United's esports team in action.

eFootball Pro: United v Bayern Munich

Friday 10 January 2020 17:00

It was time to shine, as Manchester United’s eFootball.Pro team travelled to Barcelona for matchday one.

After our arrival at the hotel we went straight to the venue, where we met all our opponents and it was great to see them. It may be a competition, but the respect and friendship is more important, so all the players were interacting and joking with each other.

Soon though, it was time for our practice matches. We hadn’t trained particularly well during the week, and this carried through into our first match against FC Barcelona, which they won.

As captain I spoke to the team about changing the way we play, and this immediately resulted in two wins. We followed it up by winning three matches in a row against Nantes FC without conceding a single goal. Our confidence was back!

eFootball.Pro: United v Bayern Munich Video

eFootball.Pro: United v Bayern Munich

Watch our esports team's first two matches of Konami's eFootball.Pro tournament, against Bayern Munich...

The next morning, the competition officially kicked off and the first match was Nantes v Boavista. Each match consists of two separate games with three points for a win and one for a draw.  We expected Nantes to get six points, but Boavista produced an upset, with both teams winning a game to secure three points each.

Next up was Celtic v Schalke. This was the surprise of the day as Schalke took home six points by winning both games 1-0.

The reigning champions Monaco were in action after that, as they faced Arsenal, with the Gunners losing both games.

Our turn next. Mikolaj, Kamel and I played as a three-man team, while Wishal coached us during the game. We started well and, inside the first 10 minutes we got a penalty, which Eldridge scored with Rashford.

Immediately after kick-off, though, Bayern scored the equaliser. We didn't let it faze us, and in the 20th minute we regained our lead. After a great dribble from Kamel with Rashford, he passed the ball to me, I controlled Chong and crossed to Mikolaj who headed home with Pogba.

In the second half we were in no danger but, just like in real football, we conceded the equaliser out of nowhere. A Bayern free kick in the 64th minute looked set to have rescued a point for our opponents, however in the 82nd minute, Kamel intercepted the ball with D’Mani Mellor and produced a long through ball to Rashford and Mikolaj, who scored with a first-time volley. What a goal! Kams and I couldn’t hide our celebrations, while Mikolaj remained his cool self, as we won the first game 3-2.

The second game was much tighter. Bayern Munich kept attacking and had lots of chances, but De Gea produced a number of fine saves. For the majority of the game we had very few shots on goal. We a chance to steal a win at the end of the game, but instead the points were shared. Against one of the title contenders we were happy with four points from the two games.

The final game of the day was between FC Barcelona and Juventus. Everyone watching was hoping for two draws, as they are both serious contenders to win. The first game finished 1-1 and the second game was heading for another stalemate, until Barca scored the winner in the fourth minute of stoppage time.

At the end of matchday one of the eFootball.Pro tournament we occupy third place in the table for now, with eight matchdays still to play. Our next game is against Arsenal on 11 January – an all English affair. Hopefully we can get all six points.