I realize that much of the discussion here has been about 2 months old, but the discussion is still relevant. (This may be long, but I am waiting for my spouse to come home and have not much to do.)
I am halfway through my first season and recognize many good features and some features that may be implemented to improve the structure of the game in general. The esthetics of the game will come with time, but improving the structure will be important based on the concerns of the forum posts. Structure problems I noticed are: second divisions needed to even out team strength, stadium inequities for income, starting times for different countries causing long waits, among others.
1) Team strength: I am currently in a second USA division. The league is dominated by 3 top teams with the rest fighting for the 4th spot. Many of the top teams purchased the bulk of their roster at the beginning of the season. There would be no way for a first year club to compete, simply due to the money differences. This would not be unreasonable in the real world for an 'expansion' team. What is unreasonable is to think a team could purchase a team in the real world and win. In the real world, players would have egos, expectations and priorities. FCD could alleviate some of the stacking of high salaries by making some players 'stars' (top scorers, champion team members, etc). These 'stars' would not want to play on any team with too many other 'stars' (2 - 3). Once a team has these 'stars' on the roster they will not be able to sign more. Also, FCD could institute a feature that adds 'teamwork' to a players skill set. The longer they are on the same team - the higher it goes. FA and transfers - no matter what their starting rating would have a low teamwork value and their effectiveness is decreased until it rises (15 - 20 games). These features would limit the purchase of high priced talent at the start of the season and help development of players.
2) Stadiums: Stadium size can put smaller teams at a disadvantage. An easy fix would be to charge a fee ($25 per seat, $10 per standing spot) at the beginning of the season for maintainence. If you can't pay it all - you lose seats). Would also put a crimp in budgets for buying players at the start of the season if you aren't careful.
3) Second divisions: I am involved in a Fantasy Football site where the beginning teams start at a lower level (possible 128 different leagues). When you place 1st or 2nd you are promoted to the next level and the four losers from above are relegated and spread over two lower leagues. The second to the bottom level has 64 leagues and up to the top one championship league at the top of the pyramid. The difficulties of FCD may be eliminated by doing this. They have 8 different levels of leagues. This allows teams from the lower leagues to be elevated to fill vacancies. All leagues from 2nd to the bottom - up are filled with real coaches. FCD could time its worlds to include this structure, filling new teams from the bottom and providing upper divisions with only human coaches. Countries and leagues could be advertised as open (as the open teams in GD) and you could wait to pick a specific country or pick any open country in a league ready to start).
Thanks for the opportunity to voice some of my observations.