The career of a football manager can go in many different ways – some will find a club they connect with and grow there, others may make a name as specialists in relegation battles or achieving promotion. Some may even just follow the wind. Their careers are not straightforward. They can have many peaks and troughs, yet still it is a journey that we can watch them work through. In FM, we can have a career in one save, but finding a save is far from easy sometimes. From November to late-October year-on-year, we can live the lives of many managers, pushing ourselves to achieve something new every time we load up.
While many new opportunities may present themselves during each year, what happens when the time comes when the ideas aren’t enough? What happens when the endless possibilities just can’t entice you forward? When the time comes, where do you hang your hat? Or is it time to take your custom away with those fond memories of past journeys at your back, and a new road in front of you? How do you play the new game when finding a save isn’t straightforward?
For the first time since my pre-content creation days,
I don’t know where I want to play Football Manager, or even if I do. I’ve tried thinking back to the processes of picking a save in the past – coming back to clubs I enjoyed in brief flings with; asking the Missus to buy me a jersey from Classic Football Shirts in the pre-Mystery Box days; creating a club; trying to break the one-club leagues; starting unemployed. Not knowing where to start is tormenting me, so instead of trying to force a connection somewhere, I have thought about changing how I approach finding a save.
I’ve thought about trying a save with a specific Recruitment & Development Policy, about playing with a specific tactical approach. I’ve come up with a list of ideas that I feel I could standby throughout a save. I’ve even thought about the type of League I want to play in – I want to play in a “Calendar-Year League” given the scheduling of the 2022 World Cup. I’ve played FM enough in the past few years to know how I coped with the World Cup in a typical European-league format, so I want to challenge myself and experience this event again in a different way.
With these “Under-the-Hood” save ideas set, the focus has to
almost to come about again to where it is that I can end up, and what it is that I want from Football Manager – the traditional one-club save, or a “journeyman” save, or a challenge-based save. It’s the paradox of choice, paralysis through the many roads I can take to navigate my way through FM23. Sometimes that lightning bolt can hit you from nowhere. Sometimes, you’re at the bus stop waiting for a bus that you hope will eventually turn up. I’m aware that I am pressuring myself to make what really is a trivial decision more difficult than it needs to be, but all I can do right now is to wait for the time my bus turns up and takes me off on a journey through FM23.
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