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Inside the Patta x Audazo Cup Tournament

New Balance linked up with long-term friends Patta to host an exclusive and packed out party on Sunday afternoon in East London. Here’s what went down...

19th August 2019

New Balance linked up with long-term friends Patta to host an exclusive and packed out party on Sunday afternoon in East London. Here’s what went down…

Nowadays, football tournaments are commonplace. But, few come with the pedigree of the Patta x Audazo Cup, which returned for its third year and its first under the ‘Audazo’ name.

To celebrate the launch of the all-new Audazo futsal sneaker, which is designed to get you to-and-from the pitch and back again, New Balance linked up with long-term friends Patta to host an exclusive and packed out party on Sunday afternoon in East London. Here’s what went down.

The annual table football competition and all-day summer party was hosted at The Glove That Fits in Homerton, East London. The annual event brings together a network of creative individuals from some of London’s exciting crews and collectives. This year, the man at centre stage – host, referee and VAR enforcer – Big Zuu kept the talent in check and stopped everything from overzealous celebrations and the frowned-upon ‘flick’ technique while also maintaining the usual fair play table football regulations. He also encouraged people to interact more and enjoy the moment rather than recording it – a welcome change from most of today’s events which are designed purely to be shared via handheld screens. 

“This is what I do,” Zuu explains, mic in one-hand, iPhone stopwatch in the other, after blowing the imaginary whistle of the first game of the tournament. “I’m always keeping the peace at football so I’m used to being the ref. It’s a natural step for me. I’ve been using the VAR too, trying to implement the new rules. I’m trying to take this table game to new levels.

“Today is just a sick a place to link up and network and have some fun. We’re all just playing table football – it’s something so simple but so fun. It’s important to have days like this where everyone in the industry can relax and enjoy themselves – it’s our escape. ”

The tournament was enjoyed by nine of the capital’s most exciting and influential collectives; including WAH London, Bounce Cinemas, Filthy Fellas, Bossy LDN, Patta, Football Daily, Hip Hop London, Trapstar and The Basement – who all stepped out in their own custom New Balance x Patta colours. Not that everyone felt like they deserved to be wearing their teams colours, though. “Last year I would say my performance levelled that of (Shkodran) Mustafi,” explains, Specs Gonzalez – self-confessed ‘weakest link’ on the Filthy Fellas team which also consisted of Poet, Vuj and Savage Dan. “But, it means a lot to us to be invited back year after year; we get to socialise with a whole host of different people and ultimately make new friends. We also learn a lot about each other – it’s very competitive here. For example, in last year’s tournament I was one of the worst players on the team. So, for an entire year, they kept telling me to step up and you need to practice.

“I’m going to step up, I’ve got a point to prove. A few people have come up to me already saying you were the guy who missed the sitters last year. So, there’s a lot to live up to. It’s funny, I try and have the mentality where I’m here to enjoy it. But, when you get up on the table and see the person opposite you showing the aggression and passion, I then know I need to step up. As soon as people put their hands on that table, it’s on. All the celebrations are up in your face. Last year, I was Mustafi. This year I’m going to have to be David Luiz because I feel like a new player.”

The renewed confidence did not reflect to success on the table for Specs, but it did for Football Daily. The multi-media collective who spend most of their time analysing the game, breezed the tournament group stages by using the very same analytical mindset on the table. “We’re the Man City of the tournament,” Football Daily chime. “We’ve mixed it up and we keep winning,” they add, before letting us in on a little secret. “ We always say the most experienced player should be the defender because you’ve got less players to work with and a lot is coming at you. They should be the focus. Then, the striker has got to have good reactions, to be the poacher. They’ve got one job, swing and hit. The defender has all the work.

“This a sport at the end of the day,” they empower. “Any game where there is a goal, there will always be mad celebrations. Which is what you’re seeing today. Everyone wants to win.”

The winning mentality was adopted fully by Filthy Fellas’ very own Alhan Gençay who, after scoring the opening goal in the teams’ final group game and polishing up his last piece of BBQ, shook the entire table. “I thought it was game over,” chuckles Big Zuu. “Alhan moved the whole entire table – it almost fell off the podium. I’ve been out here trying to stop everyone flicking the sticks and he’s here almost flipping the entire table. It’s the wildest celebration I’ve seen all day.”

The celebrations continued with another iconic performance from the Patta-affiliated brass band who marched in, splashing through the occasional British summertime time puddle, in the new Audazo sneaker. They were also supported by the Patta Soundsystem DJ, who kept the vibes going into the night; earning the approval of the tournament’s winning team Hip Hop London. “The tunes have kept us going,” the team explain. “Next time, a walk-in song would be mad. We’d have to go into something like ‘Greaze Mode – Skepta ft. Nafe Smallz – or the second half of Travis Scott’ ‘Sicko Mode.’

Brass bands, a turning of the tables – quite literally – and a multitude of celebrations, the Patta x Audazo Cup lived up to expectations for a summer party which celebrates the New Balance Audazo sneaker; a revolutionary silhouette which has been re-engineered for futsal. It’s the shoe which brings two worlds – London’s creative community and football – even closer together. 

“It’s been a crazy day, we’re all out here enjoying it all” Zuu concludes. “The craziest thing I’ve seen on the table has got to be when Patta came back – they were losing 5-0 and came back to win 5-6. That’s been the biggest scenes on the table of the day. Madness.”

Check out the action from the day in the image gallery above and for more from the campaign or to cop the new New Balance Audazo visit NewBalance Football. 

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