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Man City drives US fandom with Fifa 17 eSports tournament

Manchester City Fifa 17 Cup

UK football team Manchester City is looking to drive excitement and build a fandom in the US by hosting a Fifa eSports tournament exclusively in the region.

The club, part of the City Group that incorporates New York City, Yokohama, Melbourne City, Club Atlético Torque and the rumoured purchase of a La Liga side, is working with eSports platform Battlefy to hold the first Man City Fifa 17 Cup.

It will be hosted on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and will see the best 128 players on each platform whittled down to two on each through a series of heats, culminating in two finals in Houston 19 July.

Diego Gigliani, senior vice-president, media and innovation, City Football Marketing, said: “This is a natural evolution for Manchester City. We’ve been very involved with our partner, EA Sports, and the game Fifa for some time.

“As eSports continues to gain momentum, it makes sense for Manchester City to be part of the action and get closer to our fans, who love playing Fifa as Manchester City."

The activity will coincide with the club’s US tour.

Man City was among the first wave of football clubs to snap up an eSports player. The Drum met up with 18-year-old Kieran 'Kez' Brown at the Etihad Stadium, and that interview, alongside an investigation into why clubs are pushing into eSports, will appear in an upcoming feature in The Drum mag and documentary.

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