Friday 03 May 2019, 15:36

'Bob95': From Ajax academy to eFootball star

  • 'Bob95' plays eFootball for Ajax, currently on loan at Sagan Tosu

  • He is a former Ajax academy player on the field

  • Talks handling pressure, the honour of representing club and country

Collected and composed. When it comes to keeping his cool, Bob van Uden – also known as 'Bob95' – is no ordinary eFootballer.

His ability to keep calm under pressure stems from his days as an academy player for his beloved Ajax, where he was involved in the youth team for five years playing alongside stars such as Matthijs de Ligt and Justin Kluivert.

"Having played real football for Ajax’s youth academy, I’ve experienced a lot of pressure and I’ve played in stadiums against the likes of Manchester United," said 'Bob95', in conversation with "Through experiencing that, I feel like I’m ahead of most players mentally."

Once a youth player for the renowned on-field team, the former goalkeeper plays for Ajax eSport and is currently on loan at Japanese side Sagan Tosu.

The numbers in 'Bob95' pay homage to the year 1995 when the Amsterdam giants won the UEFA Champions League, seeing off AC Milan 1-0 thanks to Patrick Kluivert's goal - the father of Bob’s former team-mate Justin.

"I’m born and raised in Amsterdam, Ajax is all I know," he said. "On the field, I didn’t make it even though I wanted to. But being able to represent Ajax on the eSports side makes up for that."

Does he still keep in contact with his former on-field team-mates from Ajax?

"My parents are good friends with Matthijs de Ligt’s parents. When our paths cross, we of course talk and catch up," he said. "I used to play FIFA with him back in the day when we were about 13. I’d like to play him again to see what he’s like now."

Club and country

As an eFootballer, 'Bob95' is still very much part of the fabric at Ajax. When not in Japan with his loan club, he is often with his eFootball team-mates involved with the Amsterdam side.

"We are together a lot," he said. "We hang out outside of playing FIFA, we’re very good friends. We often go out socialising together as Amsterdam is a great place to go out."

Chief among them is 'Dani', a team-mate of 'Bob95' at club and international level. The pair represented the Netherlands on the global stage at the inaugural FIFA eNations Cup™ 2019. "We know each other very well and we know each other’s weakness and strengths," he said.

The eNations Cup marked a significant milestone is the journey of 'Bob95', who was able to represent his country at eFootball in an official capacity for the first time.

"It’s an honour to play as the best PlayStation player from the Netherlands," he said. "I’m really proud. It’s my biggest achievement so far in FIFA 19 and perhaps the biggest honour of my whole career so far."

From the grass pitch to the virtual field, the journey continues for 'Bob95'.

Bob van Uden of the Netherlands poses 2019-05-01 13:24:07