Oleksandr Zinchenko: "S1mple is just like Messi in Counter-Strike — an absolute phenomenon"

Feb 08 2021 3 min read

Manchester City's wingback answered questions about esports, gaming, and s1mple.

It’s hardly a secret that many younger football players are interested in PC and console games, be it Fortnite, CS:GO, Call of Duty, or simulators like FIFA and Pro Evolution Soccer. One of the most famous gamers is Oleksander Zinchenko, Manchester City’s Ukrainian left wingback. Despite the busy season and tight schedule, he found time to answer seven questions from our commentator Alexey "yXo" Maletskiy:

How did your passion for gaming start? What were your first games on PC or consoles?

My main hobby since childhood was obviously football, but when my parents managed to drive me home in the evenings, I finally had some time to play some games. My first PC game was Counter-Strike 1.6; after that came Pro Evolution Soccer 2006 and some others. On consoles, I played Super Mario Bros., Mortal Kombat, and some racing sims.

Who is the most avid gamer in Manchester City? What are the most popular games on the team?

Many guys play Call of Duty; there are also some FIFA players. But Gabriel Jesus and I are more into Counter-Strike. By the way, he’s very good.

Your coach Pep Guardiola is known for being strict: in the past, he has banned some footballers from using the internet. Aren't you worried about him finding out about your Steam account with thousands of hours in CS:GO?

He has enough worries of his own, so he has no time for our accounts! (laughs)

You have already played against Smolov's team in CS:GO, are there any plans to arrange a similar show match at the European level? For example, you with your teammate Gabriel Jesus against the team of Neymar and Casemiro?

It would be a great idea, but it will probably be difficult to get everyone together at the same time.

You played together with the recognized CS:GO genius — Oleksandr "s1mple" Kostyliev. How tangible is his incredibly high skill? Do you think it's fair to call him Messi or Ronaldo of the CS:GO world?

He's just like Messi in Counter-Strike — an absolute phenomenon. Glad to know him personally and support him at all possible tournaments!

Do you follow professional esports in your spare time? Do you have favorite players or teams?

Honestly, no, I don’t. Simply because I don’t have enough time. However, I cheer for and support Natus Vincere.

You are a professional footballer. What is your opinion on the sports component of esports? Can CS:GO, for example, be considered a sports discipline on a par with football, or is there still a difference? 

Of course, esports has now reached a completely different level, and I think that each year it will become even more popular. Still, I would not compare this discipline with football, because football is the most popular sport played all over the planet, even in its most remote parts.


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