English Premier League football club Manchester City has built on its presence in esports by agreeing what it claims is an innovative partnership with US esports and entertainment organisation FaZe Clan.
The collaboration will create new experiences for fans of both football and esports, with the two parties seeking to bring the respective audiences together in new ways. The announcement formalises the partnership between City and FaZe Clan after they previously linked up to create bespoke YouTube content together, including during City’s tour of the United States in 2017.
FaZe Clan claims to be the most followed gaming organisation in the world with 214 million global fans and over 500 million monthly views of its content. FaZe and City will collaborate to create content with talent and players, as well as hosting exclusive fans events in the US and around the world.
FaZe and City will also bring their FIFA players together in a shared training facility and launch limited edition, co-branded retail products that fans can acquire. Nuria Tarre, chief marketing officer at Manchester City’s parent company City Football Group, said: “Esports is the world’s fastest-growing spectator sport and this collaboration with FaZe Clan marks the start of an exciting new chapter in Manchester City’s esports journey.
“We recognise that fans want to celebrate their love for football across many aspects of their lives, including fashion, music and gaming, to create a culture that goes beyond what happens on the pitch.”
Lee Trink, FaZe Clan chief executive, added: “This alliance with Manchester City creates a powerful opportunity to join our collective fan base and cultures on and off the field. FaZe Clan will continue to push the boundaries of gaming and esports by engaging our fans with experiences that are meaningful, memorable and surprising.”
The collaboration builds on Manchester City’s current esports offering, with a dedicated FIFA player representing the club at tournaments across the world. City was also the first Premier League club to launch a FIFA Online team in China, which will soon be joined by gamers from South Korea as the team grows across Asia.
Beyond professional gaming, the club also hosted the Man City Esports Cup last year which saw 10,000 City-supporting amateur gamers take part in the tournament from across the world.