With matches postponed and teams self-isolating, football stars are finding novel ways to keep their competitive juices flowing during the coronavirus outbreak.
Notably players have gone head-to-head over video games during a weekend when all of Europe’s top leagues were suspended.
Spanish players Sergio Reguilon and Borja Iglesias played out the Seville derby on FIFA – defender Regulion, on loan from Real Madrid, playing as Sevilla, and striker Iglesias representing his Real Betis side.
The real match was scheduled to be played on Sunday, but all La Liga fixtures have been postponed until April 3 amid the coronavirus outbreak.
At its peak, 62,000 people watched a stream of the game, which was hosted by esports personality Ibai.
“As a sports athlete, you don’t spend more than three or four hours a day doing that so you have a lot of off time and a lot of that off time is spent doing video games,” Carlos Rodriguez, founder and owner of G2 Esports team which hosted the match, told CNN Sport.
“These two worlds collide a lot … these athletes both play and watch a lot of esports and video game related stuff.
“It’s only natural for them. They know who are (esports’) biggest stars, who are the best players, and of course they want to play with them.”