Football Federation Australia under fire for E-League player's 'Grim_rap_er' username

Football Federation Australia under fire for E-League player's 'Grim_rap_er' username

Football Federation Australia under fire for E-League player's 'Grim_rap_er' username

Updated 3 February 2018, 9:20 AEDT

Football Federation Australia’s venture into the world of online gaming hits controversy after one of its players appeared to have the username "Grim_rap_er".

Football Federation Australia's venture into the world of online gaming has hit controversy after one of its players appeared to have the username "Grim_rap_er".

The new E-League soccer competition launches in less than a fortnight in a bid to lure more fans from the online gaming market.

It will feature two professional online players representing each A-League team competing on gaming consoles.

But social media users were quick to pick up on the username this week, with many deeming it offensive.

Women's soccer advocate and former Matildas manager Sarah Groube said she began shaking when she first saw it.

She said it was bound to deter women from the new competition.

"I'd love to think that there's women participants in this E-league, I don't know if there are or if there are not, but I'd question whether I'd feel very comfortable signing up to a league that allowed this type of behaviour from participants," she said.

Football Federation Australia said it had looked into the matter and the name referred to rap music, not rape.

The username has since changed on the E-League website.

But Ms Groube was not convinced.

"What has hurt even more is the reaction on Twitter, the player has also had a bit of a chuckle and said they have even more interesting things to check out on their other social media channels."

In a response to Twitter users, the Newcastle Jets said it was an oversight on their part and emphasised the username had changed.

"We're sorry you feel that way, but it was an honest mistake by those involved and is in no way a reflection of the values of our club," the club said.

But Ms Groube said it was symptomatic of a wider focus on men and men's soccer in the new E-league.

She said the competition was leaving out women's W-League teams.

She was also frustrated that the FFA would immediately live-stream all E-Games, while many W-League fans were still waiting for online streaming.

"I mean of course I'm absolutely delighted that the FFA is getting behind gaming and looking into new innovative ways of spreading the word about the beautiful game," she said.

"But obviously it's the way they're going about it that's been a little hurtful to lots of people in the game."

But in a statement, a FFA spokesman said streaming 12-minute E-league games from a studio was much easier and cheaper than streaming a 90-minute women's soccer game.

"The costs, infrastructure and logistics are significantly different," he said.

The spokesman also said including W-League games would be impossible at this stage.

"The FIFA18 game does not include the Westfield W-League teams at this time, so including Westfield W-League teams was not an option to us," he said.

"Should these teams be available in future releases of the game, we would consider introducing these into future versions of the league."