A former boss of Liverpool FC who swapped the directors’ box at Anfield for Silicon Valley says his tech company’s new metaverse 3D cameras will revolutionise the way the “TikTok generation” watch football.
Lifelong Reds fan Peter Moore, who was the club’s CEO from 2017 to 2020, even claims people will stop viewing full-length 90-minute football matches.
The onetime PE teacher told the Standard: “That TikTok generation of 8-12 seconds of action want to see the goals scored — they want to see the highlights rather than invest their time.”
“It’s bitesize sports now and you either deliver against that or become a dinosaur.”
In 2020, Moore left Liverpool for California, where he has become senior vice president of Unity, which designs 3D graphics for films and video games.
Unity’s new technology, known as Metacast, involves placing dozens of high-definition cameras at strategic locations at a sports venue and applying machine learning to create an interactive viewing experience, allowing users to choose which positions they want to see gameplay from in real time.
“You’ll get a goal alert— ‘this goal now available in 3D’ — and with your touchscreen you can spin the action around, put your finger on a player and view them from different angles,” he said.
“It’s like playing a football game, dropping yourself right into the action, right into the penalty area.”
The new technology has already been demoed at martial arts matches in Barcelona and is set to become mainstream by the time of the 2026 men’s FIFA World Cup in the US, Canada and Mexico.
The development is the latest sign of the sports industry’s rush to establish a foothold in the metaverse.
Last month, football governing body FIFA filed a trademark application to build a presence in the metaverse, including the creation of digital merchandise stores, while earlier this week, BT Sport joined the Metaverse Standards Forum, a body aimed at building a regulatory framework for business partnerships in the new digital space.