Sky Bet League 2 club Leyton Orient have set up a new initiative to help those clubs affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The club has organised a FIFA 20 tournament with 128 participants from around the world of football to help raise money for club’s struggling to make ends meet after competitive football was put on hold till April 4th at the earliest.
? SAY HELLO TO YOUR CONTENDERS!
Here is the full list of 128 teams competing in the #UltimateQuaranTeam Cup!
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The draw will take place on *Wednesday* now – more info to follow.
Who’s do you make as the favourite then? ?
— Leyton Orient (@leytonorientfc) March 16, 2020
We have already seen clubs like National League Barnet FC that have had to make all non-essential staff redundant at the club in an effort to stay afloat.
The tournament which is going by the hashtag #UltimateQuarenteam is due to kick-off this week looks to help mainly the clubs in the EFL that have been hit by the pandemic and the fixture cancellation it has caused. Some of the money raised will also be going to the EFL’s chosen charity MIND and also the World Health Organisation’s COVID-19 solidarity response fundraiser.
The fundraiser has drawn clubs at all levels of the English game from 2018/19 treble winners Manchester City to those teams competing in the same league as Leyton Orient. There has also been involvement from teams all over Europe, as well as America, Australia and Africa.
There was a little bit of controversy surrounding this tournament as some of the teams that decided to enter had to withdraw due to an issue with the company that sponsors Leyton Orient. Orient are sponsored by The Sun Dream Team which, due to the newspaper’s treatment of Liverpool fans during the 1987 Hillsborough disaster, led to some teams taking a stand.
The draw was made last night and to see who is playing who click here.
In a statement on the club’s website, Leyton Orient Chief Executive Danny Macklin had this to say on the tournament: “This provides a fantastic opportunity to play a small part in providing some engaging content with football fans at this very difficult time.
“Furthermore and perhaps even more importantly it’s a chance to raise much-needed funds for EFL clubs and two phenomenal causes. On behalf of Leyton Orient FC, we want to thank everyone for their support and we very much wish everyone well.”
The rest of the statement can be found here
You can keep up to date with all the goings on with the tournament by following Leyton Orient on Twitter and you can watch the games being played – Orient have asked the clubs involved if they could stream the matches on Twitch.
If you would like to donate to the cause you can do that by visiting the just giving page on this link here.