Just a few days ago, EA Sports removed the Portuguese star from the game’s cover, replacing him with Neymar, Kevin De Bruyne and Paulo Dybala.
Before the game had ever been released, EA Sports’ decision to choose Cristiano Ronaldo as its cover star for FIFA 19 had become a major headache for the game developer.
Firstly, EA Sports had designed the cover with Ronaldo wearing the shirt of Real Madrid. But after he signed to Juventus in July, the company had no choice but to redesign the cover and its marketing materials so that he appeared in the black and white stripes of the Serie A club.
Then in October came American ex-model Kathryn Mayorga’s shocking allegations of rape against the footballer. Shortly after the allegations, EA Sports temporarily removed the image of Ronaldo from their website and social media pages.
However it did not take long for Ronaldo to return as the cover star of the latest edition of the long-running football game series. But just a few days ago, EA Sports removed the Portuguese star from the game’s cover, replacing him with Neymar, Kevin De Bruyne and Paulo Dybala.
And the game developer has even gone as far as to remove Ronaldo as the cover star within the game itself, replacing him with US footballer, Alex Morgan.
To find out why, AS contacted EA Sports, who said that the decision was only to do with the return of the Champions League on 12 February.
“We are giving prominence to some of the biggest stars in the world of football," EA said.
Nevertheless, the rape allegations against the Juventus star are still being cited as a possible reason for his removal as FIFA 19’s cover star.
EA itself released a statement in October in which the company expressed its deep concern over the allegations: stating: “We are closely monitoring the situation, as we expect cover athletes and ambassadors to conduct themselves in a manner that is consistent with EA’s values.”