FIFA 23 will not have Russian teams, EA confirms

(Image credit: Electronic Arts)

EA unveiled its last-ever FIFA game earlier today, FIFA 23, which will feature women's club teams for the first time ever, and the Qatar World Cup and Women's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand in post-launch updates. What it won't feature, however, are Russian teams, as Electronic Arts has confirmed that the Russian national team and Russian club teams will not be included.

"EA Sports stands in solidarity with the Ukrainian people and like so many voices across the world of football, calls for peace and an end to the invasion of Ukraine," EA said in a statement emailed to PC Gamer. "In line with our partners at FIFA and UEFA, EA Sports will not include the Russian national team or Russian clubs in FIFA 23."

This exclusion of Russian teams is a continuation of a policy EA began in March, when it removed the Russian national team and club teams from the already-released FIFA 22 because of that country's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. In fact, today's statement is almost identical to the one announcing the removal of Russian squads from FIFA 22, except for the change in wording necessitated by the fact that they're being excluded right from the start, rather than removed after the fact.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has prompted action across the videogame industry: Developers and publishers including Microsoft, Electronic Arts, CD Projekt, Activision Blizzard, Epic Games, Take-Two Interactive, and Ubisoft have all stopped doing business in Russia, and the global tech industry has also largely halted sales in the country. In response, Russia recently announced plans to develop a "national game engine," and also opened its very first state-run cybersports school.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.