Premier League champions Manchester City have unveiled a new FIFA esports team in China at an exclusive launch event at the Star Alliance Esports Center in Beijing.
The new squad will compete in the Online Star League (FSL), a competition owned and operated by Tencent, a Chinese multinational investment holding conglomerate whose subsidiaries specialize in various Internet-related services and products, entertainment, gaming, AI etc.
The team will consist of five players, including Zhang Jun, last year’s most valuable player in the FSL, as well as Aruya and Liu Chao. The club has further revealed that the remaining two spaces on the team will be filled by two of their supporters, who will be determined by a nationwide competition.
The team will participate in this season of FSL which gets underway on 15th June.
The English football giants will post updates about the team’s progress on their official Sina Weibo social media channel.
Manchester City became the first English club to enter into the world of esports by announcing a new outfit in November last year. The move also marks the club as the first Premier League club to enter the Chinese esports market.
David Tang, Manchester City’s Chinese regional director said “Our new Fifa Online team comes in addition to our dedicated esports players at Manchester City, as well as at our sister clubs New York City and Melbourne City, highlighting Manchester City’s and the wider City Football Group’s commitment to both esports and our growing fanbase in China.”
Tencent executive Shulun Gao added “It’s great to see Manchester City’s commitment to esports grow with their entry into the Chinese gaming market. Manchester City have already made a significant contribution to the esports industry.”
“They were one of the first Premier League clubs to sign a professional esports player and the digital content and fan experiences they have created since then have been unparalleled. Fifa Online is incredibly popular across China, and it is an exciting prospect for us to have an esports team in China which supporters can identify with the reigning Premier League champions.”