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FC Barcelona has made another major stride in their commitment to esports by joining League of Legends, currently the real-time action and strategy game with the most fans and audiences worldwide. As such, Barça will join the Superliga in 2022, the highest level tournament for the esports game in Spain, organised by the Professional Video Games League (LVP, Grupo Mediapro).
League of Legends is a strategy game involving two teams of five players that face off and attempt to complete objectives. The two best teams in Spain compete in the Superliga, the current champion Vodafone Giants, and the team they beat in the final on 12th August in Barcelona, UCAM Esports Club.
Other key teams include Movistar Riders, G2 Arctic, and MAD Lions Madrid, as well as the new addition of a club owned by the streamer, Ibai Llanos, and one of the Club's mens first-team captains, Gerard Piqué.
On entering this tournament, FC Barcelona is strengthening their commitment to esports, a strategic sector for the Club, which they first entered two years ago with the aim of developing a strong profile.
The Superliga in numbers
The Superliga is the most important League of Legends tournament in Spain, and one of the best in Europe for audiences and talent.
By the end of the summer 2021 season, the Superliga had been watched by close on five million people - a record high. The tournament had accumulated over 2.6 million viewing hours, 39% up on the previous year. Furthermore, the grand final was watched by 300,000 different viewers, smashing the previous record of 73,596 viewers and achieving an AMA (Average Minute Audience) of 43,191 viewers, a 165% increase on the final in summer 2020.
Barça fans will be able to follow the Superliga 2022 from January, and it will be available for viewing online every Monday and Thursday at 6pm local time, and via the UBEAT television channel.
Barça's esports division
The commitment to developing Barça's new esports division forms part of the Club's digital strategy and is motivated by the same on-field desire of FC Barcelona - to become a main player in the digital esports sector worldwide in the next few years, building a leading division to help connect the Club and its philosophy to new audiences, particularly among emerging markets for football fandom, and to take the Barça brand to countries such as the United States of America or China.
While running the project, the Club will remain true to Barça's values, only participating in non-violent games with its brand and all that it represents, while also promoting gender equality, and a commitment to educate both fans and players.
The Club currently has three other teams - eFootball, Rocket League, and Hearthstone - all of which have been competing for two years.
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