Starting in 2018/19, SEGA will be able to use the team and player names from the German Bundesliga in its Football Manager series. Previously, you could only have official names in the game if you picked up a mod that did it for you. This was thanks to the complex world of licensing.
Electronic Arts currently holds Bundesliga licensing for its FIFA titles and has done since 1998. EA’s agreement with the league covers “match simulation will remain exclusively in its hands” until the 2021/22. This is probably where SEGA managed to get the deal for Football Manager. As the game does some “match simulation” it isn’t the full on FIFA or PES-style gameplay. Talking of PES, Konami also managed to secure a non-exclusive license for a “single manager simulation.”
Speaking of the licensing deals, Jörg Daubitzer, CEO of Bundesliga International said
Match and manager simulations are especially important to us because they help make the Bundesliga even more popular around the world – especially among the target group of young people who are passionate about soccer. That is why we are particularly pleased to be able to continue our successful partnership with Electronic Arts and its world-leading FIFA product. We have also been able to win over Konami and Sega, two providers that will also help us achieve our goal,
Unfortunately, the addition of the licensing deal won’t affect this year’s version of the game but Football Manager 2019/2020 should have it when the game launches for PC on Steam.