EA Sports is considering changing the name of its iconic FIFA football video game series, the company has revealed. The latest edition, FIFA 22, was released last week and already has more than 9 million players, with 460 million matches already played and 7.6 million Ultimate Team teams created.
However, despite the huge success, EA Sports general manager Cam Weber announced that the company is exploring the idea of rebranding the FIFA series as it "reviews its naming rights agreement" with football's governing body. Should EA Sports proceed with the split, it would be extremely damaging to FIFA, with its largest commercial contract valued at over $140 million per year.
A statement said, "Over years of building our global franchise, we also know that authenticity is essential to the experience. That's why we focus so much energy on the collective strength of more than 300 individual licensee partners who give us access to more than 17,000 athletes on more than 700 teams, in 100 stadiums and more than 30 leagues around the world.
"We continually invest in the most meaningful partnerships and licenses for players, which is why our game is the only place where you can authentically play in the iconic UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, CONMEBOL Libertadores, Premier League, Bundesliga, and LaLiga Santander, among many others.
"The breadth of our partnerships and our ecosystem of licensed content will allow us to continue to bring unparalleled authenticity in our EA SPORTS soccer games, now and for many years to come.
"As we look to the future, we are also exploring the idea of renaming our EA SPORTS global football games. This means we are reviewing our naming rights agreement with FIFA, which is separate from all our other partnerships and official licenses across the football world.
"The future of football is very big and bright. Our priority is to ensure we have every opportunity to continue to deliver the best interactive football experiences in the world."
FIFA has been produced annually since 1993 by EA for PlayStation, Xbox and other device users, but now it may follow a similar line to rivals Konami, which has renamed its Pro Evolution Soccer series as eFootball.