FIFA 23 will be the most historic game in the long-running football sim series for a number of reasons. An all-new reason has been added to that list this week as it was cofirmed that the Croatian National Team will be a part of the game. It's the first time the international side has been included since FIFA 12.
“The moment many players around the world have been waiting for,” Croatian Football Federation president Marijan Kustić said via a tweet revealing the news (thanks, Eurogamer). EA has since corroborated the news, getting in on the celebrations surrounding the inclusion of Croatia in the final FIFA game it will work on before moving on to EA Sports FC.
Even though it has been more than a decade since Croatia was a playable team in a FIFA game, the effort to get the side re-added to the roster was upped significantly in 2018. The men's Croatian national team made it all the way to the World Cup final for the first time in its history that year, making it somewhat odd that the moment couldn't be replicated, and perhaps bettered, virtually by FIFA players.
The long-running dispute between EA and Croatian football's governing body is rooted in money, or rather a lack of it. Former HNA president Davor Šuker didn't agree the money EA was willing to stump up for the rights to include Croatia in FIFA 12 matched the team's worth. That meant a deal was never struck, and thus began a streak of FIFA titles in which Croatia simply wasn't included.
As highlighted, that has been a growing problem ever since Croatia became significant contenders for trophies on the world stage. With a men's and women's World Cup update coming shortly after FIFA 23 launches later this year, it would have been a little odd, and perhaps even a tad embarrassing, if the current silver medallists on the men's side of things weren't even in the game. If this news is enough to convince you to place a FIFA 23 preorder, you've already missed out on bagging the new game for just $0.063.
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