Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, or better known as CR7 by his fans, has set yet another personal best: he has been chosen to be the global cover star for FIFA 18 for the very first time in his career. His great rival, Lionel Messi of Barcelona, has already appeared four times as the global cover star in EA Sports’ annual release of the FIFA game, while other names might not be so familiar with those who were born in the new millennium. No doubt Cristiano Ronaldo is pleased with being selected, as he said, "It is a real pleasure to be on the cover of FIFA 18. It's a great feeling and I am grateful to have been chosen." Here are some of the other names that have graced EA Sports’ titular FIFA game over the years, where some of the names might not be familiar with those who were born in this millennium.
OFFICIAL: EA Sports have released the artwork for FIFA 18, with Cristiano Ronaldo as the cover star.
Fifa Soccer that came out in 1994 was the first title in the franchise, boasting of David Platt and Piotr Swierczewski on the cover. The graphics were primitive back then, and it was way too easy to score by standing in front of the goalkeeper before he takes a goal kick. FIFA Soccer 95 then saw Norwegian keeper Erik Thorstvedt imposing himself between the posts, and is the first FIFA game that included the year. FIFA Soccer 96 had the rather obscure Andy Legg and Ioan Sabau, while FIFA 97 did better with its cover being graced by David Ginola of France. Since 1998 is the year of the World Cup, EA Sports could not resist coming up with FIFA 98: Road to World Cup, and who better than iconic David Beckham of England to star in front? Of course, who would have predicted that Beckham ended up with a red card to end his World Cup campaign?
FIFA 99 had Arsenal's non-flying Dutchman, Dennis Bergkamp, and his image showed off a sponsor on his shirt. As technology progressed, so did the game's mechanics, and FIFA 2000 saw yet another English player, defender Sol Campbell. FIFA 2001 would have its second Manchester United player star, the enigmatic Paul Scholes. Arsenal's French forward, Thierry Henry, was made the global cover star of FIFA 2002, while a trio of footballers -- Edgar Davids, Ryan Giggs and Roberto Carlos all made it to the FIFA 2003 cover. The FIFA 2004 cover had Thierry Henry (again!) pose alongside Ronaldinho and Alessandro Del Piero, while FIFA 2005 saw Patrick Vieira, Fernando Morientes and Andriy Shevchenko make their debut.
For FIFA 06, there was red hot Wayne Rooney and the magician, Ronaldinho, while the FIFA 07 cover featured the same duo, only to follow through with the pair in FIFA 08. Are things getting stale by then? Apparently not, as Rooney and Ronaldinho made their final appearance together in FIFA 09. FIFA 10 was a refreshing change, taking the trio approach with Rooney (again!) alongside Frank Lampard and Theo Walcott. Rooney's not done yet by appearing on the FIFA 11 cover with Kaka, another Brazilian, and things are starting to become boring with Rooney once again on the FIFA 12 cover alongside Jack Wilshere.
The Rooney reign ends, and Lionel Messi will be featured on FIFA 13, FIFA 14, FIFA 15 (with Eden Hazard joining him), and FIFA 16. The Messi streak ended with the FIFA 17 cover as Marco Reus took centerstage, and here we are with Cristiano Ronaldo in FIFA 18. Why was Ronaldo not featured all those years ago, as he is hot property in the football world? That is because of image rights issues, and now is the time where his image rights could be used on a video game cover.
Ronaldo is a four-time Ballon d'Or winner (deemed to be the award given to the best player in the world for that particular year), and he has also managed to help his team cross the finish line this year with a double that has not been scooped up since the 1958-1959 season, by picking up the La Liga title and the Champions League crown. He was instrumental in the latter stages of the season, having been in devastating form as Real Madrid disposed of Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid in a business-like manner before deconstructing the best defence in Europe by hammering in 4 goals within 90 minutes, despite Juventus having leaked a mere 3 goals throughout their entire Champions League campaign before the final.