Most football fans were caught off guard by Christiano Ronaldo's announcement of leaving Real Madrid and joining Juventus but EA's sports division probably doubly so, since they'll now have to accommodate for Ronaldo's switch in FIFA 19.
Of course, this is nowhere near a gamebreaking deal, since it doesn't take much to change a player's allegiance in-game. Promotional material and FIFA 19's Journey mode however, may not be as simple to fix.
In this day and age, photoshop can be an invaluable money saver, so we suspect EA Sports will think so to, at least when it comes to photos. That doesn't fix FIFA 19's video footage though, which is likely to require re-shooting. After all, employing modern techniques may be more trouble than it's worth in these scenarios.
Another stumbling block is likely to be FIFA 19's Journey mode, which is your run of the mill career mode. It follows protagonist Alex Hunter, who joins Ronaldo and his now former team Real Madrid in his quest for Champions League glory.
While we suspect simply switching the mode to be about Juventus instead of Real shouldn't be difficult, that's under the assumption that EA Sports didn't include any more personalised communication between Real's players and Hunter. Well, other than Ronaldo himself of course.
Having said that, this is not the first time sports games have met a similar fate. Basketball fans may recall NBA 2K18 changing the cover to reflect Kyrie Irving's transfer to Boston and Madden NFL '09 doing the same for Brett Favre as New York Jet. By the way, 2K Sports have learned their lesson and so 2K19's cover cleverly focuses on LeBron James' face, rather than his jersey.
Interestingly, it is said that Juventus actually has better relations with EA Sports than Real, proof of which is the company's logo that's prominently displayed in their stadium. Needless to say, this isn't likely to change anytime soon.
So there you have it, Ronaldo's departure didn't only surprise Real fans, it actually gave EA a few headaches for sure. Nevertheless, FIFA 19 launches on 28 September 2018 for PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Switch, which leaves EA plenty of time to fix it.