(Pocket-lint) - FIFA has suggested it's open to working with new video games companies, as tension mounts with EA Sports regarding future licensing agreements.
EA recently published a forward-looking press release celebrating FIFA 22 that included the surprise admission that it was considering renaming the long-running series, which was followed by reports that talks with the sport's governing body had stalled.
FIFA has now responded. It's official statement appears to come out strongly against EA Sports - without directly referencing the partner, of course - saying it believes football gaming and esports "must involve more than one party controlling and exploiting all rights".
"Technology and mobile companies are now actively competing to be associated with FIFA, its platforms, and global tournaments," the statement says.
"Consequently, FIFA is engaging with various industry players, including developers, investors and analysts, to build out a long-term view of the gaming, eSports and interactive entertainment sector."
It's not entirely clear what issues are at the core of the disagreement, though FIFA is reportedly looking to double the cost of its licensing fees - $1bn every four years - while EA is looking to expand use of the license itself to video game tournaments, NFTs and other digital products. FIFA, as you can imagine, also views the the latter as a market for itself.
With EA Sports recently filing trademark applications for the 'EA Sports FC' title, as well as reportedly extending its association with player union FIFPro, it appears this one won't be going away any time soon.
With the current 10-year licensing agreement ending after the 2022 World Cup, though, some resolution will have to be found over the next few months, we expect. Stay tuned for more.