- Semi-finalists decided after second matchday
- New champion will be crowned as Gorilla bows out
- Top seeds 'Megabit', 'nicolas99fc' exit at quarter-finals
We now know our 2018 FIFA eWorld Cup™ semi-finalists. Mosaad ‘Msdossary’ Aldossary, Kurt ‘kurt0411’ Fenech, Stefano ‘StefanoPinna’ Pinna and Marcus ‘Marcuzo’ Jorgensen all booked their places in the last four of the Grand Final, putting themselves on the cusp of global glory. A new winner will be crowned this year as defending champion Spencer ‘Gorilla’ Ealing exited at the quarter-final stage after a defeat to the impressive ’kurt0411’.
This year’s winner will walk away with $250,000 USD in prize money, a trip to The Best FIFA Football Awards and, of course, the tournament’s new trophy. Forty-four match-ups took place on Friday at The O2 in London, seeing the business end of the group stage come to a close, as well as the Round of 16 and quarter-finals. FIFA.com takes a look at how the formidable four made it to Saturday’s final.
Group stage reaches climax
One of the opening day’s star performers, Michael ‘Megabit’ Bittner went into Rounds 6 & 7 of the group stages with a perfect record. The German, however, tasted defeat in his Day 2 opener, falling to eventual Group A winner ‘kurt0411’. The man from Malta went on to cap off an imposing group stage with a 12-4 win over Adam ’dreamR’ Barton in his final game, netting an impressive 59 group goals in total. PlayStation top seed Nicolas ‘nicolas99fc’ Villalba continued his fine form by ending the opening stage unbeaten and atop of Group C, while Mosaad ‘Msdossary’ Aldossary and Mohammed ‘MoAubameyang’ Harkous registered top spots in groups B and D respectively.
Classic knockout clashes
There were no real surprises with the Xbox side of the Round of 16, which made for some tantalising quarter-final match-ups. Having topped the ‘Group of Death’, ‘Msdossary’ carried significant momentum heading into his meeting with Xbox top seed ‘MegaBit’, while reigning king ‘Gorilla’ and ‘kurt0411’ locked horns. FUT Champions Cup Manchester winner ‘Msdossary’ and crowd favourite ‘kurt0411’ both progressed to set up an eagerly-anticipated Xbox semi-final.
Meanwhile, on PlayStation, top seed Nicolas ‘nicolas99fc’ Villalba dispatched Tim ’TheStrxngeR’ Katnawatos to book a quarter-final meeting with Denmark’s ‘Marcuzo’. One of the tournament favourites, ‘nicolas99fc’ was tipped by many to reach the final - but ‘Marcuzo’ held strong to defeat the seemingly unstoppable Argentinian. Belgium’s Stefano Pinna, still unbeaten in the tournament so far, saw off ‘MoAubameyang’ to book his semi-final place.
Scene set for semis
The competitive Xbox quarter-finals treated everyone to enticing match-ups - and the semi-finals look to be even sweeter. Titans ‘kurt0411’ and ‘Msdossary’ face off in a clash which could produce plenty of goals for a place in the final. The PlayStation side of the draw, meanwhile, has been blown wide open with the departure of pre-tournament favourite ‘nicolas99fc’. It should make for an intriguing tie between ’Marcuzo’ and Belgium’s ‘StefanoPinna’.
What they said
Kurt ‘kurt0411’ Fenech: “The trophy looks beautiful, I can’t get over it. My objective from the start was to win it and I’m now a couple of steps away. It was an amazing day for me personally, reaching the semi-finals, and hopefully I can bring it home for Malta tomorrow. 'Msdossary' is a top, top player. He’s as good as they come. To win this tournament, you’ve got to beat the best – and that’s what I’m going to do on Saturday."
Stefano ‘StefanoPinna’ Pinna: "I’m very confident going into the semi-finals. I didn’t expect to go so far. Nicolas was a top favourite, so now that he’s out, everything is open. I’m looking forward to facing 'Marcuzo', he’s a really good player. I have a lot of support back home in Belgium. I’m proud to be representing my country in the Grand Final."