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Why will Juventus FC appear as Zebre on Football Manager 2020?

After FIFA 20, even FM won't use bianconeri's name, logo and kits

Why will Juventus FC appear as Zebre on Football Manager 2020? After FIFA 20, even FM won't use bianconeri's name, logo and kits

This summer, Juventus - unlike the previous years - signed an exclusive agreement with Konami that now has the rights related to the name, kits and logo of the club, making Pro Evolution Soccer (one of the leading products of the Japanese company) the only video game that can use Juventus's rights. The fact that Juventus would not appear as such on FIFA 20 forced the PES number one competitor to create a pseudonym to replace the real name of the club, choosing 'Piemonte Calcio' to represent the bianconeri. And after FIFA, Football Manager also suffered the consequences of this exclusive agreement with Konami. The name 'Juventus' in fact will not appear in the new FM, just released, which chose 'Zebre' to represent the club.

Unlike the collaboration between Konami and Manchester United, for example, the partnership with Juve is exclusive and PES is the only videogame which is then licensed to use everything involving Juventus, including the Allianz Stadium. Luckily, the club's stars will still have the same name. The agreement with Juventus is not the only Konami exclusive agreement: the Japanese brand also secured the rights of Boca Juniors and River Plate, as well as those of the Brazilian championship. To clarify the context that leds to the birth of these exclusive agreements with the clubs, Adam Bhatti, key figure of the PES Team, said: 

"However the big teams want to feel they are in an actual partnership, not just bought to block out competitors. Everyone knows we cannot outspend EA, it’s the quality of recreation and commitment to being a true partner sharing the clubs values - that’s why we’re back"

PES has always avoided engaging in a fight with FIFA to get expensive licenses, preferring to focus on the graphics and the gameplay. Konami's intention to sign exclusive partnerships with certain clubs (he tried last year with Barcelona, of which he became an official partner but shared the name and shirts with FIFA), seems to be part of a strategy that aims to grow 'by taking advantage' of the appeal of the partner team.

During the last shareholders' meeting held last October, Giorgio Ricci - Chief Revenue Officer of Juventus - has spoken at a Q&A with shareholders about why the club are not officially licensed to EA Sport's FIFA franchise, instead having an almost-exclusive partnership with Konami's Pro Evolution Soccer, without drawing a well-defined line on the strategy underlying the choice: 

"EA Sport was a choice, both companies wanted to make an agreement with us. It was our choice to choose Konami. We support the project to re-launch the franchise that is having encouraging results. It is a strategic choice to have chosen exclusively one of the two major players in this sector".