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Footie fans can count on brainy Rachel

Countdown brainbox Rachel Riley is to use football stats to ensure fans know the score when it comes to the importance of maths and numeracy.

The BBC has created a series of films which will be launched during Football Focus next Saturday explaining how numbers power the beautiful game with their Maths Of The Day initiative.

Riley will join forces with footie pundit Robbie Savage to look at statistics and some of the applications of maths in areas such as the angle of shots as they help viewers to appreciate the value of numeracy skills.

BBC Sport and BBC Learning have teamed up to launch the campaign to coincide with the return of FA Cup coverage to the Beeb with four films to be shown on Football Focus.

A further four films have been made for the BBC's online iWonder guides examining the relationship between maths and soccer.

Sports presenter Dan Walker said: "Football supporters know their maths already. It's buying a pie and a Bovril and making sure you've got enough dosh left to get home.

"It's adding up the goal difference to see how many your team need to score to avoid the drop or make the play-offs.

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"What this campaign does is show you how to apply that knowledge to solve everyday maths problems."

The films, which are being released over the coming months as the FA Cup progresses, will also be made avail-able on the BBC Sport website.

CBBC's MOTD Kickabout will make versions of the films suitable to its audience, Gary Lineker is making three football-related maths films for primary schools and there will be further support for the campaign on BBC Radio 5 live.

Head of BBC Learning Sinead Rocks said: "Many people have challenges when it comes to numeracy. We want Maths Of The Day to play a part in addressing this in a way that feels engaging and by helping people realise maths isn't just about textbooks or classrooms."

Mike Ellicock, the chief executive of UK charity National Numeracy, said: "International research shows that good everyday maths is the best protection against unemployment, low wages and poor health - and this excellent initiative should help to combat 'I can't do maths', something that is holding back millions of people across the UK."

hnews@herald.ie


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