Leyton Orient challenge teams to FIFA tournament amid coronavirus outbreak
PUBLISHED: 12:00 16 March 2020 | UPDATED: 12:05 16 March 2020
Mathew Parri Thomas 2016
Leyton Orient are not letting coronavirus get in between their fans and their football fix as they played a Football Manager fixture against Bradford City and are now set to host a FIFA 20 tournament.
With elite football in the UK suspended until April 3, all fixtures in the Premier League and EFL have been postponed.
While the Covid-19 pandemic obviously presents concerns beyond the sporting world, fans of football and beyond are now facing the prospect of weeks without the escapism sport offers in an alread-difficult time.
Leyton Orient had been scheduled to play Bradford on Saturday, but that League Two fixture was of course postponed.
However, Orient took a left-field approach to providing fans with some Saturday drama by playing a game of Football Manager.
Sport Interactive's hugely popular management simulator has taken on a life of its own over the years, and Orient have now turned to their fans - literally.
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Orient put out a tweet on Saturday morning which read: 'First day on the job!
'Today's match against @officialbantams may have been postponed in real life but it's game day on @FootballManager and we need help!'
Supporters were invited to vote for who should start, along with formations and tactics, as well as making live decisions during the simulated game.
They opted for a team of Lawrence Vigouroux, Myles Judd, Dan Happe, Marvin Ekpiteta, Joe Widdowson, Jordan Maguire-Drew, Ouss Cissè, George Marsh, James Brophy, Conor Wilkinson and Ruel Sotiriou as the starting line-up.
The O's suffered a 1-0 defeat in the match to Bradford and have since promoted a FIFA 20 tournament which has seen a number of clubs across the globe sign up to take part.
It will be a 128-team knock-out tournament which includes clubs from across the EFL from Blackpool to Swedish outfit Djurgarden.
The Orient account added that it would host a live draw on Tuesday, before joking it was praying 'for an away day to Man City'.