FIFA by EA Sports is one of the most successful sports video game series of all time. Currently, the game can be played on any console, PC/MAC, tablets and smartphones around the globe.
As of 2011, the FIFA franchise is in 51 countries and 18 languages and it has sold more than 100 million copies worldwide. FIFA 12 holds the record for the "fastest selling sports game ever" with over 3.3 million games sold and over 186 million dollars in its first week of release.
This data makes it one of the best-selling video game franchises of all time.
But in spite of its current vast selection of game modes and features, none of the FIFA games has an option for women’s teams or female players.
The Entertainment Software Association has stated that 47% of all players are women.
And the US Department of State says that over 40% of soccer players in the US are girls.
Amateur soccer is played by girls and boys at school and leagues. The American expression "soccer mom," which refers to mothers who drive their children to soccer games and watch them compete, has become so popular that this group is now recognized as an informal political interest group to be reckoned with in elections.
Soccer is the most popular women's sport in college and in some cases women soccer stars are more well-known than men. Soccer star Mia Hamm was listed recently as one of the "Most Fascinating Women in Politics" in a political magazine poll, while US Women National Team's goalkeeper Hope Solo was part of ABC's Dancing With The Stars in 2011.
The US National Women's Soccer Team won two World Cups (in 1991 and 1999), three Olympic gold medals (in 1996, 2004, and 2008) and they just won the 2012 Olympic Gold in London.
By offering just men's teams as playable options on FIFA we're not only denying these girls a chance to relate to the characters they play on a videogame, but we're also wasting a great opportunity to encourage those same girls to be who they are, develop their passion, motivation and promote a healthy image and relation between women and sports.
Young girls can't be portrayed by male videogame characters. We want them to be able see themselves in the games they love, as the soccer players that inspire them.
Don't restrict our choices to Messi, Rooney, Neymar, Cristiano Ronaldo. Allow girls and boys to play with Wambach, Sawa, Morgan, Cristiane, Miyama, Rapinoe, Marta, Hope Solo, Mia Hamm, Birgit Prinz.
Tell EA Sports to include female characters on their soccer games.