Private Passions - Benjamin Francis Leftwich

On his obsession with a kickabout on his FIFA Football Game
Private Passions - Benjamin Francis Leftwich

"My FIFA journey began in the winter of 2006 really. That was the first FIFA game I ever got for Christmas.  It’s really fun. I’m not a very athletically fit person so I live out my dream of football stardom through the format of gaming. I used to play  online, but the truth is I’m  not actually very good. I got beaten so much. So, I actually went through a phase where I used to go to the pub and get chilled and then I’d tweet that anyone who could beat me at FIFA online would get two free tickets to any gig, and over the course of the year we actually lost about £600 of gig tickets to that. So for my own good I’ve stopped doing that.

I like playing my friends, but I like playing them when they’re drunk so I’ve got more chance of winning. My best mate is on tour with us. He’s been my best mate since I was  eleven, and he comes on tour and helps with merch and stuff. We do have some heated games, but I’m not a particularly aggressive person so I don’t get heated but the people around me tend to. I don’t really like to pass, even though I’m obviously passing to myself, but I like to do elaborate tricks and stuff, and I find  that the more I play it, the  more I realise it’s actually a passing game.mI’m from York and you can play as York City now, which is fun.

You’ve got to be quite focused when you’re playing or you can lose the ball quite easily. Some footballers in the premiership who are renowned for fighting on the pitch and getting red cards, a couple have actually started tweeting me, saying they listen to my record the night before a game to calm them down. I’m serious, and the other night we played in Newcastle and one of the footballers was a big Sunderland player and he came down!”

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