FIFA 13 Faces Licensing Dilemma with Rangers FC
Posted by Thomas Whitehead
What to do?
Many that follow football — or soccer — have more than likely heard about the troubles faced by Scottish Glasgow-based team Rangers FC. Despite being one half of the overwhelmingly dominant 'old firm', along with Celtic FC, Rangers got itself into trouble with the tax-man and lots of other people who were owed money. The club ultimately got liquidated — essentially ceasing to exist — before new owners started a new company in the Rangers name. Why are we telling you this? Well, it poses an interesting challenge for the people responsible for EA Sport's FIFA 13, due on Wii U, Wii and 3DS this year.
Due to the shenanigans at the club, Rangers was banished not only from Scotland's top league, the SPL, but has also been sent down to the lowest professional level in the country, which is the Third Division and the fourth tier overall. As mentioned earlier, Rangers was one of two dominant brands in Scottish football, so advertisers and TV deals may disappear due to lost revenue and 'old firm' matches. For context, imagine the NBA if LA Lakers or another big name went bust and got kicked out. There are hundreds of thousands of Rangers fans in Scotland, and elsewhere, that want to play as their favourites in the next FIFA game, so what does EA do?
Nintendo Gamer has received the following comment from EA, confirming that the SPL competition will be included as normal, but the appearance of Rangers is still a doubt.
We have a licensing agreement with the Scottish Premier League. We have discussed the league structure with them and we will take their direction regarding the 12th club. FIFA 13 will be in retail stores beginning September 28 – after the start of the SPL season – so we have the flexibility to align with the authentic league structure.
As far as Glasgow Rangers are concerned, we have not made a decision at this time on whether we will pursue a separate licensing agreement to include them in FIFA 13.
Thinking about it beyond this scenario, which sporting franchises could you not live without in one of the annual EA Sports titles?