SurpassingPep is a Football Manager 2018 series where I have added 24 managers into an FM18 save and simulated to see the results. In this post, we see where our high-potential managers are ten years into their careers. If you missed the last post, we saw a couple of our managers finally reach the English Premier League.
Alternatively, you can click the following link to find a page with all of the previous SurpassingPep instalments:
Below is an image of where our managers were at the end of the last post as we reached June 2024.
Surpassing Pep | Ten Year Update
Three managers were in charge of English Premier League teams come the end of this first season in this update. MyFMStory had a successful year with Hull as he led them to a 7th place finish. PapaPlaymaker left Championship side Newcastle for Swansea and guided his new club to survival, 4 points clear of the relegation places. Unfortunately for CasualFM, Burnley finished rock bottom of the table. Despite this it seems as though CasualFM is being given the chance to earn an immediate return to the EPL next season.
Only one of our managers ended the 8th season in the Championship. VR Fussball, who joined Norwich from Bradford City, helped his Norwich side to a 10th place finish – he’ll certainly be aiming for the playoffs and promotion over the next few seasons in order to continue to progress as a manager.
Two managers endured two very different seasons in the English League One this year. According to FM came one win away from promotion with Chesterfield after losing in the playoff final. At the other end of the table, Mr Bad Dragon left League Two side Fylde to join Coventry and he was not really at fault for their relegation as he joined them in 23rd.
Unlike our League One managers, the two men in League Two had very similar seasons and finished just one point apart. James Gordon’s Blackpool edged out Servalarian’s Crewe to secure 9th place by one point. Both managers will be hoping to move further up the league system in the next few years.
Next up we have my manager VivaLaVida. After two consecutive Scottish Cup victories, Aberdeen could have expected to begin to challenge for the Scottish title, but perhaps this is a step too far for the time being. No Scottish Cup this year for Aberdeen but they did manage to win the Betfred Cup which is VivaLaVida’s third trophy with Aberdeen.
After another SurpassingPep vote, Keanu Jones was sent to manage in Scotland after a year out of management. East Fife were the team who were available at the time of Jones’ move and unfortunately he was sent to a team who had little chance of survival. Indeed, East Fife were relegated to the Scottish League Two under Jones’ management.
Ron Burgundy spent the season with AJ Auxerre and led them to a 7th place finish. Not much more to add here, so take a look at a comment I received on Reddit:
Like Keanu Jones, Egyptian manager Youssef Amin was out of work for a year during our eighth season and another Twitter vote was held. This time, the vote ended in a tie and it was up to Amin who he would manage. He chose French club Chambly-Oise – a wise choice considering he then led them to promotion to the French third tier!
Dutchman ErgoFM has finally made the move to the Dutch leagues. Feyenoord are the team to take the plunge with our manager after sacking their previous boss due to poor league position. Feyenoord finished the season in 5th place, predicted 2nd, and ErgoFM will certainly be hoping for a much improved season next year.
Defence First FM remains in the Portuguese leagues. He was, in fact, sacked by Gil Vicente but has since managed to pick up another top tier role with Vit. Setubal. In his first season with the club he led them to an 11th place finish.
Finally we have the Allsvenskan where Swedish manager Mikael Bergstrom helped Helsingborgs IF to 10th in the top tier of Swedish football. Sadly for Bergstrom he has been sacked by his side after a poor start to the 2025 season (the Swedish leagues run differently to the rest of the leagues currently loaded – Sweden runs from Feb to Nov).
In the 2025-26 season only one of our managers ended with an English Premier League side. Papa Playmaker squeezed out another survival with Swansea as they finished three points above the drop. MyFMStory was sacked from Hull and remains unemployed at the end of the season.
Four managers competed in the second tier of English football this season, with CasualFM securing an immediate return to the EPL with Burnley. DeeJam, who was sacked by his home country Ireland last season, joined Middlesbrough and came so close to promotion as they fell in the playoffs.
VR Fussball extended his stay with Norwich whilst Darren Miller joined Millwall, helping them to beat the drop by just two points.
James Gordon finally left Blackpool as he joined League One side Cambridge. In doing so, he became the fourth of our managers to lead Cambridge. Cambridge finished comfortably above the relegation places and Gordon will certainly be looking to push his club higher up the league next season. Let’s hope he can help his new side move further up the leagues!
Our League Two managers had rather mixed fortunes. Mr Bad Dragon led his Coventry team to the title, earning a massive 98 points to secure 1st place. Servalarian overachieved with Crewe as they finished in 10th place whilst TheMinorTempah became the first manager to rejoin a previous club as he took control of Accrington.
NewgenFM returned to management with Doncaster in the Vanarama National and almost earned a second promotion after his first with Boreham Wood (this came in the sixth tier of English football). Sadly he lost out in the playoff final to Wrexham.
Will our Swiss manager stay in the Vanarama with Doncaster or look to move on?
VivaLaVida is making a home for himself up in Scotland. His Aberdeen side again finished in 3rd place and incredibly won a fourth domestic cup in four seasons as they won their third Scottish Cup under the Spaniard’s leadership.
Keanu Jones earned an immediate return back to the third tier of Scottish football with East Fife as his side won the playoffs. Yet Jones decided to resign from his role with Fife at the end of the season! This strange decision means Jones is now without a job at the end of the ninth season.
In France we have seen another move up the ladder for Ron Burgundy as our American has joined Ligue 1 side Guingamp. He can be happy with a 12th place finish and will be hoping he can improve next year – could we see Burgundy move towards the PSG’s of the French league?
Tom Robinson was unemployed at the end of the eighth season but he soon found work in the form of French Ligue 2 side Nancy. And what a choice it was! He led his new club to a 3rd place finish and promotion to Ligue 1. Robinson should be delighted with the season and will now be planning how to survive the upcoming season in France’s top tier.
Hans Down, after being sacked by Belgian Pro League side Sint-Truidense, has now joined his fourth Belgian club: Cercle Brugge. The second tier side finished 5th out of 8 teams and should go into next season with high hopes of promotion.
Despite his promotion last season, Youssef Amin was sacked by French side Chambly-Oise after a poor start to the season. He was soon picked up by Belgian third-tier club RWD Molenbeek. He helped the finish 8th in the league.
WE HAVE A TOP TIER CHAMPION!! ErgoFM has become our first manager to win a top-tier league by leading Feyenoord to the Eredivisie title. They stormed to victory and toppled Ajax by ten points.
Warren Peace had been out of work for a year before Twitter decided his next destination was to be Holland. He led Heerenveen to an 11th place finish in his first season with the club.
Another pretty underwhelming season for our Portuguese boss Defence First. His Vit. Setubal side ended the season in 13th place, two places lower than last season.
Will Defence First manage to improve Vit. Setubal or will he struggle one more?
A great little move in Sweden saw Mikael Bergstrom join AIK (who, media reports suggest, are one of Bergstrom’s least favourite clubs). He joined them in June and guided AIK to 5th place in the league by November (they were predicted 2nd but had sacked their previous manager due to their poor position in the league).
For our tenth season of the simulation, I decided to finally add in Spain, Germany and Italy. This has slowed down the processing speed (meaning it now takes longer to holiday through the seasons) but it has opened up more opportunities for our managers to manage in higher divisions. Let’s see what’s happened in season ten!
Starting with the Premier League in England we can see that three out of four managers occupied the relegation places! Ron Burgundy, sacked by Guingamp, joined Swansea and was the manager to survive the EPL.
Casual FM (Newcastle), MyFMStory (Wolves) and Warren Peace (Burnley) all failed to survive in the top tier of English football. As of June 10th 2027 they all remain in the posts.
DeeJam, who was fired from Middlesbrough, joined Leeds and led them to a playoff place where they fell in the semi-final. Three managers finished from 14th to 16th. VR Fussball continued his reign with Norwich but will be disappointed not to have progressed in his 3-and-a-half years at the club.
Mr Bad Dragon left Coventry for Ipswich and saw them finish 1 place below their bitter rivals whilst Darren Miller improved with Millwall.
No managers were in League One this season, so straight to League Two where only Youssef Amin is managing a club. He was sacked by RWDM in Belgium before signing for Mansfield.
Mike Tango will be joining Cheltenham as they aim to bounce back to League Two. He becomes the first manager to lose all three of his lives after being without a job for a year. Now he is on his own!
Domestic Cup hero VivaLaVida failed to win any trophies this season with Aberdeen. His side finished 3rd for the third consecutive year. Surely it is only a matter of time before the Spaniard moves on to Celtic or an EPL club?
After winning promotion last year, Tom Robinson’s Nancy survived Ligue 1 and finished in 14th place, five points clear of relegation.
Will Robinson stay with Nancy or look to move to a higher rated French club? What do you think he will do?
Newly added Germany acquired one of our managers as Hans Down moved from Belgian side Cercle Brugge to join Koln.
His new side finished in 7th place in the top tier of Germany, equalling the highest one of our managers has finished in a top five league.
An exciting move for Italian manager Papa Playmaker sees him move to Torino in the Italian Serie A. He was only in charge for 7 games at the end of the season so he’ll be looking to push on and aim for the European places next year.
It would be really to see one of our managers join a really big European club. Could Papa P work his way up to reach the likes of Roma, Napoli?
Opening up Spain has seen According to FM become the first of our managers to enter the country. The Colombian will naturally feel more secure using his native language and perhaps this will help him reach his potential. He’s joined third-tier side Real Irun.
Keanu Jones has had a rather mixed career so far. He reached the English Championship with Plymouth but has since seen his stock fall, resigning from East Fife and now joining Belgian third-tier side Liege. Hopefully he can overachieve with Liege and attract the attention of either a higher-placed Belgian club or his a team from his native Germany.
Last season we saw ErgoFM win the Eredivisie. Unfortunately he hasn’t been able to repeat the feat this year as his team finished 2nd in the league. He did, however, become the first of our managers to progress through to the Champions League knockout stage. Feyenoord lost out to Manchester United in the 1st knockout round.
A brilliant move for Defence First has seen him leave Vit. Setubal to join Portuguese giants Sporting. He finished 11th with Vit. Setubal before leaving to join Sporting and his now ex-club came runners-up in the Taca de Portugal.
Finally we see how our Scandinavian managers performed in the 2026 Swedish Allsvenskan. Paul Wandless came in 8th place with BK Hacken while Mikael Bergstrom won the league!! Considering he doesn’t like the team he is managing (allegedly) he is sure helping them to achieve success!
Thanks to several helpful comments through social media, I have updated the points system in order to improve its fairness. Previously a manager would earn the same amount of points for winning the Scottish Cup and for winning the English FA Cup. It was pointed out that it would be easier to win consecutive Scottish Cups (or equivalent in countries like Sweden, Belgium etc) than it would to win consecutive Italian Cups or FA Cups.
Therefore I have doubled the points awarded for winning a top-tier league or cup in the ‘Top 5’ countries – England, Spain, France, Germany and Italy. This has been represented in our points table, though of course we are yet to see a manager win in the top 5 countries.
I have also lessened the penalty for being sacked and I’ve implemented a rule whereby managers who have resigned received half the penalty acquired should they have been sacked. Let’s take a look at the points table.
- VivaLaVida: 238
- Mikael Bergstrom: 168
- Ergo FM: 141
We should also take a look at how many lives our managers have left. Remember, a manager loses a life if they have been without a club for a year and have to be moved by the in-game editor.
Mike Tango is now on his own, meaning that if he loses his job he will need to find one himself. This can, quite often, lead to an early retirement if a manager fails to find work.
As we progress further into this series I anticipate for more managers to lose lives and end up retiring early. Who will be the last man standing?!
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