Ahh Football Manager. Well known amongst fans and casual appreciators alike for its deeply realistic simulations of the football world. Now though, it’s dipping its toes in the highly confusing world of British politics.
In Sports Interactive’s latest iteration of sports management sim Football Manager, the vote to leave the EU can have some serious ramifications in the top-tier of football.
Speaking to The Telegraph, studio director Miles Jacobson discussed how Brexit left him with a headache as to how to correctly simulate the nation’s decision.
Of course none of us know what will happen, it changes on a daily basis. Six weeks ago I would have predicted a soft Brexit, but after the Conservative Party conference a hard Brexit is much more likely.
The first option for the game was to have just one scenario and that would be it, Brexit done, but it’s not possible to come out with one outcome and it won’t be until all the negotiations are done. As a result we’ve decided to go down another route, and have included every possible outcome in the game, using artificial intelligence and percentage chances to make every game different.
Basically,what this means in-game is, you’ll get one of three random Brexit scenarios. First is a soft Brexit, which will be ideal as it has no impact on player movements. Next would see player movements capped, but they’d have special exemptions which make it easier to gain a work visa. Last is the dreaded hard Brexit, in which players are subjected to the same strict rules as non-UK workers.
The hard Brexit scenario is bad news for Premier League clubs, as it could mean they have a quota of as little as four non-UK players on their books at any one time – a nightmare if you want to snag anybody outside of Messi, Ronaldo, Suarez and Neymar.
Jackobson explains why this could really suck:
If you only had four non-UK players per squad, that’s going to make things difficult. All of a sudden Championship-quality players are moving into the Premier League to fill up slots. That could mean the overall quality drops, and that means the TV money goes down. Meanwhile, transfer fees go up: foreign players are worth more to British clubs because you need to make sure you make the most of those four slots, and the best British players become more valuable, and so more expensive, too.
Far from ideal, I’m sure you’ll agree. While all these points are hypothetical and might not happen in your game, it says a lot about Football Manager‘s attention to detail that they could happen -and with the current state of Brexit, nobody can say for sure that it won’t happen. Jinkees.