The latest in EA’s FIFA soccer franchise won’t just star your favorite current players, but will also feature the fictional squad from the hit AppleTV show Ted Lasso. And the character himself will be a playable coach in the upcoming game, with a fully mocapped Jason Sudeikis to bounce about alongside your team, waving his arms, and doing whatever it is a soccer coach even does.
Today, within minutes of each other, both the official Ted Lasso and FIFA Twitter accounts revealed a one-minute trailer that sets up Lasso’s playable appearance in the game. Characterized as an unlikely soccer genius whose knowledge of the game might be sparse, but who is quite a successful coach regardless, a CGI Jason Sudeikis walks out onto a virtual field before clapping, pointing, and cheering in victory. In the trailer, we also catch glimpses of (fictional) soccer reporter Trent Crimm, Coach Beard, and several AFC Richmond stars, including Roy Kent and Jaime Tartt.
You can find the full details of the Ted Lasso / FIFA 23 crossover in EA’s official announcement.
This reveal was teased a bit yesterday when the Ted Lasso Twitter account tweeted a picture of Sudeikis standing in front of an array of cameras and lights. “Look out, Mario!” the tweet reads, “You’re not the only pixelated man with a mustache who never knows where the tube is taking him.” Before that, as PC Gamer notes, leaked database rankings for the game hinted at the crossover.
While it’s a suitably themed crossover, fleshed out by the inclusion of the full AFC Richmond squad—whom you’ll be able to play as in any mode—looking at the footage, it’s hard to avoid that creepy uncanny valley feeling. Especially as the camera moves around Lasso’s face at the end of the trailer, revealing him in full 3D polygonal form, something just isn’t right. That poor (and kind, and astonishingly emotionally intelligent) man.