Football Manager 2021: Why isn't the game coming out on PlayStation?

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Earlier this week, Sports Interactive confirmed a November 24 release date for the PC version of Football Manager 2021.

Whilst fans will certainly be looking forward to downloading the game later this year, the announcement of its release date was blighted by controversy over why the game will not be coming to the PlayStation 5.

Football Manager 2021 will see a release on the Xbox Series X (& S) in December, as well as the Xbox One. In addition, iOS and Android versions - as well as a Nintendo Switch port - will be available then too.

Curiously, though, no PlayStation versions were announced - leaving some fans very unhappy and demanding to know why SI had seemingly snubbed the Sony platform.

Such was the hunger for answers that SI boss Miles Jacobson has now tweeted to reveal exactly which side is responsible for the situation unfolding as it has.

"Being asked this a lot & will get into trouble for answering..." Jacobson began. 

"Our friends at @Xbox have spent years asking for us to come back to their consoles. It's how both FM19 & FM20 ended up on gamepass towards the end of the cycle, and now FM21 on Xbox One & Series X/S.

"Sony didn't."

There we have it. Blame for the absence of Football Manager 2021 from the PlayStation 5 lies at the door of Sony - who apparently lacked interest in bringing the title to the console.

Jacobson went on to elaborate on why it was impossible to make a game available for a particular platform without that platform's co-operation.

"So, essentially, Microsoft approached us to have our games on their platform, whereas Sony didn't...The platforms are gated & curated.

"To make games for a platform, you need a dev kit," Jacobson explained. "To get a dev kit, the platform holder have to want the game on the platform. We spoke with Sony, we have no dev kits. We spoke with Microsoft, they sent them to us."

Jacobson insisted that he has no ill will towards Sony over the lack of a development kit being made available.

"It's not terrible of them at all," he tweeted. "There are limited dev kits available. They prioritise games they want on their platform, as all hardware platforms do."

It appears that Sony's loss will be Microsoft's gain. Football Manager 2021: Xbox Edition, as it is officially known, has been specially developed for the new consoles - and designed for play on the Xbox controller.

It is a title that has been in development for years and it is this development time that rules out any chances of Football Manager 2021 coming to the PS5, per Jacobson.

"FM21 will not be on PlayStation 5," Jacobson confirmed outright. "It's not as if a magic wand can be waved if they were to send us a dev kit tomorrow and it would just work. Would be years of work - as the Xbox version has been."

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Whilst it is a shame that Football Manager 2021 will not be available to PlayStation 5 (or PS4) owners, it is understandable that Sony might want to focus resources on new titles that can make full use of what is sure to be an impressive piece of hardware.

With that being said, Football Manager is an exceptionally popular franchise with a loyal fan base. It will be interesting to see if the recent reaction to the lack of a PlayStation edition of the game will lead to a change in thinking to 2022.

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