European football titan FC Barcelona has doubled down on its commitment to esports, purchasing a slot in the brand new iteration of the Spanish Superliga, one of the regional leagues.
It’s become increasingly common for top-level football clubs to begin expanding into the esports space, with FC Schalke 04 and Paris Saint-Germain being the most notable entrants into the space. The football club announced its venture into the esports space yesterday, though some important details are yet to emerge
Riot Games has been making an active effort to reshape what the regional competitive leagues look like in Europe, beginning a series of overhauls heading into Worlds that will continue into next year. A new classification system for accredited and non-accredited leagues has meant broad changes in the way that the LEC’s sister leagues will behave.
Europe’s infrastructure for finding and recruiting players has long been praised by other regions, North America especially, for the sheer quantity of promising rookies that come out of the ERL system. Players and even entire teams have been called up directly into the LEC and enjoyed success.
FC Barcelona’s entry to the Superliga still has some mystery around it, with no information just yet on a roster or support staff. The football giant should have no shortage of resources given its status as one of the biggest organizations in Europe. The entry of more and more endemic sports teams into the European League of Legends space brings with it a variety of sponsors and media connections that aren’t endemic to esports naturally.
FC Barcelona has been investing in esports since 2019, but hadn’t yet entered an official league with a roster all its own.
The Superliga will resume play in January 2022, so excited fans can hope for lots of details as the 2022 split approaches. The Superliga has been steadily growing in recent years, with FC Barcelona touting its 39% viewer growth in the last year.