EA SPORTS have been dealt another major blow in the Serie A for future FIFA games, as Konami have announced an exclusive deal with S.S.C Napoli.
In previous seasons, this has very much been a trend for the Italian clubs. While FIFA 21 was the dawn of a new era for the Milan clubs – AC Milan and Inter Milan – becoming partner clubs, in the previous two seasons EA had been pipped by Konami for both Juventus and Roma exclusivity.
While playing as Roma FC and Piemonte Calcio may not be favorable for fans, it looks like Napoli supporters are next in line.
The deal was announced on April 28, with Gli Azzurri set to join the likes of Barcelona in the group of PES partner clubs.
Will Napoli be in FIFA 22?
Napoli’s exclusivity will commence from the 2022/23 season, which means they will feature in FIFA 22 – but that will end after that.
Naoki Morita, President at Konami Digital Entertainment B.V, said: “With this close partnership between our two companies, we will further establish eFootball PES as the definitive video game series for Italian football.
“Showing strong belief in our long-term plan, we are humbled that Napoli chose to sign this exclusive agreement with KONAMI.”
While it’s not mentioned in this statement specifically, that will mean the Napoli badge, kits and stadium will only feature in the PES series for the duration of this deal. FIFA players will instead have to look forward to playing at a generic stadium, but with star heads (or face scans) from previous seasons.
PES 2022 x Napoli trailer
Serena Salvione, Chief International Development Officer at Società Sportiva Calcio Napoli, added:”We are delighted to launch this exclusive partnership with an innovative, international brand such as KONAMI to create content and unique experiences for Napoli fans. KONAMI has further tied its name to the Napoli brand by acquiring the naming rights to the training ground.
“This partnership is the latest step in the wider drive towards internationalisation of the Napoli brand that the club has been working on in recent years.”
This may be disappointing news for diehard FIFA players, and casual fans of the game series, but it’s certainly a major coup for Konami. Whether or not more clubs will announce new allegiances like this in the run-up to the release of PES 2022 remains to be seen – but it’s a solid start.