Esports League featuring solely sports teams to debut next year

The League of Professional Esports is a new tournament that will only feature established sports teams.

Image via Akatsuki

An esports league aimed exclusively toward established sports teams will be launching in 2019.

Founded by Japanese entertainment company Akatsuki, the League of Professional Esports seeks to be populated entirely by global sports brands. Some of the names attached to the project are, among others, Ajax, FC Barcelona, and Tokyo Verdy.

The goal behind the league is to introduce “an esports league that fosters mutual competition at the professional level between leading Sports Clubs while emphasizing core values of gender equality, inclusion, transparency and professionalism,” according to a press release. Any established sports team from around the world can enter the league, meaning that the tournament will be a global competition.

It’s unclear which games will be present at the League of Professional Esports. When asked via email, a representative for LPE told Dot Esports that the league aims to have four separate games represented, and that teams can choose how many games they wish to compete in. Given the number of football clubs that have already signed up for the tournament, however, it would be safe to assume that a title like FIFA may be at the center of the competition.

“We intend to bring light and transparency to a sector that moves millions of young people all over the world, and who see in this new way of competition an opportunity to demonstrate their skills and talent,” said LPE CEO Xavier Cortés. “That is why our league also aims to be a point of convergence between both worlds, reaching different generations and uniting both followers of conventional sports and esports.”

The inaugural season of the LPE will be taking place in 2019, and is set to feature a $500,000 prize pool.