So in my last blog I discussed some Hints & Tips as to how you can set your new FM save up in order to maximise your pre-season. In this blog I want to take that a step further and talk about setting up your staff responsibilities in order to help you in areas where you may not want to take full control. By this stage you should have your staff in place that you want to go into the season with or know who you want to be bringing in. That will help you be able to know where you want to pass control over.
Not a lot you can do here apart from whether you want to be in charge of hiring a Director of Football or you want to pass that to a board member. If you don’t want one then leave yourself in charge of it. If you do want one and are not sure who to get, leave it to a member of the board to sort out.
For all these options, I always leave the hiring and firing of all staff to myself because I don’t want the potential for staff I like and enjoy working with being fired, so I like to have full control over this section. If you want this taken off your hands, then you can select any board member to be doing this for you. I have personally never allowed this but I do know one thing, I wouldn’t want Ed Woodward doing this for me at Manchester United!!
I would assume most FM players would want to take control of their incoming transfers. I’ve never worked with a Director of Football of Football Manager but unless they are bringing you players to go straight to your first team that you don’t already know about, then I don’t see it working, but hey, if any of you have a Director of Football and it works, comment at the bottom of this blog and I will happily eat my words. Similarly, I will handle new signing contract negotiations; if you are signing the players then you may as well handle the contract negotiations as well. Finally I will handle the confirmation of the signing.
I let my Head of Youth Development make offers for young players of the future. This allows me to hopefully not miss out on the next gem that you may not have discovered yet. When they make the offer for the player, I will still get him scouted by the scouting team so I can fully cast my eye over who the potential signing is. If they do not have potential ability of a minimum 4 stars, I will cancel the transfer. I let the Head of Youth Development handle the contract negotiations as well, a bit like the point above; if they are handling the transfer then they can handle the contract too. The only part different to what was discussed earlier is that I will handle the confirmation of the signing making a last glance at the players scout report making sure he is right for my club.
This section can be quite different to the Transfer Incoming section. You can, which I do, handle all outgoing transfers yourself therefore having complete control over it. The other option you have is to transfer list the first team players you no longer want and let your board handle incoming offers for these players. It means that you don’t have to keep negotiating with clubs and can concentrate on bringing new players in. You can also hand over responsibilities of incoming offers for youth team players to the board, but you can also hand that over to your Assistant Manager, Head of Youth Development or U18 Manager. Again, I always handle outgoing transfers to try and get the best deal I can which I wouldn’t trust the Manchester United board to get.
For all staff/player contract negotiations I will handle them myself because as discussed before, I don’t want to potentially lose someone because the board made a decision not to renew a contract. The only responsibility I hand over is that of the youth players. I do this because I have found that when I have previously done handled it myself and let some youngsters go because I deemed them not good enough (rightly), the fans were unhappy at them released. So if my chief operator in the youth team can handle who we should be keeping, it should work out that we keep the ones he thinks has the potential and loose the ones whose career may be better elsewhere.
Setting assignments for the scouting team is passed over to my Chief Scout. I never tend to get involved in this as the Chief Scout should be able to cope with the demands of this task.
First team training I hand over to my assistant manager, I have never quite known how to train players as well as they should be, so passing on this task also allows you to focus on other matters like tactics and who you’re going to select for the forthcoming match. Youth training is taken by the U18 manager; he manages the team, so he should be training the team (yes quite contradicting to my statement in the first sentence).
I also pass on the responsibility of setting up individual training to the Assistant Manager as again, I never quite got it right and ended up with players who were unhappy with their training. My Head of Youth Development sets up individual training for the youth team players. If he is of high enough quality, he should be setting this up to improve your youth team players and getting them ready for the first team.
The First team manager (You), U21 manager and U18 manager all run match training for their respective squads. The manager is ultimately in charge and should be seen to be trying to enforce their tactics onto pitch and players.
The Head of Youth Development brings youth players into the club, this is their number one priority, making sure your youth ranks boast the best youngsters around who can challenge for first team places.
The only part of this screen that I change is to allow my Assistant Manager to arrange the friendly matches. This is because they get your schedule right so you play enough games in preseason allowing your players to get match fit and be able to try out some formations.
Under 21s/Under 18s
Make sure both these teams are set up to play first team match tactics, this means players are better prepared for your first team and can slot straight in if/when needed. Get the team manager to arrange friendly matches when there is not game during the week. This level of football isn’t always the best and there can be gaps in the playing schedule, so this keeps your players ticking over fitness and match sharpness wise. If you have a very small squad you may not want this option as you’re players can get tired by playing twice a week.
On this screen I leave all the settings as already assigned apart from how often you are reminded to speak to your backroom staff. This I change to every week as your staff may have some advice for you which is crucial to a game situation or have advice on something a player can be doing better to improve themselves and/or the team.
I hope this blog has been useful for you in helping you decide how much responsibility you pass on to your staff. It’s a process which only needs to take 5-10 minutes but one that needs to happen to allow your team and players to get used to what you have asked. You don’t want to keep changing the staff doing the tasks as players will never settle and their training methods may continuously change. If you do anything differently or have any other tips then please comment below.