London, England – 23 July 2021 – Sports Interactive™ and SEGA® Europe Ltd. can today proudly announce that work has started on a multi-year project to bring women’s football into its iconic Football Manager™ series.
The result of this landmark work will not be a standalone women’s football management simulation. Instead, women’s football will be fully incorporated into FM’s living, breathing world, with managers able to take control of either men’s or women’s clubs and move between them seamlessly.
The studio has not set a definitive date for when the project will be completed; but the intention is to incorporate the women’s game as soon as realistically possible. Sports Interactive’s development team is committed to ensuring that women’s football is represented as authentically as possible and with the level of realism and attention to detail that the series is renowned for and will not announce a launch date until these standards have been met.
Miles Jacobson, Studio Director at Sports Interactive, said: “We have NO interest whatsoever in making a standalone women’s football version of FM. What we are doing is adding women’s football to FM… one sport, one game.”
“We know that adding women’s football to FM is going to cost in the millions and that the short-term return it delivers will be minimal. But that’s not the point. There’s no hiding that there’s currently a glass ceiling for women’s football and we want to do what we can to help smash through it. We believe in equality for all and we want to be part of the solution.”
“We want to be a part of the process that puts women’s football on an equal footing with the men’s game. We know that we’re not alone in this – the historic TV deal that Sky and the BBC recently agreed with WSL in England is proof of that – but we intend to do everything we can to get women’s football to where it deserves to be.”
The move to incorporate women’s football into FM has received support from leading figures inside the football industry, including Chelsea FC Women manager, Emma Hayes.
“Women’s football is capturing the imagination of fans across the globe and we’re making huge strides in terms of attendance figures and broadcast deals,” says Hayes. “For the women’s game to get to the next level, though, it needs to be recognised as an integral part of the world of football, not something separate and different. We want future generations to grow up in a world where football isn’t divided into ‘women’s’ and ‘men’s’… it’s just football. The ambitious plan that the Sports Interactive team have for Football Manager will play a huge part in getting us there.”
A detailed overview of the project and some of the technical work that it will entail is presented in a blog by Jacobson, published today on the Football Manager website.
About Sports Interactive™
Sports Interactive (SI) is the world’s leading developer of sports management simulations. Founded in 1994, SI became a wholly owned subsidiary of SEGA in 2006. Based in Stratford, East London, the SI team includes more than 200 full-time staff members, supported by a network of roughly 1,000 part-time researchers across the globe. SI is an official partner of many major football leagues and organisations, including the Bundesliga, LFP, the EFL and the League Managers Association, as well as numerous charities and not for profit organisations. Further information on the studio and its work can be found at www.sigames.com.
About Football Manager™
Football Manager (FM) is the world’s leading football management simulation title. With more than 50 countries to manage in and a database of over 800,000 players and staff it offers an incredibly detailed and immersive experience. In FM you make all of the key decisions, from signing (and selling) players through training, team selection and tactics as you take your team to the top of the footballing world while carving out your own philosophy and strengthening your club’s identity. FM has grown to become more than just a game and has embedded itself in the football industry; the FM database is used by several clubs to help shape their recruitment strategies and thousands of professional footballers and backroom staff members are committed fans of the game. FM has become an integral part of modern fan culture; the game has not only enhanced the collective footballing knowledge of its players but has been the inspiration for several books, a stand-up comedy show and even a feature length documentary. For more information on Football Manager, visit www.footballmanager.com.
About SEGA® Europe Ltd.:
SEGA® Europe Ltd. is the European Distribution arm of Tokyo, Japan-based SEGA CORPORATION, and a worldwide leader in interactive entertainment both inside and outside the home. The company develops and distributes interactive entertainment software products for a variety of hardware platforms including PC, wireless devices, and those manufactured by Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe. SEGA wholly owns the video game development studios Two Point Studios, Creative Assembly, Relic Entertainment, Amplitude Studios, Sports Interactive and HARDlight. SEGA Europe’s website is located at www.sega.co.uk