Buffo: This competition is magical

We are happy to present to you the third part of our 'share your FIWC story' series. Today's user submission comes from Andre Buffo. The Brazilian won a seat at the FIWC11 Grand Final by finishing in the top two for Season 1 of online qualification. A Grand Finalist in 2006, 2008, 2009 and now 2011, Andre gives FIWC fans some insight into what it takes to qualify for the Grand Final.

Andre: "I started playing FIFA for fun when I was seven years old and since then I haven‘t stopped. In 2004 I watched Ronaldinho being honoured as the FIFA World Player of the Year on television and I thought, “this could be me."

Two years later, at the age of 14, I became the 2006 Brazilian FIWC champion. Back then I didn‘t know many other competitors so I wasn‘t able to practice against the best players. This is why I was eliminated at the quarter-final stage of the 2006 FIWC Grand Final in Amsterdam. However, I didn‘t give up and continued playing. All the hard work was worth it in the end. I became a professional gamer and managed to get a sponsor. Years later, numerous appearances at the Grand Final, and the most important thing for me is still securing qualification for the FIFA Interactive World Cup Grand Final. Why? Because this competition is magical!

In my opinion, psychology plays a very important role; you should not get nervous or be afraid of losing the game.
FIWC11 Grand Finalist Andre Buffo.

The key to being successful is never giving up and believing in yourself. The game changes, but you are still the same and if you practice hard enough you can be good again. Sometimes you have to change your formation and tactic. At the first FIFA Interactive World Cup in 2006 I played with a 4-4-2 formation. Two years later I changed my tactic and used the 4-3-1-2. Since 2009 I‘ve preferred a 4-1-2-1-2, and with this formation I made it to the FIFA Interactive World Cup 2011 Grand Final.

I achieved my best result at the FIWC 2008, when I finished in 4th place. I think with a bit of luck I could have been the champion, but the semi-finals didn’t go well. Temporarily I was up 2-0 and even missed a penalty kick. In the end, I lost 4-3, it didn‘t seem to be my time.

This year I am really good at the game and I‘m practising three hours a day against my team-mates. But what makes the difference is not only playing well. In my opinion, psychology plays a very important role; you should not get nervous or be afraid of losing the game. I would like to thank you all for the opportunity of being a part of this dream, which is FIWC!"