Earlier this month, a 93rd minute goal from Chicago Fire midfielder Marco Pappa snatched victory at Chivas. For Club member Wlievano, the injury-time strike meant a first place finish on the weekly leaderboard for FIFA Match Predictor. We spoke to our Round 35 winner shortly after the roller coaster round.
FIFA.com: Could you tell us a little about yourself?
Wlievano: I'm a Journalist living in New York City. I'm Colombian, but moved to the US eight years ago. Despite being born in Bogota, I became a fan of America de Cali and even now, with the distance, I try to never miss their games. Whenever I go home to visit I try to arrange my travel dates so that they coincide with America playing in Bogota!
You won Round 35 by just two points! Can you talk us through your experience in Round 35?
The whole weekend was a roller coaster. I didn't watch the MLS game. I was following the game online from my phone but I closed the page when they reached the 90th minute, a little disappointed with the result. I woke up early the next day to go to a wedding and in the rush I forgot to check the scores. To complicate things, the reception was held in the basement of the church with no Wi-Fi connection. At the first opportunity I had, I went up to the entrance of the church to check the FA Cup final result and my Predictor score. I saw that I was leading. I couldn't believe it! I was glued to my phone for the rest of the day.
On Sunday, I had to work, but I was able to watch the second half of the Inter-AC Milan game on my lunch hour. When Inter scored the fourth goal I celebrated, but at the same time I felt sad because I thought the result would cost me the round. I was overjoyed when I checked a few minutes later and I was still in the lead by two points!
Living in the USA, it must have felt extra-special to get your joker correct on a MLS game?
Although I'm not from the US I like the MLS and I usually have a good idea of who is going to win, that I why I used my joker on the Chivas match. The MLS has given me many points in my years playing Predictor and I'm happy that they contributed to my win.
You're involved in several private leagues. Do you enjoy the challenge of a private league?
Private leagues are a lot of fun. They give you an extra incentive to make good predictions and you get to interact with other fans from around the world.
How long have you been playing Predictor for?
I started playing on the very first season and haven't stopped since then. The game has made me a truly global football fan. Now I have a better knowledge of football in far away places like Australia, Scotland, South Africa, South Korea and Japan. At this rate I might end up with a favourite team in every country in the world!
Was there anything special about the way you made your predictions in Round 35, or did you stick to your usual strategy?
I followed my usual guidelines: Pay attention to the overall performance of the team instead of their position on the league, predict with the brain not with the heart - that's why I didn't pick Inter Milan, so maybe I should rethink that one. Also, always play the joker in a league you know well.
Every week, one lucky Predictor wins a football jersey customized with their choice of name and number. It's never too late to sign up. Join the prediction fun now and participate in the final three rounds of the season!