Is this the end of EA Sports’ FIFA franchise?

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Although plans are in the works for the release of FIFA 23 this year, it may be the last time EA Sports may use the FIFA name.

According to reports from VGC, EA Sports CEO, Andrew Wilson, has told employees that the FIFA brand and licence has been an ‘impediment’ to EA Sports in recent years. Wilson gave employees a frank appraisal of why he believes the company could be better off ending its 30-year relationship with FIFA. This may well be the clearest indication of the relationship between EA and FIFA which could be coming to an end soon.

According to VGC’s anonymous source(s), Wilson claimed that FIFA had precluded EA from expanding its games into modes beyond traditional 11v11, or “broader digital ecosystems”, and suggested that the only value EA got from the licence in a non-World Cup year was “four letters on the front of the box”.

VGC are also reporting that, according to their sources, EA are still planning to release FIFA 23 this year, the follow up to FIFA 22, with the game set to include content around two FIFA World Cup tournaments, men’s and women’s.

The public negotiations between EA and FIFA began last year when EA released a statement indicating that they were considering whether or not to renew their licensing agreement with FIFA. A decision which could prompt a name change for one of the biggest video gaming franchises in history.

According to the Statement, EA was also looking at exploring the idea of renaming their global EA SPORTS football games. “This means we’re reviewing our naming rights agreement with FIFA, which is separate from all our other official partnerships and licenses across the football world.”

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