Date: 12th November 2017 at 3:41pm
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Today, new hope for Sevco fans, courtesy of The Sunday Mail.

Someone in their media office has got their hands on the new version of Football Manager – 2018 came out on Friday; I’ll do them a favour and only review it when the match engine issues, which permeate their forums, are resolved.

As usual, the game has a ton of additions and new features and all of them seem pretty decent.

One of them is a recalibration of the prices of players; for the first time SPL players have values which more closely reflect what they might command in England. Dembele and Kieran don’t reach the levels they are worth but guys like Armstrong are rated as in the £10 million bracket and John McGinn, a player I regularly bought for £1 million in 2017, is now worth £5 million. Some Sevco players are valued highly, but there’s an explanation for that which I’ll go over in a moment.

The Record did some crack investigating here, I have to admit.

They actually went through the two teams and the other top players in the league and wrote down their values.

Wow.

This has no relevance at all to the real world, of course, but they wanted to know if Sevco could make its money back on people like Pena “one of the highest rated players” in Scotland.

The data in this game comes from researchers of course; they know Pena has a certain level of technical skill, as do guys like Herrera. But the game can’t simulate personal problems, bad lifestyle choices, dressing room splits, players who can’t settle and chaos at clubs.

Pena will leave Ibrox, probably in January, at a huge loss … it’s not impossible that on top of not getting the transfer fee they spent on him that they’ll also have to pay some of his salary into the future.

The game doesn’t simulate that at all.

But none of that is the headline news, the stuff that’s causing such excitement in the media offices. That’s the news that Celtic do not make it to ten in a row when the game is simulated through the next five seasons. We win this title … but Sevco catches us next year.

Before Sevco fans start to get as excited as the hacks it should be noted that their club then falls to fourth and sixth … and that Hibs actually take the SPL title before the end of the cycle.

Unrealistic nonsense – except the bits about them plunging to fourth and sixth; remove their financial doping and that becomes a serious reality – but something for them to cling to, that Celtic can be stopped, even if it’s in a parallel universe simulated by computer bits.

When you’ve got nothing to hold onto you’ll take whatever you can get, I suppose.