After an impressive showing in the inaugural edition of the eISL with Northeast United FC, Emaad Jameel Ahmed now has his eyes set on the greatest prize in the competitive FIFA 23 scene. He will be representing Offbeet Esports in the upcoming FIFA Global Series qualifiers, aiming to make it onto the biggest stage of them all.
The Global Series is the pinnacle of competitive FIFA gameplay, with professional players from around the globe vying to leave a mark on the annals of FIFA esports. Not only is the prize pool more impressive than ever before, the exposure and mainstream coverage make it the most enticing competition for competitive gamers, and Emaad is eager to showcase his abilities on the global stage.
In a conversation with Sportskeeda Esports’ Shivanshu Raturi, Emaad provided insight into his mindset as a FIFA athlete, his relationship with his Offbeet Esports teammates, as well as his plans for a future in competitive gaming and content creation.
Offbeet Esports’ Emaad Jameel Ahmed shares his thoughts on his journey in the world of competitive FIFA
Q. What made you decide to take up FIFA as a profession and start competing?
Emaad: I have always enjoyed competing and participating in FIFA tournaments alongside my friends, even though most of the time I didn’t even make it to the top four. Then, for almost two years, I stopped competing to focus on my studies and just played occasionally with my friends.
After those two years, I took part in a FIFA tournament with my friends and the next thing you know is that I had won that tournament, that too very comfortably. On my way back home, I asked myself: “How many more tournaments can I win like this?” From that moment on, I knew I wanted to start competing professionally.
Q. You represented Northeast United in the inaugural edition of the eISL. How did your experience at the event influence your perspective and your esports journey?
Emaad: The eISL was a big stepping stone not just for me, but for the entire FIFA esports scene in India. For the first time, we had 22 of the best players in India competing against each other for a very attractive prize pool and the glorious FGS ticket. The experience was something that many people could only dream of. I competed with the best and kept improving my game on the side.
Representing Northeast united was an absolute honor and I am very happy that I get to represent them again in the second season of eISL.
Q. The Offbeet FIFA roster currently consists of four competitive players and a coach. How does this fresh experience compare to your time in the eISL?
Emaad: Offbeet is the next stage of my esports career and it will bring me new challenges and learning. I have a great relationship with my teammates and coach. In eISL, everyone only had one teammate; when you compare this to Offbeet, there are four of us and we have a coach.
It gives us a platform where we can explore different game strategies and additional coaching wherever required to improve our gameplay. There’s healthy competition between all of us as we all want to be the best of the best.
Q. In your opinion, what makes Offbeet Esports special? What is your vision for the future of the org?
Emaad: Offbeet Esports stood out to me from other organizations as they had a clear plan and great vision. They also showed me how I can grow, both professionally and personally.
For me, this stood out as many organizations don’t have much interest in the growth of their players and this is Offbeets’ main priority: they want to make the players better. Hopefully, we will see more teams from different games join Offbeet soon and aspiring players can also make it to the top with the help of Offbeet’s Esports Academy.
Q. While Offbeet might be a newly formed entity, you have been familiar with your teammates for a while now. How has your dynamic changed now that you are representing the same esports team?
Emaad: It’s a completely different dynamic than before. Previously, we were competing against each other and we’re all teammates now. We try to help each other out and teach each other things that might help us in all competitions in the future.
Q. How are you preparing for the upcoming FGS qualifiers?
Emaad: I’m constantly trying to improve my game in every aspect, it can be learning new plays or learning to approach a game differently. I continuously watch other pros play as I feel like it adds more to my game, even if it’s the smallest thing.
Q. With Offbeet Esports having four players on their FIFA roster, they can have two separate teams representing them in 2v2 co-op tournaments. Which one of your teammates do you feel will be the ideal partner for you?
Emaad: It’s great that all of us have the option to find a suitable partner that matches our style of playing the best. I think Karman Tikka and I have good chemistry. Our playstyles are not that similar, and this gives us an advantage as we can be unpredictable for an opponent. But honestly speaking, I think any two of us can play together. It’s more about your training and the effort you put into the game; we each have our strengths.
Q. You recently started posting reels on your Instagram and also started streaming on your YouTube channel. How do you think content creation affects a competitive player’s growth in the scene?
Emaad: I think people are very intrigued in India when it comes to an esports player’s training and what they do differently. Esports players can show that through streams and even reels on Instagram, and can inspire aspiring players to train and compete. When you put yourself out there, you get more opportunities to grow, and they can help you get resources that you thought were impossible to get at first.
Q. What personal goals do you wish to achieve by the time FIFA 23 reaches the end of its game cycle?
Emaad: I think it would be a dream to represent Offbeet Esports in the FGS global playoffs and the FIFAe World Cup. But as this is my first year competing in the FGS, I would say being in the top 10 in the South Asian region would be a good place to start.
Going forward, I would also like to have a community where, apart from entertaining people, I can also interact with them and help them become better at their game.
Q. What is your message to any aspiring esports competitors looking to make a name for themselves and earn a living playing the games they love?
Emaad: Nothing is impossible. Esports is all about striking a balance between hard work and patience. Opportunities will always be there; you just need to seize your moment. There will be times when you will have to make tough decisions, you just have to find the courage to do it!