The exclusive deal with Sports Interactive, the game’s developers, which is a football and gaming first, gives Everton manager David Moyes unrivalled and unrestricted access to Football Manager’s extensive database. Football Manager employs the largest scouting network in football, with over 1,000 scouts, who have uncovered over 370,000 players and staff from 20,000 active teams, in more than 50 countries around the globe.
The Game’s original creators, Paul and Oliver Collyer, felt the time was right to put pen to paper over the deal, despite declining previous offers from other clubs, in a bid to “bring virtual football management to the real world”. Paul Collyer continues:
“The game’s database is a valuable resource with the most extensive scouting network in football so Everton FC is making a top signing. I am personally delighted with the announcement as I’m a Toffees fan. Standing on the pitch with my signing on shirt is as close to my boyhood dream of playing at Goodison Park as I will ever get.”
Football Manager’s unique database has helped propel the game to becoming the most popular football management simulation around. And with a track record of unearthing and predicting the talents of some of the world’s current stars (Ashley Young, Wayne Rooney at 15 and Lionel Messi at 14) Everton hope to take advantage of the game’s knack for talent spotting and bring some of the world’s brightest talents to Goodison Park. In a statement on footballmanager.com, Studio Director Miles Jacobson said:
“We’ve known for a while that teams use the game to research certain players, whether to buy or to check out the opposition, but this formal recognition by a premiership team is fantastic and we are sure it will prove a fruitful one for the Everton FC.”
Copies of Football Manager 2009 have been on sale since Friday 14th November and the game, which has been fully updated for the 2008/09 football season, will feature an all new 3D match engine and has, again, been heralded by game reviewers across the UK as the most realistic management experience available.