Welcome to my new series, The Backroom Staff – A Complete Football Manager Staff Guide. This guide will be focussing on one of the most important areas of the game; the Backroom Staff in Football Manager. I have written about the various functions of the backroom team before, such as training and scouting, but I wanted to concentrate more on the people who make these functions work. This guide will be continually updated as newer versions of the game are released, so it will always contain information relating to the most recent version.
Version date 19 July 2020 • 1.0 - Written for Football Manager 2020
- An Introduction to the Backroom Staff in Football Manager
- Staff Attributes
- Staff Overview
- Staff Responsibilities
- Staff Search
- Staff Shortlist
- Job Centre
- Job Security
In this post I will be covering an introduction to the Backroom Staff in Football Manager and their responsibilities. I will also take a brief look at the other options available from the Staff screen, including the Staff Search, Staff Shortlist, the Job Centre and Job Security.
An Introduction to the Backroom Staff in Football Manager
As the title suggests this series will be covering all of the Backroom Staff in Football Manager that are available to you and the responsibilities that you can delegate to them. I wont be covering everything in this post, that would be far too long even by my standards, but rather this will be the hub for a series of posts covering all of the Backroom Staff in Football Manager from the coaching staff to the recruitment and medical staff.
The Backroom Staff in Football Manager are the ones who keep everything running behind the scenes. I’ve written quite extensively about training and scouting, but nothing in detail about the people who actually perform the roles within these functions so I thought it would be quite interesting to write about the Backroom Staff and go into some detail about how I use them in my games.
This opening post is an introduction to the series with some high-level information. There will be more detailed posts coming over the next few months where I’ll aim to write about every staff role in Football Manager.
The Backroom Staff in Football Manager
Depending on the size of the club and your reputation, the following Backroom Staff in Football Manager are available to you.
- The Assistant Manager
- The Head of Youth Development
- The Coaches: General Coaches, Fitness Coaches, and Goalkeeping Coaches
- The Director of Football
- The Technical Director
- The Chief Scout, and further Scouts
- The Chief Data Analyst, and further Data Analysts
- The Loan Manager
- The Head Physio, and further Physios
- The Head of Sports Science, and further Sports Scientists
As the manager it is your job to ensure you have the best backroom team around you if you want to plan for success. You don’t necessarily have to take responsibility for hiring the staff and managing them yourself, but you are in control and so it is your responsibility to make sure the foundations for success are there, but ultimately, it comes down to you, the Manager, to decide who you have working for you.
The great thing about Football Manager is that you can take control of as much or as little as possible. If you are the sort of Manager who likes to micro-manage everything, then you can probably get away with saving some money on the more expensive staff, like a Director of Football and Technical Directory. However, if you prefer to work at the macro level, and delegate the more mundane tasks like contract renewals then you can do that.
Ultimately , the decision is yours. Understand your strengths and weaknesses. If you’re unsure on how best to perform some tasks of if you already have enough on your plate trying to keep your team from relegation then get the right team in place and put the experts in control. There’s no right or wrong approach. Even the best managers in the world need help.
In subsequent posts, I will be covering all of the Backroom Staff Roles in Football Manager in more detail, talking about the jobs they can take on for you at the club, and the responsibilities they can take on, the key attributes required and highlighting some of the best staff available in these positions. I aim to have full coverage of all staff and their roles soon.
Like players, the Backroom Staff in Football Manager also have attributes. These attributes work on the same 1-20 scale as it does for players, with 20 being the highest possible value and 1 being the lowest.
Staff attributes are broken down into the following categories
- Coaching attributes
- Mental attributes
- Knowledge attributes
- Data Analysis attributes
- Medical attributes
The staff attributes will impact upon their ability to do the role that is assigned to them. A Backroom Staff member with high attributes for the role assigned will deliver to a high standard more regularly than on who has low attributes for their role. The scout with 20 for Judging Player Ability will deliver better reports you can rely on, an Assistant Manager with 20 for Tactical Knowledge will be better placed to provide you with tactical information, A physio with 20 for Physiotherapy will naturally be more effective.
Backroom Staff attributes are relative, however, just like player attributes are. A good way to see what level of staff you should be signing is by looking at the staff overview screen and viewing the average rating for each of the attribute levels. As long as you’re above average, you’re golden. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t be looking to get the best Backroom Staff where possible, but they will cost you more, naturally.
The following are the key attributes for coaches in Football Manager. You should also ensure that your coaches have a good level of Determination, Level of Discipline and Motivating (also known as DDM) to increase their star rating for the role that they are being asked to perform.
Key Attributes for Coaches in Football Manager
- Working with Youngsters
- GK Distribution
- GK Handling
- GK Shot Stopping
The Attacking attribute reflects the coach’s ability to coach attacking football. This is not an attribute that is used in isolation. Along with DDM, it is combined with either Tactical or Technical coaching to determine the ability of the coach in these coaching areas. To competently take Attacking Tactical training, the coach must possess good Attacking and Tactical attributes.
The Defending attribute reflects the coach’s ability to coach defensive football. This is not an attribute that is used in isolation. It is combined with either Tactical or Technical coaching to determine the ability of the coach in these coaching areas. To competently take Defending Tactical training, the coach must possess good Defending and Tactical attributes.
The Fitness attribute reflects the coach’s ability to undertake fitness relating training.
The Mental attribute reflects the coach’s ability to observe a players mental state of mind. In terms of training it is used in conjunction with either Technical or Tactical attribute to determine the coach’s ability to train players in the art of Possession football.
The Tactical attribute reflects the ability to coach the tactical side of the game, but also to provide more accurate an informative information if, for example, the coach was also providing opposition reports.
The Technical attribute reflects the ability to coach the technical side of the game. Used in conjunction with Attacking, Defending and Possession training.
The Working with Youngsters attribute reflects the coach’s ability to work with those who are under 19. This is useful for the youth coaches working with the Youth Teams, but also other staff like the Head of Youth Development.
The GK Distribution, Handling, and Shot Stopping attributes are used to determine the coach’s ability to train goalkeepers. Used in conjunction with their DDM to determine the appropriate sessions to train, either distribution or handling and shot stopping.
The Mental attributes impact upon all your Backroom Staff members. For example, in order to get the best Coaches, they must have good Determination, Level of Discipline and Motivating. Scouts will require good Adaptability, to ensure they can adapt well to living in another country.
- Level of Discipline
- Man Management
Determination, Level of Discipline and Motivating are important attributes for your coaches. These attributes will work together to increase the star rating of your coaches. Adaptability will help the staff member adapt to their new role or new country much quicker. A higher level of Man Management is useful if you delegate tasks to staff members which could affect a player’s happiness levels, for example.
The Knowledge attributes are important for a range of Backroom Staff. For example, your scouts will rely heavily on their ability to judge a players ability and potential, but so will a Director of Football if making signings for the club. Tactical knowledge, for example, is important for Coaches but also to Scouts providing tactical analysis on the opposition.
- Judging Player Ability
- Judging Player Potential
- Judging Staff Ability
- Judging Staff Potential
- Tactical Knowledge
Data Analysis Attributes
The Data Analysis attributes are important for the Data Analysis teams. They affect the ability of the analysts to interpret the data and present it back to you in a meaningful way.
- Judging Player Data
- Judging Team Data
- Presenting Data
The Medical attributes are important for your Physios and Sports Scientists. While the Physiotherapy attribute is important for injury prevention and rehabilitation from injuries, the Sports Science attribute it important for managing every player’s fitness levels and injury risk.
- Sports Science
Staff > Overview
Your Backroom Staff in Football Manager is made up of three teams.
- The Coaching Team
- The Recruitment Team
- The Medical Team
The Backroom Staff displayed here are your First Team Backroom Staff members. Using the links at the bottom of the screen above, you can quickly access the Board Staff, the Reserve Staff and the Under 19s Staff.
Note: Your club might have different labels here, for example, you might not have a Reserve Team and only an Under 18s team.
The yellow and green bars show the average rating of your staff in each of the areas judged. For example, the Medical Team comparison shows that we have the highest average Physiotherapy rating, but we don’t have the highest rating in Sports Science. This isn’t always the worst thing in the world, since the numbers here are relevant to the standard you’re playing at.
The club I have chosen for this series is Ajax, so they would expect to have above average ratings and probably close to the top ratings in the league. Lesser clubs, however, should aim to have above average ratings to be at an advantage over other clubs. The slight grey bar across each of the attribute bars above represent the league average. At a minimum you should aim to be above average, but if the funds allow it, then be the best!
Along the bottom you have more options. Starting at the Board Staff, you have no control over this area of the club, but selecting Jong Ajax Staff or Ajax Under 19s Staff, allows you to see how your other teams compare to their competitors in the respective divisions that they compete in. For example, in the screenshot above, I can see how our First Team coaching, recruitment, and medical teams compare against other teams in the Eredivisie, the league Ajax compete in.
Should you wish to make changes to your staff in any of the three teams, you can use the appropriate dropdown to make a board request.
Above we have selected to request changes to the Coaching Team. We can make the following changes to the Coaching Team.
- Increase the number of coaches allowed
- Increase the maximum wage we can offer to coaches when offering them contracts
- Increase the maximum wages we can offer the Assistant Manager
- Place an advert for a vacant position
Each team will have different options, for example, under the Recruitment Team you can request to increase the number of Scouts that you are allowed at the club.
Further details on each of your teams can be seen by either selecting the team name, e.g., Coaching Team, or navigating there by hovering over the Overview and selecting the appropriate team. This will give you more details on that specific team, but this will be covered in a further guide.
Staff > Responsibilities > Overview > Manager / Staff
The Staff Responsibilities Overview screen will give you a view of the roles designated to you as the Manager and to your Backroom Staff in Football Manager. When you’re at a big club it can become time-consuming micro-managing each individual area of the club, from negotiating Backroom Staff contracts to finding clubs to take your Youth Players on loan.
The Backroom Staff in Football Manager are there to help you and to take that weight off your shoulders so you can get on with the more important tasks like building a winning football team!
Read more » Staff Responsibilities in Football Manager
How to Change Staff Responsibilities in Football Manager
- Select Staff
- Navigate to responsibilities
- From the dropdown select the staff area, e.g., Transfers and Contracts
- Change the responsibility from the dropdown
From the Overview screen, you can quickly change the responsibilities by selecting the dropdown to the right of the task and then selecting to either delegate it, which will auto-assign the task to the most suitable candidate, or you can choose a specific member of your staff to take on the responsibility
Once you change responsibility of a task away from yourself and to another staff member, the task will no longer be shown on the Manager tab. You can view the task by navigating to the Staff tab.
Not every staff member can carry out each task, as you can see from the above, the task of hiring and firing the Director of Football can only be delegated to either the Chairman or another Director on the board.
Staff > Responsibilities > Board
You cannot make changes to the responsibilities held at board level, but this is the area where you can see who is responsible for such tasks at your club like hiring and firing the manager or who is the face of the club in the media regarding club-related issues. The boardroom at each club will be different. Some clubs will have many board members, others just one or two.
Staff > Responsibilities > Staff > General / Contracts / Advice and Reports
The Staff Responsibilities are broken down into General responsibilities, Contracts, and Advice and Reports. From here you can view all of the responsibilities relating to your Backroom Staff in Football Manager, and make changes where appropriate.
You can delegate the following Staff Responsibilities.
Staff Responsibilities – General
- Manage Team Selection
- Recruit Directors
- First Team Staff Recruitment
- Recruit Staff (Reserve/B/Youth Teams)
- Coaching Courses
Staff Responsibilities – Contract
- Director Contract Renewals
- First Team Staff Contract Renewals
- Staff Contract Renewals (Reserve/B/Youth Teams)
Staff Responsibilities – Advice and Reports
- Transfers and Contracts
- Player Reports
You can delegate as much or as little as you like. It comes down to you as the manager and your preference for giving up control. You can choose to have Football Manager determine the best person for the job by selecting Delegate or you can select who you think would best suit the job by selecting the dropdown and picking the available Backroom Staff member.
Not all staff members can do all jobs. Your Assistant Manager cannot assign your Scouts, for example.
Staff > Staff Search
There comes a time in every save where you’re going to need to sign some staff members, unless of course you have immediately delegated everything to your Backroom Staff. If, like me, you like to sign your own staff for the first team, then this is the place to do it.
I have my own views setup for each of the staff members, showing me the key information I need to see in order to make informed decisions. You can see above I have my Head of Youth Development view setup, so I can see all of the information that is important to me, for example, their personality, preferred formation, tactical style, and some of their key attributes.
I will detail more on this in upcoming posts focussing on each of the roles individually, but to filter your search results select the New Search button from the top left to begin creating your filter. If you are unsure on the key attributes for the role you are searching you can follow:
New Search > Pick > Highlight key attributes for role
The game will then select the attributes for you that are important for the role. You can then adjust the minimum values and start your search.
Staff > Staff Shortlist
Your shortlist contains all the current staff members you have found and added to your shortlist. To add a staff member to your shortlist just right click on the name of the staff member and select:
Add to Staff Shortlist > Indefinitely / 1 Month / 3 Months / 6 Months / 1 Year
By selecting Default in the top right you can create new shortlists, similar to those that you can create for players. This is useful if you want to keep your shortlist of Coaches separate from your shortlist of Physios.
Staff > Job Centre
The Job Centre will show you a list of current vacancies around the world. You can Place Advert from the bottom left menu, if you’re looking to recruit a staff, rather than going through the staff search screens and searching for staff members who may or may not be willing to come to your club.
and you can filter the results on the screen to show and hide different roles available.
For you as the manager, this can be useful if you’re thinking about leaving your current role. You can assess which clubs have a vacant managers position and apply for the role. You can select to Apply All and this will send in an application for all available Manager vacancies for the leagues you have loaded.
Staff > Job Security
The job security will show you all of the Managers at the clubs for the leagues you have loaded and their current status at the club they manage. You can also see the security of the International Managers, too. The status can range from available to untouchable. If the job is available you can declare your interest in the position in a hope that the club will come to you and offer you an interview, or you can directly apply for the job.
Beware, however, that your current employers might not take kindly to you declaring interest in another job, so be warned.
I hope this introduction was useful to you. I plan on getting the next few pieces out soon. I want to cover each of the Backroom Teams and then one-by-one cover each of the staff roles available in the game.
As said not all roles are available to all clubs, as those lower down won’t permit you to have a Director of Football, for example. I will, however, cover them all off as and when I can.
As always, if you made it this far, thank you for reading along. You can get in touch with me in the comments below, via twitter @fmfutbolmanager, or my slack channel #fmFutbolManager — if you’re not a part of the Football Manager Slack community, then you can join here!
Until next time.