AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Tottenham Hotspur winger Gareth Bale have both tweeted about FIFA 21, EA SPORTS, Fifpro and more What’s the truth behind the claims?
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Zlatan Ibrahimovic has targeted EA SPORTS, the creators of the FIFA gaming franchise, claiming on social media that they used his likeness without permission.
It offers over 7. 000 players, 700 teams, 90 stadiums and 30 leagues and exclusive access to the world’s largest competitions, including the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, Copa Libertadores, Premier League, Bundesliga, La Liga and more.
Despite appearing in versions of the game for nearly two decades, AC Milan striker Ibrahimovic accused EA SPORTS and FIFPro of using his name and face without permission in a tweet posted Monday night.
« I am not aware that I am a member of FIFPro and when I am I have been taken there by some strange maneuver without real knowledge. And of course I never allowed @FIFAcom or FIFPro to make any money with myself.
« Over the years someone has made profit on my name and face without consent. Time to investigate. «
« Interesting, what is FIFPro? #TimeToInvestigate », the Welshman asked in a tweet published an hour later, which Zlatan then tweeted again.
Shortly afterwards, Ibrahimovic’s agent Mino Raiola also waded on Twitter: « I hope we get the answer to our letters @Ibra_official now. «
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Both Ibrahimovic and Bale, along with their names and similarities, have appeared in numerous previous FIFA games.
Ibrahimovic even posed with his FIFA 17 Ultimate Team Premier League Player of the Month card, awarded in January 2017, while at Manchester United.
Former Real Madrid star Bale has since appeared on the cover of FIFA 14 in the UK, Ireland and the Middle East, which is pictured alongside Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi.
In addition, EA SPORTS is currently the official video game partner of Spurs and AC Milan. Both signed multi-year exclusive license agreements with EA SPORTS for FIFA 21 and beyond in August, whereby the partnership also includes players, kit and stadium rights.
While Bale hadn’t joined Spurs at the time, veteran striker Ibrahimovic was heavily featured in the promotional images released to give Milan’s approval.
There are already reports that other players – many of whom play the game and have posed for content related to the FIFA series of games – might follow suit in suggesting that this is an imposition of their image rights.
However, the truth about this story and Ibrahimovic and Bale’s remarks have more to do with FIFPro and their support for agent reforms, with the player’s respective agents – Raiola and Jonathan Barnett – strongly opposed to the reform proposals.
These were already presented by FIFA in January. The Football Association released a statement in which it stated: « The Football Stakeholder Committee and the FIFA Council unanimously approved a number of reform proposals for football agents over the past year to protect the integrity of football and prevent abuse.
« These actions were the result of an extensive consultation process with stakeholders (players, clubs, leagues and member associations) and representatives who have been invited to several consultation meetings.
« The overriding goal here is to improve transparency, protect the players’ wellbeing, improve contract stability and raise professional and ethical standards.
« In other words, to eliminate or at least reduce the abusive and excessive practices that unfortunately have existed in football. «
The FIFA statement resulted in Raiola, Barnett, Jorge Mendes and other agents threatening legal action.
Barnett publicly stated: “We want fairness, FIFA should recognize us and treat us appropriately.
« The truth is that FIFA doesn’t know exactly what an agent is doing. Nobody from FIFA has ever been in my office or had a conversation with me.
« If you ask players what they want, they are agents. There are never any complaints about agent fees from players.
« We will try to solve the problem until the last minute, but rest assured, if necessary, we will go to any court in the world. ”
This story has less to do with Ibrahimovic, Bale and EA SPORTS and more to do with the ongoing battle of leading football agents against FIFA and Fifpro for reforms.
If you’re wondering why they have things planned for now, it’s because more agent conversations on the matter are planned soon, while they haven’t overlooked the fact that David Beckham is being paid big bucks for this year’s gig.
For its part, EA Sports is relaxed about the situation, an EA spokesperson told Mirror Football: « EA SPORTS FIFA is the world’s leading football video game. In order to create an authentic experience year after year, we work with numerous leagues and teams and individual talent to secure the rights of player likeness to be included in our game.
« One of them is a longstanding relationship with global professional football player FIFPro, who works with a number of licensors to negotiate deals that will benefit the players and their unions. «
* FIFA 21 is available now for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC. The next generation of FIFA 21 is expected to be released on Jan.. Released December 2020 on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and PlayStation 5.
Plus, fans who step into FIFA 21 can take advantage of Dual Entitlement so they can upgrade their copy of the game from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5 or Xbox One to Xbox Series X / S at no additional cost.
Zlatan Ibrahimović, FIFA, EA Sports, A. . C.. . Milan, Electronic Arts, Gareth Bale
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