Is EA SPORTS FC considering a major move in the FIFA-UEFA licensing dispute?

Is EA SPORTS FC considering a major move in the FIFA-UEFA licensing dispute?

The announcement of EA SPORTS FC has demonstrated yet again that football''s most intense competition isn''t the Premier League title race, but the licensing battle between UEFA, FIFA, and the top leagues around Europe.

Maybe this is because my team is having a terrible season, but it really feels like football is melting.

I''ve never been to Camp Nou before, but I took Lionel Messi to Paris Saint-Germain pretty hard. It just felt like another victory for football''s corporatization, with the crazed and crazed friendship with their beloved club unceremoniously squished in a deal that left no one except the shirt-printers at Nike.

Not the casual fans who have lost their idealised image of one of the greatest players of all time, not the PSG fans who entered boo and whistle his entire touch, and certainly not the Spanish league that Messi played in, La Liga, who had now lost two of their most marketable players in their years-long feud with Paris Saint-Germain. The first being when PSG started the 222 million league-mandated release clause in Neymars contract, which was supposed to be an absurd, astronomical amount no one

Fewer big names are causing less international TV interest, thus lowering revenue and a less prosperous competition, with even greater ground being lost to poorer teams.

Weve seen how powerful strong branding is and how devastating being out of it can be. Pro Evolution Soccer, or should I say eFootball, which for years provided the best gameplay but gradually became less and more relevant because it didn''t have the new West Ham kit every year.

So far, lower sales fueled a somewhat lowered investment. That said, until we were left with the free-to-play frozen ooze that is eFootball 2022, the type of off-brand football game you''d buy for 4 at Blockbuster on the PS1. At least it technically costs less now.

Even with a handful of the best teams being replaced with generic ones, Serie A in FIFA 22 is also depressing.

Europa''s largest teams are trying to keep up with state-backed clubs like PSG and Manchester City, as well as the Premier League as globally regarded as the best league and thus receives the most TV money. There have been a slew of hijinx that have stubbed the footballing establishment.

Teams like Juventus in Italy, Real Madrid and Barcelona in Spain must go all out on the Champions League, the current top European competition, and the most lucrative moneyspinner. The Champions League is managed by UEFA and Europe''s football authority, but they are under constant pressure to give top clubs access and a bigger slice of the income pie.

This in part resulted in the detested, but currently dismissed, European Super League, a closed-shop competition that would replace the UEFAs Champions League, but without UEFAs involvement, where historically large teams would play each other without need for qualification and without the threat of relegation.

To combat this challenge, UEFA sought for help from FIFA, the world football governing body responsible for the World Cup, but, at least initially, didn''t get much. FIFA and UEFA are not seeing eye-to-eye on a lot of things either.

FIFA''s biggest cash generator is the World Cup, but that only happens every four years. FIFA therefore wants to shorten the cycle to every couple of years, but this would disrupt the European Championships and the UEFA Nations League, and result in many other issues.

EA abandoning FIFA''s license to own EA SPORTS FC is incredibly rewarding because to all of these cynical factions. FIFA has served as the motto for football games for over 30 years, and the loss of that brand recognition is likely to slam sales.

FIFA fixtures are particularly important for football zeitgeists and a significant part of how younger people interact with football, especially as watching live matches has become more difficult and costly.

EA reportedly has been unhappy with the cost of working with FIFA for years, but it appears that the $250 million they were paid to stump up at the tail end of last year was the gold bullion that broke the cashcows back.

EA SPORTS FC announced that its 300+ license partners were flexible, more than implying that this new game would still have the same realistic glitz as current FIFA games. The two went on to demonstrate how their unique licensing portfolio, which includes agreements with FIFPRO, many top leagues and kit manufacturers, would remain post-FIFA. That''s what''s the names, competitions, and kits sorted at least.

However, although it was not confirmed in this post, one of the greatest additions EA has made in the last few years is a fully licensed Champions League and Europa League. How curious would it be if UEFA took a lead role with one of its most daily culturally relevant touchstones with fans?

This move would also seem to extend its influence to certain clubs, leagues, and even players, who have also been embroiled in playing in different games, based on their looks and qualities.

On the FIFA side, it very likely that their decision to give their name out to other game developers to produce different items irked EA. After all, what''d their''s the alleged $250 million paying for if not even the exclusive right to make FIFA games?

Although EA SPORTS FC is simple to read as a tussle between EA and FIFA, it also engages in the wider and increasing branding battle throughout football, as diverse parties struggle to extract as much as possible money.

EA is one of the best in this regard, with the Ultimate Team from FIFA, Madden, and NHL totaling $1.6 billion, overdoubling the revenue of even the most powerful football teams.

As crypto exchanges, currency creators, and NFT projects continue to invest heavily in both gaming and football, it appears more than likely that EA might add to its new platform in the Department, whether its Socios, as many teams already have or a different company.

You never know; some other publisher might profit from the opportunity to collaborate with FIFA and challenge EAs hegemony with a fresh and exciting football game - FIFA 2K24 perhaps? Again, if it doesnt have the right Crystal Palace away strip its not worth playing, is it?

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