Melbourne Victory’s E-League competitors for season two have made their intentions clear: they’re here to take the top prize.
Season one player Mouad Zwed has re-signed with the club and is joined by Sarge Singh to lead Victory’s charge against the best FIFA players in Australia.
Good friends for several years, Mo and Sarge will be hoping their combined chemistry and skill can help the club claim its first E-League title.
Like last season, games will be played every Thursday night and in addition to being streamed live on Twitch, will also be carried by Fox Sports channel 505. All Hyundai A-League clubs will have an Xbox and PlayStation representative respectively, as well as a substitute player.
How would you describe yourselves?
Mo: FIFA and gaming is like a part-time job for me where I mainly play weekends but I do stream on Twitch when I get the opportunity to. I also play football for Kingston City FC in the NPL and it takes up most of my week but FIFA for me is just casual at the moment.
Sarge: I work in the government, it’s hard to describe what I do for a living! I stream on Twitch every chance I get. I like to help people get better and the community to get better, especially in this region.
How would you describe your friendship?
Mo: Toxic! The game brings the worst out of us I guess but I’ve known Sarge for a couple of years now. I remember the first time I played him, we didn’t really know each other well but I lost 3-2 to him via a 120th minute penalty. I remember raging to one of my mates about how bad he was and then we just have been friends since then. He’s one of, if not the best player in the region and I always struggle against him when we play friendlies. We’ve played about 100 games this year and I think I’ve won about 5%.
How long have you two played FIFA for?
Mo: I’d say casually all my life, I’ve played all FIFAs that have come out either online or offline. I’d say I started taking it more seriously in FIFA 13 and really the E-League last year was my first major competition.
Sarge: I’ve also played casually my whole life, probably since FIFA 2000 on PC. I started taking it seriously in FIFA 10, where I attended the Interactive World Cup. FIFA 17 is where I broke out as one of the best players in Australia and I went to three or four events then. Last year for FIFA 18, I took a break but I still played head to head.
Sarge is on the PlayStation, how did that decision come about?
Sarge: We both can play on both consoles very well, it just all comes down to who feels more comfortable on which platform.
Mo: Sarge is a better player than me on PlayStation and he wants the PlayStation spot so I’m not going to stand in his way! He has to have that spot. I’d grown up playing on Xbox anyway so I’m quite comfortable on it. It was my decision to make to put him on PlayStation.
How excited are you about the future of the E-League
Mo: I’m really excited. Being involved last year it was the first major tournament that represented Australian players and A-League clubs. A lot of people in Europe underestimate the players here because we don’t have a great number of players, but the E-League smashed everything last year in terms of stats. It’s getting even bigger this season with games every round to be shown on Fox Sports and now the FFA also have the support of EA Sports. It’s going to get bigger and bigger every year.
Sarge: Speaking as a viewer last season, I watched most of the games and last year was such a success. It was really good giving the spotlight to our region and showing the world that we’ve got some players too who can compete.
Mo, what did you learn from the first season?
Mo: No matter how comfortable you are you always get stressed before a game. What I’d obviously like to improve on is to get more wins than last year but for me, I’ve made lifelong friendships with these guys I used to play online against, to meet them is great, I speak to a lot of them almost every day. For me personally the goal is to win the whole thing, the E-League, that’s the only thing that would satisfy me.
Sarge: That’s the goal!
Who’s the first player you pick in your side?
Sarge: I’d have to say prime Ruud Gullit.
Mo: I’ll say 99 Ronaldo, even though I’m a big Messi fan.