London, 20th November - With a pressure-packed, energetic crowd of football fans and gamers cheering him on, Paul, 22, of Croydon, London, took centre stage at Earls Court and conquered some of the best football video gamers Europe has to offer, earning him the coveted title of London Regional Winner of the inaugural FIFA Interactive World Cup.
Paul's team progressed through each round of the tournament with poise and determination, ultimately defeating Simon Pike, 15 of Swansea to secure his place in the FIFA Interactive World Cup Finals which will take place this December in Zurich.
The London event was the fifth of eight regional tournaments being held across six different continents between October and December. The FIFA Interactive World Cup Finals will be held in FIFA House in Zurich on December 19, 2004. The following day, at the FIFA World Player Gala in the Opera House of Zurich, the best interactive footballer in the World will be honored onstage and presented with the FIFA Interactive World Player 2004 award alongside the best female and male footballer in the World - the FIFA World Players 2004.
The best football gamers in Europe poured in to test their skills in knockout matches of FIFA Football 2005 in the hope of winning the amazing trip to Zurich "This match was as thrilling as a real FIFA World Cup match with real national teams," said Paul. "The experience as a whole exceeded all my expectations. It was great to meet one of my football idols, Darius Vassell, and have brilliant DJ's like Tim Westwood, spin some records while I battled my way through the rounds. The whole experience was so cool and I'm honored to represent the UK in the FIFA Interactive World Cup Finals in Zurich."
The FIFA Interactive World Cup is the world's first-ever video game tournament, combining both on- and off-line football gaming action on EA's FIFA Football 2005 on Xbox and Xbox® LiveTM. With the conclusion of the tournament's first five events in Johannesburg, New York, Rio de Janeiro, Sydney and now London, the FIFA Interactive World Cup competition moves to Seoul next week, and will continue making stops in Paris and Berlin.
For the past 100 years, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association, founded on 21 May 1904 in Paris and better known as FIFA, has continued to provide the essential leadership role to the international football family. Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, the eighth FIFA President, Joseph S. Blatter (Switzerland), guides the organisation today with a commitment to the evolution of FIFA as a modern and dynamic association. The basis of the world's football family is formed by FIFA's member associations. From the founding seven in 1904, the family has today grown to 205 affiliated associations, also organised into six confederations spanning the globe. FIFA's worldwide activities go well beyond its various competitions, such as the world's biggest single-sport event, the FIFA World CupTM. In projects such as SOS Children's Villages and the FIFA Goal Programme, FIFA gives material, financial and promotional support to develop the game and bring joy to underprivileged children worldwide.
About Electronic Arts
Electronic Arts, headquartered in Redwood City, California, is the world's leading interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, EA posted revenues of $2.96 billion for fiscal 2004. The company develops, publishes, and distributes interactive software worldwide for video game systems, personal computers and the Internet. In 2003, EA had 27 titles that sold more than one million copies. Electronic Arts markets its products under three brand names: EA SPORTSTM, EA GAMESTM and EA SPORTS BIGTM. EA's homepage and online game site is www.ea.com. More information about EA's products and full text of press releases can be found on the Internet at http://info.ea.com.
Xbox (http://www.xbox.com) is the video game system from Microsoft that brings people together for the most exhilarating game and entertainment experiences. Xbox delivers an expansive collection of breakthrough games, powerful hardware and the unified Xbox Live online service. The new tagline, "it's good to play together," captures the spirit of Xbox as the social hub of the new digital entertainment lifestyle. Xbox is now available in Europe for an estimated street price of 149.99/£99.99.