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FIFA 19

How much money do FIFA pros earn & how to get paid to play? Esports commentators reveal all

16:15 GMT+3 12/06/2019
MsDossary
Goal has enlisted the help of commentary duo Brandon Smith and Richard Buckley to help you gain a better understanding of competitive gaming

You have may seen FIFA tournaments on your TV screen or perhaps you heard that UEFA recently held a virtual version of the Champions League. If you're new to the world of competitive FIFA, it can be all a bit too overwhelming.

That is why Goal has enlisted the help of FIFA esports commentary duo Brandon Smith and Richard Buckley who have answered all the questions who you might have about the esports scene. After this guide you'll be more than ready ahead of the FIFA eWorld Cup, the biggest tournament of the year.


How do FIFA players become professionals? 


Smith: "FIFA players become professionals in my opinion when they are signed to a football club or esports organisation and their main source of income is to play FIFA and compete at events from around the world."  

Buckley: "So for me personally the term professional is when someone is doing something as a full-time job or earning money from playing a sport or game. How you become a professional player when it comes to FIFA esports is a difficult one.

"I think the keys things are to qualify for events, be hitting more than 27 wins each week on FUT Champions and using your social’s medias in the correct way. Why is this? When football clubs or esports organisations are looking to sign a player they will look at a mixture of things. They will need to see that you’re a top quality player who will be qualifying for events, that you can compete against the best players in the world on Weekend League and that you have a good ‘brand’ or personal image that will fit their organisation." 


What is the yearly format for FIFA 19 esports? 


Smith: "The format of the FIFA 19 season in terms of esports is all about the Global Series. It is all about getting Global Series Ranking points and earning your way up the standings. Once you hit 27 wins on the Weekend League you are eligible to compete in tournaments against other verified players in hope of clinching a high finish and getting an event spot."

Buckley: "The points help you on the FIFA.GG rankings, which kicked off in October 2018. Everyone is trying to ensure they finish in the Top 60 of their console's rankings come the end of May as the Top 64 players will travel to the Playoffs in June/July (TBC). There, the players will battle it out once again for more points/money and to earn a top 16 spot which will take you into the FIFA eWorld Cup grand finals. The FIFA eWorld Cup is the most important tournament of the year, where last year Saudi Arabian FIFA Pro MSDossary won $250k and became world champion."


Who are the best FIFA players in the world?


Smith: "I think if you look at what’s happened this year you have to say Donovan "F2Tekkz" Hunt and Mossad "MSDossary" Aldossary. Both have won a number of competitions including FUT Champions Cups, eClub World Cup and virtual leagues with their respected clubs. Plus the fact that MSDossary was the world champion last year and Tekkz has qualified for 19 events just this year yet both are still hungry to win more which is pretty incredible to see!"


What separates professional FIFA players from others? 


Smith: "The difference in these pro players from the standard good player on FIFA is all about consistency as well being able to do the best possible button input and knowing the outcome before you even have to think about it. Having the knowledge of the game is essential, weak foot/skill moves of certain players and knowing the highest percentage of success in the game is something that sets these players above the rest."

Buckley: "And there's even a large difference in skill between some pro players. I think when you look at the domination that Tekkz has had this year its the minor details. For example, Tekkz can defend, attack, work set pieces, use a handful of skill moves, he can do it all. At every event he is so unpredictable and has never failed to get past the Swiss rounds. There’s also the difference between keeping your calm in the final third and missing a penalty. Players like Tekkz and MSDossary are ice cold when they get into match-winning situations hence why one is a world champion and one has been so dominant this year. 


How much money do professional FIFA players earn?  


Smith: "It’s a difficult question. No one really knows what each player will earn per year or month. Just like real football, no one tends to know each player's individual salary and I guess it should remain private to them. For me personally, I just hope all players in the scene are looked after well and are able to make a career from esports. "

Buckley : "FIFA players get paid different amounts for a number of reasons, one being how much social reach they have as an individual and also how good their performances have been on the virtual pitch can all warrant a different amount of money."


Why are football clubs and leagues getting involved with FIFA esports? 


Smith: "Football clubs and esports organisations are getting involved because they see the scope of FIFA esports and see the potential growth and rapid growth that FIFA has already had in just three years with EA sports backing the game as an esport title."

Buckley: "I’ve recently been writing my university dissertation on this subject. It’s certainly an interesting one, but the answer is simple. Esports provide an opportunity for any clubs to connect with a new demographic of football fan that are maybe slighter younger than your average season ticket holder. More and more people are playing video games now and are choosing to watch Twitch/YouTube over mainstream television.

"As technology is changing, so are people’s interests. For a club like Manchester City, they’ve seen great success in the last 18 months in the way they’ve been able to connect new fans to the club after following their pro players around the world in competitions - especially with the recent ePremier league which saw a Manchester Derby take place. Though it may be on the virtual pitch it still replicated the same thing. I believe more and more football clubs will continue to enter the space, as the FIFA Esports industry grows and more virtual leagues become activated!"