Yeah, I get that it would be up to date with transfers - but you can get that online for a prior version (FM16 etc).
I hate starting in February for a season that is 2/3s over in real life. The main advantage of getting the game early is that to me.
I also wouldn't want February squads from the start of the season. Way back in Championship Manager days there used to be a site that made updates that instead of just moving the players set them up as future transfers. I liked that - as then all the transfers went through when they did. But in any case, I'd prefer just starting the season with the squad that started the season - and as close to the start of the season IRL as possible.
Have you guys ever played with no transfers allowed in first window?
Sometimes I have reservations starting a new save because I often do a comprehensive analysis of the whole squad when starting out. If I force myself to sticking to the existing team for at least half a season then I get to learn more about the players slowly, with each game. For that reason I have used that option.
My first game is Liverpool. I often go Sydney FC as my first game and try to work my way up to a European job ( I went A-League, MLS then finally into Europe one save a while ago), but this year I decided to just go straight to Liverpool.