue experience – because know-how feels safe and so we assume it’s important – or be overly optimistic about a new player because we desperately want the signing to work out.
    Since […]

  • 29 Mar 2017

    The distant GM

    The ability to remain objective and view information dispassionately is central to any robust decision-making process. At 21st Club we frequently expound the benefits of getting an ‘outside view’ when setting strategic objectives or making other major decisions. But what if clubs went further and more fully incorporated the role of ‘the outsider’ into their […]

  • 16 Feb 2017


    If I asked you how likely your new January signing was to be a success, what would you say?

    Assuming you acquired an established player your natural instinct is that you really want your new signing to play every match between now and the end of the season – to boost your chances of survival or […]

  • 19 Jan 2017

    The endowment effect

    At this time of year, it is worth remembering that there is a sizeable disconnect between the number of transfer rumours reported, and the number of trades that actually occur.

    One simple explanation for this is that the level of evidence required to legitimately report a ‘rumour’ is very low. Another is that the rumours may […]