The CEO of Liverpool Football Club (FC) — former video game exec Peter Moore — is concerned that potential millennial audiences would rather play video games than watch soccer matches, SportsPro reported Wednesday.
Moore told Arabian Business magazine that in order to keep younger audiences interested in soccer, the powers that be in the industry need to use new technology and adapt content to shorter attention spans. The executive even mentioned “Fortnite” as a competing interest for younger viewership, perhaps even more so than other soccer teams.
“90 minutes is a long time for a millennial male to sit down on a couch,” Moore said, referring to the average length of a soccer match. “When I look at viewing and attendance figures of millennial males, I’m concerned as a chief executive of a football club that relies on the next generation of fans coming through.”
Moore previously worked for Sega of America and EA Sports, so he is familiar with the key demographic Liverpool FC wants to build, as well as the pull and appeal of the video game industry’s offerings with that same demographic.
“If we don’t build technological prowess as a club we will lose [millennial male viewership],” Moore said. “There’s so much pressure on time now and only 24 hours in a day… there are only so many hours to play ‘Fortnite.’”
“Fortnite” is the wildly successful, free to play battle royale game that’s made Epic Games CEO (and Variety500 recipient) Tim Sweeney a billionaire. You likely have heard of it, whether from news headlines or from talk show hosts like Ellen DeGeneres or Jimmy Kimmel.
Moore further explained how to reach a new generation of potential soccer enthusiasts (and, ideally, Liverpool FC fans).
“We are an industry that needs to harness technology to make sure we don’t miss an entire generation of young people growing up that don’t have that love for football,” he said. “We need to package content in bites of 60 to 90 seconds to keep their engagement.”
Moore went on to reveal that Liverpool FC is partnering with IBM to connect soccer fans with more relevant content across its website and apps.