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Who Are UNILAD Esports?

Who Are UNILAD Esports?

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Just when we thought the team movements for Season 3 were all complete, over the hill at the 11th hour comes UNILAD Esports to join the Gfinity Elite Series. They arrive with plenty of fanfare and will be setting their sights on FIFA in particular. If you’ve not heard of UNILAD before - where have you been? These social sensations have been a frequent fixture on Facebook timelines since their inception. But how did they get into esports? Allow us to guide you through the history of UNILAD Esports and give some background on the Elite Series' newest combatants.

Since its inception UNILAD has gone from strength to strength and today had grown into one of the largest media platforms on the planet. Fresh from ending 2016 as the worlds #1 social publisher, UNILAD Esports was launched to compete in FIFA, and was marked by the signing of one of the most successful FIFA players in the world: Spencer “Gorilla” Ealing.

This was a statement of intent right out of the gate. People could easily have seen UNILAD Esports' presence in FIFA tournaments as nothing more than a marketing exercise, but signing Gorilla showed they meant business. Gorilla's record is as stacked as they come, having achieved success since his debut way back in FIFA 13.

A former player for Elite Series stalwarts exceL and Epsilon, his major tournament victories include the 2016 Gfinity Play Like A Legend Grand Final, the 2017 FIFA Ultimate Team Championship Series Europe (Xbox) and the 2017 FIFA Interactive World Cup. Eagle-eyed Gfinity fans will have also noticed him competing in the current Gfinity Challenger Series; we'll leave it up to you to decide whether he was merely keeping match-fit or doing some scouting on potential opponents for the upcoming season. Regardless, he and UNILAD Esports will be hoping to add the Elite Series FIFA trophy to his already-bulging cabinet.

In September 2017, UNILAD bolstered their roster with the signing of Shellz, one of the hottest young stars on the FIFA circuit. Shellz' story is quite extraordinary. From starting 2017 as a college student and amateur FIFA player, his victory in the 2017 Ultimate Team Championship Series (PS4) shocked the world, and he would go on to finish overall runner-up to veteran Vitality player Rocky.

For the unsigned player wondering whether his decision to quit college to become a professional FIFA player was the right one, this was the ultimate vindication – as was the £46,000 he earned in prize money for his incredible achievement. It was only a matter of time before someone snapped Shellz up, and UNILAD became that team in September 2017, almost four months to the day since the FUT Championship Series final.

With a successful foundation laid down in FIFA competition, UNILAD Esports have started to expand across the board. They signed a Call of Duty: WW2 roster in late November, and now join the Elite Series where they will add SFV and Rocket League teams. Unsurprisingly they start as potential favourites to win the FIFA tournament in Season 3, but it won’t be easy. It will be fascinating in particular to see them do battle once again with Rocky and Team Vitality, especially considering Rocky defeated both Gorilla AND Shellz in back-to-back matches in the aforementioned UT Championship Series last year. If they can overcome that obstacle, it will be hard to bet against them lifting at least one trophy in their debut Elite Series season.

Elsewhere, UNILAD will start somewhat on the back foot. They have no prior experience in either SFV or Rocket League and their late arrival affords them slightly less time to recruit players who aren't already snapped up by other teams. Their recruitment has been spot-on so far in terms of their FIFA roster, and it will have to be once again for them to be successful across the board in their debut Elite Series season.

Time to get behind the lads: win, lose or draw, the UNILAD Esports journey is never a dull one.

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