In Brief

#NoFuchsGiven: Leicester City’s Christian Fuchs talks esports, Fifa and Fortnite

Premier League winner launched his own esports team in June

Leicester City defender Christian Fuchs insists he has no plans to hang up his real boots just yet despite his move into football gaming earlier this year.

In June the 32-year-old became the first Premier League footballer to launch an esports team and academy, under his lifestyle brand #NoFuchsGiven. Focused on competing in the popular Fifa game, Fuchs signed a number of players including Singapore’s Chiang ‘Hibidi’ Wen Jun.

A Premier League winner in 2016 with Leicester, former Austrian international Fuchs revealed the reason why he started his own esports brand.

Speaking at the ESI London 2018 conference, Fuchs said: “I never thought of launching an esports team, but then I saw my son following all those e-gamers, especially the ones from Fortnite and Overwatch, and being a fan of them. I thought ‘hold on, there’s something growing there’.   

“It was my son [that got me into esports], that’s all I have to say. I am proud that he pushed me into that, because it’s a fun business, a great community.”

When Leicester City face Everton at the King Power Stadium on 6 October Fuchs will have some special guests watching him from the stands. His esports team players will attend the Premier League game before spending a few days with “the boss” producing content.

A move into Fortnite or Overwatch?

Fuchs says it’s natural as a footballer to be focused on Fifa, but is there any plan to expand the team into other titles such as Fortnite or Overwatch? If it was his son’s decision the move would already be done.

“For me right now it’s about Fifa,” he said. “I want to see how it grows within the one year. But the pressure is growing from my son because he’s all about Overwatch and Fortnite so I have to deal with that.

“He’s pushing me to branch out. It’s definitely worth having a look at those titles, but I want to grow it [the brand] organically. It has to be step-by-step.”

‘I want to make an impact’

While he was the first Premier League star to own an esports team, Fuchs has now been joined in the gaming industry. The Daily Mail reported earlier this month that Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil has also launched an Fifa esports team.

Will others players follow? Fuchs believes so…

“One or two players at Leicester City are already thinking about doing it as well,” he said. “I strongly believe in the next one or two years there will be more and more players joining esports.”

For Fuchs gaming has to take a back seat while he concentrates on the rigours of being a Premier League footballer for Leicester. “I still have a couple of years in my legs,” he said about his playing career.

But on his ambitions in esports he concluded: “I definitely want to make an impact, I definitely want to be successful and I believe I have a good team to realise that.”

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