New York City FC has become the first Major League Soccer team to sign a FIFA player after they unveiled Christopher Holly.
By signing a FIFA player, New York City FC have become the first MLS team to enter the space. NYCFC share a parent company with Manchester City, who signed Kieran “Kez” Brown last year as their FIFA representative so this move isn’t overly surprising.
Diego Gigliani, Senior Vice President of Media and Innovation at City Football Marketing revealed in a statement: “At New York City FC, we are always looking for new ways to innovate and get closer to our fans. We are delighted to welcome Christopher Holly to the Club to represent NYCFC as the first ever esports player in MLS,”
He then added: “Christopher will play EA Sports FIFA at gaming tournaments around the world and challenge NYCFC fans pre-match as well as our players. We’ll also be creating content and live streaming on platforms like YouTube and Twitch.”
With the announcement, New York City FC also released a YouTube video with Ugo Okoli playing against Christopher Holly on FIFA and inevitably losing. It seems as though New York plan on using Christopher in a wider ambassadorial role than most FIFA professionals. Whilst many clubs in the UK and across the world now have a FIFA player, they tend to rarely be talked about outside of the space. With New York suggesting that Christopher will “challenge NYCFC fans pre-match as well as our players” and creating content it seems that they have significantly bigger and bolder plans than many a club.
Esports Insider says: It’s the first we’ve heard of a FIFA professional in the States, so it’s great to see. The Madden scene is fairly popular but it’s good to see the MLS getting involved. Now we’re waiting for the big news that the guys in charge of City are going deeper into esports….