If Cristiano Ronaldo moves away from Real Madrid this summer, it will be one of the most surprising moves in football history.
Seemingly pretty settled at a club that have just successfully defended their Champions League crown alongside the La Liga title, CR7 is undoubtedly the most famous football star on the planet.
But while a world record transfer might still be a while away, there are probably a good few people at EA Sports praying the Real Madrid star doesn’t move.
Why? Well, as this year’s cover star for their upcoming FIFA 18 game, it could lead to some drastic and rapid changes in the way the game is released.
We’ve previewed what a potential Ronaldo move away from Los Blancos might mean for the release of FIFA 18.
How will it affect him as the game’s cover star?
Ronaldo was announced with great fanfare as FIFA 18’s cover star.
Most tellingly, he was pictured in his Real Madrid kit – meaning if he were to move away, you’d expect a hastily arranged photoshoot in his new strip.
The actual printing of the covers won’t be a problem – if he were to move it would be before September at the very latest.
If this was the case the manufacturers could wait until anything is official before pressing the print button in the factory.
Will it impact The Journey 2?
This might be the thing that is making EA Sports sweat the most right now.
We know Cristiano Ronaldo features in The Journey 2, with heavy rumours that Alex Hunter will be offered a move to become a Galactico.
Which means the story line that Hunter goes on would feature Ronaldo becoming a team-mate.
This could be problematic – either EA could decide to pull that part of the storyline entirely, or risk an unauthentic experience by leaving Ronaldo playing for Madrid.
Obviously becoming the cover star for any FIFA game is a big deal, and there’s a lot of publicity that goes alongside it.
Ronaldo is likely to have already agreed public appearances for EA Sports alongside the launch of the game, but whether or not he moves and how that will impact it remains a mystery.
Whatever happens, it will be a very interesting, and probably nervy, time ahead for a few departments at EA Sports.