24 Hours In FM: Part 1 – Setting The Scene

Today (14 May) is my birthday and, seeing as there’s nothing to do I thought I’d just play Football Manager all day. Then I thought, ‘can I just play Football Manager ALL DAY?’ So I decided to try and play Football Manager for 24 hours straight.

It’s currently 5am on Thursday and I’m aiming to play the game through until 5am on Friday! I’ll post blogs throughout the day with updates on how the save progresses. And there’s a charitable angle to this, as I’ll make a donation to charity based on the number of views the posts get.

Setting the Scene

I decided to do something a little bit different by joining the game as an Unemployed manager and simming 5 years into the future. I’ve seen people do the same thing 1 year into the future, and thought it’d be interesting to see how easy it’d be to get a job for some guy who’s not done anything fpr 5 years. We shall see.

To help with that, I gave myself a Continental Pro licence and Global footballer status then went on holiday for 5 years.

The state of football in 2024

In England, Manchester City have dominated by winning the Premier League in all 5 seasons. Kylian Mbappe was the top scorer with 24 goals but played for 4th-placed Chelsea, with Liverpool 2nd just 2 points behind City and 17 points ahead of 3rd-placed Tottenham Hotspur.

Southampton and Leicester City have just been promoted back to the big time, along with playoff champs Birmingham City. Sunderland are still in League One, which Notts County just got relegated from and Bolton Wanderers just achieved promotion back to.

Spain had just been won by Barcelona. Atletico won the title in the first season, then Barca won it twice and Madrid won it in 2023. Interestingly, the top scorer in Spain was a regen wonderkid from Alaves who’d scored 20 goals, while Bernardo Silva had scored 18 goals for Barca.

Italy had been pretty interesting, with Juve winning it as usual in the first season followed by titles for Inter, Milan and Napoli, before Juve claimed their crown back in 2024. The league’s top scorer was Torino’s Sebastiano Esposito with 19 goals, followed by Napoli’s Patrick Cutrone and Milan’s Gabriel Jesus with 18. Man City have clearly had a huge turnover in staff, because Leroy Sané is one of the top performers in the league at Juventus.

Borussia Dortmund are currently the team on top in Germany, winning their second title of the save in 2024. The first was in 2020/21, with FC Bayern of course winning the league in the three other years.

Unsurprisingly, PSG have won the French league every season – that’s why I didn’t bother turning the French league on – Benfica have won in Portugal every year, and Ajax have won all bar one Eredivisie.

PSG have just lifted their maiden Champions League title, defeating Real Madrid 3-1 in the final with goals from Paul Pogba, Erling Haaland and some dodgy regen striker. Barca won it in the first season and 2021/22, with the other seasons seeing FC Bayern and Liverpool become Champions of Europe.

Man United are current Europa League winners, having beaten Arsenal in the final with goals from Dele Alli and Son-Heung Min… (checks it was actually Man United, not Spurs)… yes, they’ve raided Spurs. Speaking of Spurs, they won the tournament the previous season, preceded by Bayern, Barcelona and Arsenal. Interestingly, David De Gea had the second highest average rating in the Europa League with a 7.72, which tells you a lot about United…

The current World Champions are… Turkey. What? The Turks beat Germany 3-0 in the final of Qatar 2022 having knocked out Argentina and Spain in the semis and quarters. Bizarre. The European Championship is just about to kick off, but Portugal defended their crown in 2020.

In terms of transfers, the biggest so far was Mbappe going to Chelsea for a massive £193 million in the summer of 2021. He’s scored 67 league goals in three seasons and now wanted by City and Barca.

That was followed, strangely, by Arsenal signing Hertha BSC’s Calvin Stengs for £141 million in summer 2023 and my Atalanta boy Dejan Kulusevski joining Barcelona from Atletico for £135 million in January 2024.

There have been 13 transfers of over £100 million, of which the strangest is probably United selling Marcus Rashford to Chelsea for £132 million. Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham, meanwhile, have replaced Alli and Son with Joao Felix and Kai Havertz for a combined £202 million – which is shrewd business.

As yet, there are no regen players on the first page of leading transfers nor the players with highest reputation, so the wait goes on to find what FM has dealt out wonderkid-wise.

On the job hunt

Upon returning to the game on 1 June 2024, I was quickly notified that current available jobs were: Athletic Bilbao – who bizarrely had until recently been managed by Zinedine Zidane! – Dundee United, Motherwell, Reggina, Roma, Eintracht Braunschweig, VfL Wolfsburg, Salford United and Wolves. Some decent sides in there. While Insecure jobs included Coventry City, Getafe, Watford, Ireland, Slovenia and Switzerland.

Come back for Part 2 to find out how we get on in our hunt to join the world of football management in 2024.

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