Sky Sports delves even deeper into the world of eSports, announcing ePremier League tournament broadcast.
Top sports channel in the UK to feature FIFA tournament
Sky Sports has just revealed today that it will broadcast a brand new eSports tournament. The ePremier League will be formed in a partnership with the publisher of the FIFA video game franchise – Electronic Arts. The tournament will be based in the United Kingdom and will be shown live on the Sky Sports channel.
The game in question is FIFA 19 Global Series, developed by EA Sports. It will include all 20 Premier Football clubs and all of them will make an appearance at the tournament. To determine which gamer will get to play a given team, qualifications will be held ahead of the event. Dedicated players may register for their favorite team starting December 2018.
The tournament will begin in January after the qualifications and the 16 chosen players of a given team will compete against each other to represent the football club. The best two players of a team – one for each console platform – will make it to the Grand Finals at the Gfinity Arena in London. The Grand Finals will be broadcast live on Sky Sports.
Sky Sports’ involvement in eSports
Sky Sports has shown a great interest in the eSports industry these last few months. Not too long ago, the network forged a partnership with FACEIT to broadcast the Grand Finals of the CSGO FACEIT Major in London. That tournament turned out to be the third most viewed in eSports history, right behind the League of Legends 2017 World Championship and Dota 2’s The International 7. Evidently, the company must be pleased with how that event turned out.
Although it’s unconfirmed, Sky Bet along with multiple esports betting sites will have involvement in the eFIFA tournament offering major esports bets.
It is no doubt interesting how this will progress and what this means for the future of competitive FIFA video games. Granted, the eSports football scene is not the largest, nor the best known out there, but it still enjoys a significant following. Furthermore, the addition of a non-violent video game could work to influence the Olympic Committee’s opinion regarding eSports. Following the Asian Games 2018 event, the Olympic bureaucracy determined that many eSports titles were too violent and did not hold up to “Olympic values and ideals”. Despite that, the Committee did praise the inclusion of Konami’s Pro Evolution Soccer series in the selection of eSports.
The EA Sports development studio has been established for decades and in that time has developed numerous sports titles. Moreover, their games are widespread and quite popular in the West. There may be a whole new eSports viewer base that simply needs to awaken and this new development might be the way to do it.