After the huge response following FIFA’s Women’s World Cup earlier this month, EA Sports announced today that the upcoming FIFA 16 will feature playable female soccer teams in-game along with both US Nationals Team Forward, Alex Morgan, and Canadian Nationals Team Captain, Christine Taylor, gracing the cover with Lionel Messi. This is the first time in the FIFA franchise that women’s soccer teams have been featured on the cover and in the game.
Check out the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 North American covers below:
Both covers will be featured only in North America, with the Alex Morgan/Lionel Messi cover in the US and the Christine Sinclair/Messi cover in Canada.
Alex Morgan says of being one of the first women on the cover of a FIFA that it is “an incredible honor” and finds being alongside Messi “surreal”. Christine Sinclair says she is “thrilled” and calls the move “another exciting step for women in sports.”
FIFA 16 will feature 12 Women’s National Teams in in Kick Off, offline tournaments, and online friendly matches. So why did EA finally make the move? David Pekush, Sr. Manager of North America Marketing for EA SPORTS says, “As soon as we knew Women’s National Teams were joining FIFA 16, we immediately recognized that Christine and Alex would be the perfect cover athletes based on their accomplishments and what they represent for their respective countries and the sport of women’s soccer. They are exhilarating players and exude heart and courage on the pitch, and we are extremely proud to be working with them this year.”
This is a BIG move for EA. When the WNBA reached its ratings peak in the early-aughts, NBA Live didn’t include female players. But it is great to see EA making such a progressive step with what is currently their biggest franchise.
FIFA 16 is slated for release on Xbox One, Xbox, 360, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, and Origin for PC on September 22nd, 2015 in North America.