How to Fix Football Manager 2021 Crashes, Freezes, Performance, Cloud Saves and More

Are you experiencing crashes and freezes in Football Manager 2021? Here are some workarounds you can try before the next patch.

Football Manager 2021 has just come live on PC through Steam and players are already noticing some crashes and error messages ruining their gameplay. As with any PC game, launch issues are frequent and there are some things you can try and stop some of them. We’ve gathered some of the most popular issues present in the game right now and offer you some workarounds.

Football Manager 2021 Crashes at Startup

The most common culprit in situations where Football Manager 2021 crashes when you try to launch it is your GPU drivers. Before you start checking out any workarounds, make sure your PC meets the minimum requirements and your GPU drivers are up to date. If these are not the problem then we can move on to the things you can to do lift the issue.

First, run the game as an administrator and whitelist it from your anti-virus program and firewall. This will stop the issue if it’s related to security. If it doesn’t then your next try is to run the game in a windowed mode. To do that, right-click on the game’s shortcut and go to Shortcut. In its target add a -w after the full path and click apply. Double click and launch the game to see if it launches. If it does, then you can set the fullscreen mode through the in-game settings.

However, if you find that none of the workarounds above work for you, then the last thing you can try is verifuing your game’s files through its Steam settings. In case the problem persists, you should submit a ticket to the support team and have them give you a solution that works 100%.

In-game Freeze

Players are reporting that Football Manager 2021 freezes and then crashes after a match. This could be a security issue that you can stop if you whitelist the game from your anti-virus and firewall programs. Try running the game as an administrator and see if the issue persists.

One more thing you can try is to close any unnecessary programs or browser windows you have open. Your hardware could be freezing up the game after the whole system getting significantly heated.

Last but not least, download and install the Microsoft Visual C++ 2015 Redistributables, which is a fix that can resolve crashing and freezing errors universally. It’s not a certain fix at all times but can alleviate issues both in startup and in-game.

In-game Football Manager 2021 Crashes / Low FPS & Performance

First, check if your GPU has any pending updates. If so, download and install them as this is a common crash issue with video games. Next up, you can open up the Task Manager and check if your CPU and RAM usage is above 80%. If so, close any unneeded programs and browser tabs. Also, do a restart to your PC to clean start the game afterward.

Last but not least, go into the game’s graphics settings and turn off demanding options like Post Processing, V-Sync, and Anti-Aliasing. Those setting turn night to day when it comes to video game performance in midrange hardware.

Save Error

One common issue with saving errors in video games is the fact that most of the time the game files and save files are located in completely different places. Find where your save files are and see if that disk has available free space. If this isn’t the case, then try running the game as an administrator and whitelist it from your firewall and anti-virus.

Error downloading the game

In case you have encountered an issue while downloading Football Manager 2021 which states “An error has occurred while installing Football Manager 21 (missing app configuration)”, you can shut down Steam and delete this file: C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\appcache\appinfo.vdf. After you’ve done that, try launching Steam and reinstalling the game.

Game Detected as Malware

First and foremost, whitelist Football Manager 2021 from your firewall and anti-virus programs. This way, they won’t try and scan it before running and therefore they won’t recognize it as malware. You can find how to do that by opening up your program and navigate to Exclusions, exceptions or Whitelist. Choose the game’s .exe file and add it to the list. Next, whitelist the game from your anti-virus and firewall if you haven’t already.

If the previous steps haven’t helped then you can try verifying the game’s files by right-clicking on its name through Steam and going to the Game Files tab. Click on Verify and let the procedure end before you run the game again.

Last but not least, change the location of your game’s documents which is most likely in this location: C:\Users\[windows username]\Documents\Sports Interactive\Football Manager 2021. Move the files in this folder to another location and try running the game again. If the issue persists, then it’s high time you send a ticket to the support team as SEGA urges you to do.

Crash Dump Error

The first step into identifying and eliminating a Crash Dump error is to make sure your GPU and Windows are fully updated. If yes then check whether or not you use any programs that might interfere with the game’s connection like VPN or IP filtering programs. P2P and File Sharing software can also cause problems so if you are running any of those, close them down before you run the game.


According to SEGA’s support forum, this issue is connected to your GPU. The first thing you need to do is check the game’s minimum requirements and see if you meet them. If everything is ok on that front, follow the instructions below, as presented by SEGA, depending on what type of GPU you use:

Intel GPU
If you have an Intel processor that is low spec (for instance like an Intel Celeron/Pentium Nxxx series with below 2.2Ghz), your system is below minimum specifications. Launch the game with the following instructions, you may find it can run:

  • Open Steam and access your Games Library
  • Right-click on Football Manager 2021 -> Properties -> General -> Set Launch Options
  • Type this in the box: –config very_low
  • Click on OK, close the window and launch FM21 through Steam

If you still encounter an issue, make sure to create your OWN thread on our tech forums and post your DxDiag.

If you have an NVIDIA graphics card, you will also find a GPU dump file in your crash dumps folder called GPU_Info_[version].gpudump, please when you create your thread attach the file. You can find this file in the following location – C:\Users\Your Windows Username\Documents\Sports Interactive\Football Manager 2021\crash dumps

We would also recommend if you’ve encountered this issue, being cautious about leaving the game up and running for a significant amount of time without interacting with it. Likewise, when putting your system into sleep or hibernation.

“Unable to find Essential Data” Error

This is an issue that is relevant to Football Manager 2021’s compatibility with Windows. If you are using Windows 7 or 8, close Steam, go to properties, and choose Compatibility. Uncheck the “Run Compatibility mode for…” and start the game again. If you are playing on Windows 10 then simply right-click on Steam’s icon, choose “Troubleshoot compatibility” and then “Try recommended settings”.

Cloud Save Not Working

First things first, make sure that you don’t have cloud saves disabled in Steam. If that’s not the issue, you can refer to this troubleshooting guide to resolve your specific issue.

These are all the issues we could find for now on Football Manager 2021. Of course, the developer team will push a new patch into the game, addressing some of the most annoying of those issues. If you find more game-breaking errors and bugs, you can always contact the game’s support team and have them offer you a personalized solution to your problem.

Always looking for a deep story, empathetic characters, and a great soundtrack in video games. Hardcore game hoarder and a strong believer that one day Xbox will win the console war.