EA has issued a lifetime ban to player 18-year-old FIFA player, Patrick O’Brien, after he retaliated against Ian Wright with a series of racially abusive messages last May. The teenager lost a FIFA 20 match while using the Arsenal players icon card, and he took to the real-life Ian Wright’s Instagram, spamming him with 20 racially charged angry messages.
The case was taken to court, where O’Brien pleaded guilty and was spared a sentence. The judge claimed there was nothing to be gained by issuing a criminal conviction. In the courts eyes, O’Brien showed remorse by both writing an apology to the football legend and donating 500 euros to the Irish Network Against Racism. Wright issued a statement on twitter revealing he was disappointed with the verdict.
EA stepped up where the courts would not, issuing the player a lifetime ban from the popular franchise. Wright was thrilled that EA had his back, and made it known on his Spotify podcast, “EA Sports bro, they stepped up for me. After this attack they changed their whole policy. And you know with a company like that, the different levels, and can you imagine the legality you have to go through to change your policy? Not only for me, it’s for their staff, for players, the talent, the people they partner with. Zero tolerance. Zero tolerance. And action will be taken.” The company apologized to the player himself and stated this kind of behaviour will not be tolerated on any level.
EA SPORTS has joined the Premier League in their No Room For Racism Action Plan. They’ve integrated the No Room For Racism branding into FIFA 21 including a FUT kit, TIFO, Stadium Theme and Badge in FIFA Ultimate Team. These items are available until March 26th. Both the Premier League and EA have made it known that “There is no room for racism, anywhere.”