USM Finch Farm played host to a virtual football match with a difference recently, as Ronald Koeman took on Football Manager creator, and lifelong Evertonian, Paul Collyer in a head-to-head clash on the world’s most popular football management simulation game.
To ensure a level playing field, both managers selected their teams from the current Everton squad with their choices then fed into the Football Manager system and the two managers began to plot their tactics.
The Blues first-team boss opted for a traditionally Dutch 4-3-3 formation whilst Collyer used his experience of creating the game to set his team to line-up in 3-5-1-1 formation. Both men named a near-identical side with the only exception being the Dutchman opting for the attacking option of Dominic Calvert-Lewin over Collyer’s selection of defender Mason Holgate.
Playing in yellow against Koeman’s boys in blue, Collyer’s team took an early lead through Tom Davies much to the annoyance of Koeman, who was disappointed with the defensive space his team had allowed the opposition. The Football Manager creator soon doubled his lead thanks to a Gana strike and Belgian international Lukaku soon made it 3-0. This saw the Toffees boss make his first substitution of the game and jokingly ask for support from the computer!
The second-half saw Koeman ask for an early reaction from his players and they quickly repaid his faith with Lukaku reducing the deficit to 3-1 and the Blues boss made another tactical substitution with the introduction of January signing Lookman who made an immediate impact and set up Lukaku for him to drive the ball into the back of the net.
Despite a few late chances the virtual match finished 3-2 to Collyer’s Everton side and speaking after his first experience of the football management simulation game, Koeman said:
“It was very interesting for me to sit down with Paul and Football Manager today to understand the technicalities of this computer game and get some insight into the history behind it. The game is incredibly realistic and detailed; Paul knew his way around the game very well but I began to get the hang of it in the second half.”
“It was a special experience for me to test out my virtual managerial acumen against Mr Koeman, who apart from managing the club I love, is also a legend in world football," added Collyer. "Not only that, but I gleaned an insight into the way a top coach constructs his team and thinks on a tactical level. So as well as having the honour of being shown Finch Farm and meeting some true Everton legends along the way, I also picked up some valuable insights to take back to the SI team and help improve Football Manager in the future.”
Developed by Sports Interactive and published by SEGA, the Football Manager series gives gamers the chance to take control of a football club in what is the most realistic, in-depth and immersive simulation game available.
Reader Comments (11)
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1 Posted 31/05/2017 at 06:24:53
2 Posted 31/05/2017 at 06:56:22
3 Posted 31/05/2017 at 07:54:15
4 Posted 31/05/2017 at 20:33:32
5 Posted 31/05/2017 at 20:58:21
As a long-time player of the game itself, it does a fantastic job of capturing the 'feel' of being a manager, but achieves very little in replicating the authenticity of football and it's tactics.
Not surprised that someone who understood real football tried to impress it upon the game engine and achieved little.
6 Posted 31/05/2017 at 21:08:50
7 Posted 31/05/2017 at 22:03:22
Koeman, straight faced said in the second half 'I started to get the hang of it .'
Just like real Ronald, we start games like an oil tanker, and nearly always have to change it at half time...
Art mimics life..
8 Posted 01/06/2017 at 19:11:23
9 Posted 01/06/2017 at 19:16:00
10 Posted 02/06/2017 at 01:52:35
11 Posted 04/06/2017 at 01:00:13
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