Now the cleat’s on the other foot.

Surprise! eFootball PES 2020 dropped a bombshell announcement earlier today when Konami revealed it had secured exclusivity rights to Juventus. Juventus, or Juve to fans, is an Italian soccer club that currently enjoys the talents of Cristiano Ronaldo on the pitch.

The PES 2020 exclusivity deal grants Konami sole rights of digital representation of the club in video games, pulling the rug out from under FIFA, which has leaned heavily on Ronaldo to market its games in the past. While FIFA will still be able to produce the likenesses and names of the members of Juventus, it won’t be able to actually refer to the team as such. Instead, FIFA will refer to Juventus as Piemonte Calcio.

This deal will shake up the soccer video game landscape drastically. Keep in mind that it wasn’t too long ago PES was made fun of for being forced to refer to Manchester United as “Man Red” in its games due to the same sort of exclusivity deals being made by EA. Now, fans of Juve will have to make the choice between supporting the more popular soccer franchise or their beloved team.

This deal will shake up the soccer video game landscape drastically.

The PES 2020 exclusivity deal also means FIFA will have to represent Juventus with a different kit, crest and stadium, too. The team will virtually be unrecognizable, save for the actual players who are signed to it, which could be a crucial factor for a soccer club that boasts nearly 1.5 million followers on its English Twitter alone. Here’s the shocking tweet in all its glory:

seperator

Cody's Take

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Securing the representation rights to Juventus isn’t going to magically help PES 2020 usurp FIFA overnight, but it’s a promising deal. FIFA has been utterly dominant as a soccer game franchise. Monopolies can lead to stagnancy, though, which has been the fear of many footie fans for years. PES 2020 can legitimately claim it has one of the most exciting teams in the world as its own exclusive and that’s a huge deal that could push sales of the game higher.

PES 2020 can legitimately claim it has one of the most exciting teams in the world.

Don’t believe me? Juventus is one of the biggest soccer teams on the planet, and it’s the home of one of the sport’s brightest stars. Soccer fans will go to great lengths to support their team of choice—even if it means jumping ship to another franchise. As a Manchester United fan myself, I know I’d make the same leap if PES 2020 suddenly had that club’s exclusive rights, too. While Juventus isn’t quite as big—its nearly 29 million followers on Instagram falls just shy of Manchester United’s close to 30 million—that number should prove why this deal is so tantalizing.

Oh, and to make things even more interesting? Ronaldo himself has 175 million Instagram followers. While he’ll be available in both games, it will be interesting to see just how many of his fans end up choosing PES 2020 because it’s the more authentic representation of his club.

PES 2020 is set to massively benefit from Juventus, and it will do so at the expense of FIFA. That’s a dramatic change in the narrative of the two franchise’s rivalry, and it could genuinely mean some healthy competition in a genre that’s been synonymous with one title for too long.

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Based out of Niagara Falls, Cody is a gaming expert with years of industry experience writing about the latest in news, trends, and criticism. He's known for his honesty, analysis, and sense of humour, and he has a particularly large soft spot for JRPGs. Outside of video games, Cody is passionate about anime, Japanese pro wrestling, trading card games, and tattoos. You can find him tweeting about all of those things and more @cm_GG.