WITH football suspended for the time being, fans are eager for their fix of the Beautiful Game.
Coronavirus has resulted in almost every European league shutting down – barring Belarus – and there's no set date for when competitions will return.
EA Sports, the makers of the popular FIFA series, are pledging $1million for the Covid-19 relief effort and hosting the Stay and Play Cup to keep you all entertained in lockdown.
When is the Stay and Play Cup?
A TOURNAMENT on their most recent iteration FIFA 20, the Stay and Play Cup will feature a number of high-profile players.
Twenty stars from around Europe will battle it out, representing their own clubs in a knockout-style event held over five days.
EA released a statement, announcing the competition: "Like you, we miss football.
"While we wait with you for its return, we’ve been inspired by the ways you continue to play together and help your teammates.
"In a time where we need to stay physically apart, we know the role that games are playing for millions of people around the world in helping us to stay connected, entertained, and safe, and in helping others as we stay home to save lives.
"Our message is simple: Stay Home. Play Together.
"That’s why we’re bringing together 20 professional footballers from 20 of Europe’s most historic clubs in the FIFA 20 Stay and Play Cup, in support of Global Giving’s Coronavirus Relief Fund.
"As part of the Stay and Play Cup, EA will also donate US$1M to help support immediate and long-term relief and recovery in vulnerable communities most affected by COVID-19."
The tournament starts on Wednesday, April 15 at 5pm UK time, culminating with the final on Sunday, April 19.
How can I live stream it?
EVERY moment of the competition is free to watch wherever you are in the world.
EA Sport will be broadcasting each match on their Twitch platform.
Fixtures on Wednesday, April 15
- Saif-Eddine Khaoui vs Jesper Lindstrom – 5pm (Marseille vs Brondby)
- Manu Vallejo vs Jesper Karlstrom – 5.45pm (Valencia vs Djurgardens)
- Mohammed Ihattaren vs Nabil Bahoui – 6.30pm (PSV Eindhoven vs AIK)
- Mohammed Daramy vs Nikolai Alho – 7.15pm (FC Copenhagen vs Helsinki)
- The competition will follow a traditional knockout-style.
- Each match will be a one leg one vs one match with 85-rated squads.
- This means that the virtual players will all be rated the same.
- The winner advances to the next round and the loser is knocked out entirely.
- In the event of a draw after 90 minutes, games will be decided by extra time and penalties.
Who is playing?
EA will reveal the full list of players participating in the competition ahead of kick-off on Wednesday.
For now, we know that Cesar Azpilicueta will be representing Chelsea, Trent Alexander-Arnold for Liverpool, Phil Foden Manchester City and Vinicius Jr for Real Madrid.
Players from the following clubs will represent their side in the tournament:
- England: Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Tottenham
- France: Lyon, Marseille, Paris Saint-Germain
- Germany: Dortmund
- Spain: Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Valencia
- Portugal: Porto
- Italy: AS Roma
- Netherlands: Ajax, PSV Eindhoven
- Sweden: AIK, Djurgarden
- Finland: HJK Helsinki
- Denmark: FC Copenhagen, Brondby
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