Monday 03 February 2020, 10:55

Bale: There are similarities between football and eSports

  • Gareth Bale revealed as co-owner of Ellevens eSports

  • Team will be competing at this week’s FIFA eClub World Cup

  • Bale joins likes of Ruud Gullit, Mesut Ozil in venturing into eSports team ownership

With three FIFA Club World Cup™ winners’ medals to his name, Gareth Bale knows what it takes to triumph on the global stage.

This week, the Welshman will have a vested interest in who will be crowned the best club team on the planet – on the virtual football pitch.

Bale has today been revealed as the co-owner of Ellevens, an eSports team formed in November 2019, who will be competing at this week’s FIFA eClub World Cup 2020™ in Milan. So, what inspired the Real Madrid star to move into the world of eSports?

“My interest in eSports started about two years ago watching Ninja stream Fortnite and I naturally progressed to watching FIFA and the FIFA Global Series,” said Bale. “The competitive side was fascinating, so I decided I wanted to provide an opportunity for gamers who take eSports seriously and want to play for a professional organisation at the highest level.

“I am fortunate enough to have been a professional footballer from a young age playing at some of the world’s best clubs and I feel there are lots of similarities between real life sport and eSports. I want to provide the best professional environment for gamers around the world and build an eSports legacy.”

The expansion of the EA SPORTS FIFA 20 Global Series ecosystem last decade saw renowned football clubs establish eSport divisions, including the likes of Manchester City, AS Roma and Olympique Lyonnais, who will be competing at this week’s eClub World Cup.

The demand for competitive FIFA would later give rise to domestic leagues and international tournaments – from the ePremier League and Virtual La Liga to 24 Member Associations endorsing their own national teams to compete at the inaugural FIFA eNations Cup™ last year.

Bale joins high-profile names such as Mesut Ozil, Christian Fuchs and Ruud Guillt by venturing into the virtual side of football with eSports team ownership.

“On the pitch, my goal is always to win. With Ellevens eSports, that winning attitude is just as important,” said Bale. “There are similarities between football and eSports in that it takes real dedication and sacrifice to reach the top of your game.

“I'm really excited to now have my own team and I'm looking forward to Ellevens competing in major eSports events all over the world.”

Ellevens eSports

The journey to global glory

Bale’s Ellevens will be looking to ‘PResende7’ and ‘EthxnH’ to guide them to eClub World Cup success this week in Milan.

Brazil’s ‘PResende7’ is a seasoned competitor who has played at the last two FIFA eWorld Cup™ Grand Finals, the biggest stage of competitive EA SPORTS FIFA, while the UK’s ‘EthxnH’ has been enjoying a breakout campaign this year.

“It's an honour to be part of Ellevens. Even though we're new in the scene, we already have a very strong team,” said ‘PResende7’. "Having Gareth Bale involved brings a lot of attention which is really exciting. Hopefully we'll deliver our fans a number of championship titles.”

“Fans can expect to see Ellevens be one of the best teams in the world," said ‘EthxnH’. "Having Gareth Bale as co-owner is amazing as it’s a completely new experience for all of us players.”

FIFA President Gianni Infantino awards Gareth Bale of Real Madrid his Adidas Golden Ball award

Having lifted three Club World Cup trophies with Real Madrid, not to mention winning the adidas Golden Ball at the 2018 edition of the tournament, Bale can naturally speak with authority when it comes to competing - and succeeding - on the international stage.

His advice to those in the Ellevens eSports ranks and those hoping to be a part of it? Savour the occasion.

"Whatever you do in life you have to enjoy it so do your best, practice as much as you can and the rest will follow," he said.

"One of the aspects I love about eSports is that it brings people together - it allows anyone in the world to try out for Ellevens eSports. It’s a fantastic chance to become a professional gamer and I wish everyone good luck. I'll be watching!”