Hi, I’m Ryan Pessoa! I’m one of Manchester City’s pro esports players, representing the Club on Xbox at EA SPORTS FIFA competitions around the world. Over the lockdown period, I’ve played FIFA against Sergio Aguero, Krept & Konan and many more. I have also competed in a number of pro FIFA events, most recently coming 2nd place in the Fnatic UK Masters.

This Saturday I’ll be taking part in the City Football Group FIFA Challenge that will see footballers, pro gamers, and fans from eight CFG clubs come together in the eSports space for the very first time.

I’ll be taking on former defender and Club legend Joleon Lescott to see if he has what it takes to beat me! Tune in at https://www.twitch.tv/cfgfifachallenge.

I am also a Red Bull athlete, University of Surrey graduate, and a former junior sprinter for London. Ask me anything!

Proof: https://i.redd.it/shcfxip2pp351.jpg

Comments: 117 • Responses: 12  • Date: 

YaMaIsYaDa22 karma

I've been following you since your hashtag days. Just a few questions.

  1. What was it like at Hashtag?

  2. How different is it at Man city? What changes do you like and which ones do you not like?

  3. Is being a fifa pro a sustainable job?

ManCityUS17 karma

Firstly, I appreciate you for following me that long. That's amazing.

  1. At Hashtag it was amazing because it was like we were on a family basis. We had a HQ where we all stayed because we had a lot of qualifiers. During the season last year we had qualifiers almost every weekend, so we were around each other almost every day if I didn't have university commitments. So I got to know a lot of the boys working behind-the-scenes and it's great guys there.
  2. The travel aspect with City is much more global, and I've had a lot more opportunities to create content, like I got to play with Sergio Aguero. I've become a much better player too and at City we have a sports psychologist, which I've never had the opportunity to work with before, and it helps to zone in on the other aspects of competing. It's not just ability, it's other things you have to take into account, the mental preparation, dealing with what happens when you're not doing well at at tournament, or when you ARE doing well at a tournament, and different challenges.
  3. I'm privileged to be working with Man City and working in worldwide eSports competitions in FIFA, and I'm grateful I'm in the position I'm in.

RonSwansonsChair11 karma

As someone who has played a lot of FIFA 20 but still can’t make it to the upper tiers of play, what few small things would you recommend to work on that really make a difference?

ManCityUS21 karma

With FIFA 20, if you compare it with FIFA 19, there are a lot fewer things you have to try and master. I'd recommend learning three skills moves. There are three that are really effective in creating goal-scoring opportunities: the elastico, the reverse elastico, and the scoop. They're all five-star skill moves, so you need players with five-star skill moves to execute them.

I'd say the other thing a lot of people don't do is try and find a way to record your gameplay, and also watch people at a higher level, because when you can watch back, you can see the things you did to create a goal-scoring opportunity, and when you watch someone at a higher level you're able to see the little intricacies, how they can create a goal-scoring opportunity out of nothing, or defend against a player with a very different style.

TheLaughingForest9 karma

I've been reading how the Olympic athletes have been trying to keep "training ready" during quarantine. Do you have any rituals you like or need to do for esports?

ManCityUS14 karma

I'd say the key with EA SPORTS FIFA specifically is that it's really a mechanics-based game, so you really have to make sure you're up to scratch with dribbling, attacking, and defending at the highest level. Because in quarantine our season has been suspended, so we have to make sure we're engaging in competitions that keep us at the highest level, whether that's with teammates or other tournaments with ranked players, and just making sure you're at the highest level for when tournaments resume.

TheLaughingForest8 karma

Thanks! Do you need to do any - idk...hand stretches or stuff like that to prevent repetitive stress injury? And do you have a favorite year of FIFA? Mine is 96 but alas that was from another time...

ManCityUS11 karma

I don't have specific stretches that I do for gaming, but I try to keep myself in good physical shape overall.

As for favorite year, in all honesty I don't know, because I feel like I always enjoy FIFA anyways. I always focused on just playing with my friends, not the game-play side, so it reminds me of spending time with my friends.

If I had to give a specific one, it would be FIFA 14, because that was when my friends had a lot of spare time to play in high school.

powpomelo8 karma

What does your day-of (and day before?) preparation look like for an eSports event vs an IRL one? Do you have any special rituals you like to follow?

ManCityUS8 karma

I wouldn't say I necessarily have a special ritual I follow. I know that for example if I have an esports competition coming up -- as a gamer, our routine is quite reversed, I'll be up quite late at night instead of waking up a normal times. So I'll try to reverse that and watch footage of my opponents and see how they're doing.

In terms of athletic competition, I never had a ritual either. Two to three days before training, I'd just let my body relax.

There are some similarities, but I'd say I was a lot more nervous competing for athletics than I did for esports.

AlexMullerSA4 karma

Serious question. Do you have a diet or nutrition plan? Schedules meals etc?

ManCityUS8 karma

I'll be honest, I'd say throughout 2019 in all honesty I didn't. When I was at university, because I was trying to balance both esports and my degree, I would rarely try and dedicate a lot of time to cook or schedule meals. I would order in whatever or do a quick-cook meal. So since the start of 2020, I've been trying to get my diet right and get my sleeping right for way we compete.

The way I eat on a normal day-to-day basis is kind of healthy anyway, but I'd say specifically from 2020 since the end of January, that's when I decided to cut out a lot of the fast-food aspects and sugary foods and drinks. But that's not just because of trying to get in the perfect physical shape for esports, it's just in general because I exercise quite a lot, so I want to try and gain a lot of muscle, so the best way to do that is by eating healthy foods.

Since lockdown I managed to buy one of the last rowing machines, and that came about two months ago, so I've been exercising and doing a lot of cardio about three or four times a week, and I follow an ab routine that I've been doing for almost three months. I've just been trying to keep to that routine since in lockdown I haven't been able to do many other activities. I haven't been able to do any weight exercises because gyms are still closed in the UK.

Jph12102 karma

What kind of in-game tactics do you use?

ManCityUS7 karma

My in-game tactics are very balanced, literally. I use for my defensive width, I use it as five, and depth as five as well. My offensive is all balanced and on five. I don't change too much.

Initially at the start of the year is where I'd spend hundreds of games just learning the changes of he game, and which tactics suited my style best. The only thing I changed is that I make sure my fullbacks stay back to make sure I'm not susceptible to counter-attacks. Otherwise everything is the same.

ibpants2 karma

I know that the CFG hierarchy are very keen on their different clubs playing similar brands of football and hire coaches with that in mind. Is there any such expectation from the club that their esports players will adhere to a similar style/do you think you were brought in because you fit that style, or are they less hands on regarding footballing philosophy when it comes to esports?

ManCityUS6 karma

Shellzz (my teammate at Man City) and I play differently, he's a lot more secure defensively and I'd say I'm a lot more of an attacking player. When the game allows me to express myself, I'm naturally great at going forward on FIFA.

I think it's fair to say this current FIFA is more for a defensive style, and that's not naturally suited to me. I've always been a person who thrives when I can express myself going forward. So based on that, the way I play is very expressive and free-flowing attacking football.

Dartastic2 karma

I kind of feel like I'm garbage at Fifa 20. I feel like I'm always scrambling on defense and when I get in the box to attack I have a hard time creating good chances. Any advice on that would be great.

Also, what would you say the best way to get coins in ultimate team is? It's not even worth playing online against other people for me because my team just gets outclassed every single time.

ManCityUS6 karma

In terms of defending on FIFA 20, I'd say it's pretty straightforward. The AI is very intelligent defensively, so you're at a disadvantage if you're switching players out a lot, and I'd say it's key to not take any of your back four defenders out of position, and keep them in shape.

As far as attacking, a key example of improving the game, and advice I'd always give anyways, is letting go of the sprint button when your'e dribbling, because it keeps the ball closest to the feet, and it allows you to assess your options when you are walking slowly towards the defense.

The best way to get coins is by playing in Weekend League. You get rewarded based on where you finish. But it is difficult, and since you said you don't have a great team, try to build up your team by playing squad battles offline, which is AI, and you can get enough coins to boost your squad. Then you can try to qualify for the Weekend League to get more coins.

Infamy4442 karma

Which City players/ex have you played against, and who's the best and who's the worst?

ManCityUS4 karma

I played against Sergio Aguero, and I won 4-0 against him. He's a decent player, and I know that he streams a lot of FIFA anyways so he's a big fan of the game. He's an entertaining streamer.

In terms of former players I'm going to play Joleon Lescott on Saturday as part of the CFG FIFA Challenge, and hopefully he's as good as he says, because he's been saying he wants to compete professionally. So we'll see how good he is.

Tune in at https://www.twitch.tv/cfgfifachallenge.

Jimjam9162 karma

How good are you at IRL football/soccer?

ManCityUS5 karma

I'd say I'm pretty good. As I said I'm quick. So when I was younger, I was really fast, so my managers would always play me on the wing or up front. But as I got older and matured, I played right back when I played Sunday league. And when I play seven-a-side with my friends I play centre back. I'd say my physical attributes help me a lot and I'm quite strong on the ball, and my pace helps me when I'm defending.

ManCityUS-1 karma

...Thanks for all your questions, everyone! I'm signing off now.

You can see me take on Joleon Lescott this Saturday as part of the CFG FIFA Challenge: https://www.twitch.tv/cfgfifachallenge.