How to fix team names in Football Manager 2021

Tired of seeing Zebre instead of Juventus? Here’s how to fix it.

Is Football Manager 2021 coming to Xbox Series X and Xbox One?

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As you might expect from a game that handles a lot of leagues from many countries from across the world, the Football Manager series covers a broad spectrum of players and clubs but cannot use the official names for everything. While the leagues are correctly named, for the most part, some teams have required a change to cover for the lack of license.

These include some high profile teams, with Juventus being the most prominent example. In Football Manager 2021, they are called Zebre, and manager Andrea Pirlo has been given an alternative name.

Similarly, some national teams are locked out entirely. The Germany national team, for example, simply shows blanked out names. This will only be populated with players in-game that are new gens, ones that the game generates within the database at youth-intakes. In short, it won’t allow real players to be used.

However, these issues are actually fairly easy to fix. Almost all of them have been altered using separate files inserted by the developer Sports Interactive in the game’s directory to override the real data, but a file will be needed to correct certain teams.

How to install the real name fix

First, you will need to download the real name fix files. This is available from various Football Manager community websites, including FMScout

Once downloaded, you need to extract the files contained within the ZIP file you have downloaded to a temporary location by right-clicking on the ZIP clicking the extract option. You will need the files contained within the extracted folder shortly.

If you don’t have the extract option, you will need to download software that will allow you to, such as 7Zip.

Next, navigate to your Football Manager directory. For Steam, this is usually found in:

  • [Hard Drive where the game is installed]\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Football Manager 2021\data

And for the Epic Games Store version:

  • [Hard Drive where the game is installed]\Program Files\Epic Games\FootballManager2021\data

In this directory, head into the ‘data’>’database’>’db’ folders, where you will find files with the format 21xx. These will contain some of the database files that need to be removed. Head into the ‘2101’ folder, then ‘lnc’, and then the ‘all’ directory. Here, you will see lots of ‘.lnc’ files. You can place the files that were downloaded earlier into this folder and delete the following files:

  • fake.lnc
  • lic_dan_swe_fra.lnc
  • nleague.lnc

After this, head back two levels to the ‘2101’ directory and then go into the ‘edt’ folder, and then ‘permanent’. Here, you will want to delete the ‘fake.edt’ file.

Once again, head back two levels and then go into the ‘dbc’ folder, and then ‘permanent’. In here, the files you will want to delete include:

  • zebra award.dbc
  • zebra turin fake staff.dbc
  • brazil_kits.dbc
  • forbidden names.dbc
  • Licensing2.dbc
  • Licensing2_chn.dbc

This will correct Juventus and the Brazilian clubs, and now, when you open Football Manager 2021, the names should be fixed whenever you start a new game. It will not change existing files.

You should also be wary that any database changes will typically add these files back into the folders. If an update happens, you may need to repeat these steps with the latest ‘21xx’ version with these file names mentioned above in them.