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The best challenges to take on in Football Manager 2021

Tom Gott
Feb 1, 2021, 1:30 PM GMT
Ajax are on the hunt for European glory
Ajax are on the hunt for European glory | Soccrates Images/Getty Images
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Everyone loves taking control of a global powerhouse in Football Manager 2021, splashing the cash and building an unbeatable team. But why not try something a little more challenging?

Hidden in FM21 are plenty of mouth-watering challenges and missions for you to test your hand at, and there's something for every kind of manager to enjoy.

Here are seven of the best tasks for you to try in FM21.

Napoli

Diego Maradona is a Napoli legend
Diego Maradona is a Napoli legend | Alessandro Sabattini/Getty Images

Never has rebuilding Napoli been as important as it is in FM21.

Recently losing the great Diego Maradona has brought back memories of some of the club's greatest moments - moments which haven't been around since the league title win of the 1989/90 season.

Napoli have brought themselves somewhere close to the top of the mountain again in recent years, but they're yet to get over the line. It's your job to take them to the next level and bring the trophies back.

Ajax

Ajax are looking for a return to glory
Ajax are looking for a return to glory | Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Ajax are a club which appeal to every different kind of manager.

You want to rebuild a sleeping giant? Ajax are the club for you.
You want European glory with a team of home-grown youngsters? Go Ajax.
You want to upset the apple cart with a team outside of Europe's top leagues? It's Ajax time.

The Dutch side have one of the most fascinating stories in European history, and it's up to you to write another chapter. Their squad is packed full of high-potential talent that you can build upon in the seasons to come, so this is an ideal long-term challenge.

Saint-Etienne

Saint-Etienne are Ligue 1's most successful team
Saint-Etienne are Ligue 1's most successful team | Marcio Machado/Getty Images

Steering any Ligue 1 side past Paris Saint-Germain and to the league title is a challenge in itself, but Saint-Etienne are one of the more intriguing candidates for the job.

Saint-Etienne's ten Ligue 1 titles is actually a record in the division, but the last of those triumphs came all the way back in 1981, after which off-field issues led to a dramatic fall from grace for Les Verts.

PSG have won nine titles and are odds-on favourites to tie Saint-Etienne's record in the first season - can you stop them?

Kaiserslautern

Kaiserslautern have fallen to the 3. Liga
Kaiserslautern have fallen to the 3. Liga | Adam Pretty/Getty Images

Just like with Saint-Etienne in France, Kaiserslautern come with a rich history in Germany. They're four-time league champions who were playing in European quarter-finals in 1999, but things have gone sour recently.

Now playing in the third tier of Germany football, there's a whole lot of rebuilding to do to get Kaiserslautern back up to the Bundesliga, but you've got all the facilities you need, including a near 50,000-seater stadium.

Just getting back to the top flight is a challenge in itself, but you can try and go one step further and dethrone Bayern Munich.

Lech Poznan

Lech have plenty of European history
Lech have plenty of European history | PressFocus/MB Media/Getty Images

Lech Poznan have a long history of success in the Polish Ekstraklasa, but when it comes to European competition, things haven't been as rosy.

Regular faces in the group stage, some of the greatest games in Lech history have come against Europe's biggest sides, but despite some spirited performances, trips to the knockout stages have been sparse.

It's up to you to take Lech one step further than before, and if you can do so while finding a striker to follow in the footsteps of Robert Lewandowski, even better.

Sunderland

Sunderland have fallen from grace
Sunderland have fallen from grace | Pete Norton/Getty Images

Once mainstays in the English top flight, Sunderland have been lost in a downward spiral for a few years now and currently find themselves lost in League One.

Major instability, both on and off the field, has left Sunderland looking like a shadow of their former selves, and the 49,000-seater Stadium of Light hasn't seen many good times in recent memory.

The Black Cats need a manager capable of firstly steadying the ship and stopping the decline, but the real fun comes in Sunderland's quest to get back among the big boys.

Inter Miami

Inter Miami are looking to make some noise
Inter Miami are looking to make some noise | Ira L. Black - Corbis/Getty Images

Trying your hand at managing in Major League Soccer is always a fascinating experience, and this year, there's no team more intriguing than David Beckham's Inter Miami.

In anticipation of their debut season, Inter Miami managed to strike blockbuster deals to sign the likes of Gonzalo Higuain and Blaise Matuidi, giving the squad the talent it needs to compete for major silverware in the coming years.

With the club still in its infancy, they need a manager to bring the squad together and build up the chemistry ahead of launching an all-out assault on the MLS Cup. Beckham expects no less.

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