September 26 – Manchester City owners City Football Group has beefed up its club partnership with video game maker EA Sports, tuning it into a global deal across all seven of its owned clubs.
The multi-year deal sees EA Sports become the Official Gaming Partner for City Football Group (CFG) in what CFG is saying “will see a deeper and more integrated approach.”
Damian Willoughby, Senior Vice President of Partnerships at City Football Group, said: “This partnership is significant for City Football Group. By enhancing our existing Manchester City partnership and becoming a global partner for the Group, we’re excited to break into new ground within the gaming industry.
CFG says the existing Manchester City partnership saw the City kit worn 246 million times and Sergio Aguero’s avatar scoring 217 million goals in EA SPORTS FIFA 19. Man City, under the new arrangement, will create a monthly lifestyle gaming show, made by CityTV, on the latest trends in football and gaming, focussing on the EA SPORTS FIFA Team of the Week, and EA SPORTS Player of the Month.
CFG’s clubs will all develop their own local strategies with professional video gamers continuing to represent the club brands at esports tournaments worldwide. NYCFC player, Chris Holly, made esports history by becoming the first ever eChampions League winner last May.
“We know that playing EA SPORTS FIFA entices gamers to become lifelong football supporters so having all three clubs represented in FIFA 20 provides us with a unique opportunity. Our presence in esports has grown significantly over the past three years with each club having a selection of esports players, an exciting content strategy in place and hosting a series of events including tournaments for fans to participate in,” said Willoughby.
The CFG announcement comes a day before the EA SPORTS FIFA 20 version of the games becomes available to the consumer market worldwide on PlayStation®4, Xbox One and PC.
UK&I Country Manager, Electronic Arts, Samantha Ebelthite, commented: “We always aim to blur the lines between the virtual and real worlds of football. Through working with City Football Group on esports, content and fan engagement initiatives, we are delighted to do this by bringing fans closer to the clubs that they love.”
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