As a trademark dispute from 2020 has been settled, Manchester United will be renamed to Manchester UFC from Football Manager 22 onward.
Following a trademark lawsuit between Manchester United and Sega, the football club will be referred to as Manchester UFC in all future Football Manager games – starting with Football Manager 22.
Sharing the news via Twitter, the official Football Manager account stated “Manchester United and Sega have agreed a settlement to amicably resolve their trade mark dispute” and added that the team would be named “Manchester UFC” in future titles.
From FM22 onwards, the Manchester United football club will be named ‘Manchester UFC’ or ‘Man UFC’. These name changes have been made purely to settle the dispute on a no admissions basis.
— Football Manager (@FootballManager) August 6, 2021
The Football Manager account further states that “these name changes have been made purely to settle the dispute on a no admissions basis” and that “Sega and Sports Interactive maintain that they do not need a licence to use the ‘Manchester United’ name but have made the change as a gesture of goodwill so that both parties can move on.”
The legal action was filed by Manchester United last May, alleging that Football Manager was infringing its trademark and, by using a randomly generated logo instead of their official logo, was depriving “the registered proprietor of its right to have the club crest licensed” (thanks, Eurogamer).
In turn, Sega argued that the club aimed to “prevent legitimate competition in the video games field by preventing parties not licensed by the claimant from using the name of the Manchester United football team within such games”.
They further added that the club has had no problem with Football Manager using the name in decades of previous games, and players at Manchester United have even spoke positively of the game in the past.