PES is gradually closing the gap on FIFA in terms of playability, Konami has told MCV.
"I don't think there's a massive gap in terms of the playability," Konami UK general manager Pete Stone told MCV. "There are certain areas we need to improve, but it's not a huge gap - and we're gradually closing it."
Stone is under no illusion that PES is suddenly going to outsell EA's football giant, but Konami doesn't need its franchise to outperform FIFA in order to be a success.
"We may not outsell FIFA, but we can sell enough so that it's good from our point of view," Stone added. "Don't think of it as a battle where we're trying to 'win', or outsell them, because that's not necessarily the case."
Stone believes the series has made progress, but the company is going to "spend a few years rebuilding PES and sales".
PES 2012 is expected around October.
While Konami might believe PES is closing the gap in terms of playability, in reality I'm not so sure.
While PES 2011 was an improvement over its predecessor, FIFA continues to make its own strides forward. There's also the issue of presentation, where PES is possibly even further behind its rival. It's going to take many years of improvement for PES to catch up.