Transfer Talks Broken Down in FIFA 18
If you’re reading this post, I’m 99.99% sure it’s because you’ve had multiple ‘Transfer Talks Broken Down’ emails and you’re confused and or sick of it.
In FIFA 18 Career Mode, selling or loaning out players is incredibly difficult. Once you have received and accepted an offer for loan or sale, you wait. Hopefully you’ll receive an email to say that personal terms have been agreed and the player has been loaned/sold (or will be). However, in FIFA 18 it’s more likely that you’ll receive an email like the one below, telling you that the player’s transfer talks have broken down.
Just like that, the transfer or loan deal collapses. Because the talks are on personal terms, you’re not involved and can’t negotiate in any way.
This wouldn’t be such a big deal but it happens again and again, restricting your ability to do two key things:
1. Loan out players that need to grow but aren’t ready to play for you just yet
2. Move on players that you no longer want at all
This makes it easier than ever in FIFA 18 to get what I call squad bloat. This is when your squad is almost or completely full of players, many of whom you no longer want. It restricts your ability to bring in new players because of both squad restrictions and wage budget.
Why Does This Happen?
Let’s try and run through the possible reasons why this could be happening.
This seems to be a common issue in real life so why not? Don’t forget wages are often a common sticking point when agreeing contracts with your own players or new transfers.
I also speculated that (just like in real life) there is a significant difference in what clubs pay their players. I looked into this in more detail in my wage analysis of the English leagues. This does seem to be the case, so it is understandable if a less wealthy club is attempting to sign a player from you.
Don’t forget that wages can only affect transfer deals, not loans. In loan deals, wage splits are agreed by the clubs themselves.
Another factor that could possibly be affected transfer deals only is performance bonuses. I’ve previously talked about these in my contract negotiation guide. Together with wages, performance bonuses complete the financial package for a player. Players seem to view this package as one, so bonuses are less likely to be demanded if the wages offered are high.
Again, this could be a problem if you’re managing a wealthy club (European giants or Premier League) and trying to sell players to smaller clubs.
Perhaps squad role has something to do with it? Players often want to be reassured of their position within a club’s hierarchy and therefore how much game time they can expect to get. Loan players don’t agree a squad role so this should only apply to transfer deals, if at all.
Club Worth or Standing
Maybe the player you’re trying to loan out or sell thinks the prospective club is beneath him in some way? Again, this would be somewhat realistic. However, most of the time players will leave big clubs and big paychecks behind in favour of regular games.
Bug or Game Issue
Sorry EA, I had to put this in. I suspected it myself and there are plenty of others too. Before deciding to write this post I’d read plenty of posts on the FIFA Careers subreddit, most people seem to put it down to a bug or fault in the game.
The email itself is an intentional feature, it’s there for a reason. It’s the frequency of this message (more on this further down) that makes me think it’s not working properly.
Is It Realistic?
This is the point that seems to cause massive debate whenever this issue is brought up. As I’ve already mentioned, plenty of people will instantly say it’s a bug and/or the game is broken. However, other people will often counter that its realistic, and therefore a good thing. Let me try and break this down.
I do agree that transfer talks breaking down more often is realistic. One of my biggest gripes with career mode is how easy it is to strengthen a club by exploiting the transfer system. Ask any respectable football journalist and they’ll tell you that transfers are more complex than the rumour mills make out.
So my concluding opinion on this is that yes, this does make the game more realistic. However, the frequency that this happens has a negative effect on the game.
This is the sticking point for me, and most people I’ve spoken to about the issue. We have no problem with it happening some of the time. But it’s the fact it’s happening 75% of the time or more. The image below is from the same career mode as the one above.
You’ll have seen this before on your own career mode. A player will reject move after move, leaving you none the wiser as to what the actual problem is. If it was just one player doing this I could accept, perhaps in a way similar to previous games where you occasionally had homesick players. Maybe then you’d be able to sit down with the player and agent (as you do in negotiations) and tell them that they aren’t in your plans this season so need to leave the club, go on loan, or rot on the bench.
What You Can Do About It
Now that I’ve speculated about what might be causing the issue, let’s discuss what you can actually do about it in your game.
Avoid Squad Bloat
Prevention is the best cure. Yes it will still happen, but it’s easier to get a few players sold/out on loan than trying to shift 15+. Avoid signing players until you need to and don’t abuse the youth scouting system.
Save & Reload
Save the game regularly, progress slowly and reload if you don’t get any desirable loan/transfer offers. Right after accepting an offer save the game and reload if you get the ‘Transfer Talks Broken Down’ message.
Negotiate Loan Wage Splits
If you’re a small club with a limited budget then I totally understand you having to be a little stubborn over wage splits for loan players. If however you’re a well established team with great finances, just offer to pay most of them. You’ll be paying 100% if you can’t get rid of them, and if you’re successful they won’t be constantly nagging you about game time.
Force the Player Out
This one is a bit more risky but you could try forcing the player to leave. Attempt to renegotiate their contract with ridiculously low wages, leave them in the reserves and don’t play them. This might make them more likely to accept a transfer/loan.
Release the Player
This is the last resort/give up option. Again, if you’re Manchester City and you can’t get rid of a player worth <£1,000,000, just release him.
Give EA Your Feedback
I’m not going to suggest that you wait and or pray for a fix to this. I would recommend that you try voicing your feedback though. Players need to be vocal about their opinions, to give EA the best chance to improve the game moving forward. This doesn’t mean they have to act on it, but you’ve done your part. The other thing I have to point out, is please do this with respect. I do think EA can do more to keep improving Career Mode each year, but I don’t think lower level employees deserve to be insulted or told their work sucks, it’s not constructive. Use whatever channel you prefer (email, twitter, reddit etc) and ask them to look into the ‘Transfer Talks Broken Down’ issue.