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Published 24 January 2023 4 min read

Get to know eLions player MHaywxrd

Written by:

Frank Smith

We catch up with eLion player MHaywxrd as he answer a host of questions and we find out who would make his dream FIFA five-a-side team

Full name: Mitch Hayward

Date of birth: 10/04/99

From: Wembley, about 15 minutes from the stadium and you can see the arch from my house.

England eLions debut: March 2021.

Key achievement: ePremier League Final 3/4 finish x2

Club support: Arsenal

Learn more about eLions

Favourite player: Lionel Messi

Favourite England player: Bukayo Saka

How old were you when you started playing FIFA?

When I first started playing I was about five or six but the first one I remember was FIFA 09 when I got it for the PS3 for Christmas and I was over the moon. So I would have been nine or ten.

Who is your favourite player to sign on FIFA?

R9 Ronaldo. He is the best player on the game year in, year out.

England eLions squad and coach Zac Moore
England eLions squad and coach Zac Moore

Who would make your FIFA five-a-side team?

Edwin van der Sar in goal because he is probably the most-used icon every year and is very reliable. In defence, I would go Virgil van Dijk, there isn’t much space to run into in a five-a-side. Then the other three would be Ruud Gullit, R9 and then Neymar - you have to have Neymar in a five-a-side surely?

Who would make your FIFA five-a-side team of just England players?

Aaron Ramsdale, for obvious reasons, centre back would be John Stones, Jude Bellingham in midfield and then Bukayo Saka and you have to have Harry Kane in there.

What has been your favourite moment as an eLion?

It would probably be winning that final game to win my spot on the eLions team. It is hard to say one definite moment but that stands out. And then after becoming an eLion, qualifying for the eNations and going to Copenhagen for the tournament was one of the first offline LAN events we had after COVID. We got to meet a lot of the guys you get to know online so I would say that or qualifying for the event here at Wembley.

What does it mean to be an eLion?

It means a lot. As a country we have a great pool of FIFA players, especially compared to other nations. There are plenty of top nations but our depth is very good because there are plenty of players who are good enough to play for the national team so being selected means a lot for sure.

Mitch tells us who would make his dream FIFA five-a-side team
Mitch tells us who would make his dream FIFA five-a-side team

How would you describe your playing style?

I would say it has adapted over the years. When I first broke onto the scene, I was a bit more slow tempo and possession-based but you have to adapt year in, year out. So this year, for example, it is not really that type of game so you have to adapt. Now I am more based around getting down the wings, getting to the byline and looking for cut-backs and extra passes.

How do you assess England’s chances in the eNations Cup?

Every year we have a great chance of winning the eNations Cup because we have such a great pool of players in this country when it comes to FIFA. So we have to go into the competition looking to win it for sure. There will be plenty of other nations that could but I expect us to be right up there.

eLions squad

Meet our eLions squad and coach