VY Esports, a company that works in live events and content creation for esports, has partnered with American video game company Electronic Arts (EA) and soft drink brand Coca-Cola. The Russian Esports Federation (RESF) and Football Union of Russia (RFU) are also involved in the deal.
The reason for this partnership? Together, these companies will launch the Russian Interactive Football Cup. This tournament will act as the official qualifier of the EA SPORTS FIFA 18 Global Series, leading to the Fifa eWorld Cup 2018.
Seen as a way to capitalize on the popularity of the FIFA World Cup – which will be hosted in Russia itself this year – VY Esports will bring in players, fans, and celebrities to take part in both online and offline esports events leading up to the world’s biggest football competition.
Oleg Butenko, CEO and Founder of VY Esports commented in a statement: “The Russian Interactive Football Cup will bring the global community of esports fans and players together in an experience unlike any other. The Cup will focus on online and live content that entertains and engages the competitive spirit in ways that only EA, FIFA and football can bring. We’re excited to partner with EA and Coca-Cola to create the first official qualifying competition of this magnitude across Russia.”
The first stage of the Russian Interactive Football Cup will be made up of a series of online and offline qualifying events, from there a total of 64 players will advance to the final tournament in May at the Yota Arena, Moscow. The final stage of the competition will be broadcast on Russian social networks VK.com and Odnoklassniki, among other platforms unspecified at this point.
The winner of the Russian Interactive Football Cup will advance to the EA SPORTS FIFA 18 Global Series Playoffs.
Esports Insider says: It’s a clever move to host a Russian FIFA tournament so close to the 2018 World Cup, and we’re glad to see a familiar face in Coca-Cola returning for yet another esports-related deal – especially when it has ties to traditional football. Hopefully, the Russian Interactive Football Cup is broadcast on a platform such as Twitch so it gets exposure outside of the hosting country.