Friday 04 January 2019, 14:56

City Football Group – A global eSports setup

  • City Football Group has four FIFA players on its books

  • From Manchester via Australia, all the way to the United States

  • City Football Group’s eFootball players and clubs at a glance

City Football Group (CFG) established its eSports department by signing Kez Brown as its first FIFA player in June 2016.

When City discovered, via a fan survey, that more than half of Man City fans are active FIFA gamers, it was a natural step to start acquiring professional players.

It is particularly common in "new" football markets - such as the US - for football fans to start supporting a specific team after playing with them on FIFA. This prompted the group to sign an agreement with its first eSports sponsor in 2018.

Melbourne City, New York City and Manchester City are the three teams in CFG that all have an eSports player. In Kai Wollin, Manchester City have a multiple FIFA eWorld Cup Grand Finalist at their disposal, who was only narrowly beaten into second place by Spencer Ealing in the 2017 Final Showdown.

The team at a glance: Kai Wollin - Manchester City Shaun Springette - Manchester City Christopher Holly - New York City FC Marcus Gomes - Melbourne City FC

All of the players are full-time pro’s, and spend 100 per cent of their day on eSports. In New York, Melbourne and Manchester, City have acquired local talent, and players who are first and foremost fans of the team.

In the case of Kai (Manchester City), there’s a more global approach, given his high profile within the sport. He gives the Manchester City digital channels an additional boost, particularly in his native Germany.

The group has also set itself ambitious targets for the coming year, and is looking to have full representation at the FIFA eWorld Cup 2019.

CFG is also keen to expand its eFootball team and reach more people with its eSports content. It would also like to make greater use of its training facilities to continually improve the performance of its eSports players.

Whether in Manchester, New York or Melbourne, all of City Football Group’s players are undoubtedly among the favourites to qualify for the FIFA eWorld Cup 2019. All that remains is to see how their journey plays out.