Published on by smooks Updated on
Saturday was qualification day for PlayStation players, as 16 players punched their tickets to London for the FIFA eWorld Cup grand final in August. Barcelona FUT Champions Cup runner-up Nicolas 'nicolas99fc' Villalba continued his dominance, having won 15 of his 16 matches in the competition; the Argentine seems honed in on finally attaching some silverware to his name after such a successful year.
Villalba began the day by facing his only other undefeated opponent, Spanish player JRA Lion. The two tied 2-2 in the first leg, but Nicolas edged his opponent by a 3-2 margin in the second. He then cruised to a 7-2 win over RB Leipzig's Cihan Yasarlar in the seventh round, and his 6-2 win over Lukas_1004 in the Round of 32 earned him a place in London.
Both of the Hashtag United players facing elimination from yesterday, 'Hashtag Agge' Rosenmeier and Ivan 'Hashtag Boras' Lapanje, clawed their way back to make the knockout rounds. Moreover, both qualified for London as well with exciting victories over notable competition.
Boras, who has been unlucky at past tourneys despite strong showings, finally made his mark Saturday, beating Daniele 'IcePrinsipe' Paolucci in the Round of 32 in an epic 5-4 match. Despite falling down early, Boras regained his footing, only to see Prinsipe equalize with less than ten minutes left. However, a 118th-minute strike from Ruud Gullit spelled the end for Paolucci. Paolucci was all class after the gutting loss had him so close yet so far to the Grand Final:
An incredible year. A relentless adventure. Lived with you, following my journey, spur me every day more. But today I gave way to a great player and to even greater friend. Beautiful game @Hashtag_Boras pic.twitter.com/ELa0KuhwnM— Daniele Paolucci (@IcePrinsipe) June 2, 2018
Agge had to win both his matches to even qualify for the knockout rounds. He got off to a nervy start, losing his very first match, 1-2, to Turkish pro Isopowerr; he went on to win the second leg, 4-2. In the seventh round, he took care of business in the first leg itself with a 5-0 win. In the knockout rounds, Agge qualified for London with a 5-2 win over RB Leipzig's Cihan Yasarlar.
Without question, Saturday's Round of 32 was one of the most exciting rounds in the history of competitive FIFA. Seven of the 16 matches were decided by one goal, and most of them were shootouts; the lowest scoring match, between Philipp 'Eisvogel' Schermer and Lev 'Ajax Lev' Vinken, was still a very exciting 4-3 affair.
FC Basel's Tim 'FCB TheStrxngeR' Katnawatos downed his teammate Florian 'CodyDerFinisher' Müller, 6-4, to set up a showdown with Mo Aubameyang, who won a tight one over Japanese pro 'Curl,' 5-3. Damie, a player who signed with Roma just days before this tournament, advanced to London with a 7-6 win over Aaygun96; he will play MaestroSquad, who won 8-7 over Famsinho10.
Manchester City's Marcus 'Marcuzo' Jørgensen will play the Spaniard AndoniiPM in the Round of 16, coincidentally the same player that eliminated the Dane in knockout rounds in Manchester back in April. Jørgensen enjoyed a comfortable 7-1 win over Envy Jas, the largest margin of victory in the entire round, while Andonii played one of the more exciting matches, beating FifaUstun, who had scored 73 goals in 19 matches, 8-7.
Notable exits from this round of the competition obviously include JRA Lion, who started the day undefeated. 'IcePrinsipe,' the Italian player who beat Spencer 'FaZe Gorilla' Ealing the Madrid Regional Final last May, will also not feature in London. RB Leipzig's Cihan Yasarlar, the runner-up in the Paris Regional Final, was knocked out by Hashtag Agge and sees his 2018 run end here as well.
The broadcast crew will be back Sunday morning at 6 a.m. ET (11 a.m. UK time) for the rest of the knockout stages, including the PlayStation 4 grand final. For a more fleshed-out look at the entire weekend's schedule, you can go here. Extended coverage and behind-the-scenes action can be found on Twitch.