Professional FIFA player Mike LaBelle says a lot goes into preparing for an esports tournament.

“For this next month, I’ll be playing every single day, where I’m creating content on Twitch, which you can find YouTube,” he told Cheddar in an interview. “The week before, I’ll look to play a lot more offline, because it is an offline event.”

And there’s a physical aspect to his training as well.

“At least for me mentally...if I got good rest, I feel like I’m going to be on top of my game,” he said. “I try not to eat poorly before an event. I wouldn’t recommend fast food.”

LaBelle recently signed on to New York Red Bulls as its first official esports athlete and will represent the club at the EA Sports FIFA 18 gaming league, competing in April’s eMLS Cup and in FIFA tournaments around the world.

LaBelle boasts more than 285,000 followers on YouTube and over 70,000 on Twitch, where he offers FIFA tutorials.

He says there are nuances to the sport that may escape casual gamers and fans.

“I think people who aren’t necessarily involved in gaming don’t understand that there’s a big difference between playing in-person versus playing online. So it’s important to get that kind of practice and repetition and see if there’s anything different so you make good habits.”

For the full interview, click here.