Last month Konami announced that it was not going to renew its deal with UEFA for the Champions League and Europa League licenses. Naturally, everyone’s assumption was that rival EA Sports was going to jump on the tournament licenses involving top European clubs. Now a Dutch commentator who does work for FIFA may have slipped that the licenses have been added to FIFA 19.
In a TV interview, Dutch football commentator Evert ten Napel, who apparently has done voice work for the FIFA series for many years, said he’s working on FIFA 19 right now and that it includes the Champions League and Europa licenses.
EA is expected to announce the deal at E3 next month. I’ve reached out to EA for comment on the matter, and will update this story if the company has anything substantial to say.
For more on my thoughts of what the loss of the license means for PES fans and Konami, check out this entry of the Sports Desk column.
It’s no surprise this is happening, but what EA does with the licenses is the larger question. Having it in The Journey story mode will be cool, but that mode still has a ways to go to capture the energy and vibe of league play. Can it do so with the Champions League? Hopefully it’s not like the real-life managers in the game who are there in form but add nothing to the experience.