Ted Lasso is in FIFA 23. So are Sam Obisanya, Dani Rojas, and the rest of AFC Richmond, the fictional English football club in Apple TV Plus’ Emmy-winning, feel-good comedy-drama.
Electronic Arts and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment announced the crossover for EA Sports’ global bestseller on Wednesday, and it’s a lot more robust than earlier rumors had suggested. Lasso (Jason Sudeikis) is available as a manager in Career Mode for AFC Richmond or any other side. Players may also create their own pro and join AFC Richmond in Career, playing in any league they choose.
Even Richmond’s fictional home stadium, Nelson Road (which, in real life, is Crystal Palace’s Selhurst Park) will appear in FIFA 23. It and the Greyhounds’ roster will be available in the Kickoff (one-off matches) Online Friendlies, and Online Seasons mode.
“It is so f***ing cool to be in FIFA,” Brett Goldstein, who portrays the famously foul-mouthed Kent, said in a statement that was censored by EA, not us. “I’m not sure this is going to help dispel the CGI rumors but, f*** it, totally worth it.”
Goldstein is referring to a weird Internet conspiracy theory/meme that posits Roy Kent is entirely a CGI creation and his actor does not exist. (For the record, Goldstein has insisted he is “a completely real, normal, human man,” who does “normal, human, basic things, like rendering and buffering.”)
Anyway, “I look forward to beating my nephew in a game with me as Roy Kent and him as Jamie Tartt,” Goldstein said. “He’s gonna be furious.” Though Kent retired from Richmond and became a (foul-mouthed) analyst for Sky Sports in Ted Lasso season 2, he will be on their starting 11 in FIFA 23.
Lasso himself, Jason Sudeikis, said he is a fan of EA Sports’ soccer franchise and called the inclusion, “truly a dream come true for myself and the rest of the fellas.”
“Our cast and crew work tremendously hard on this show, and we are flattered that it resonates with so many folks,” Sudeikis said. “We look forward to our fans having the opportunity to play with, play as, and even play against their favorite AFC Richmond characters.”
EA Sports added that additional AFC Richmond content will be available in the Football Ultimate Team and Pro Clubs modes — including, yes, manager items for both Lasso and Coach Beard. Players will also be able to kit their virtual sides in Richmond uniforms, play at Nelson Road, and hang Greyhound banners and tifos in the seats.
Players and fans have previously modded the club in or built tributes to Sudeikis’ character in career modes, but this will be the first time AFC Richmond appears in the series’ main lineup of clubs.
At the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards on Sept. 12, Ted Lasso and its cast won Outstanding Comedy Series, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (Sudeikis), Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (Goldstein), and Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series, out of 20 nominations overall. The third season of Ted Lasso does not yet have a first date.
FIFA 23 launches Sept. 27, 2022 on Google Stadia, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X, with some features on current-generation versions not available on other platforms.