CARSON, Calif – To celebrate the release of EA SPORTS FIFA 18, the StubHub Center and the LA Galaxy played host to an invite-only FIFA 18 tournament Thursday night with the winner getting a chance to be scouted and signed by the Galaxy.
With the StubHub Center featuring prominently in FIFA 18 -- and the Galaxy’s Gyasi Zardes having a role in The Journey story mode -- it felt the appropriate setting to celebrate. Several Galaxy players were on hand for the live stream of the event on Twitch, including Zardes, who handed out the tournament’s trophy, and Sebastian Lletget, an avid FIFA player himself.
For the Galaxy, FIFA is a bonding experience on the road, with Zardes the one who gets the party going.
“It’s good between the guys on like away trips and stuff,” said Lletget, “Gyasi [Zardes] brings this Playstation that’s portable, it comes with a screen and everything so we just get it on like that.”
Those team FIFA sessions can also get fairly competitive, but Lletget is fairly certain who the best gamer on the team is.
“I think a lot of guys would say me,” said Lletget. “Not even I’m saying me, I’m saying a lot of guys would say me. So that’s all I’m saying.”
Lletget has had plenty of time to hone his FIFA skills this year, as he’s missed nearly the entire season due to a foot fracture suffered in the US’ 6-0 victory over Honduras in March. He was initially given a 4-6 month recovery window for the injury, and just hit the 6-month mark this week. He’s returned to doing fitness work on the practice field, but understands that he’s unlikely to see the field again this year with only three games left and the Galaxy already out of playoff contention.
“There’s only like three games left,” said Lletget. “It would be a reach. Even if I could, I don’t know if it’s possible. This type of injury is super serious so I’m being extra careful with it. I’m more looking forward to next year.”
Lletget’s current goal is getting back to full fitness without setting back recovery. That process can be mentally tough when you can’t mix it up with your teammates.
“Not just yet,” said Lletget on whether he’s scrimmaging. “It’s more one-on-one sessions with our trainers. It’s frustrating but it’s also really exciting because I’m back out there, and it’s just nice to be out there on the grass and join the guys for a little bit and then do my own thing.”