Arsenal Make Bizarre Move by Appointing Candy Crush Creator as Club’s New Data Scientist

2 min


​Arsenal have continued their staff overhaul by appointing a former Candy Crush creator as the club’s new Data Scientist.

According to ​Training Ground Guru, a website run by former BBC Sport journalist Simon Austin, highly-qualified scientist Mikhail Zhilkin joins the club having had no previous experience in the football industry.

The Russian graduated with a Master of Science in Applied Physics and Mathematics in 2006 from the famous and well-respected Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology.

He oversaw the launch of two famous Candy Crush games – Candy Crush Soda and Candy Crush Jelly – during his time as senior data scientist and technical lead for, the company behind the famous game franchise.

In his new role at Arsenal, Zhilkin will focus on injury and physical data, identifying patterns and creating insights in order to help the coaching and sports science staff.

Mikhail Zhilkin on LinkedIn (1)

His work will help to improve training and recovery processes to ensure that players are at maximum fitness going into every game of a long and crucial season for the Gunners.

Arsenal’s new recruit is also said to speak excellent English, a crucial factor as communication with other departments in the club will be a huge part of his new role.

Over the past year, Arsenal have overhauled their staff in virtually all departments of the club, including coaching, recruitment, medical, performance and contract negotiating.

Arsenal FC v Atletico Madrid - UEFA Europa League Semi Final Leg One

Some of the key new figures to arrive include Unai Emery, Sven Mislintat, Raul Sanllehi, Sal Bibbo, Gary O’Driscoll and Darren Burgess.

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