Yann, Florian, the Strasbourg fans discovered you a few weeks ago when the new roster was announced. Can you introduce yourself in a few lines?
Florian: I’m 27 years old, I’ve been a professional esports player for 8 years now, and I play under the nickname “RayZiaaH”. I passed through a few and clubs during these years thanks to my consistency and my performances.
Yann: I’m 23 years old, and I’ve been a professional on the EA football games for 7 years now.
How did you “fall” into the professional world of esports?
FM: A bit by chance, it started with the PGW on FIFA 16. There was a qualifying tournament where I lost against a professional player in the quarter-finals. My opponents were surprised at my level and told me to try my luck. I was curious to see what I could do and since then everything has come together.
YR: It was really by chance for me as well. A friend with whom I played a lot for fun signed us up for an online tournament. I didn’t know what was in store or even what we were playing for. I won the tournament and it was a qualifying stage for a national final by KFC. It was there that I met Daxe, Rocky and RayZiaaH, who really explained to me how FIFA esports worked at the time.
Florian, is there a reason behind choosing “RayZiaaH” as a nickname? And you Yann for “Cursorr”?
FM: The reason for this nickname is that at the time I was playing a lot of Call of Duty. Nicknames like mine were a bit trendy. So I took inspiration from it and simply created RayZiaaH!
YR: Just a typo and a bad play on words. When I was young, I played World Of Warcraft with friends, and our nicknames were jumbles of words related to the game. Mine was “Crusor” (for CRUELTY and TREASURE). When I created my first account on XBOX, I made a typo between the R and the U and it has stuck ever since.
You have been present at the very beginnings of eLigue 1. Despite your ages (27 and 23), can we say that you are “old hands”?
FM: Yes indeed, through our age and especially our past experiences, it is obvious that we are among the veterans since we have been here for several years now.
YR: I think we can really say that we are veterans, players who are still here and who were present at the very first edition, there must be 5 or 6 left.
Is it an advantage to have so many eLigue 1 seasons behind you? If so, how can you take advantage of it?
FM: Obviously, experience is important in this competition. We know it, we know how it happens, we are used to this pressure and these matches. It’s up to us to control all that to make it a strength and allow us to play as we know how.
YR: I think it’s an advantage compared to the rookies. Playing with eLigue 1 teams, in BO1, is very different from the usual competitions that we know, but we are used to that now. Secondly, for some it will be the first time that they are not playing exclusively for themselves, but for their teammate as well, which can add notable stress. Afterwards it remains to be seen if we can really benefit from it!
If this is your first match together in the Racing jersey, you have already played together in the same jersey. Are you happy to be reunited?
FM: Of course. Yann is one of my best friends in the FIFA scene. We have known each other since FIFA 16, but above all we created a relationship playing during FIFA 19, then in 2021 when we were together under at LOSC.
YR: It’s true that we wore the same colors with LOSC, a year during which our friendship really evolved. Flo’ has become a true friend, so obviously very happy to be able to team up with him again.
Yann, if you had to give one quality and one fault of Florian, what would they be? Same question for Florian about Yann?
YR: This question is not easy. It’s easier for the fault *laughs* but I’ll give two: that he is impulsive and that he complains. For the quality, I would say, if we talk about good things, his altruism, the fact that he cares about others, that he is there for them and to help them.
FM: I would say that Yann knows how to adapt regardless of the scenario. He’s a guy who uses a lot of mechanics at set pieces for example. And as a fault, I honestly don’t have one in mind. Just that he maintains confidence in himself because it is one of his strengths.
What does Racing Club de Strasbourg Alsace mean to you?
YR: It is a historic club in the French league. I am very proud to be able to wear these colors.
FM: RCSA represents for me a football club which believes in esports and which invests enormously in this competition. We were well received and integrated into the club in the same way as any other guest.
On December 20, you experienced your first match at La Meinau by attending the Ligue 1 Uber Eats match between Racing and LOSC. What did you think of the atmosphere?
FM: To be honest, I was surprised by this atmosphere. I didn’t expect so much fervor and people who supported and sang their hearts out to support his team. I’m looking forward to coming back to see a match at Meinau!
YR: There’s a very good atmosphere in the club, whether in the stands, in front of the stadium, in the lounge. We recognize this as a family club and the supporters are behind the players, it was very nice to see, especially with the victory.
Coming back to eLigue 1 Uber Eats, how were the last weeks of preparation organized in order to be ready to launch the season this Tuesday, January 9?
FM: I worked with Cursorr, whether together or separately. We tested lineups, players, etc. in order to master our game.
YR: Quite simply, a lot of training matches and hours of reviews to analyze our mistakes in particular in order to perfect our game.
One of the new features this season is the appearance of Super Week with two matches to be played in the same week (instead of the usual one). What does this change for you?
FM: I find these “Super Weeks” cool. This allows you to keep a rhythm all week and avoid a big break between each match. This can be good for maintaining good momentum or confidence!
YR: It’s true that the addition of “Super Weeks” can change a lot of things. We are used to having only one match per week, you have time to analyze, to digest your defeat if that is the case, to train. This can totally change the dynamics. Having to string together two matches with this intensity with such a short interval can be tough if you lose on the first day of the super week ago.
For the uninitiated, can you remind us how the competition works and how points are counted in the rankings?
The matches are played in BO3 (Best Of 3), so you need 2 wins out of 3 matches to achieve victory. Since 2 victories are required, there will be at least 2 matches, drawn at random to determine the matches.
Player A vs Player 1 and Player B vs Player 2. At the end of these two matches there are two possibilities, i.e. 2-0 for one team in this case the match is over and the winning team scores 3 points, i.e. 1- 1 and in this case we will have the right to a decisive match with choice of coach to know the player who will play in this meeting.
The team that wins the deciding match wins the match with a score of 2-1 and scores 2 points. The team that loses, whether 2-0 or 2-1, does not score a point.
To summarize, it is a league table to the start, and then the six best at the end of this part qualify for the playoffs, the final phase of the competition.
You are both playing for the same team and yet there will only be 1v1s and more 2v2s like last year… Does this change the way you approach matches?
FM: Slightly, I would say that it makes preparation easier because we just have to focus on ourselves and our level in 1v1. Then you just have to trust your teammate and support him.
YR: Personally yes, last year with the 2v2 depending on the pairs, you started certain match knowing that you would bring back at least 1 point in the confrontation, that it could be more complicated, we have no room for error.
It’s the wishing season, what can we wish you for 2024?
FM: The best obviously and why not an eLigue 1 Uber Eats champion title!
YR: Health and being happy are the most important things! With the bonus of the Uber Eats eLigue1 title! 😊