The manager who went from football manager to elite football

On August 29, 2021, millions of people sat in front of the TV watching something unimaginable: Lionel Messi’s debut in a shirt that was not Barcelona’s. With the Argentinian in the spotlight, no one paid much attention to William Still, the person who was at Stade Auguste Delaune and was taking another important step in his career.

William Steele, still at Berchot (Credit: Reproduction/Transfermarkt)

He still worked as an assistant for the under-14 team Preston North End, until he became a coach for the professional teams of Lercy and Berchot, both from Belgium. Appointed as an assistant by the Stade de Reims in June 2021, the young coach, at just 28 years old, will have the opportunity to lead the French side by chance, stopping head coach Oscar Garcia.

Without the ability to count on the captain, the humble Reims team will need to rely on the “boy” knowledge to take on the mighty Paris Saint-Germain. This would be enough to make many fans desperate, but what most didn’t know (and could be an aggravating factor) is that he still developed much of his learning in football management games.

The son of English parents, but born in Belgium, William and his brother Edward have always been passionate about this type of game since they were young, especially English Premier League Football Manager 2001. In fact, the duo spent so much time perfecting their virtual teams that their parents forbade them even from playing.

According to William, the duo played the game created by Electronic Arts until the disc stopped working, and eventually decided to switch to Tournament Manager. At the time, about 15 years old, he would stay up until dawn playing, and since he had to get up so soon after, he always wondered why he kept doing this.

English Premier League Football Manager 2001

A nice end to the day at the 2001 Premier League Football Manager (Credit: Disclosure / EA / MobyGames)

With football being a part of his life, William Steele passed through the youth divisions of clubs such as Saint-Troyd and Mons, and made his professional debut at Tempo Overijs, of the Belgian fourth division. Then came spells in other, smaller teams, suggesting that this would be the boy’s life: playing in small clubs, until the time came for him to retire and perhaps become a coach.

However, at a certain point, he still realized that he didn’t want it, and that he didn’t have the skills to be a great player, so he decided to become a coach. Then the study and training phases began at Preston North End, with the dedication of this topic imparting to experiences in several teams. However, he never forgot how this desire to become a coach began.

“The director of football gave me the motivation to want to organize a team,” said William Steele. “I wanted to be able to talk to the players. I wanted to have that relationship. I mean, I was already into football, but the football director allowed me to get a glimpse of what it would really be like to manage a team.”

“In fact, I think the people who play football manager understand the game [futebol] A little more,” the coach defended. “You have to go into a lot of detail to really win things and be successful in the game, especially these days where it gets more and more complex.”

Still according to Steele, a lot to see in a game like football manager It often happens in real world clubs. Examples he cited are negotiations, where the hypothetical coach needs to make a proposal, receive a counter-offer and even with the clubs reaching an agreement, it can happen that the athlete simply does not accept the transfer.

Similarities between real and virtual will still occur in conversations, in the training schedule, and in the definition of exercise procedures. As for William Still, the deeper we go into the details of the game, the more realistic it becomes, he even claimed that football manager Make him a better coach.

Football manager: a support tool or just a hobby?

Football Manager 2022

“Come on, team!” (Credit: Disclosure/Sports Interactive)

For purists, Steele’s statements may seem a bit exaggerated, because the game will not be able to prepare a person for such a complex task as running a football club. However, the idea of ​​using football manager As a support tool spread all over the world.

It appears as one of the favorites of athletes such as Cesar Azpilicueta, Antoine Griezmann, Diogo Jota and Ousmane Dembele, and is often used as an escape valve, allowing even famous players to feel like being in the shoes of those who drive. With them. Even Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, the former Manchester United manager, has already claimed to have learned a lot from creating Sports Interactive.

But it’s not just aspiring techies who can benefit from the realism the series suggests. football manager. It serves as a powerful database for clubs from different parts of the planet, through which many analysis teams were looking for athletes who could emerge as new world stars.

Created with the help of a network of more than 1,300 contributors – not counting 86 chiefs of research, including one full-time for the Premier League – over 25 years, the title has collected data on more than 925 thousand athletes. In its 2021 edition, it already had 350 thousand football players, as well as 60 thousand clubs, 50 thousand cities and hundreds of competitions.

Football Manager 2022

FM22, a complete board for those who love numbers, tables, etc. (Credit: Disclosure/Sports Interactive)

According to a Premier League club scout who spoke to ESPN on condition of anonymity, the database is available at football managerIt’s great […] With it it covers every corner of the planet.” However, the executive has doubts about how much this can help the analysis departments.

“For me, it is purely entertainment and I will not consult the game for information that I will use professionally,” he explained. “At the end of the day, it’s a game…we have our own network that took years to build, made up of people we know and trust, and that’s good enough.”

However, it is important to note that most clubs do not have such a well-organized scouting network, let alone a team budget in the world’s richest league – and we don’t even have to look to South America to realize which – which. According to the mayor of Toulouse, which is part of France’s second tier, they will have to adopt football manager As a way to help when hiring.

“There are many clubs that use [o jogo]Damian Comolli said. “It won’t be the mainstay of our recruitment strategy, but it can help. Football scouts make notes on the pitch. Then they send in those reports and we check them with data. […] All recruitment takes place thanks to data that confirm what the scouts see.

A career in FIFA is a lot less complicated (Credit: Disclosure / EA)

That is, with or without the use of football managerSigning a player – especially when it comes to young prospects – turns out to be a combination of study, observation and a dash of luck. There are countless reports of athletes who have been ignored by clubs and then become superstars, as we have those who have everything to take revenge, but never leave the mediocre.

For those who use games like this just for fun, channeling these talents is part of the fun, making betting on boys as great as winning the championship at the end of the season. Interestingly, even though I love football and consider the career situation of the series FIFA As my favourite, I’ve never really been interested in “purely administrative” titles.

I think it has to do with the impossibility of being an active part of these games, making us take care of the administrative and technical aspects of the teams and letting the players make decisions on the pitch. I also like to control virtual athletes directly because I think management is in them FIFA It is already comprehensive enough, I will continue to run my team there. At least my marriage thank you.

source: Mirror Online

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