For anyone experiencing 'A network connection is required in order to play FM' or a '5000 error' message on Epic, this is a problem caused by not allowing your Epic Games account to connect to FM20. To fix this, follow the steps below:
- First off remove FM20's access to Epic as shown here - https://www.epicgames.com/help/en-US/epic-accounts-c74/epic-account-services-c144/how-do-i-disable-access-to-my-epic-account-for-a-specific-product-or-service-such-as-a-site-game-or-app-a4178#
- Once you've done so, the next time you launch the game you’ll be prompted by a pop up to allow Epic games to connect to ‘Use Football Manager 2020 with your Epic Games account’.
- You must click ‘ALLOW’ to enable network play or the ability to launch the In-Game Editor if you've purchased it.
- Now launch the game and you'll have access to all functionality.