Football Manager 2021: EFL Championship Transfer & Wage Budgets for all Clubs

Known in England as one of the toughest divisions to escape, in this article, we give you the low-down on all of the Championship club’s transfer and wage budgets.

The Championship will truly test your mettle as a manager: earning promotion to the elite Premier League will take an astute tactical approach and shrewd financial decisions. To help you along the way we’ve compiled all of the club’s transfer and wage budgets.

You will find the top five transfer budgets of the Championship clubs detailed below, with a full table of all of the league budgets at the foot of the page.

This article is based on the beta version of FM 21, available to all pre-purchasers of the game, and could change upon the game’s highly-anticipated full release on 24 November.

At the start of a new save in Football Manager 21, the signings made during the summer transfer window in real-life directly impacts clubs’ in-game budgets for the first season.

Norwich (£15,000,000 budget)

Reputation: Three-stars
Transfer Budget: £15,000,000
Wage Budget: £501,160
Key Players: Teemu Pukki, Emiliano Buendía, Max Aarons

A dismal campaign last season saw Norwich City relegated from the Premier League. Looking to bounce straight back up this season, the Canaries had a busy transfer window to get ready for a promotion charge.

Selling star players Ben Godfrey and Jamal Lewis will always be a blow, but with ample compensation, the club set about bolstering the team. Bringing in ten players, all but two of which are 23-years-old or younger.

The mouth-watering £15 million transfer budget that Norwich possesses, unfortunately, comes with strings attached. The club start FM 21 at £11.58 million over the allowed losses for financial fair play – failing to meet the conditions before the end of the season will cause a transfer embargo to be imposed.

Negotiating a high transfer offer for key player Emi Buendía may be enough to stave off the FFP regulations while earning plenty to make a move for other targets. Nurturing talented youth prospects at Norwich will also save forking out on transfer fees, especially as the club holds excellent youth facilities.

Nottingham Forest (£3,500,000 budget)

Reputation: Three-stars
Transfer Budget: £3,500,000
Wage Budget: £442,145
Key Players: Anthony Knockaert, Scott McKenna, Lewis Grabban

On the cusp of a play-off place last season, missing out only on goal difference, Nottingham Forest will be hoping to take it a step further this season, finally achieving their promotion dreams.

Another team hard at work during the transfer window, spending money on the services of Harry Arter and 19-year-old centre-back Loïc Mbe Soh, amongst others. The club also brought in reinforcements via the free agency and loan markets to great effect.

To secure the club for the future, work needs to be done to improve the facilities on offer – they’re currently ranging from good to adequate. Upgrading these will enhance the quality of the youth team, recruitment, the standard of training for the squad, and the income from corporate facilities.

As a whole, the squad Nottingham Forest have is solid, holding plenty of depth in every position. Trimming the fringe players down can create some additional funds for you to make improvements to the team. Alex Mighten’s development is certainly an area to keep a close eye on, with the winger being a potential five-star player.

Swansea (£3,180,000 budget)

Reputation: Three-stars
Transfer Budget: £3,180,000
Wage Budget: £360,454
Key Players: André Ayew, Ryan Bennett, Matt Grimes

Coming close to promotion last season, Swansea finished the campaign in sixth place, narrowly losing 3-2 against Brentford in the play-off semi-finals. The squad was deemed ready to go again for a promotion push, leading to minimal transfer activity in the window.

Primarily, Swansea were seen dipping into the loan market for some young, top-quality Premier League stars – namely, Morgan Gibbs-White. Veteran defender Ryan Bennett also made the move from Wolverhampton Wanderers to the Welsh club on a permanent transfer.

Having excellent youth recruitment and great youth facilities, it’s the adequate junior coaching that lets them down in a key area. Employing better coaching staff for the youth teams will help develop them into better players faster, getting them into the first-team sooner.

Relating to the coaching staff, the club boasts a pool of youth prospects with four-and-a-half star potential ratings; developing these talents quickly will save a lot of time and money from scouring the transfer market. A good core base of players gives Swansea a nice starting position for growth, but the attacking areas of the pitch lack depth, especially at striker. An injury crisis may present itself in that position if not addressed.

Brentford (£3,000,000 budget)

Reputation: Three-stars
Transfer Budget: £3,000,000
Wage Budget: £367,422
Key Players: Pontus Jansson, Ivan Toney, Bryan Mbeumo

Brentford got one step further than Swansea in the push for promotion, making it to the play-off finals, but agonisingly lost to Fulham. It was a huge achievement for the Bees in itself, although, the dream of making their Premier League debut continues.

A quiet transfer window for the club saw just four players brought in; it was the departures which had the club grabbing headlines. The club sold star players Ollie Watkins to Aston Villa for a massive £27.72 million, and Saïd Benrahma to West Ham – initially on-loan before making the move permanent in the summer – in a deal that could pay £30 million to Brentford.

Ivan Toney is the only senior striker available, so finding suitable back-up in the loan market or unearthing a potential wonderkid would be beneficial as the season continues. Brentford has a decent amount of depth in every other position, and with only two senior players over 30-years-old, there’s plenty of room for improvement.

Considering that the club seem to completely lack youth recruitment, academy coaching, and youth facilities, Brentford has an array of young talent throughout. Bryan Mbeumo leads the young pack. Potentially a five-star player, the 20-year-old is ready to start on the wing for the first-team.

Birmingham (£1,000,000 budget)

Reputation: Three-stars
Transfer Budget: £1,000,000
Wage Budget: £320,830
Key Players: Iván Sánchez, Mikel San José, Lukas Jutkiewicz

Finishing last season in 20th will be bitterly disappointing for Birmingham, even more so after losing hot-prospect Jude Bellingham to Borussia Dortmund. It will seem an age since their fans tasted the atmosphere of a Premier League matchday, but this may be the season that their luck turns.

Seeing Bellingham leave for pastures new, the club made use of the free transfer market by bringing six new faces to the side, and letting five leave in the same manner. Scott Hogan, Neil Etheridge, and 21-year-old Jonathon Leko were all purchased to strengthen the team.

Despite having good depth throughout the first-team, it remains to be seen whether the team can challenge for the top spots of the fiercely competitive Championship. Bringing Fran Villalba back from his loan spell at Almería will provide a boost in the attacking options available, as will Leko’s rehabilitation from injury.

As the club don’t have too much financial backing, it makes the emphasis on developing youth even more critical for the club to progress. The weakest aspect of their youth system is recruitment, but improving the entire academy set-up will soon have the side producing world-class prospects.

All the transfer and wage budgets for EFL Championship teams on FM 21

Here’s the full table of every Championship team’s transfer and wage budgets at the start of Football Manager 2021, listed in alphabetical order.

Team Transfer Budget Wage Budget (Per Week)
Barnsley £600,000 £143,405
Birmingham £1,000,000 £320,830
Blackburn £100,000 £281,350
Bournemouth £0 £624,243
Brentford £3,000,000 £367,422
Bristol City £1,000,000 £310,774
Cardiff £0 £437,992
Coventry £0 £86,938
Derby £0 £278,379
Huddersfield £0 £277,499
Luton £50,000 £131,880
Middlesbrough £0 £298,223
Millwall £0 £215,350
Norwich £15,000,000 £501,160
Nottingham Forest £3,500,000 £442,145
Preston £800,000 £213,507
QPR £1,000,000 £227,018
Reading £0 £256,047
Rotherham £300,000 £92,608
Sheffield Wednesday £0 £380,958
Stoke £0 £540,668
Swansea £3,180,000 £360,454
Watford £0 £805,729
Wycombe £0 £62,073

Now you know all of the transfer and wage budgets for the Championship teams in FM 21, who will you look to take to the Premier League?

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