Diego Maradona wants to “initiate legal actions” against Pro Evolution Soccer publishers Konami, who he says used his likeness in a video game without permission.
PES 2017, the latest game in the series, has a stable of retired players it calls “Legends” that are available for use in its myClub mode. This includes guys like Ronaldo (the Brazilian one), Ronaldinho, Thierry Henry, Gary Lineker and Ronald Koeman.
It also includes Maradona, who if you get him instantly becomes the best player in the game, with a rating of 97 beating even that of Lionel Messi, who is “only” a 94.
That’s his name there alright (older PES games had him in the game, but in true series style “hid” him behind fictional names like “Malgani”), and that’s definitely his likeness, down to the hair explosion.
Maradona issued a statement on his Facebook page earlier today, saying:
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...
The irony here being that Konami are usually so particular about their usage rights...
We’ve contacted Konami asking how the rights for retired players were handled.