Basically, i decided that i wanted to give myself an ultimate challenge in Fm10, something which would give me huge satisfaction and make me feel like iv'e really achieved something on the game, as opposed to "winnin the league with liverpool" or "winnin the champions league with madrid spendin £90million", which nearly anybody can do.
I decided to push my home town Runcorn Linnets into the BSN as a challenge, i edited nothing else like budget or linked clubs, and set about on starting a new game.
What to say... Runcorn are currently north west counties, and the squad certainly reflects this... even if half of them are just regens. None of the players are capable of playing at BSN standard, and first thing i did was set about releasing every single player in order to free up my wage budget, and confirmed to the board that i would be "bravely fighting relegation". To my shock horror, at this point i realised the board were only providing me with a wage budget of £500 and wernt budging, and at this point i realised just how hard this was about to become.
The club has a crippling 750k debt which is being payed back at 5k a month which sounds very little, but trust me this adds up, and as explained above my wage budget was duly restricted because of this to just 500. Signings
I loaded the french leagues, but due to the complete lack of any reputation held by the linnets, i found it increasingly hard to attract any sort of half decent talent, and after much thought, i accepted that i was going to play a 4-1-2-2-1 formation, with one holdin mid, 2 centre mids, AML AMR and a centre forward. I knew that under no circumstances would i be able to attract the calibre of players to be able to become a lower league Arsenal style team, so straight away i set my sights on signin three hard working midfielders with high work rate, teamwork and stamina in order to get in the oppositions faces and close them down, even if they couldnt kick a ball. My deep defensive line meant i could sign slow defenders as strikers rarely will get behind me as the line drops as soon as posession is lost, and i set my sights on signing big strong aerial centre backs to keep the middle tight. Together this with 2 tricky wingers, Shabbazz Baidoo and Benoit Lestavel, i felt like the team was taking shape. Unfortunately, things didn't work out like that. The plan of big aerial defenders didnt work, and in the end i signed anybody i could get in the 2 centre back positions, and a random goalkeeper just to be able to field a side. Season 2009/2010
The season started really hit and miss. Throw in a couple of 4-0 defeats, and a few last minute goals conceded resulting in losses, and i could tell it was going to be a long hard season. Nevertheless, 10 points from 10 games and i was hovering around 17th and was reasonably pleased i wasn't rock bottom. My captain Scot Wells epitimised the hard work ethic i based my team around, and i knew that providing that i kept a clean bill of health i stood a minimal chance of keeping the team up. However, due to my budget, i could only sign 11 players, and unfortunately as injuries and suspensions developed, i found myself in games playing 4 or 5 greyed-out players and as a result suffered the consequences in terms of results. Mid season however, things picked up, the defence tightened up and the goals started coming, via a great loan signing by the name of Rory Boulding who was scoring for fun. My January, i found myself sitting 12th, and was even looking 10 points ahead at the playoffs, wondering what if. Together with this, i had a great FA Cup run which saw us progress unexpectedly to the First round to draw exeter at home which had a great day for us financially even though we lost the game 1-0, despite that moral was extremely high. I was however, about to come back to earth with a big bang.
Boulding got injured, Wells was out of form and my wingers weren't cutting it. Added to that, the defence was picking up suspensions and greyed out players in defence somehow don't provide the strong hardmanship i had earlier in the season. After january, i won only 3 games, and survived in the end by just 8 points which was only achieved as Boulding came back from injury to rescue my season.
I survived... and that was my primary aim. Together with this, i kept a tight budget and managed to get my bank balance to around 50k, after a board takeover cleared the debt. I knew that the next season, deep down i really wanted to win promotion, or at least challenge for the playoffs, but realistically i would just be greatful to survive. With a nice balance though, and the new director approving of Wigan Athletic as a parent club, i looked to next season for progression, and the plan for me was to once again survive, increase the bank balance even more so in my third season i would be able to afford good players and force a title push.