For well over two decades now Championship Manager and, more recently, Football Manager has been a favourite among football-loving gamers the world over.
It’s also proven to be the making and breaking of many a budding young footballer’s career too with players like Tonton Zola-Moukoko and Andri Sigporsson promising much on the virtual playing field before delivering little in real life.
Another name that falls into that category is the once promising Swedish midfielder Kennedy Bakircioglu.
Linked with Manchester United in his younger days, Bakircioglu enjoyed a solid enough career with spells at Twente, Ajax and Racing Santander to his name.
He never quite lived up to the hype – or scores – generated by Football Manager, with injuries hampering much of his progress.
Despite featuring just 14 times for the Swedish national side over the course of his career to date, Bakircioglu remains a force to be reckoned with in his homeland.
Now 35 and back playing with Hammarby, the club where he previously made his name, the midfielder is enjoying an indian summer of sorts, having scored an impressive 37 goals in 97 appearances since returning to the team in 2012.
Much of this has to do with his ability from dead-ball situations – he was always rated highly for free kicks on Football Manager – as this sublime last-minute effort from Hammarby’s 2-0 victory over IFK Goteborg in the Allsvenskan.
His fifth goal in seven games for the mid-table side, Bakircioglu is proving that while Football Manager form is temporary, class is permanent.