Football Manager 2021 does exactly what its name suggests: it lets you manage a football team from humble beginnings to the top of the league. The 2021 version improves on the 2020 edition in several ways. It’s currently available for PC, with plans for a console release.
Different number, same game?
With other football sim games like FIFA 2021 and even Football Manager 2020, it’s a common belief that the next installment is more of the same. Although there’s some truth to this idea, these games, especially Football Manager 2021, often have a few new tricks up their sleeves.
Football Manager 2021 is built on the same engine as the 2020 version but adds some much-needed and welcome upgrades. There’s a new match engine, detailed career mode, and more.
Chief among the improvements is a new, in-depth match engine. You’d get results and statistics on matches your team played in previous versions of the game, but they were always a little vague.
This ambiguity was excellent for your imagination but terrible for helping you refine your tactics. That’s definitely not the case now. From heat maps of player positions to failed player actions, it’s possible to see exactly what works and what doesn’t.
Suitable for everyone
There’s no doubt Football Manager 2021 is predominantly geared towards football fans, but many of the game’s improvements help even those less interested in the sport enjoy themselves.
For example, despite the new match engine’s initially bewildering reports, you’ll ultimately have all the info you need to make educated guesses as to how to best beat a rival team and progress. There’s a tutorial that’s better at explaining the fundamentals and player agents you can strike up deals with in the game.
Football Manager 2021 does an excellent job of letting you try to become the next José Mourinho or Alex Ferguson. Although the game is very similar to the 2020 version, many of the 2021 improvements make it worth playing.
Should you download it?
Yes. Other football sims like FIFA 2021 let you play out matches, but they can’t compete with Football Manager 2021’s sheer level of statistical detail. You’ll also need to register the game online, but then it’s playable offline.