It turns out that Nazi jokes don’t really pay off. EA removed legendary soccer player and current sports TV pundit Marco van Basten from FIFA 20 after controversial comments live on TV. During a live on-air segment, a reporter was interviewing a German team manager. As the interview finishes, Marco van Basten can be heard very clearly saying “sieg heil” at them from off-camera, mimicking the rallying cry for the Nazis during WWII. Van Basten was promptly suspended from Fox Sports as a pundit for a week without pay and now has been removed from FIFA 20 as well.
Anyone who has turned on FIFA 2020 in the last day has been greeted by an in-game message from the FIFA team. This message informs the players that Marco van Basten has been removed from the game. The message can be read in full below:
We are aware of the recent comments made by Marco van Basten. We have an expectation that our commitment to equality and diversity is upheld across our game. As such, we will suspend Marco van Basten ICON items from being available in Packs, SBCs and FUT Draft until further notice.
Stay tuned for further updates.
The FIFA Team
Players who own van Basten ICON cards can continue to use them, but they will no longer be obtainable.
This isn’t the first time that EA has removed players from their games for their actions in real life. In 2014, EA chose to remove Ray Rice from Madden 15 after he was suspended from the NFL when footage was released of him knocking out his wife in an elevator. Likewise, EA chose to remove Emiliano Sala from FIFA 19‘s Ultimate Team mode after the player died in an airplane crash, permanently locking the price of his cards so that players couldn’t raise them to profit off of his death.
While you may no longer be able to put Marco van Basten on your team due to his comments, a new Wolfenstein game came out earlier this year for all your Nazi punching needs.