As expected, the latest tournament in the FIFA 18 Global Series on the Road to the 2018 FIFA eWorld Cup kicked off with plenty of action. FUT Champions Cup Manchester re-ignited rivalries and produced some incredible matches through all five group stage rounds. If the rest of the weekend produces as many fierce starts, dramatic finishes, and tense penalty shootouts as Friday did, you won't want to miss a single minute of this tournament!
The excitement started not long after the tournament did, as reigning Barcelona champion Donovan “F2Tekkz” Hunt quickly proved that he wasn't a one-hit wonder. Fresh off signing with F2Freestylers, F2Tekkz scored his first goal in the eighth minute of his first game against Melbourne City Marcus, en route to an impressive 8-2 win that kicked off his tournament in style. Despite a strong Round 2 in which he defeated Rayziaah 6-2, F2Tekkz was finally bested in an exciting rematch with none other than Kurt “kurt0411” Fenech. F2Tekkz won the first game via a tense 1-0 win, but that was followed by a dominant performance by kurt0411 in the second to earn a 6-3 win. Hopefully this won't be the last we've seen of this matchup this weekend.
Both F2Tekkz and kurt0411 won their next two rounds and progressed to the bracket stage, but it was the former who produced one of the most dramatic moments of the day. F2Tekkz was on the brink of another loss in his Round 4 match-up with RemiMartinn, but he showed his quality yet again by snatching a late win with a goal in the 120th minute. Kurt0411 went undefeated until the very end, picking up his only loss of the day in Round 5, when he fell 7-3 to Falcon Msdosary.
Some of the most intense drama of the day came via a number of penalty shootouts. El Polako and Vitality Brian went to penalties in Round 3 after a wild 8-8 draw at the end of regulation and extra time, ending with a 3-2 shootout win for El Polako. A number of big-name players also saw penalties early, as both UNILAD Gorilla and FaZe Tass lost their Round 1 matches after a shootout.
Thanks to the exciting Swiss format of the FUT Champions Cup group stage, only four players were able to go undefeated on day one. ARES Janoz and Falcon Msdosary earned 5-0 records in the Xbox group, while MCFC deto and TM NICOLAS99FC went perfect on PS4. Since it only takes four wins to move on, these players are among the group that will qualify for the bracket stage after the final two group rounds wrap up on Saturday.
Some notable names were unfortunate enough to be on the opposite end as well, as the likes of UNILAD Shellzz, Vitality Brian, FUTWIZ Richie, and Marlut picked up four losses on the day and were automatically eliminated. Many more players stand on the brink of elimination after losing three of their five matches on day one, meaning that there will be plenty of nerves and excitement as each competitor fights to stay in the tournament.
The day finished with a fun, yet highly competitive matchup between Hashtag United teammates Harry and Ryan. The second game of the match went down to the wire, but Harry earned both bragging rights and a spot in the bracket stage with a 4-3 win. Ryan is still in it with a 3-2 record, and he'll be a favorite to join his teammate in the next round as the group stage comes to a close on Saturday.
Plus, see what other players you should watch for as the tournament continues.
Make sure to subscribe to the EA SPORTS FIFA YouTube Channel, Twitch Channel, Twitter, and Facebook so you don't miss any of the action live from Manchester. You can also check out the full schedule, including dates and times, on our schedule page.
FIFA 18 is Available Now for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. Conditions and restrictions apply. See https://www.easports.com/fifa/fifa-18-game-and-offer-disclaimers for details.