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Football Manager 2010 Top 10 Wish List

Football Manager. Just saying those two words amongst a group of football-mad mates will almost surely send everyone into a state of euphoria. For many the game is a way to relax on a Saturday afternoon; for others, the game is life — an addiction, if you will.

Whatever side of the fence you sit on there’s one thing all groups can agree on, and that’s the need to consistently critique the game from the day we get it in our hands.

After much deliberation and forum consulting, in no particular order I have produced a comprehensive list of ten necessities that Sports Interactive must consider for Football Manager 2010. You will no doubt disagree with many of my choices so please feel free to use the comments section below to outline exactly what you would incorporate into FM 2010 ready for its autumn/winter release.

Remember, you can buy FM 10 online here.

1. Testimonials

Wouldn’t it be great to be able to acknowledge that dying breed of the one club man by arranging a testimonial fixture for their services to your club? A glamour tie against a Manchester United, Real Madrid or AC Milan would bring the fans flooding in and would add an extra dimension to the fixture planning and media/player interaction side of the game.

2. Bring back the fun of the game!

We are all undoubtedly split in our dedication and affinity to FM. To some it is their life, to others a pass time for the weekend. Although at the end of the day FM is just a game and I want it to feel more like a game. The complexities surrounding things like training and tactics at times require far too much perseverance. I want to be able to send out a strong Manchester United team in a basic 4-4-2 formation and expect to beat a relegation threatened side at home without having to tweak my tactics at numerous intervals during the match.

3. Overhaul Press Conferences

Don’t tell me I’m the only one who sends my assistant to every perceivable Press Conference (bar the very important ones!). FM Press Conferences mean as much to me as the BBC does to Sir Alex Ferguson. The answers become mandatory and I believe this area of the game needs to be developed further as it can clearly has the potential to work.

4. 3D Match Engine

I don’t know about you but I turned off 3D after only a couple of games of trying it. It just doesn’t do it for me. Maybe I’m too old fashioned and completely susceptible to change but I really haven’t seen the need, as of yet, to switch from the classic 2D blobs that still manage to fit the bill. The 3D match engine is clearly still in its early stages but unless it’s improved drastically, I won’t be interested in using it again for another season of FM at least.

5. Match day Experience

The match day experience should really be the lifeblood for FM and I don’t feel like Sports Interactive can safely say they have delivered with decent results. The AI of both human and computer players is at times shocking where on field reactions and movements can often be likened to that of an intoxicated Titus Bramble ice skating on one leg.

6. Tactical Sliders

Arguably my biggest gripe with FM and I am sure it is being addressed but I just can’t comprehend the need and point for the sheer amount of tactical sliders. Why can’t I send out Lionel Messi and tell him to be creative and express himself rather than have to nudge a slider seven ticks to the right hand side to get the desired effect. At the moment it’s just not realistic.

7. Chairmen Interference

Chairmen don’t really do a great deal on FM 09. They don’t have any personality and rarely have any involvement in the game. Yes, it’s Football Manager not Football Chairman, but wouldn’t it be a nice addition to have your billionaire Sheikh demanding that you sign big name players or he will take matters into his own hands? I seem to remember this sort of thing happening on a previous version of the game and I’m all for bringing it back for FM 2010! Why not throw in Directors of Football too?

8. Realistic expectations

OK, so you’ve just achieved the proverbial miracle of breaking into the Champions League with West Brom in your first season in the big time. Your fans love it, your chairman loves it but you know deep down that it was a one off. The following season you finish tenth in the league and get knocked out of Europe by Barcelona. Jeremy Peace shows you the exit door as a result of underachievement. I’ve seen it happen and it needs to be addressed.

9. Penalty takers (See who wants one!)

I, for one, hate having to rely on attributes when it comes down to the lottery of a penalty shoot-out. Because that’s exactly what it is. A lottery! You’re bustling centre-half may not be Francesco Totti from 12 yards out, but if he’s got the balls to step up to the plate, I want to know about it.

10. Make sure the game is ready for release

The problems with activation were well documented with the launch of FM 09 and I’m sure the guys over at SI don’t need me to tell them to do everything in their power to avoid a similar predicament. Although the main problem I find and it happens every year, is that the game is never really completely playable until a patch is released a couple of months after the game becomes available on the shelves. I know it’s difficult, but if SI can deliver a first release that is relatively bug free and we don’t have to wait for a patch, then everyone will go home extremely happy. I’m sure of it!

The Football Manager 2010 Demo is available here.

You can buy FM 10 online here.

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