FM18 Experiments: Liverpool 01/02

Here’s The Anfield Talk’s Anthony (@anthonymarkmcav) with another FM18 Experiment


I have lost count of the hours and hours that this database has taken me to put together so please, if you could give the tweet for this article as much support as possible! I’d like to get this to as many different people as possible.

In this iteration of FM18 Experiments, I’ve loaded up Championship Manager 01/02 and transferred all of the players from that Liverpool squad to the 2017/18 season. That means, Gerrard, Fowler, Heskey, Dudek, McAllister, Hyypia, Carragher all involved to see how the Liverpool side that was only a few months removed from winning a historic treble of the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup would fare this season against the likes of the record breaking Manchester City squad.

If you want to get your hands on the database, stay tuned to the end of the article, I’ll give you a download link to download it for yourself and see if you can do better than the Reds can by themselves.

Anyway in a slightly new format, where I sim the same season three times to get a sort of average, here’s how the Reds got on:

Sim 1:

The first attempt that the 01/02 squad had was a very mixed bag. Jurgen Klopp basically overhauled the squad in the summer, bringing in no less than seven players, selling just as many. The biggest names being Ivan Perisic in, for a fee of £39.5m, rising to nearly £60m and Dietmar Hamann being sold to Arsenal for a very similar fee.    

The season started with the Reds on fire, winning 15 of their 16 opening games, with the only dropped result being a 1-1 draw with Young Boys in the Champions League. Then. Then it went completely to pot. Five defeats in seven. Three league defeats back-to-back and barely scraping out of the Champions League group, it all went south very quickly for Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool. 

The season ended with the Reds finishing fifth in the Premier League, but they did reach the Champions League final, losing out to Real Madrid 3-2 in the last game in the competition. A 2-1 loss to Burnley in the Carabao Cup and a 1-0 loss to Man City saw Liverpool exit both competitions in the early stages.

The squad didn’t perform anywhere near as good as it’s qualities should have. Michael Owen only got 19 goals throughout the season. Ivan Perisic was installed as captain pretty quickly and the season culminated in Jurgen Klopp being sacked after failing to win a single trophy. Let’s hope the team fares better.

Sim 2:

Somehow, it got worse for the Reds second time round. Dropping out of the Champions League in the group stage, finishing behind Hoffenheim and Juventus in the group.

The transfers look horrible too, with Gerrard being sold to Arsenal for peanuts in today’s market, Heggem to Barca happened again and Mahrez was signed instead of Perisic but this is just looking awful compared to the first sim. Klopp continues to seem determined to overhaul the 01/02 squad as much as possible. 

That being said, due to the utter lack of good performances, Klopp got the sack in the beginning of January after the run of form shown below. Five defeats in six and elimination from two cup competitions sealed Klopp’s fate. However Luis Enrique who replaced the German couldn’t turn the season around.

It’s a bit strange seeing Markus Babbel having played 55 games this season, after his immune system illness kept him out for the majority of the real 01/02 season.

Michael Owen yet again finished as top scorer with just 19 goals, and you can see how most of the new signings under-performed. For the record, Gerrard went on to score eight goals in 26 appearances for Arsenal, and he also helped them lift the Europa League. Fingers crossed for something better (at least top four, come on) in the last sim.

Sim 3:


In the third and final sim of the 2017/18 season, Liverpool have finally picked up a trophy, the first in any of our three sims, albeit the Carabao Cup.Transfers look eerily similar every time we sim the season but with little differences here and there. Heggem to Barca AGAIN. I don’t understand the Catalan giant’s infatuation with him but you know, it goes on.

Liverpool managed to only get 6th in the league this time too, with the Reds only a point behind 4th and 5th. Swansea the next highest placed team… somehow.

 Scoring issues continued as Robbie Fowler finished as top scorer on 15 goals and Steven Gerrard out-scored Michael Owen with 14 of his own. Liverpool’s run-in wasn’t exactly great, and the dip in performance saw Jurgen Klopp once again sacked at the end of the season, with Maximilliano Allegri taking over this time.

Daniel Sjolund and Vladimir Smicer got the goals that gave Liverpool a 2-1 win over Leicester in the Carabao Cup final.

All in all, given the disappointments of the real 01/02 season, I think the Liverpool side fared just as expected although I would have at least liked one or two more trophies in the cabinet for the sim.

I challenge you to do better. Download the database below, send screenshots to @TheAnfieldTalk and show us how you get on, we’ll RT and share with our followers.

As promised, you can download the 2001-2002 Liverpool squad here.

If you are having trouble installing the database:

  • Extract the contents of the .zip file using the default zip utility of your OS or get a free tool such as 7-zip.
  • Move the extracted “Liverpool 2001-02.fmf” file to the following location:
    Documents / Sports Interactive / Football Manager 2018 / editor data
    Create the “editor data” folder if it doesn’t exist.
  • Then when you start a new game, use the database changes option and select this as one of them.

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