EA Sports Reinstates Mason Greenwood in FIFA Games After Legal Clearing
EA Sports has confirmed the return of Mason Greenwood to FC 24 after a two-game absence from the popular FIFA games. Greenwood, who was suspended from FIFA 22 following his arrest earlier this year, has now been reinstated after the charges against him were dropped.
Legal Controversy Surrounding Greenwood
In January 2022, Mason Greenwood, the young English footballer who plays for Manchester United, was arrested on charges of attempted rape and assault. As a result, he was removed from FIFA 22 and was not included in last year’s edition of the game, FIFA 23.
However, on February 2, 2023, the charges against Greenwood were dropped, and he denied all the alleged offenses. This legal resolution paved the way for his return to the virtual football pitch.
Greenwood’s Return to FIFA Games
Greenwood recently joined Spanish side Getafe on loan, and as a result, EA Sports has included him in FC 24 as part of the active roster of players at Getafe. However, he will not be available in the Ultimate Team mode at launch.
EA’s statement to IGN clarified the decision: “EA Sports FC 24 authentically reflects the active rosters of teams and clubs in the real world of football. As he is now part of an active roster with Getafe CF, Mason Greenwood will be included in FC 24. As Greenwood was not part of an active roster at the time of our cut-off date for final team and player data, he will not appear in Ultimate Team at launch.”
Man United’s Decision and FIFA Manager’s Similar Stand
In August 2023, Manchester United announced that Greenwood would leave the club following an internal investigation. The club stated, “All those involved, including Mason, recognize the difficulties with him recommencing his career at Manchester United.”
Football Manager maker Sports Interactive also confirmed Greenwood’s return for this year’s Football Manager 2024, showing unity among popular football gaming franchises to separate legal affairs from the players’ virtual presence.
Preventing Offensive and Toxic Club Composition
EA’s decision to exclude Greenwood from the Ultimate Team mode aims to prevent potential offensive and toxic club composition from players. Ultimate Team, known for its highly popular mode, often faces issues with inappropriate content and toxic behavior.
With the recent addition of women to the Ultimate Team, concerns about increased online toxicity have been raised. FIFA has faced criticism in the past for racist user-generated content, particularly in the Pro Clubs mode. Players are now bracing themselves for potential sexism and inappropriate team composition once FC 24 is released in September.
The return of Mason Greenwood to the FIFA games marks a significant milestone in his career, following the legal resolution of the charges against him. EA Sports’ decision to reinstate Greenwood showcases the company’s commitment to reflecting the real-world status of active rosters, while also acknowledging the importance of preventing offensive behavior in its games.
As FIFA fans eagerly await the release of FC 24 in September, the inclusion of Greenwood presents both opportunities and challenges for players venturing into the Ultimate Team mode. It remains to be seen how EA Sports’ efforts to combat toxic behavior and maintain an inclusive gaming experience will play out in the highly anticipated game.