Argentinian soccer legend Diego Maradona says he is going to take “legal actions” against video game publisher Konami after they allegedly used his likeness in their popular Pro Evolution Soccer series without his permission. The game has s a strange mixture of licenses and non-licenses. It doesn’t have the official FIFA stamp of approval like the EA Sports title, but does have licensing deals with individual clubs like Barcelona, Liverpool, Borussia Dortmund, and the entire Brazilian domestic league.
It also has a roster of Legends, retired players like Ronaldo (not Cristiano), Ronaldinho, Thierry Henry, and Ronald Koeman. Maradona is also included on this roster, and was given a 97 rating, making him the best player in the game.
I heard yesterday that the Japanese company Konami uses my image for its game PES 2017. Unfortunately, my lawyer Matias Morla will initiate the corresponding legal actions. I hope this is not another scam…
He also this image, which definitely shows a young Maradona, complete with his trademark curly afro:
Previous versions of the game also included former players, but hid them under fake names. Maradona’s character was renamed “Malgani” in some versions. It’s unclear why Konami felt they didn’t have to resort to those old tricks for the 2017 version of the game.