Years of childhood competition toughened up Bjørn and Eirik Kronstad as the brothers strive for eEURO 2021 success with Norway.
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Brothers Bjørn and Eirik Kronstad will be leading Norway’s charge for eEURO 2021 glory on KONAMI's eFootball PES 2021 Season Update as part of a three-man national team.
The 28-year-old accountant Eirik (aka Rosicky_NOR92) and 33-year-old fireman Bjørn (Bearkr87) have teamed up with 37-year-old Haris Bhutta (Capo1867), an airline manager, to mount their campaign for the biggest prize in European national-team competition, having been schooled in PES in intense family games.
“I’m the second youngest child in a family of 15: eight brothers and five sisters,” says Eirik. “We always had someone to play with and against. We peaked as a family when six brothers played. It took some years for me to be ‘the one to beat’ but I got there eventually. Even though the eEURO matches are different and on a bigger stage, it’s an advantage for us that we had to compete from an early age.”
Bjørn made it to the national team first, with Eirik forced to watch his brother from the sidelines as Norway made their eEURO debut last year. “It was not the national team I dreamed about when I was little, but still very fun to be a part of,” says Bjørn. The elder sibling once aspired to make it in outdoor football, yet has found the national efootball set-up impressive.
“It was very professionally planned by the Norway Football Federation with different tests of coordination and reaction among other things at the bootcamp where they selected the players for the national team,” he said. “We also got tips on how to improve these things so we could perform at a higher level.”
The brothers are now playing together for Norway; vindication for the hours they supposedly wasted on computer football as youngsters. “It’s very special to share the experience with someone who has been close to me my whole life,” says Eirik. “I also think our family is proud of us, and maybe they are thinking it’s OK that we spent all those hours on video games growing up."
The pair continue to put in the hours as the draw for eEURO 2021 approaches, and Bjørn hopes they can stand up to the best players in Europe once the tournament kicks off. "To be the best you must beat the best," he says. "We must perform our best from the first match on 29 March – not be affected by anything, play our best no matter what gets thrown at us – and if we manage to do so, great things can follow."