Esports craze is growing by the day among football players. The latest in the line is the Barcelona midfieler Andre Gomes. The Portuguese star has made a strategic investment in G2 esports.
G2 esports, who have teams in League of Legends, Counter Strike: Global Offensive and Rocket League, are among the biggest players in the esports business.
The funding will be used to assist the expansion of G2 esports and grow the current talent pool of players. Other investors include Eric Mindich’s Everblue Management, MACRO Ventures, and Marc Lemann of Go4It.
The Barcelona superstar himself is a big League of Legends fan. “He loves League of Legends and watched us play the semis and the finals. He’s a BIG league fan and we’ve had a lot of conversations about the industry and where it’s headed,” said G2’s CEO and founder, Carlos ‘Ocelote’ Rodgriguez, who is a former League of Legends player himself.
G2 had teased the announcement on Twitter earlier that day.
A new Samurai is joining the army – Can you guess who this is? pic.twitter.com/CA4wmOlpBw
— G2 Esports (@G2esports) August 23, 2017
Fans were confused that the man, who looks like Gomes, could be someone else.
Gomes’ former teammate Neymar, who has now moved to Paris Saint Germain too is a big CS:GO fan. He has once played the game for 20 hours a week and even met up with the SK Gaming team in Brazil.
On top of that, there is Arsenal Owner Stan Kroenke who is buying an Overwatch League team for over £15million. The sports and esports industry are continuing to merge and interlink.
Presently it is expected that eSports will generate $696 million this year globally. Other notable soccer stars to invest in esports include Manchester United’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Brazilian legend Ronaldo.
This follows a wider trend of soccer teams also investing in their own esports teams. Kieran Brown signed with English Premier League team Manchester City last year, becoming its first esports player. Meanwhile a host of other clubs including Manchester United, West Ham, Wolfsburg and Paris Saint-Germain have also jumped into esports.