Why is Nigeria not in FIFA Games? Expert Answers
As a Nigerian football fan, you’ll enjoy playing FIFA on Play Station Consoles and Xbox. People enjoy playing console games more than mobile ones because they can choose whatever team they want to play with. You can play with a club team – Manchester United, FC Barcelona, Real Madrid – or a country – Argentina, Spain, Brazil.
However, you cannot play with the Nigerian football team in FIFA. In fact, you won’t find the team in the game at all. This doesn’t mean that Nigerian players are not in FIFA. They are, but not as a team.
What you’ll be wondering – which is why you’re reading this post – is why? We’ll look at that in this post as we answer the question, Why is Nigeria not in FIFA games? Read on.
The Reason Nigeria is not in FIFA Games
Many say Nigeria is not in FIFA games because the country was banned by the football federation. That is wrong and far from the truth. FIFA did not ban Nigeria from appearing in their mobile games.
Another common misconception is that it is because Nigeria didn’t qualify for the FIFA 2023 World Cup. Again, that is untrue. The reason Nigeria is not in FIFA games has more to do with the NFF authorities.
FIFA must acquire licenses to feature a player, club, or country in their games. And for these licenses to be issued appropriately, a staunch regulatory body must be in place. Unfortunately, Nigeria doesn’t have such. So, the task is complicated for FIFA.
FIFA can go on and add the Nigerian team to their games. But if they do that, it won’t be long before someone calls them out or slams them in a copyright infringement lawsuit. Meanwhile, the right regulatory bodies to ensure FIFA follows due process are not there.
Another reason why Nigeria is not in FIFA may have to do with the squad list. If you watch Nigerian games regularly, you’ll agree that there are new players in almost every match. Of course, we know the big players who play in Europe. But so many other players get called up for the first time.
With such fluctuating squad sheet, FIFA will have to make regular updates to keep their game current, which will be inconvenient.
Has Nigeria Ever Been In A FIFA Game?
Yes, the Nigerian football team has been in many FIFA games in the past. The most recent, however, was in 2018 during the FIFA World Cup.
At the time, football fans were hyped about the Nigerian jersey – arguably the most popular to date. So, they requested EA Sports that they want to play with the jersey. EA Sports agreed, and the Nigerian team was added in an update.
This is why many believe Nigeria is not in FIFA because they didn’t qualify for the most recent World Cup. While that’s not true, as explained earlier, the World Cup influences FIFA Games.
If Nigeria had qualified for the World Cup in Qatar, it wouldn’t be uncommon for FIFA to try all they could to include the team in their game. After all, the NFF is most organized during a prestigious competition like the World Cup.
Can You Name A Team Nigeria In FIFA
Since Nigeria is not in FIFA games, some players try to outsmart the system by creating and naming a team, Nigeria. Unfortunately, that won’t work. If FIFA allowed that in the game, it, too, would be infringement.
The game will block you from moving on if you attempt to use the term “Nigeria” or even anything close like “e-Nigerian,” stating that your squad name “contains a restricted word.” It is unclear if Nigeria or perhaps Niger is the term that is being prohibited. Nevertheless, the general consensus is that nothing similar to Nigeria is allowed.
Like other game creators, FIFA put in place a thorough word filter for community-generated names. These names may subsequently be shared or viewed online, so they do it to avoid infl=rigment. Aside from infringement, they restrict derogatory terms and names related to some real-life people and other sensitive things.
Are Other African Countries In FIFA?
Only a few African countries are in FIFA. So, you can relax a bit knowing Nigeria is not the only African country that is not the popular game. In fact, FIFA only usually features two to three complete African teams. But African players are all over the game.
Not just countries, FIFA also leaves out some club teams. The bottom line is that they cannot feature every one. EA must bargain with and compensate teams and players for licenses before including them in the game. They may become bankrupt if they try to do so for every football player and team.
List of African Teams In FIFA Game
Since Nigeria is not in FIFA game, you may want to play with other African teams. In that regard, here are the African Teams in the FIFA game:
Nigeria’s neighbors, Ghana, are in the FIFA game. The Black Stars beat Nigeria to a spot in the 2021 FIFA World Cup despite their underwhelming performance in the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon.
At the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, they were the last team standing from Africa. Thomas Partey, Inaki Williams, and the Ayew Brothers are rising stars on the West African side. You can enjoy them on FIFA when you play World Cup Mode.
The Carthage Eagles, the third-best team in Africa, are renowned for their European flair and are the final African side anticipated to appear in FIFA 23.
Players like Hannibal Mejbri of Birmingham City, Mohamed Drager of Luzern, and Al Arabi captain Youssef Msakni are among those who are in the game.
Morocco, the North African team, recognized for its five-star athletes, is returning to FIFA 23 in anticipation of playing in Qatar ’22. The Atlas Lions team includes stars like Hakim Ziyech of Chelsea, Achraf Hakimi of PSG, Noussair Mazraoui of Bayern Munich, and Bono, the goalie for Sevilla.
This is a welcome development, and you can’t argue that the team is brilliant. They got to the semifinals of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. It was the first time an African team had gotten to that stage.
Since FIFA23 has the rights to a World Cup mode, you will once be able to play as the African countries who have qualified for the World Cup in Qatar. African teams were unavailable in FIFA22 due to licensing concerns.
The Lions of Terenga, in addition to being the current African champions, will participate in FIFA23. So, you can play with players like Kalidou Koulibaly, Sadio Mane, Edouard Mendy, and Idrissa Gueye in this one. They have a good team.
Cameroon is always one of the strongest African countries when it comes to football. Of course, the Indomitable Lions qualified for the FIFA World Cup, and that puts them in the FIFA game.
When you choose Cameroon, players you can enjoy include Andre Onana, Vincente Aboubakar, and France-based Karl Toko-Ekambi.
Mamelodi Sundowns is the only African club in the most recent FIFA video game due to their legendary collaboration with EA Sports.
The statement confirmed the current South African champions’ growing worldwide appeal. Mamelodi Sundowns is an ambitious family-rooted club that strives to be the most significant African football team in the world.
How To Make Sure Nigeria Is In The Next FIFA Game
For Nigeria to be in the next FIFA game, the country needs massive improvements, football-wise, especially in terms of regulations. Corruption remains a significant problem in Nigeria, and if you check recent news, you’ll see that the NFF has its fair share of it.
It’s not just Nigeria alone but in many African countries. As you can see from the previous section, only countries that qualified for the World Cup are in the FIFA game. The track record of African football administrators is relatively extensive, ranging from intervening in club decisions to stealing money intended for player maintenance.
Politics always dominates the conversation, never football. There is constant battling among the FAs about power, which strangely ought to be their first focus. These destabilize the framework that should make it easy for FIFA to acquire licenses.
More former international players replacing politicians managing African football would be the answer. In this way, we can be confident that the persons in control are competent and will prioritize the requirements of the gamers. These former international players know how the system – especially license acquisition – works.
FIFA has never given a definitive reason why the Nigerian football team doesn’t appear in their games. However, it is not because there’s a ban on Nigeria or because the country did not qualify for the World Cup.
The most likely reason is that FIFA can’t acquire the necessary licenses needed to make their game infringement free. Hopefully, in the near years, the NFF will establish a firmer regulatory network, and everyone can play FIFA using the Green-White-Green jersey.