Bringing an end to a fortnight of intense debate and fan voting, Electronic Arts has officially unveiled German playmaker Marco Reus to be the new cover star of FIFA 17.
Fending off competition from James Rodriguez of Real Madrid C.F., Anthony Martial of Manchester United and Eden Hazard of Chelsea FC, Borussia Dortmund’s gifted attacking midfielder pulled in the most votes during EA’s straw poll, after the publisher asked fans who they would like see replace Lionel Messi on the cover – perhaps in light of the Argentinean’s tax scandal.
In a statement, Nick Channon, Senior Producer for EA Sports FIFA, stated that, “It is incredible to see how fans get behind their favorite player – Marco plays for a great club, is really fun to watch, and he is very popular in FIFA Ultimate Team, so it makes a lot of sense that the fans picked him. Reus joins an elite group of international football superstars who have appeared on the cover of FIFA over the years.”
He’ll replace Messi and Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson, who adorned the cover of FIFA 16 in select territories last year. Reus, who missed out on EURO 2016 due to injury, revealed his jubilation in EA’s press release: “I’m honored to join a very distinguished group of footballers to appear on the cover of FIFA. Most of all I am humbled that the fans have chosen me, and I will strive to make them proud with my performance on the pitch.”
— Marco Reus (@woodyinho) July 21, 2016
FIFA 17 is set for release in North America on September 27, before expanding worldwide two days later on September 29. It’ll be available via PS4, Xbox One, PS3, Xbox 360 and PC.