The world has been brought to a near standstill as a result of the coronavirus.
Many businesses across the globe, namely small businesses have been seriously hampered. Many may struggle to resurface once everything calms down.
Football clubs are not exempt to this, either.
Around the world, nearly every league competition has been postponed to avoid players, staff and fans from contracting the virus which has claimed nearly 19,000 lives worldwide at the time of writing.
It all started with the Serie A postponing all fixtures. Italy has been ravaged by the virus and it was no surprise that they were the first to temporarily shut up shop.
Spain and La Liga followed suit, before the Premier League and nearly every other competition decided to also bite the bullet and call it off.
Other sports have also been hit hard, with Australian rules football, cricket and basketball in the same boat.
Many clubs and organisations will suffer substantial financial losses as a result and when the dust eventually settles, they will never be the same again.
However, in these dark and bizarre times, one sporting arena has the opportunity to take in the spotlight and grow like they’d never imagined they could.
E-sports have always been a topic for debate. There aren’t many who out and out hate the concept of it, but there is a strong contingent who aren’t fond of it, purely because it’s not the real thing. That it is not a sport.
On the contrary, there are many who believe it is a great niche for some who do have great ability on their respective platforms and that this is a way for them to display their abilities.
With nearly every major sporting code called off until further notice, E-sports is the only sport that will be consistently available to sporting fans around the globe.
There are lots of different games that are played in E-sports. For example, Dota 2, Counterstrike and Fortnite lead the financial market for E-sports.
Nearly $400 million has been handed out to winners across all three of those platforms.
When it comes to sports though, FIFA is well and truly ahead of the game.
Online FIFA has a massive audience around the world, especially in Europe, where many football clubs have signed E-sports players to represent their clubs in major tournaments.
FIFA Ultimate Team has been a huge part of many kids’ lives and now, as they grow into young adults, they now have the unprecedented opportunity to make money off of playing the game they love.
This massive opportunity for E-sports could help them catapult onto a level that could be equal to that of the everyday sports we’ve become accustomed to.
Despite the terrible nature of these circumstances, E-sports leagues across the world would see it as a huge chance gone begging if they were to let this pass up.
There are literally no other sports of note taking place right now.
Unless you can’t get enough of the Russian volleyball, there is not much to turn to at this moment for sports fans.
Granted, tournaments won’t be held in one venue due to restrictions on public gatherings. But as the only requirement is for two players to be present and on a steady internet connection, there’s no reason they can’t keep playing.
FIFA is a universally appreciated game and many fans will begin following their respective club’s representative for E-sports during these tough times.
To simply treat this as normal would be the worst thing clubs and organisations associated with FIFA E-sports could do.
They must take advantage of this enormous opportunity before they never get it back again. Sure, the coronavirus is a large distraction, but if E-sports is to be taken seriously, they must take action.
You can never truly grasp how great an opportunity is until you’ve lost it.
Would you like to see E-sports become more prominent in the wake of the coronavirus? Let us know on social media @Soccersceneau and join in the conversation.
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Above all else, stay indoors and be sensible over the next few weeks or months and look after each other.