We all know how the process goes don’t we?! You start off as a kid dreaming of playing for the club you love, scoring the winning goal in the cup final and even one day shining on the international stage. Then as you get older that dream starts to dissolve as you come to terms with the cold hard fact that you’re nowhere near good enough to play pro – heart breaking! It’s okay you tell yourself, I’ve got the tactical brain and the social skills to become a manager, the next best thing. THEN you realise that means standing out in the freezing cold, getting soaked in minus degrees in the middle of Feb, so you sack that idea off too. If only there was another more accessible, warmer alternative?
Lucky for all of us wannabes out there, the kind folks at Sports Interactive brought us Football Manager so that we may live out all our managerial fantasies from the comfort of our own homes. Now if you’re like me and have been managing teams since the glory days of Championship Manager 96/97 then you’ll be pretty well versed at Football Manager (and if you’re not the title kind of gives it away). So what new features are there to this already highly addictive game that can take days/weeks off your life?
Squad happiness has a new dynamic and hierarchy system, so the most charismatic and big-name players like the captain have a higher influence. There’s new friendship groups that also affect the atmosphere, so if you’ve got a squad that mainly speaks Spanish make sure you sign someone that speaks the same language. New short pre-match meetings enable you to fine tune those intricate tactics and you’ve also got greater control of a player’s in-game instructions. Scouting has had an overhaul with more in-depth reports and the choice of how much you invest in the scouts themselves. Plus with even better post-match analysis from your assistant, player heat maps and even a half time overview, it looks like you’re going to be spending longer than ever becoming the next Pep Guardiola…… and not be remotely sad about it!