The world of eSports – joining Bale’s team, teenagers with agents and £100k prizes – The Athletic

Marcus Rashford collects the ball just inside the penalty area, spins and unleashes a ferocious left-footed shot into the top left corner to put England 2-0 up just before half-time.

The Athletic looks defeated and the hairdryer treatment is almost a certainty for a Belgium team being ripped apart. Heads fall and the Xbox controller with which we’re conducting the 11 immaculately-rendered pixelated players sags in our hands.

Meanwhile, 18-year-old Donovan Hunt (Tekkz) offers a muted celebration. This is basically a practice game for the FNATIC man — he is, after all, ranked No 1 in the world on Xbox. Victory for The Athletic would have been the equivalent of defeating Voldemort with a candy cane.

While still a teenager, his CV is peppered with achievements — as any passing visitor to his Twitter page will know; a five-time winner of the FUT (FIFA Ultimate Team) Cup, an ePremier League champion with Liverpool in 2019 (ensuring the club didn’t…

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