EA recently redefined their deal where they would pay a whopping £488 million ($590 million) to be a lead partner for the top soccer league with the England Premier League. The EPL is considered the best league in the world and is also the most watched as well as the most commercially successful. The deal may be the biggest partnership for EA with them being rebranded to EA Sports FC and that will be the new moniker for the popular series that used to be known as FIFA.
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All Clubs Notified
It was reported by Sky Sports that in a meeting, the 20 clubs in the EPL were told about the new partnership. The details of the deal are that EA will not pay a lump sum payment, but will fork out £80 million ($97.45 million) annually for the next six years. The deal goes with the previous agreements between EA and the Premier League. While not in the official language, EA will stay as the main partner of the prestigious soccer league. This means that all game licenses that are relevant are to remain and in terms of commercial coverage at the EPL club’s facilities, EA Sports FC will have a prominent presence.
In terms of the money involved, it’s more than twice as much as the previous deal. The two have had agreements dating back to 1998 and in 2016, EA became the league’s lead partner. The new deal towers over other gaming partnership deals with some of the other big leagues in Europe such as Serie A in Italy and La Liga in Spain.
There are still rumblings of a European Super League, which would be made up of the top clubs in Europe. In 2021 a Super League was proposed and it was thought to take over for the Champions League but the teams wouldn’t leave their respective domestic leagues. Some of the clubs in the league were Inter Milan, Real Madrid, AC Milan, Barcelona, and Juventus as well as six EPL sides including Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, and Chelsea. However, the Super League never came to fruition and was widely criticized by FIFA and UEFA as well as the respective domestic leagues.
Going to England
EA is now turning their main focus to England after their falling out with FIFA. EA walked away from negotiations with the global governing body of soccer who wanted more than $1 billion for the branding license. The last game to bear the FIFA name will be FIFA 23 but the games will continue to carry the EA brand. Still, the EPL’s gain is FIFA’s loss after EA abandoned their license with the governing body.
The previous FIFA and EA collaboration was a huge success with many great soccer video games featuring the top players from around the world. After the deal between the two fell through FIFA president Gianni Infantino stated that the FIFA name will still be and always be the best. However, with EA now focusing their attention on the EPL that remains to be seen.