Football Manager 2019: Inauspicious beginnings amid injury crises

It’s safe to say that my relationship with Football Manager 2019 has not gotten off to the best of starts. If this was the aftermath of a first date, I’d be avoiding messaging her and holding off on arranging the second date.

There’s a few issues I have with the game, but the main one is the absolute deluge of injuries. I don’t know if I’m doing something wrong – I probably am, because I really can’t be arsed with getting involved in running training – but it seems no matter what I do, my players just KEEP ON getting injured.

Case in point. I started a go with Liverpool – a bit of a challenge but in theory not too difficult to ease into the new game – and things were going pretty well to start with. We were unbeaten in eight league games – won six, drew two, including beating Arsenal on the opening day – and suddenly, we had Man United away. Jordan Henderson picked up an injury in the week, so no holding midfielder, then Naby Keita got injured after 7 minutes and Mohamed Salah got injured early in the second half, when it was 1-1.

Unsurprisingly, we eventually lost 3-1 at Old Trafford, but that was the catalyst for an injury catastrophe the like of which I’ve never seen before on any version of FM.

Players just kept on getting injured. James Milner, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andrew Robertson, Fabinho, Virgil Van Dijk, Joe Gomez – all starting eleven players, all injured. Mohamed Salah started the season poorly, scored a couple, then got injured for a couple of weeks, came back, I eased him back into the starting eleven, and he got injured again.

Even backup midfield option Lucas Paqueta, who looks to have bags of potential, came in, played a couple of games, and duly got injured. I gave Xherdan Shaqiri – who I’m highly convinced won’t last longer than a season at the club – a couple of games, he did his knee ligaments in and he’s out for three months. I think the only first pick who hasn’t been injured yet is Sadio Mane, and even he picked up a knock in one game as well.

It got to the point where I went into a big game away at Everton with a midfield three of Pedro Chirivella in the holding role, behind an out of position Adam Lallana and massively inexperienced youngster Isaac Christie-Davies. And Divock Origi up front as Firmino got injured in the week building up to it. Needless to say, we lost, even though we somehow managed to take the lead. Oh, and Lallana got injured. Of course he did.

The most common topic in my Inbox in FM19 so far is “so-and-so player adds to Liverpool injury crisis.” It’s just annoying, and I’m really hoping it’s a glitch in the Beta version, or this relationship won’t be lasting too much longer.

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