TSA Invade Manchester, Play UEFA, Get Pissed

It’s a tough life. Gaming. Writing about gaming. Drinking. Writing about drinking. A bit more gaming. The only things we spare you are the tales of vomiting and what we had for lunch. So, when EA lay on a show, chances are it’s going to involve gaming, and drinking, and to miss that suggests a foolhardy mindset that we here at TSA simply don’t subscribe to.

So, it was off to Manchester last night, to the Amperside Nightclub in Deansgate, which was playing host to the finest gaming talent in the UK, the overall winner of the night would then be shipped off to Munich to play in the FIFA 08 World Cup. As is traditional with EA Sports, the event was slick, stylish and full of celebrities consuming the free beer. There were also break dancers, dancing and breaking.

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As is also traditional, we were half and hour late – the club wasn’t on Deansgate at all, it’s down some dingy alley round the back, but the red carpet and photographers suggested that once we’d found the place if it wasn’t the right place this was still going to be fun. Smiling at the cameras like idiots from Crimewatch – check Heat next week – we were off inside.

So, yeah, celebrities. Around the large bar (with cocktail lasses handing out nibbles and stuff) were OB and Max from Hollyoaks (real names: OB and Max), David Platt from Coronation Street (real name: David Platt) and some other people, including footballers from Man City and Wayne Rooney himself, happily playing UEFA against us normal folk – what a lovely chap.

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Footage of the games played was beamed onto massive screens up high, so amongst all the Barcelonas and UTDs we jumped in and gave Tyrone from Coronation Street (real name: Tyrone) a good thrashing with Burnley FC. Great delight was taken there we can assure you.

We had to pause the game while some break dancers had a dance off and a surfer dude juggled a football about. During which we turned to see the back drop on the big screen was not some rolling video footage but in giant letters BURNLEY 2 SHEFFIELD WED 0, absolute quality, replays of Akinbiyi’s fluky goal rolling over and over again, was hard to stifle the giggles.

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The final of the FIFA was won by someone, not sure who because we had drunk way too much by then. Bit of ogling and some smoozing later and we’d run out of business cards to give out. Bit of boogieing and then home.

The game? Aye, it’s great. The vomiting? Not so much.

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