Having looked briefly across the internet I couldn’t find many articles supporting national management in Football Manager. Most articles or threads describe it as tedious, boring, monotonous etc.
I thought I’d write an article highlighting a couple of reasons why you should give national management a go.
National management is seen as quite boring and slow when compared to club management; instead of playing matches every week you end up playing two matches every couple of months.
But there are several ways in which national management can be fun and I intend to put forward some of these in this post.
3 Reasons to Manage a Nation on FM
1) The World Cup
This is the absolute pinnacle of any player or managers career. It is the most prestigious competition in World football and managing your nation in a World Cup should be seen as the dream for any football manager.
The relative quickness of the competition always appeals to me. You play three groups matches, usually within the space of 12 days to 2 weeks, followed by the knockout rounds. I have never won the World Cup but it is something that I always look to do on each incarnation of FM.
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2) Building up a nation
Every tried managing one of the smaller nations like San Marino or Fiji? Impossible isn’t it?
But one of the main draws of managing a smaller nation is when you manage a club in that nation too. Managing both club and country could allow you to build up the nation through improving the standard of the league. I will use Belarus as an example.
As manager of Naftan Novopolotsk on FM16, I signed many players from Brazil and USA. After 5 years these players gained Belarusian nationality and became eligible to play for Belarus. In doing so the standard of the Belarus national side improved due to the influx of ‘foreign’ talent.
Over my time with Naftan I’d also improved the standard of the Belarus league, largely thanks to our performances in Europe. This, in turn, allowed some of the other teams in the league to attract better players and improve as a club.
Quite often a good nation to choose for this challenge would be Norway or Denmark.
3) Improve your club side
How often do you have it that one of your best regens just never gets picked for their national side? It may well be a relief for some managers, meaning that their star player goes under the radar somewhat.
But for others it’s frustrating seeing your young star be continually left out of their national squad. Their morale takes a hit and they perform worse for the club. Their value drops and suddenly they are no longer the player they once were, now lingering in the reserves and running down their contract. Perhaps a slight exaggeration, but you get the idea.
Instead, manage the national side and your club. Call up your best young players to the national side.
This could be a huge benefit to your youngsters, allowing them the chance to gain experience on a national stage. Just think of your young regen making his international debut. How proud you will be.
If I remember correctly David Moyes was in charge of England when Rooney made his national debut in 2003.
Making National Management Fun
Try playing with some of these self-implemented rules whilst managing any nation of your choice:
- Olympic Rules: Only three players allowed in squad over the age of 23
- Booked and Benched: Player gets a booking? You can’t play him in your next game.
- Hero to Zero: Player scores a goal? Misses next game
- Two Squads: You must start each match with a completely different starting XI to previous match
- No Changes: You are unable to make changes to your starting XI (pre-match… in-game you can make substitutions) unless enforced. Once enforced, starting XI must be kept the same until another change is enforced.
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Thank you for reading this Football Manager article. I hope you’ve found a couple of reasons to give national management a go in FM17.
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