Football gaming fans, it’s truly the end of an era: EA is reportedly rebranding its iconic FIFA series to EA Sports Football Club.
What a clunky title. The news comes via journalist and industry insider Jeff Grub, who discussed the change on his premium podcast show GrubbSnax.
“EA Sports Football Club, EA Sports FC, that’s the name of the game,” he revealed (as per VGC). “I saw trademarks for it, I thought that could be just a feature like an online mode, (but) I asked around about it (and) that’s it, that’s the name.”
It comes after FIFA – the governing body and not the game – has been consistently embroiled in turmoil. Last month, EA boss Andrew Wilson claimed in an internal meeting that using the FIFA licence was “an impediment” to the publisher’s ambitions for the gaming series.
He also insisted that FIFA had precluded EA from expanding beyond the usual gameplay modes, and the only genuine value the FIFA licence brought in a non-World Cup year was “four letters on the front of the box.”
Rumours about a name change for the game have persisted for a long time. Last October, it was reported that EA was considering dropping the FIFA name due to the current agreement coming to an end later this year.
It’s not the only recent issue for the game, with the legendary Diego Maradona being “suspended” from FIFA 2022 following a legal dispute which claimed EA had negotiated with the wrong party and therefore did not have the rights to use his likeness.
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“Due to a third party legal dispute, we must suspend Diego Maradona from appearing in FIFA Ultimate Team Packs, Ultimate Draft and the Soccer Aid World XI team,” a message states that appears when starting up the game.
“As such, Diego Maradona Icon Items will no longer be made available in Packs, SBCs and FUT Draft, and their price range has been fixed until further notice. We share our fans’ disappointment and hope to bring one of football’s greatest icons back in the game at some point in the future.”
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