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Sophara United - Academy players only, for better or worse (The sequel to the Kafra series)


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3 minutes ago, deez0r said:

STRIKERSSSSS! Always nice seeing them be the big talking point of an intake :D

I love me a good striker, but its low on my priorities right now. I got two good prospects in Christie and Gibson and McDonald can be a serviceable backup in the PL for our first few years. I need to address the defense!

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13 minutes ago, abulezz said:

I love me a good striker, but its low on my priorities right now. I got two good prospects in Christie and Gibson and McDonald can be a serviceable backup in the PL for our first few years. I need to address the defense!

Lets hope you get a Dion Dublin type who can play centre back or striker

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The Premier League saw Arsenal (1st) become the first time in its history to win the title four years in a row. They took it by a sizable margin, with a full 10 Points ahead of Liverpool (2nd) and 12 Points ahead of Man City (3rd), with Man United (4th) rounding up the top four a full 17 Points behind the four-time champions. This was Liverpool’s highest finish since the 2029/30 season, replacing Man City as this Runners-Up. The last ten titles have now gone to either Arsenal or Man City, who won it three times in a row from 2031 to 2033. Everton (7th) were running strong and competing for a top two spot before a late season disaster of a run brought them down the table, settling for a Europa League spot instead of the Champions League. Also heading to the Europa League are Chelsea (5th) and Tottenham (6th)Wolves (8th) were 5 Points off of Everton and a spot on the continent, so it was not particularly close. At the other end of the table, Leicester (18th) could not avoid the drop despite picking up on a late season surge – they could not overcome a disastrous start to the season that saw them pick up a single Point in their first 15 Games. They will be joined in the Championship next season by Bristol City (19th) and Blackburn (20th), both teams that survived only one season the PL before heading back down.

Arsenal felt like a team with a destiny to collect all both major trophies this season, but that plan was thwarted in the CL Finals in Kiev, Ukraine by Atletico Madrid. This was Arsenal’s second straight Finals loss – in 2036, they fell to rivals Chelsea in London, no less. The former defending champions – who will not be in the CL next year – ended up losing to Arsenal in the Quarter-Finals this season as their rivalry over the past few years deepens. The 2032 champions Juventus fell to this year’s champions in the Semi-Finals while Arsenal won an entertaining tie against a rising Borussia Dortmund side – the same side that defeated favored Man United in the Quarter-Finals. Wolves – who also missed out on the CL next season – surprised everyone by making it to the Quarter-Finals stage and pushing eventual champions Atletico Madrid to the brink, losing on away goals after a 1-1 finish to the tie.





The first season in the Premier League and Sophara United were the only team out of the three newly promoted (Bristol City and Blackburn were the others) to be staying in the PL come next season. Despite conceding 79 Goals and being ranked the worst defense in the league, stand-out performances from the likes of Connor (more on him and his magnificent season below), Christie, and Gibson managed to keep the team just safe enough away from relegation zone to be mostly comfortable all season. The club managed to stay within the mid-table range almost all season – they did have a couple of dips down to 16th and 17th Places, but didn’t stay there long. They finished the season in 15th Place, a fair testament to their efforts but also their glaring holes and weakness. The offense did not do bad, ranking in 10th Place in the PL despite some inconsistent form from the midfield. The good news of staying up for another season was met with a bad one right at the end of it – the proposed Sophara United Stadium project, which was set to break ground this summer, was scrapped. The process of getting a new stadium has to start all over again, and it is unclear for now if Sophara Park will once again be the club’s home or if they will stay in their rented home of Craven Cottage. The board made up for that horrible piece of news by announcing new, multi-million pound investments in both the Training and Youth Facilities at the club and the Youth Academy.





There can now be no doubt who the greatest player in club history is, not after Mark Connor (’27) captured the PL Football of the Year, English Player’s Player of the Year, and was named to the PL Team of the Year – not to mention his 8th Sophara United Player of the Year award in a row. The 26 year old GK set a new standard of form at the club – his 7.50 AR was both a career-high and a new Sophara United record. He is not the most talented GK in the PL by a long-shot, but the last time a GK won the PL’s most prestigious individual award was pre-Premier League times, if ever. Without him, the team would have been one of three returning back to the Championship – instead, they were the only one who managed to survive their first year in the world’s toughest domestic competition. The squad was the worst defensive team in the PL this season, conceding 79 Goals, 71 of which came with Connor between the sticks – he played in 35 Games this season as the manager put full trust him as captain on and off the pitch to help navigate the squad through the season. He is now just 17 Games short of playing 400 League Games for Sophara United, a mark he should easily cross next season. He is – without a doubt – one of the most, if not THE MOST, indispensable player on the squad right now currently, carrying the GOAT status with full pride having signed a new contract that will keep him at the club until 2041, paying him £32.5K per week. His £24M valuation is currently the 3rd highest on the team after the two young star strikers.

Despite being Sophara United’s GOAT and current best player (as well as the PL’s best player!), the general feeling around the league is that Connor is keeping the seat warm for 18 year prospect Carl Jones (’34), one of the most exciting young GKs in the nation. Connor has a CA and PA of 4/5 – Jones is at 3/5 CA and maintains 5/5 PA with zero Cons comments in his latest player report. His Shot-Stopping is already of an elite level and he has no glaring weaknesses in his game. He has overtaken Victor Ali (’29) in the pecking order, making the 24 year old – who is talented in his own right – surplus to requirements. Jones only appeared in 3 Games but the manager remains reluctant to send him out on loan, presumably to monitor and stay on top of his development personally. He has shown marked improvement in all major attributes for his position and the talk around Sophara Park is that he could be in line for further playing time next season. The position remains one of the most consistent and talented overall in the team, with both short-term form and long-term potential covered.





The worst defensive team in the PL this year, part of the blame has to go to the current crop of CDs and their form this season. None of the three in rotation registered over 6.70 AR, with 24 year old Scottish CD Ellis Champion (’29 – Scotland: 2 Caps) the highest at 6.69 AR in 34 Games. That is a huge drop from the 6.99 AR he registered last season and perhaps shows just how much of a step up the PL is from the Championship, a league Sophara United easily won last year. The talent level of the CD position is lacking – Champion, for example, is ranked as decent Championship-level player, a far cry from being PL-level and able to contribute positively at this tier of the game.

The only player who has the potential to be skilled enough to have a career in the PL is young Irish CD Wayne Breen (’33 – Ireland: 15 Caps/2 Goals) – the 19 year old featured with his nation of Ireland at Germany 2036, getting knocked out in the Group Stages of the European Championship. He has since become a common name inside Ireland’s team sheet, one of just a few players under 20 who feature prominently. He became a full-time starter for Sophara this season, playing in 33 Games and registering 1.01 TpG and 6.67 AR, down from 6.85 AR last season. His work in training has been nothing short of spectacular - +7 Point increase in Marking, +5 in Positioning and Strength, and further noticeable improvements in almost every important attribute. He is currently rated at 4/5 CA and continues to maintain a 5/5 PA, even as he approaches the end of his teenage years. This was his 4th season with the club but his first as a full-time starter, replacing Kenan Akbulut (’31) in the starting eleven as the 22 year old Turkish CD played in only 15 Games (9 Starts) as cover for Champion and Breen. Akbulut simply does not have the talent needed to thrive in the PL but he remains in the rotation as the team’s talent pool is shallow at the position. Breen is the player of the future and apparently the now, as well – going into next season, he will be closely monitored to see how he does and how much further improvement is still on the cards for him. Backing up Breen and Champion along with Akbulut was Omar Everett (’29 – Jamaica: 56 Caps/8 Goals), who also was the primary back-up at right-back and for Arinze Mbah as a defensive midfielder.






Before the season started, Sophara United veteran and left-back Rio Amankwaah (’28) was sold to Milwall for £165K. It was a mutual decision and the split was amicable, with the manager wishing his former player luck at his next stop. He had only played in 7 Games the previous season after racking up 221 League Appearances for the club over the course of eight seasons, mostly as a starter. He left behind a situation that continues to be a mess at both full-back positions.

Like the rest of the central defenders, the Sophara United full-backs showed just how overwhelming the talent level in the PL was for the team’s defensive line. They played even worse – the top full-back on the team was Max Newton (’30), who registered 6.62 AR while playing in all 38 Games. The team did not have any capable alternatives to Newton at the right-back, at least none that are natural at the position. His 3.15 TpG were the 2nd highest on the team as he completed his 5th season as the starter, but there are questions about his viability as a long-term starter for the club. There were doubts going into the season and he didn’t do anything to alleviate those doubts – in fact, it just solidified the management’s stance that Newton shouldn’t be the long-term solution for the club at the position.

The same applies for the team’s starting left-back, 24 year old Nigerian Stanley Abdullahi (’28 – Nigeria: 4 Caps), who put forward a very mediocre season registering 6.57 AR. That represented his second lowest mark of his career and he was clearly overwhelmed dealing with PL players and talent. He’s made a couple more of appearances for Nigeria but has not been able to hold down a stable place due to how poor he was in the league. At 24, there is still hope he can figure it out and become a decent player for us, but there it does not look likely. A recent article stated that Abdullahi might be Sophara’s worst starting player in a team lacking in talent at a lot of positions.

Northern Ireland’s U21 defender Jordan O’Hare (’32) was the only viable cover both starters had this season – that is how bad the situation was. In 7 Games, he registered 6.24 AR, making it painfully obvious to any watching that he did not belong anywhere near the Premier League. The 20 year old does have the ability to play anywhere on the defensive line, a pretty big plus negated by the fact that he played terribly anywhere he was put. The manager might have to reach into his U18 team to see if there is anyone with a remote possibility of being able to handle PL level football, because O’Hare was a huge liability everytime he played.






In a bit of experimental season in the middle of the pitch for Sophara United, the manager rolled out two separate line-ups – one feature a holding midfielder behind the wingers an attacking playmaker, and the other featuring two central midfielders with alternative focuses. Both reaped similar benefits, and it was probably a match-up issue for the team. In any case, Arinze Mbah (’28 – Nigeria: 35 Caps/1 Goal), the team’s vice-captain, remained a crucial element despite finding the Premier League much more difficult to contend with than the Championship. Experts have said that he is a Championship level player whose willpower and hard work has elevated him to be a decent PL midfielder, but he still struggled a lot more than the last couple of years. His 6.70 AR was his lowest mark since his 3rd season in 2030/31. He only played in 30 Games, but not due to injury – he continues to rack up yellow cards with the best in the business. He also had to miss some games dues to the African Cup of Nations, in which Nigeria were humiliated in the Group Stages at Tunisia 2037, managing to gain only one Point from Ghana while losing their other two matches to inferior opponents Zimbabwe and Burkina Faso. Morocco ended up winning the competition by defeating Senegal in the Finals, making it three straight titles that have gone to North African countries. This was the second straight ACN tournament that Mbah was a part of and that Nigeria underachieved. He continues to be a strong defender, but he has limitations to his talent that will probably have the management looking for alternatives if he cannot prove he can handle himself in the PL.

Possibly the most disappointing player this season was 20 year old Jishua Tyrell (’33), whose 6.46 AR was the lowest amongst all starters and caused alarm bells to ring through the league. Tyrell has been generally considered one of the club’s top prospects outside of the strike force, with interest being shown by clubs like Liverpool and Chelsea last season. He was coming off an impressive 3rd season with the club, having been an important member of the team that took the Championship title (42 Apps, 5 Goals, 12 Assists, 6.80 AR) and also having earned some U21 Caps for England. This season, however, was a total disaster for the midfielder – 33 Apps, 2 Goals, 6 Assists, 72% Pass Completed (too low), and an abysmal 6.46 AR, the lowest mark since his 6.44 AR during his rookie season. What is perplexing the coaching staff and sources close to the club is that his effort and work-rate in training is phenomenal – he is clearly putting in the work to be a better player and it is paying off in a big way. It just has not translated into good form on the pitch yet. Like much of the team, the reasoning is dealing with the shock of the difference in talent between the Premier League and the Championship, but there are expectations that come with being a starter for a team in the PL. The management has not lost patience yet and are convinced he will be able to translate that potential into good performances, so look for him to continue to be a central part of the team’s foundation for the foreseeable future.

Andre Hayles (’31) was the first choice of the bench to cover either player and the only other central midfielder to play any significant minutes. A couple of younger midfielders spent the season on loan, but that have not broken into the first team yet. Hayles remains a perplexing subject – some believe he has yet to unleash his full potential with memories of his rookie year since fresh, while others believe that he has peaked and will not develop any further. In 30 Appearances (6 Starts), he failed to score (he hit 18 Goals in his rookie season), had just 1 Assist, and registered 6.54 AR, a huge drop from the 6.84 AR he registered last season and the lowest mark of his career by a significant margin. The manager has seemingly sided with those that doubt Hayles can increase further and has positioned him in a rotational role as opposed to being part of the starting unit. The 21 year old has the 4th richest contract at the club, paying him £33K per week and he also remains the 5th highest valued player at £7.25M.






Out of the two winger positions, one of them is breaming with potential while the other has seemingly lost its way. It has gotten to a point where the left-wing position – the one with lots of positivity and potential around it – has loaned out its players to cover for the loss of direction at the right-wing position. The rotation at left-wing was between sophomore Kurtis Thompson (’35) and rookie Tyler Craig (’36), both of which showed good progress in training, as well. Thompson played in 25 Games (22 Starts), registering 5 Goals, 3 Assists, and 6.68 AR, up from 6.56 AR last year in the Championship. He has not proven himself durable over the past couple of seasons, however – just this season, he had to deal with three separate ankle injuries (very possible it was reaggravation) and a knee injury that ruled him out of a total of over three months. When he was available, he was not consistent enough but did have some outstanding games. Most importantly, his injuries have not seemed to have any long-term effect (yet) on the left winger’s Physical attributes as his Strength, Stamina, and Speed attributes have all increased, some by +2 Points. He needs to continue to work on his play going forward and he is still not the best crosser of the ball, but the Welsh U21 winger is only 18 years old with tons of time to develop.

Tyler Craig will not turn 17 until early next season – that is how young the rookie is. He played more than management would have liked thanks to his ability to also play down the right-wing, appearing in 19 Games and registering 2 Goals, 4 Assists, and 6.59 AR. Obviously, consistency was a real issue and he struggled to be good enough in a lot of the games he featured, but given his age and the fact that more pressure was placed on his shoulders than intended, he did fine. The real points to watch next season will be his progression off the pitch – he really developed mentally as a player this season – and bettering his form on the pitch. He remains Sophara United’s youngest ever player to make an appearance and score for the club.

Craig was put in a position to start down the right-wing thanks to the unreliability of Stuart Coker (’32), who has Premier League talent, and the lack of enough talent and skill from Max Atkinson (’27), who incidentally is one of the club’s most reliable players. Neither could make the right-wing position their own – Coker played in 29 Games (21 Starts) and Atkinson in 16 Games (0 Starts), and it does not look like the management has enough confidence in either heading into next season. Coker did register 3 Goals and 4 Assists, but his 6.54 AR told a more complete story about his infuriatingly mediocre season, while Atkinson was used as cover but still overachieved when called up, registering 3 Assists and 6.89 AR. Other potential prospects like 19 year old Jamaican Sherwin Laing (’33) have not shown enough to take that next step forward in terms of playing time. There were expectations that Laing could develop into a serviceable winger for the squad, but outside of his speed, he hasn’t been able to elevate his game as necessary.







Outside of Mark Connor, the team has two bonifide stars in their young strike-force of Kieran Christie (’32) and Ben Gibson (’34), both of whom were amongst the team’s best players and also the PL’s brightest prospects this season. This was an eventful one for Christie in particular – after demolishing the Championship single-handedly last season (44 Apps, 39 Goals, 16 Assists, 12 PoMs, 7.43 AR in 2035/36) and continuing his hot streak through the first few months of the Premier League, he was named the 2036 World U21 Footballer of the Year and the 2036 European Golden Boy award recipient. Clearly, the eyes of the footballing world are already on this young man and his scorching career thus far. There was no slacking off in his first season in the Premier League, either – in 36 Appearances, he registered 22 Goals (3rd in PL), 82% Pass Completed, 63% Shot Target, and 6.91 AR. All of that has been accomplished before the age of 22, and it will not be long before he gets the call-up to the English national team. He owns the richest contract in Sophara United history, paying him £80K per week, and is the club’s second highest valued player at £36M.

The highest valued player on the squad at just under £38M is 18 year old striker Ben Gibson (’34) – a player so talented that he relegated club legend and all-time leading goalscorer Ross McDonald (’23) to the bench this season. In his 3rd season with the club, Gibson registered 16 Goals, 9 Assists, 3 PoMs, and 6.86 AR – the goals were a new career-high. The main talking point about him is just how far he’s already come as a footballer in all aspects – Technically, Mentally, and Physically. His growth has been staggering and still so much more is expected to come. He won the PL Young Player of the Month award three times this season, losing out on the annual version of it to 22 year old Ukrainian hulking CD Eugene Sokol. Still, there is no denying just how great Gibson can become – his hip injury from a year or so back has become long forgotten with no lingering effects thus far. His new deal pays him £55K per week, which seems fair because he is one of the most exciting young stars to watch in the PL. His pace is elite, his finishing is great, and he is good with the ball at his feet. He is also the first Sophara United player to earn the description of “Wonderkid” – the bad news is, he has been complaining of needing to play for a bigger club. The English/Australian striker has already started featuring for the English U21 team, earning 7 Caps thus far.

Making room in the starting eleven, and rather abruptly at that, for the two young stars was club legend Ross McDonald (’23), who scored only 5 Goals in 25 Appearances (13 Starts) this season. Not only was it a career-low but it was also the first season in McDonald’s unique and storied career where he failed to score at least 15 Goals. His 6.74 AR was also a career-low as the signs began to show that the legend’s career is starting to fade. He is still only 30 years old so he has a few seasons in him still, but perhaps the Premier League was a step too high for a player that has won numerous individual and goalscoring awards in every other league he has played in. He started with Sophara in the Vanarama National league – the only remaining player on the club he played with another club legend in Danny Marriott from its early days. He is only 19 Games shy of 600 League Games and he has already surpassed 350 Goals (351), a fantastic ratio from a player who used to give lower league defenders nightmares. The suspicion is that McDonald may want to leave the club and try to continue being a starter elsewhere, most likely in the lower leagues where he can still score with the best of them. This summer should be interesting – if he does end up staying, it will be for the benefit of the team as his presence and skill continues to be needed.










Edited by abulezz
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12 minutes ago, deez0r said:

That first season is all about consolidation!

I have been lucky to have rarely experienced relegation but every time I make it up to the Premier League, I get worried about going back down because of the talent level difference. This first season was a great success in my opinion - not only did we stay up, but we stayed up relatively comfortable. We had a several point advantage on the relegation zone teams for almost all the season before it dropped down to just 2 because of some late season form dip. We had actually confirmed our place in the PL next season with 3 games to go!

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The ’23 Youth Class turned out to be quite the difference-maker for the club – both Ross McDonald and Otis Spence, both of which are club legends, were part of this intake. In addition, a number of other members are still active in the game, while a few since retired players made quite a few appearances for the club between them. The pick of the bunch by the Sophara United staff – Ross McDonald – ended up being the best player from this class, although the manager had his doubts when he first saw him. There weren’t any major disappointments from this crop, either – as stated, a lot of players went on to become contributors to the team and two of them became legends of the team, especially in the 2020s.









The man needs no introduction – one of the top two players in Sophara United history with Mark Connor, the 2020s, early and mid-2030s belonged to them. He has set records and collected awards in every league he has played in with the exception of the Premier League. In 2027, he broke the club’s record with 53 Overall Goals scored, was named the 2027 Vanarama National Footballer of the Year, Top Goalscorer (42 Goals), and most importantly, crowned the 2027 Vanarama National champions. That became known as McDonald’s breakout season, although he had scored 26 Goals during the prior year. Two year in the League Two saw him also collect the 2028 League Two Top Goalscorer award (32 Goals), and in 2029 – which saw Sophara United promoted to the League One – he was the league’s 2nd leading scorer while also setting a new club and league record for most goals in a single match with 6 Goals. Moving up one tier to the League One made no difference for the Scottish striker, and in 2030 he captured the League One Top Goalscorer award (32 Goals). This would be the first of three times he would capture the award (2031 – 34 Goals, 2033 – 30 Goals), with 2033 also being the year the club captured the League One title after just four years of being in it. The Championship, which the team played in from 2033 to 2036, saw McDonald start to finally feel the change in the level of football being played, with two of the three seasons spent in the league seeing the striker fail to score at least 20 Goals. He did come in 2nd in the league’s goalscoring charts with 27 Goals in 2034/35, and he finally crossed the 350 League Goal mark this season, the club’s first in the Premier League. His 581 League Appearances for the club is a record currently, and his record from 2027 for most goals scored in a season also still stands. No matter how big the club gets or how many World-Class players the Youth Academy churns out, the club’s formative years in the 2020s and 2030s will be synonymous with one of its original legends, a player who had the opportunity to depart for greener pastures but showed incredible loyalty and stuck with his manager almost the entire journey up the leagues.  








Generally considered Sophara United’s best defender during the 2020s, Spence is a former captain of the club and one of the rocks of its foundation during its formative years. One of the undersong heroes of that era, Spence was thrown immediately into the starting lineup in his rookie year, only giving it up ten years later – a couple of years before he finally left the club and moved to his current club, Lincoln, for £25K. A calm but powerful influence both on and off the pitch, Spence has proven himself to be a winner throughout his career – he was integral part of both the Vanarama National (2027) and League One (2033) championship teams, and he won the 2037 League Two title with Lincoln this year, as well. He was never one to be considered for individual awards but that did nothing to reduce his importance to the club while he was a starter. He has his best season in 2026/27, where he registered a career-high 7.14 AR and was one of the main components to the squad that ended up lifting the Vanarama National trophy that year. A club legend regardless of what the requirements are, Otis Spence was one of the manager’s favorite and most reliable players during the 2020s era.




The two other players who have gone to have notable careers both with the club and others are Gambian international CM Lamine Touray (Gambia: 36 Caps) and Nigerian LW Daniel Musa. Touray was part of the rotation in the mid-2020s for the club, but by the 2026/27 season – the year the club won the Vanarama National title – he had already become somewhat surplus to requirements. He played in 16 Games in the following year, the club’s first in the League Two, before leaving and moving on Free to back to the Vanarama National with Dartford. A year later, in 2029, he would earn his first Cap for Gambia, during his second season with his new club. He would spend three total years with Dartford, leaving in 2031 after the club found itself relegated down to the Vanarama South. He joined Newport – still in the Vanarama National – on Free but would only make 5 Appearances in his first season with them and none during his second. Hoping for a better experience and more playing time, he would move on Free to Gillingham in the League Two after just two seasons with Newport, but his time there ended up being even worse – 0 Appearance in 2033/34 and 2 Appearances in 3034/35. He was sold to Wrexham for £8K in 2035 where he had a decent first season but only 2 Appearances this past one.

Daniel Musa was also a rotational player for the squad during the mid-2020s, which were his teenage years. By the time the team won the Vanarama National title in 2027, however, he had been reduced to a bit role and was subsequently sold that summer to Welsh club Barry for £31K in the Welsh Premier League. His time with Barry were the best of his career – he stayed with the club for seven years with his first five being particularly impressive. He was shortlisted for the Welsh Premier League Player of the Year three times – his first year in 2027/28 (27 Apps, 2 Goals, 11 Assists, 7.20 AR), 2028/29 (27 Apps, 5 Goals, 12 Assists, 7 PoMs, 7.21 AR), and 2030/31 (23 Apps, 2 Goals, 9 Assists, 7.18 AR), one year before he would capture the league title in 2031/32. His last two years with Barry saw his playing time dwindle, however, and in 2034 he would leave the club and join Connah’s Quay on Free, also in the Welsh Premier League. In his first season with his new club, he would tie his career-high of 12 Assists and has since spent three seasons with the club preparing for his fourth. He captured the Welsh Cup with Connah’s Quay this past season while playing a major role in the starting eleven. There is no doubt that Musa has become one of the Welsh Premier League’s most prominent players in the 2030s, staring on his 11th season in the league with two different clubs and capturing a title during that time.







Romaric Browne was one of the more highly touted players from the ’23 Youth Class, but he didn’t work out as hoped. He has seesawed between playing in the Vanarama lower leagues and those below, spending time at Kidderminster (where he only played one game in 6 years) and Frome Town, where he currently is playing and is the squad’s captain.

Out of the rest of the class, it is Ben Sharp who had the best career. The CD was actually a starter for Sophara United and was in the rotation during the 2027 Vanarama National title win. He spent the mid-2020s as both a starter and first choice CD off the bench before moving FC Halifax on Free in 2030. He played for a few more lower league teams before announcing his retirement from Hemel Hempstead (where he had been for three years) and football in the summer of 2036.

Players like Rohan Adams (24 Apps, 4 Goals, retired in 2030), Bernard Twumasi (29 Apps, retired in 2030), Julian Edgar (28 Apps, 6 Goals, retired in 2028), and Jeremie Francis (16 Apps, retired in 2027) all spent their full careers with Sophara United, with their appearances all coming in the mid-2020s.

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18 hours ago, deez0r said:

Well hello there! A potential deep lying playmaker and a playmaker in 1 intake! What formation are you currently using? 

Yes, they looks like they could develop into something nice. Still no defensive prospects - the Academy is killing me!

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1 hour ago, abulezz said:

Yes, they looks like they could develop into something nice. Still no defensive prospects - the Academy is killing me!

Sounds like you might have to go full Kevin Keegan and outscore the opponents!

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14 hours ago, TelcontarTargaryen said:

It took me a few hours but I (albeit quickly) read through all 15 seasons and six pages of this. Quite inspiring, makes me thinking about doing either a youth only, or mostly youth save.

That's awesome, thanks for the positive comment! I am glad you enjoyed it - I played with the template a bit and now I believe I am comfortable with it. I love doing Youth Only saves - it takes the parts of the game I enjoy and makes it a challenge. I've done 6 straight Youth-Only challenges, and I have yet to win the CL, so that is always the target when I start one. 

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Arsenal (1st) made it five times in a row, winning the title with a 4 Point advantage on Man City (2nd) and 7 Point advantage of Man United (3rd), with both Manchester teams moving up one spot from the previous season. Liverpool (4th) rounded up the Top Four but sank 2 spots, grabbing the last CL spot by the slim margin of GD as they finished even with Chelsea (5th) with 62 Points – the Blues ended up in the same spot as last season, meaning the Top Five remained unchanged. Wolves (6th), up two spots, beat out Tottenham (7th) and Everton (8th), but that also meant that the Top Eight went unchanged over the course of two seasons. Brighton (18th), who finished 14th last season, Newcastle (19th), who were the Championship title winners, and Southampton (20th), who finished in 9th Place, all will be playing in the Championship next year. The other two newly promoted teams – Sheffield United (13th) and Derby (17th) – both did well to stay up, although the latter only did so on GD, beating Brighton by 6 Goals.



It was not to be for the third straight time for Arsenal in the Champions League, however, as they were defeated 1-0 in extra-time by newly crowned Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich in Cardiff. After losing to Juventus two years in a row (Second Round in 2036, Quarter-Finals in 2037), they finally knocked them out in the Quarter-Finals this year with a convincing 4-1 score in the tie. This was after they had knocked out AC Milan in the Second Round and before they obliterated Liverpool 7-2 in the Semi-Finals. Again this year it looked like Arsenal were going to finally complete the highly sought after “double”, especially after rocked Barcelona 5-1 in the Second Round, dominated Real Madrid 7-2 in the Quarter-Finals, and finally decimated rivals Man United 5-0 in the Semi-Finals. Defending champions Atletico Madrid were absent from even the Second Round, which had some unfamiliar faces in Nice and Bayer Leverkusen this year. Semi-Finalists in 2037 Borussia Dortmund were also a notable absentee as it was predicted that the German team were one on the rise. Instead, it was once again 3 English teams in the Semi-Finals along with Bayern Munich, who became the first German team to capture the title since they last took in 2020.




The beginning of the 2037/38 season was rough on Sophara United, and it wasn’t until after Christmas that the team slowly started inching away from the relegation zone and its demoralizing battles. By the time April rolled around, the team was on somewhat of a role, having put significant distance between it and the zone and was firmly entrenched in the mid-table. This time around, there was no late season dip in form and the squad maintained their mid-tableness until the very last day. They ended up in 12th Place, a good improvement from the 15th Place finish they registered in their first PL campaign last year, with the manager publicly acknowledging the defensive improvement (from worst to 16th) over the course of the season as the main reason for the higher finish. Of course, the offense remained the key to the team – the 60 Goals were good enough for 8th best in the PL. At the manager’s exit interview, he reiterated how proud he was of his young team and said the best is yet to come as they begin their pre-season plans amongst a World Cup year. The FA Cup performance saw improvement this year as they made it to the Fifth Round before being knocked out by now five-time PL champions Arsenal, while it was more of the same in the Carabao Cup after an underwhelming Fourth Round exit to Tottenham.

The club also sold off two of its players – GK Victor Ali (’29) to Luton for ؚ£145K and Gibraltar international Jake Ansell (’35) to Portsmouth for £275K. Both players requested playing time that was not available to them so the decision to let them go was made. Sophara United Stadium got approval for an extension to the grounds at the end of the season and the board put in nearly £6M into improving its Youth and Training Facilities this summer, as well.






Mark Connor (’27) became the two-time Premier League Footballer of the Year this season, winning that and the English Players’ Player of the Year awards for the second consecutive season – he was also named in the PL Team of the Year for the second year in a row, as well. Not only has he cemented himself as Sophara United’s greatest player of all-time (winning the club’s Player of the Year award for the 9th overall and consecutive time), but he is now firmly entrenched amongst the legends of the PL, having won its most prestigious individual awards two years in a row. The critics continue to bemoan the fact that he only plays so well (league-leading 7.50 AR) because he is so active given the lack of quality in front of him, but even then he still has to put out good performances. He has saved the club countless times from losing points through his heroic efforts between the sticks. His 7.50 AR equaled his career-high, which he actually set last season, and brought his career average to 7.32 AR in 411 League Games. His 1.79 Con/90 was a big improvement from the 2.03 Con/90 from last season, although he only played in 28 Games (down from 35) as Carl Jones (’34) got some playing time after becoming the clear-cut No.2 with Victor Ali (’29) being sold to Luton in the League One for £145K.

Carl Jones has yet to turn 20 (Connor is 27), but his potential – and ability – is becoming more obvious by the day. He played in 10 Games this year, registering 1.90 Con/90 and 7.04 AR. More important than that, however, is his Progression report, which continues to hit new heights. He is considered to be good enough to be a solid Premier League GK at this point, but he seemingly has so much more growth left in him. His Shot-Stopping is already at an elite level as was highlighted last season, but this year he showed significant improvement in his Distribution, so much so that he is now known for starting counter-attacks with huge, long throws. Between Connor and Jones, the GK position at Sophara United is at an all-league level.





Sophara United are no longer the worst defensive team in the PL (16th worst) and that is due to a collective effort from all the defensive line to be better. As predicted by experts, Wayne Breen (’33 – Ireland: 22 Caps/ 2 Goals) has taken his position as the most talented and skilled defender on the roster – his 6.82 AR was the highest of any defender and a significant jump from 6.67 AR in 2036/37. He played in all 38 Games and has now officially been given the “Wonderkid” description. His 6.82 AR is not a career-high – he managed 6.85 AR during the club’s final season in the Championship two years ago, but the 20 year old was not yet a full-time starter and had only played in 18 Games. He has come on leaps and bounds since then, improving significantly as he continues to fill into his 1.93m body frame. As of right now, he is the most talented defender on the team as well as the one with the most potential. The Irish international is valued at £5.5M and his contract now pays him £30K per week – he is considered the future of Sophara’s defensive line and remains the only player the coaching staff is confident can play up to a PL level. He is still not a strong tackler (1.50 TpG) but he has gotten better – now the focus has to be on getting his defensive instincts up to par with the rest of the league’s standards as he still makes some silly mistakes. That will disappear as he gets older, hopefully, but the talk out of the Sophara camp is that they are delighted with his progress thus far.

Scotland international, 25 year old Ellis Champion (’29 – Scotland: 3 Caps), remained the partner of choice for Breen this season as the position remained light on talent. The good news is that Champion improved noticeably in his second year in the PL, registering a jump to 6.78 AR from 6.69 AR in 2036/37. He only played in 31 Games, not because of injury, but because of the rotation that was set in place between him and Jamaican international Omar Everett (’29 – 70 Caps/8 Goals), who will be one of seven Sophara United players representing the club at South Africa 2038 as Brazil hopes to defend its World Cup title and make it a record 8th championship. Champion is currently at 3/5 for both CA and PA and in the latest scouting report is considered a good player for most Championship teams – he is not considered a PL level CD nor is it likely he will cross into that tier. He has been serviceable, however, and has been reliable enough for Sophara’s management not to go into full-out crisis mode scouring the Academy for potential CDs. That being said, neither Champion nor Everett – 31 Apps (20 Starts), 2.12 TpG, 6.75 AR – are a long-term answer, something that been reiterated by anyone with any know-how or inside information about the team.






The lightest positions on the team are easily the full-back positions. Outside of the two starters, there is no one who can come close to being capable of playing in the PL, and the Sophara Youth Academy has not produced any capable prospects in a number of years. Down the right, 24 year old Max Newton (’30) showed a little improvement in the club’s second season in the PL, raising his AR from 6.62 to 6.66 while playing in 36 Games. His 2.11 TpG was low for a right-back and he lacks the technical ability to be anything more than body in front of the league’s attacking forces. He is a brave and physical player who is probably better suited for the CD position but given the lack of full-backs on the team he has become a natural on the right.

On the other side of the pitch is Stanley Abdullahi (’28 – Nigeria: 5 Caps), who will be one of two Sophara United players representing Nigeria in the upcoming World Cup. His story is pretty much the same as Newton – showed some improvement this year as opposed to his first in the PL but ultimately lacking in many areas, especially technical, that hinder is development into a PL standard full-back. He improved from 6.57 AR to 6.69 AR this season, playing in 33 Games and registering 3 Assists and 2.30 TpG. A lower back fracture ruled him out of action for six weeks but had no serious effect on his form once he came back. The most recent internal report on him was not kind, however – he is considered to be the weakest player in the starting eleven with management actively searching for alternatives as the belief is that he is simply not good enough.





The leader of the team’s midfield is without a doubt its vice-captain, 25 year old Nigerian international Arinze Mbah (’28 – Nigeria: 39 Caps/1 Goal), who will be representing Nigeria with teammate Stanley Abdullahi at South Africa 2038. What was so impressive about the defensive midfielder this season was his hard-work during training – he was constantly reported as the player that gave the most effort in training and performance sessions throughout the season. Playing at the highest level of club football in the world has obviously motivated Mbah, and he showed some improvement in his form on the pitch as a result, with his 6.72 AR rising from 6.70 AR he recorded last season. His 3.65 TpG was down significantly from 4.90 last season but he did register 4 Assists as opposed to none. The 12 Yellow Cards are a problem and he needs to find a way to control his aggressiveness on the pitch, but Mbah remains a vital member of the starting eleven even if there are some doubts about his technical abilities being up to standard.

Some of that hard-work mentality has begun rubbing off on his talented teammate, Jishua Tyrell (’33), who turned it around mid-season and finally began playing to a standard that is worthy of his current ability and potential. Only one other player on the squad has a higher rating than the 4.5/5 CA he currently carries and he is easily one of the most talented players on the team. It took until February/March for him to figure it out, however, which is why his 6.67 AR is not reflective on his form for the second part of the season. He played in all 37 Games, registering 5 Goals, 7 Assists, 17 Clear-Cut Chances (1st on the team), 1.53 TpG, and 81% Pass Completed. In the last 20 Games of the season, he had 7.01 AR, which was reflective of the form expected of him going into next year. He is infinitely more talented than either Mbah or any other CM on the team and has represented England 21 times at the U21 level, although experts suggest his talent could catapult him to the main team if he continues to show improvement and progress. His struggles last season – which was his first in the PL – have hopefully been put behind him, as the 21 year old looks to position himself as one of the best up and coming players in the PL in the upcoming season.

Behind Mbah and Tyrell as first choice off the bench was again Andre Hayles (’31), who played in 32 Games but only had 9 Starts. He definitely showed significant improvement over his first year in the Premier League – his 6.54 AR from 2036/37 jumped to 6.77 AR this season, and he registered 3 Goals, 2 Assists, and 88% Pass Completed to go along with it. He remains an important cog in the rotation but at 22 years old, it is doubtful he will live up to the promise he showed during his rookie year.

Rookie Boubacar Diallo (’37) made his debut this season, playing in 4 Games and registering an Assist, 3.75 TpG, 83% Pass Completed, and 6.97 AR. He showed encouraging progress in training, showing great improvement in just one year in both Passing and Technique (+2 Points each), with his Vision improving substantially (+3 Points) – in fact, in just one year, he has already shown Major overall improvement in all three key attribute categories. He has been put on a customized individual training program to help him gain strength and endurance, and he was part of the Sophara United U18 team that won the English U18 Division 3 South-East league this year, registering 20 Goals (2nd in league), 12 Assists (3rd), 7 PoMs (1st), and 8.23 AR (1st) while being widely considered its best player this season. He was given a rating of 3.5/5 PA coming out of the Sophara Youth Academy, but that has now risen to 4/5 PA. Management has chosen not to send him out on loan as the belief is he has enough talent to earn some playing time with the club going forward – he is already proven to be good with the ball at his feet and has a strong technical foundation. Despite his physical shortcomings, he is 1.84 meters tall so he doesn’t actually have physical limitations, so he just needs to pack on some muscle and get his stamina up and he could be a real contender for a stable rotational spot at CM going forward.







The winger positions – both right and left – have been overhauled over the past couple of seasons. There used to be two solid starters on each position, but now the squad features interchangeable pieces in a rotation that features three main pieces and one young prospect who was the crown jewel of the ’37 Youth Class according to the report the club’s staff presented in March of 2037. In fact, three out of the four players in the rotation have been deemed the gems of their respective youth classes, starting with Kurtis Thompson (’35), who completed his third season with the club. He is considered the best left-winger at the club currently, but his form has yet to live to up to. In 35 Games (26 Starts), he registered weak numbers – 0 Goals, 2 Assists, and 6.63 AR, which was actually  down from 6.68 AR last year. His biggest strength is his speed but his development technically has been rather stagnant thus far. That being said, the staff remain big fans of his (5/5 PA) and PL pundits have said that if he can become a more consistent player, then he will certainly be good enough to be a starting left-winger in the league. The 19 year old was appointed the Wales U21 squad’s vice-captain at the end of the 2036 and has thus far made 9 U21 Appearances for his nation.

Tyler Craig (’36) is also on an increasingly growing list of hot winger prospects that the Academy has churned out over the last few years, and he spent time at both winger positions this season. In his second year with the club, he spotted Thompson down the left-wing when needed and shared a rotation with Coker at right-wing, although there is little doubt that Craig will soon become the permanent starter down the right flank given Coker’s unreliability both on and off the pitch – more on him in a bit. Craig did not have impressive numbers – 28 Apps (22 Starts), 2 Goals, 4 Assists, 6.62 AR – but the talent is obvious. He has shown good progression over the past two years that has maintained his 5/5 PA and sources close to the club say the manager loves his skillset for his position. Experts have suggested that Craig might actually be a more complete and better long-term prospect who will have a better career than his teammate Thompson.

Although the days of missing games because of late night partying has not reoccurred, Stuart Coker (’32) remains somewhat of a nuisance. He is quick to anger, quick to confront management, and frequently seems to have issues with managerial decisions which he expresses vocally and loudly. Currently, he is “worried about the dressing room atmosphere” for not reason. His 5/5 PA days are also long gone – he is now rated at most 4/5 PA. That being said, the 22 year old delivered his finest season yet in his 6th year with the club. In 35 Appearances (17 Starts), he registered 5 Goals (career-high), 8 Assists (career-high), 2 PoMs (career-high), 80% Pass Completed, and 6.80 AR – also a career-high and a huge jump from the 6.54 AR of last season. The consensus on Coker is that he still room for improvement and that although he is not considered a PL-level talent yet, he can still get there. The critics have a large list against him, though – he is considered a selfish player who puts his needs in front of the team’s both on and off the pitch, he has a competitive streak that gets him in trouble when it is not needed, and he doesn’t seem to thrive when it is big matches, which is why management is excited about the cream of last year’s youth class.

With the ability to play equally comfortable down either wing and with speed already amongst the best in the PL, 17 year old rookie Niall Bayliss (’37) looks like he is getting close to a breakout early in his career. He played in 14 Games (10 Starts), registering 1 Goal, 1 Assist, and 6.65 AR and generally did not make a fool of himself against the strongest competition in the world. The only knock on him thus far is his laid-back personality – he is considered unambitious and there is worry that could affect his development as he is not yet willing to put in the work needed to improve as needed. The good news is that his general social group are known for their Driven and Determined personalities, so the hope is that some of that will rub off on him. He is due for additional playing time next season so there is no doubt he is being watched closely.







Sophara United have a new star in Ben Gibson (’34 – England: 2 Caps), who became the first player in Sophara United’s history to win a cap with England and represent his nation at the highest international level. He is a “Wonderkid” as described by the media but if his progress keeps hitting all cylinders the way it is now, he is going to be a world-class elite striker in a couple of years. In 36 Appearances, he registered 20 Goals, 9 Assists, 4 PoMs, 82% Pass Completed, 56% Shot Target, and 7.13 AR. His form over his last 20 Games, however, paints the full picture – 14 Goals, 6 Assists, and 7.44 AR. It was a bit inconsistent the first couple of months, but he has really taken off as the season has come to a close. There is little argument that he is currently the club’s most talented player, easily surpassing the likes of his partner up front Christie in that department. He was named the PL Young Player of the Month in January and in April, he won both that award and the PL Player of the Month. He scored 10 Goals in his rookie and sophomore seasons each, scored 16 Goals last season, and now has hit the 20 Goal mark before his age turns 20. He exciting, he is skilled, he is fast, and he has great attacking instincts. The general agreement between most experts and pundits is that Gibson is one of the most exciting young players in the world and there is definitely anticipation – both on the PL and the international levels – about just how good he can get. He is one of the players representing the club at South Africa 2038.

The praise for Gibson is no slight against Kieran Christie (’32), who had a good season and has proven himself more than capable of being one of the better strikers in the PL today. Last year he scored 22 Goals – this year, it was down a bit to 19 Goals but his 6.96 AR was up from 6.91 AR. Additionally, he played in all 38 Games, with his Assists going up from 3 to 9 and also registering 80% Pass Completed and 62% Shot Target. There is no question that Gibson is the more talented of the two, but Christie has been a shining light on the squad ever since put the team on his back in 2035/36 and almost single-handedly won the Championship title and PL promotion (44 Apps, 39 Goals, 16 Assists, 12 PoMs, 7.43 AR), winning every individual award he was eligible for that season, including the prestigious U21 World Footballer of the Year and European Golden Boy awards. The hype might have died down a bit as Gibson has taken center stage and he might not have the speed or strength to become a truly world-class striker in his career (although it is unwise to doubt him) but he is still as clinical as ever. He is still only 22 years old and his attacking instincts and skills are already of an elite level.

The odd man out here is club legend Ross McDonald (’23), who has seen his playing time dwindle to almost nothing thanks to the form of Gibson and Christie. Truth be told, the writing was on the wall for the past couple of years, with the 31 year old Scottish striker scoring only 5 Goals last year and only appearing in 4 Games this season. He has let it be known that he is open to a new challenge and finishing his career at a different club, which his fine and will do nothing to decrease the stature, the contributions, and the importance towards the club throughout the 2020s all the way up to the mid-2030s.









Edited by abulezz
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Where the ’23 Youth Class was full of potential and ended up producing two legends and several players who made it into the Sophara first team’s rotation, the ’24 Youth Class was also full of potential but its best prospects ended up playing most of the football away from the club. Several players from the ’24 Youth Class were rated as ready to join the first team immediately, more so than the previous class, but none ended up contributing more than a fee years of solid play at the club. The two star prospects are Issah Diallo and Luke Bell – two of a total of five players who had a 2.5/5 CA coming right out of the Academy, with the latter being the pick of the club’s HOYD at the time. A total of eight players – a high, impressive number – became part of the rotation at one point, with five of them becoming starters on the first team for more than one year. Players like Darius Negrut, Fahad Kasirye, and Charley Bricknell actually became important members of the team for quite a few years before moving on. The only knock on the ’24 Youth Class is that while it produced fantastic talent across the board, the contributions made by the ’23 Youth Class to the club and its success was much bigger, which puts it ahead as our best reviewed Youth Class thus far.




Generally considered the 3rd best prospect in the ’24 Youth Class when it was first introduced, Diallo has gone on to have the best career – albeit not the smoothest – out of all the other graduates. It started with a bang as he netted 26 Goals as a rookie having been thrust immediately into the starting lineup. He broke the then club and Vanarama National records for ‘Youngest Player to Score in a Match’ when he scored against Dorking Wanderers at the age of 15 years and 291 days. His sophomore season, however, remains his best to date – this was the year he won the Vanarama National Player of the Season and Top Goalscorer awards while also breaking the club record at that time with 9 PoMs in a single season. In 45 Games during the 2025/2026 season, he registered an incredible 41 Goals, 6 Assists, 9 PoMs, and 7.30 AR, which subsequently led him to being sold to Brentford in the Championship for a then club record of £1.3M, ending his short but sweet career with Sophara United.

In the one and half years in spent with Brentford, he made a total of 3 Appearances, scoring no Goals. He was then sold to Watford in the Premier League during the summer of 2028 for £3.9M, but he failed to make his debut for his new club that season. He never actually got to play for the club as he spent both seasons on loan with different teams – 2029/30 with Maccabi Haifa (34 Apps, 14 Goals, 6.98 AR) and 2030/31 with Huddersfield in the Championship. It was his year on loan with Maccabi Haifa that encouraged Danish club Brondby IF to acquire him during the summer of 2031 from Watford for £325K, with many predicted the striker would wash out in a few years. He proved them wrong.

Despite a difficult first year with the Danish club (19 Apps, 4 Goals, 6.85 AR), he turned it around in 2032/33 (30 Apps, 13 Goals, 6.89 AR) and has since been a central figure in their offense. He was the Danish Superliga Top Goalscorer Runner-Up with 14 Goals before his breakout season in 2034/35 (31 Apps, 18 Goals, 7.13 AR) in which he was named the league’s Top Goalscorer and named to its Team of the Year. Most importantly, however, Diallo became a champion as Brondby captured the Danish Superliga title that season. He continued his strong play in 2035/36 (30 Apps, 17 Goals, 7.04 AR), where he was once again Runner-Up in the Top Goalscorer award but also won the 2036 Danish Superliga Autumn Player of the Year. He recaptured the Top Goalscorer award in 2036/37 with 14 Goals, also getting name to his 2nd Team of the Year selection, and this past year he became Brondby’s all-time record holder for most League Goals with 86.

Currently Brondby’s highest-valued player at £5.5M, the 29 year old English/Ghanaian striker has made a name for himself in Denmark and has recently signed a contract that will keep him at the club until the summer of 2041. His manager at Sophara United has always been a fan of his skills and recently stated that while he is very happy for Diallo and his accomplishments in Denmark, he believes that he had the skills to accomplish more in his career. He was Brondby’s most important player during their 2034/35 title win, having ended FC Kobenhavn’s hope of winning seven straight titles and have been the only team over than the current champions who have won the league over the past ten years.  






Luke Bell, who was the number one ranked prospect from the ’24 Youth Class, has ended up having the 2nd best career after Diallo. He stuck with Sophara United longer than his former teammate – Diallo left in 2026 while Bell left the club after five years in 2029. The manager allowed his contract to run down at the time in hopes of convincing him to stay, rejecting all offers that came his way, but Bell had already made his mind at left on Free to French Ligue 1 club Lille. Prior to that, he had been a starter for Sophara United since his rookie year in 2024/25 and was a hugely important member of the starting eleven when they captured the Vanarama National title in 2027 and got promoted to the League Two. The 2026/27 season ended up being his best for the club (43 Apps, 4 Goals, 8 Assists, 6.89 AR) as he failed to find the form expected of him during his two years in the League Two, registering 6.74 and 6.73 AR.

He left on Free to France with Lille during the summer of 2029, but he failed to make his debut for the club that season. The following season he was sent on loan to Nimes in the French National league, where he helped the club get promoted and was named in the French National Team of the Season as well as the league’s winner of its Revelation of the Season award. He played in 25 Games during the 2030/31 season he spent with Nimes, registering 2 Goals, 8 Assists, and 7.03 AR. Unfortunately, it was not enough to convince Lille that he deserved a place in the first team, instead spending the next couple of years playing for the club’s second team in the National 2-A league.

In 2033, he left the club and France and returned to England, joining Championship squad QPR in a move that revitalized his ailing career. He experienced both relegation to the League One (2035) and then promotion back to the Championship (2036), with his 2035/36 campaign form (44 Apps, 3 Goals, 8 Assists, 7.17 AR) earning him a place in the League One Team of the Year. Since returning to the Championship, he has continued to play well, breaking his career-high in 2036/37 with 10 Assists and the breaking it again this past season with 11 Assists, also leading QPR with 26 Clear-Cut Chances. He is now valued at £7.25M and despite never developing as he should have in his Technical attributes, he has had a good career that also saw him earn 4 U21 Caps for Ireland.






Darius Negrut, who is English/Romanian, was actually Sophara United’s starting right-back for several years in the 2020s. He was put in the first team during his rookie year as the manager was impressed with his Mental attributes and football IQ, but he never delivered on the promise of his potential. He never registered higher than 6.65 AR during his tenure with the club, which he set during his 3rd year in 2026/27 – the year the club captured the Vanarama National title and were promoted to the League Two. He set a career-high of 8 Assists during the club’s final season in the League in 2028/29, but after one year of starting at the League One level in which he registered 6.22 AR, the coaching staff finally lost faith and sidelined him from the starting eleven and eventually the entire rotation.

He left the club in 2033 on Free, joining Vanarama National outfit Northampton, only playing 5 Games and spending just one year there. They sold him to Southend in the League One for £4.1K in 2034, but he also spent just one year there registering the exact same numbers as he did with Northampton – 5 Appearances, 6.42 AR. In 3035, another League One side in MK Dons bought him from Southend for £7.5K, where he played in only 2 Games but registered 7.10 AR. Amazingly, he would sold to a fourth club in four years in 2036 as MK Dons let him go to yet another League One outfit in Rochdale. He would go to his 5th club in five years at the beginning of last season when he was sold by Rochdale for £5.75K to Romanian club Sepsi OSK, where he played in 7 Games and registered 6.63 AR.

In the past five years, he has featured in a total of 24 Games, never playing more than 7 Games in a season. He turned 30 years old in February and right now he has an estimated value of £60K – the highest of his career. In a recent interview, he said he hoped he had found a permanent home to see out the rest of his career in Romania.





Uganda – 80 Caps/3 Goals

Fahad Kasirye was Negrut’s full-back colleague on the other end (left-back) during the 2020s, although he did leave the club a year earlier in 2032. He had a better time at Sophara United, too, with his best season coming during the club’s first year in the League Two in 2027/28 – he played in 42 Games that season, registering 4 Assists, 2 PoMs, and 6.78 AR, which was his highest mark during the eight years he spent at the club. He earned his first international cap for Uganda in 2026 during his second season with the club at the age of 18, and also earned the right to be called the Ugandan U20 team’s captain that year, as well. He was part of the team that won the 2027 Vanarama National championship as its starting left-back and was also a big part of the team that won promotion to the League One in 2029.

After failing to agree to a new contract with Sophara having played a career-low 13 Games, Kasirye left the club on Free during the summer of 2032 and joined Vanarama National club Fleetwood. He was also appointed the Ugandan national team’s vice-captain that year, but that was about the most memorable thing that happened to him during the two years he spent there. In 2035, he joined another Vanarama National club in Scarborough on Free, where he has spent the last two seasons (they were relegated to the Vanarama South during his first year) and had possibly the finest season of his career this year. He played in 41 Games, registering 4 Assists, 1.93 TpG, and a career-high 6.87 AR. However that was not enough to earn him a new contract, and he left the club this summer and is currently a free agent.

One of the first names of the starting eleven list during the 2020s, he was a reliable albeit mediocre left-back whose international prestige has outweighed his club one. He has spent the majority of his career playing with Sophara United, playing in 259 League Games with them.






There are two other notable players who deserve some plaudits, and those are Charley Bricknell and Gregory Morris (Barbados – 68 Caps.) The former retired in 2034 after being let go by the club, having spent his entire career with Sophara United and playing in 219 League Games with the club while registering 52 Goals. His prime came from 2026 to 2028 in his late teen/early 20s, where he scored 16 Goals per season in back to back seasons, including 2027 when the club won the Vanarama National title. His form at a higher level of football started to get inconsistent and by the time the mid-2030s rolled around, he had become a bit-player for the first team.

Morris remains in football, playing with Tranmere in the Vanarama National currently. With the versatility and ability to play anywhere on the defensive line, Morris found playing time plenty at Sophara United during the mid and late 2020s, and he was also a main component during the Vanarama National title run in 2027. He left the club in 2031 after playing in only 2 Games the prior season and joined Woking on Free. He has since joined 5 other clubs, never quite recapturing the form he had during his time with Sophara United.

His international track record, however, is quite storied. He earned his first international cap for Barbados in 2025 when he was only 17 years old and has gone on to feature a total of 68 times for his nation. He is no longer an automatic selection to the national team, but he participated in numerous international tournaments during his career.





Out of the remaining players, Ioakiem Kyriakou (Cyprus: 7 Caps) is probably the most storied. He represented Cyprus at the international level and also played 110 Games while scoring 9 Goals for Sophara United. After leaving the club in 2028, he played with four other clubs before retiring in 2033, appearing in a total of 185 Games and scoring 16 Goals over his career. Adrian Vance, who is currently playing CD for Buxton in the Vanarama North where he has spent the past two years, was at Maidenhead for eight years after leaving Sophara United without making an appearance for the club in 2027. Gary Panzavechia (10 Apps) recently retired after four years at Vanarama North outfit St. Albans, where he played 101 Games and scoring 21 Goals. Prior to that, he spent three years at Billericay (71 Apps, 9 Goals), and four years from 2029 to 2032 with Bognor Regis (114 Apps, 14 Goals) after joining them from Peterborough, where he didn’t play a single game. Striker Ayo O’Connell (14 Apps, 4 Goals) spent three years at the club before moving to Woking and the retiring from the game in 2029.

Edited by abulezz
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SOUTH AFRICA 2038 - World Cup

This tournament looked pre-destined for Germany from the beginning, and the 4-2 result in the Finals flattered former defending champions Brazil, who scored two late-ish goals after the Germans took it down a couple of notches after going up 4-0. Simply put, a new legend was born in 22 year old striker Samuel Grant, who was inexplicably benched during the Finals after the 22 year old Real Madrid striker scored an impossible 12 Goals in just 6 Appearances. His partner in crime up front, Arsenal striker Nikola Cvijovic, picked up the slack against Brazil and scored a hat-trick to ensure that Germany won the title for the 5th time and for the first time since 2014 - that was when they defeated Brazil 7-1 on Brazilian soil and went on to capture the title after defeating Lionel Messi and Argentina in the Finals. As for Grant, he was just one goal away from  tying Just Fontaine's record of 13 Goals set in 1958, which makes his benching during the Finals even more baffling. Nevertheless, the Germans were carried by their offense - in their last three matches, they defeated Brazil, Portugal, and South Africa by scoring 4 Goals against each - and the offense was carried by Grant, who possibly has now become the world's highest valued and most sought after player after this tournament. Making their second straight Finals, the Brazilians were looking to add to their record 7 titles, but the German team proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that they currently have no equal in football today. The World Cup Best Goalkeeper went to 23 year old German Stefan Peters while the Best Young Player went to German Mateusz Wojcik. Portugal and Spain battled for the bronze medal, with Portugal ultimately being named the 3rd best team in the world. 










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Just now, deez0r said:

New Stadium


A new stadium which is council owned but didn't cost us a penny! Thats a very good sized stadium for our level!

Maybe the wrong thread :lol:

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11 minutes ago, Maw74 said:

A massive offer but not like you can go out and spend it on a replacement, so meh :)


Exactly! Our finances are fine so I don't really benefit anything by selling him off. I think this summer I will get offers for him for even more. 

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After a record five titles in a row, Arsenal (2nd) had to give up their cherished prize to rivals Man United (1st), conceding the title with a difference of just two points. The new champions won the title for the first time since 2025, ending a fourteen year drought that was amongst the longest in club history. Arsenal’s team of stars underperformed in the PL this season (although they captured the Champions League title), with no one on the team’s rotation registering more than 7.30 AR. Tottenham (3rd) made a huge jump up from 7th Place last season but it was more to do with everyone else underperforming than it was to do with impressive play – in fact, 7.09 AR was the highest on the team! Liverpool (4th) remained in the same place as last season, grabbing the final CL spot. Man City (7th) crashed hard, dropping 4 Places from 3rd last season, finishing behind Burnley (5th) and Watford (6th), both of which grabbed spots in the Europa League. Dropping 3 Places and failing to gain a spot in Europe were Chelsea (8th), who finished ahead of Sophara United (9th) and Aston Villa (10th) – the latter were led by newly crowned PL Footballer of the Year Matthew Logan, who has spent the last two years lighting up the league. On the other end, two of the three newly promoted did not survive the season – Bristol City (18th) and Nottingham Forest (20th) both went back down to the Championship. Last year’s survivors managed to stay up for a second year, as Sheffield United (14th) and Derby (16th) both managed to maintain their positions in the PL. The only newly promoted team to stay up this year was Leicester (13th), while Bournemouth (19th) head down to the Championship after 18 years in the PL, with their best run coming in the 2020s where they finished as high as 7th Place.






After four consecutive trips to the Finals, Arsenal finally lifted the Champions League trophy for the 2nd time, with the first being in 2023. That they did it on home turf at the Wembley Stadium in London was the cherry on top, defeating Valencia 2-1 after an extra-time goal saw them through till the end. Over the previous three years, they lost to Chelsea in 2036, Atletico Madrid in 2037, and Bayern Munich in 2038 before capturing the title in their 6th Finals appearance. The defeated Finalists, Valencia, knocked out former defending champions Bayern Munich in the Second Round before taking out heavyweights Man City and Real Madrid in the Quarter-Finals and Semi-Finals, respectively. Arsenal, on paper, had an easier road to the Finals – they defeated Bayer Leverkusen in the Second Round, Hertha BSC in the Quarter-Finals, and Man United in the Semi-Finals for the 2nd consecutive year after beating them 5-0 at the same stage last year. Arsenal and Man United were the only teams repeating Semi-Finalists – Bayern Munich was a Second Round casualty and Liverpool did not even make it to that stage. The best player in the world in most experts opinion, Real Madrid and Germany striker Samuel Grant, scored 11 Goals – the most since Cristiano Ronaldo hit 11 during the 2020/21 season. The fact that he did not win the World Footballer of the Year awards (he came in 2nd) was a travesty, especially considering how he led Germany to their 5th World Cup title at South Africa 2038 at the age of 22, scoring 12 Goals during the tournament and winning its Best Player and Top Goalscorer awards and how he led Real Madrid to their first La Liga title in 20 years in his second year with the club.






There can be no question now that Sophara United belong in the Premier League and are ready to compete. Yes, the team is very young and immature and yes, the team is lacking in experience, but they are starting to make special things happen on the pitch. They also showed they are capable of costly lapses, such as the Opening Day 6-3 defeat to Aston Villa. In the League Table, Sophara were generally consistent all season long, hovering between 6th and 10th Places throughout. The defense was predictably bad (17th) but the offense was a shining star with an attitude much like the team – fast, strong, unpredictable, and deadly. In fact, the team had the best offense in the league this season, led by Ben Gibson’s 30 Goals which was tied for best in the PL. The rise of Gibson as Sophara’s star as he takes the nation by storm has its effect seen in the league table, as the squad climbed 3 Places to 9th this season – the highest ever finish in club history. The 79 Goals conceded were a big drop from the 69 Goals Conceded last season, but the 81 Goals Scored were also a big improvement from the 60 Goals Scored during 2037/38. In the Cups, the club had early exits in both – in the FA Cup, it was a Fourth Round exit at the hands of Man City and in the Carabao Cup it was the Third Round against Burnley.

The board invested in improving the club’s Youth Level as well as £5.25M in improving the Training Facilities and £3.7M to improve the Youth Facilities. After spending the year at Craven Cottage due to the expansion project of the new Sophara United Stadium, they will go back to playing on home ground next season as the completion is scheduled for this summer – with the new expansion, Sophara United Stadium will now be able to seat just over 25,000 people.

The club also let go of legend Ross McDonald during the January transfer, selling him to Peruvian club Alianza for £375K. The 32 year old had spent his entire career with Sophara United and leaves as the club’s record holder for Most League Appearances (586) and Most League Goals (351), numbers that will take some effort to beat. He is considered one of the Top Three in the club’s history, playing with Sophara through five tiers from the Vanarama National all the way up to the Premier League. Haig Ashley-Seal (’30) was also sold for a club record for £4.6M to Blackburn in the Championship after impressing with Coventry on loan last season, also in the Championship. The CM was surplus to requirements as the position is one of the deepest on the team and has several young talented prospects fighting for playing time – there was simply no more space for the 25 year old, who has great Passing abilities.







After capturing the PL Footballer of the Year two years in a row, Mark Connor (’27) – the only GK to have won the award during the Premier League era – relinquished it despite having another impressive season. In 28 Appearances, he registered 2.11 Con/90 (his worst since joining the PL three years ago), 3 Clean Sheets, and 7.48 AR – the previous two seasons in which he was crowned the league’s best player, he registered 7.50 AR in both. His value has skyrocketed to about £22M and his form far outweighs his actual abilities, but the feeling is that he might have to give up that starting spot he has held since 2027 to the skillfully superior Jones. The 27 Games was the lowest he has played in his career, and only a couple of them were due to his first injury since 2034 – he pulled an abdominal muscle that ruled him out for two weeks. Formerly the club’s second longest tenured active player, the team Captain – he has played that role for the last 10 years – is now the longest lasting active member of the team after Ross McDonald left to Peru earlier this year. It won’t be an easy decision and no one quite knows what the manager is thinking in terms of the rotation at the GK position, but it is clear to all that Jones is the future and that Connor is now keeping the seat warm for the 20 year old youngster.

Carl Jones (’34) played in a career-high 11 Games this season and was highly impressive – in those 11 Appearances, he registered 1.73 Con/90 and 7.66 AR, also a career-high. He was named twice to the PL Team of the Week, meaning he was the best GK in the entire league for two of those matches. His improvement this season has been remarkable, both on and off the pitch – on it, his 7.66 AR was a dramatic improvement from 7.04 AR last season, while off it he showed decent improvement in the Goalkeeping and Mental abilities and strong growth in the Physical abilities over the last twelve months. In every important aspect and attribute, Jones is superior to Connor, and with his form rising to Connor levels, there is nothing hold Jones back anymore. There has been talk that the U21 England international might be in line for a call-up to the main team as he is widely considered the best English GK in the nation under the age of 30. His value is now £10M but is predicted to at least double if he can start playing closer to 20 Games a season.







Tired of having inadequately skilled left-backs, the manager made the controversial decision of starting then 16 year old Spanish rookie Pablo Cobo (’38) instead of Nigerian international Stanley Abdullahi (’28 – Nigeria: 10 Caps), who played in 25 Games but only 5 Starts. Cobo predictably had a very tough time – in 33 Games, he registered 3.20 TpG, 33 Interceptions, and 6.42 AR – but upon asking about his progress during a recent interview, his manager stated he was extremely happy with the Spaniard’s development over the past year. He came out of the Youth Academy with 1/5 CA and 4/5 PA and he ended the year with 1.5/5 CA and 4.5/5 PA as the coaching staff believe he has the potential to be a good Premier League level left-back in the future. With nothing to lose since Abdullahi was not performing up to standard, the risk can be considered successful so far – Cobo’s development has been fast-tracked, he has responded well to the pressure at a young age and is now looking capable of becoming a good left-back soon. The manager did state he would like to see the rookie improve his form next season in a statement that suggested Cobo will retain his starting position.

Max Newton (’30) has missed just two games since the team got promoted to the PL three years ago, and both came last season. He played in all 38 Games this season, registering a career-high of 6 Assists and a PL career-high of 6.81 AR, up from 6.66 AR last season. He also registered 2.35 TpG, 87% Pass Completed, and 52 Interceptions, which was good enough for 2nd on the team. The latest report on him suggest that he is playing to his full potential, with the 25 year old rated at 3.5/5 in both CA and PA. He is considered a ‘Decent PL player’ and has brought needed consistency to what was a trouble position for the club, even if it is being done unspectacularly. His natural position is at CD but he remains our best option at RB by a long shot. Even with the possible emergence of Cobo, the full-back positions remain the lightest in terms of talent on the squad.





The big news out of the defensive line this year – other than the emergence of LB Cobo – was the return of Wayne Breen (’33 – Ireland: 24 Caps/2 Goals) from a devastating broken leg injury sustained towards the end of August that ruled him out for more than half the season. He returned in full form despite needed some time to improve his Physical attributes back to what they once were, but thankfully it looks like there will be no long-term effects from the injury. He played in 21 Games, registering 1.15 TpG and 6.78 AR, down slightly from the 6.82 AR he registered last season. The 21 year old is currently rated as a ‘Premier League-level CD’ with the potential to still get significantly better, according to the Sophara United coaching staff. His 3/5 CA remains unchanged but his 4.5/5 PA currently has experienced a slight drop, possibly due to having to consider a broken leg injury when analyzing the player. Regardless, Breen remains the most talented CD on the roster, with solid claim to being the best defender on the squad, period. This was his third year as a starter for the club and his absence only helped him further consolidate control on one of the two starting positions at CD.

The other starting spot saw a rotation between former full-time starter Ellis Champion (’29 – Scotland: 3 Caps) and Omar Everett (’29 – Jamaica: 79 Caps/8 Goals), with the latter still maintaining his relevance in the first team despite years of doubt about his ability to play up to a Premier League level. Champion had the worst season of his career this year – in 34 Appearances, he registered 0.77 TpG and a career-low 6.65 AR, down from 6.78 AR last season. It is clear that Champion is out of his depth and that the Premier League is a level too high for him, but other than Everett, there are no alternatives at the position currently. In general, the defensive positions have been largely ignored by the Sophara Youth Academy, which has churned out CMs, Wingers, and Strikers by the bulk. Neither Champion nor Everett – who registered 1.13 TpG and 6.75 AR in 31 Appearances – is the answer next to Breen, but the rotation will continue next year due to a lack of prospects and replacements.






It has been a while coming but the 3038/39 season was the breakout year for the insanely talented yet still underperforming CM Jishua Tyrell (’33 – England: 3 Caps). It was an eventful year for the 22 year old as he earned he represented England for the first time against Venezuela and registered career-highs of 11 Assists and 6.80 AR to go with 4 Goals, 2.57 TpG, 80% Pass Completed, and 48 Interceptions in 37 Appearances. While the form is still not where it should be considering his skills, his improvement was appreciated and noticeable – his first season in the PL three years ago saw him register 6.46 AR, which speaks volumes about how far Tyrell has come. He is still halfway there, and in a recent interview with the manager, he suggested that the CM should be aiming to be over the 7.00 AR mark. Nonetheless, the CM is now void of any glaring weaknesses and has become one of the best passers of the ball in the Premier League, a skill which was average at best a few years ago. He has made noise about leaving for a bigger club this year, but his contract + club option has him staying at the club for the next five years. Till then, he will remain one of the main building blocks for a team that could potentially challenge for a European spot.

Next to him was Sophara United veteran and vice-captain, 26 year old Nigerian Arinze Mbah (’28 – Nigeria: 52 Caps/2 Goals), who registered 6.83 AR – the highest so far in the three years he has played in the PL – in 28 Games. He joined Nigeria in the African Cup of Nations, but Ivory Coast 2039 did not go any better than Tunisia 2037 as the African giants crashed out in the Second Round again. He led the league in two key statistics – his 5.28 TpG and 141 Tackles Won were both top of the PL. At this point, Sophara United know exactly what they are getting from Mbah – strong, tough play in the middle of pitch centered on winning the ball and distributing it out of the team’s half of the pitch. He has completed his 11th season with the club and is now worth over £11M on the market, but his value to the club is much higher than that. He is entering the prime of his career now and the coaching staff at the club have expressed vocally that they would like to see him cross the 7.00 AR threshold even with the doubts remaining about his ability to do so in the Premier League, with critics saying he simply isn’t talented enough.

Sophomore Boubacar Diallo (’37) has begun making noise, playing in 14 Games and registering 2 Assists and 6.54 AR, which took a huge tumble from his 6.97 AR during his rookie year albeit from only 4 Games. The talk isn’t so much about his form but about his solid improvement as a player – his 4/5 PA is a slight increase from the 3.5/5 PA coming out of the Youth Academy but as of right now, only Diallo and winger Niall Bayliss have managed to crack it into the first team. While the Sophara coaching staff have been reluctant to expect too much from Diallo, there is a growing number of experts throughout the league that say he could develop into something special. Diallo shared time in the rotation with 23 year old Andre Hayles (’31), whose playing time continues to dwindle thanks to large number of prospects at the position. He played in 32 Games last season but only 13 this year, with only 2 of them coming as Starts. The consensus is that Hayles belongs in the League One/Championship with the PL being a step too high for him.  







The winger positions might not be as important with this current crop of players as it was a decade ago, but the capabilities of the starters remain intriguing especially as they are still young. On the right wing, Tyler Craig (’36) has now made the position his own in his third year with the club – in 36 Appearances, he registered career-highs of 8 Goals, 11 Assists, 2 PoMs, and 6.88 AR, a huge improvement over the 6.62 AR registered last season. The ability is obvious – he is one out of only four players on the team with a 5/5 PA rating, and out of those four he is the youngest at only 18 years old. His £13.5M official value is the 4th highest on the team and his versatility – he is able to play down either wing and is equally comfortable playing in the middle of the pitch – makes him a very valuable commodity for a team that is scarce on depth. There was some comments about his lack of pace coming out of the Sophara Youth Academy, but those have since disappeared as he has matured and grown. He has earned 4 U21 Caps for England and has now earned the Media Description of ‘Wonderkid’ and as such has started airing concerns that maybe he belongs at a bigger club. He will have a lot of eyes on him next season as he continues to progress and develop.

Down the other wing, Sophara United have a clear starter at the position in Welsh international Kurtis Thompson (’35 – Wales: 1 Cap) – he also carries the ‘Wonderkid’ tag and has become one of the most sought after players on the roster with offers of double his official value of £13.5M. This was his second year as the full-time starter for the club at LW and his improvement was dramatic – in 30 Appearances, he registered career-highs of 8 Goals, 5 Assists, 2 PoMs, and 6.80 AR, up from 6.63 AR last season. Along with Craig, he is one of the four players to have a 5/5 PA on the squad to go along with his 3.5/5 CA. He’s always had the pace and speed, but now his Passing and Technical abilities have begun developing which led to his new contract – it pays him £56K per week and lasts until the summer of 2044.

Niall Bayliss (’37) continues to impress, as the 18 year old registered 3 Goals and 6.74 AR (up from 6.65 AR during his rookie year) in 10 Appearances while playing down the right-wing as well as striker. Like Thompson, his strength coming into the first team was his speed (his Pace is already 17) but he has shown significant progress technically, as well. He is the same age as Craig so he has a challenge in taking away playing time down the right flank but given his versatility and ability to play up front, he should become the team’s 3rd choice striker next season. Pundits are already talking about a team that puts out Thompson, Bayliss, and Gibson at the same time and how fast they would be. Bayliss’ PA has been downgraded a bit from 5/5 to 4.5/5, but there is no doubting his potential. If he continues to develop, his ability will live up to the hype he is getting from the media that he could potentially be ‘the next Michael Owen’ – high praise indeed. Stuart Coker (’32) appeared in 30 Games but had only 5 Starts as he has seen himself drop in the pecking order, although he recently announced he was happy at the club and there have been no repeats of the absent incident of a few years ago.







There can be no doubt anymore about whose team this is, not after the season Ben Gibson (’34 – England: 14 Caps/6 Goals) had. Not only has he cemented himself as perhaps the most talented player to ever come out of the Sophara United Youth Academy and play for the club, but he is now positioning himself as one of the premier players under the age of 21 anywhere in the world. Last summer, he played for England at South Africa 2038, scoring 2 Goals before the English team succumbed to Russia 2-0 in a Third Round upset. Since then, he has become one of the most valuable members of the team at £62M, and the assumption is – since he is the youngest player on the roster – that number will only continue to increase over the coming few years. His numbers (36 Apps, 30 Goals, 11 Assists, 8 PoMs, 57% Shot Target, 7.47 AR) won him the PL Young Player of the Year and the Sophara United Player of the Year, the first player in 10 years not named Mark Connor to win the latter award. He was tied for the Top Goalscorer award with 30 Goals but was named Runner-Up due to the fact he had played more games than the winner. He doesn’t have a weakness – he literally has the potential and the ability to become the best player in the world if he applies himself. The club has three more years to convince him that Sophara is the right place to spend his career – he has been talking a lot and publicly about wanting to join a club that is competing in the Champions League. Additionally, Gibson is comfortable playing down either wing, so not only is he the club’s best player overall, he is also their best player at three different positions. Many experts predict that next year could be the year Gibson is declared the PL’s finest player, especially if the growth pattern continues as it has been.

Gibson’s partner up front has been overshadowed over the last two years by the young ‘Wonderkid’ striker, but it should not be forgotten that Kieran Christie (’32) is a former World U21 Footballer of the Year, European Golden Boy recipient, and the main reason Sophara United got promoted from the Championship after that epic season in 2035/36. He had his best season in the Premier League to date – in 38 Games, he registered 21 Goals, 11 Assists, 3 PoMs, 60% Shot Target, and 7.11 AR. All of his numbers were the best he has done in the three years he has been in the Premier League thus far. The 23 year old’s value is now approximately £45M, but it is highly doubtful the manager would let him go for anything even remotely close to that. He has been the perfect partner for the quicker and more flamboyant Gibson over the past two years and has taken to his role as the team’s secondary striker exceptionally well. As he approaches 300 League Games for the club (he is at 274 now), he is also tallying up the Goals, of which he now has 145. The young strike force that Sophara United rolls out on Matchdays has led them to be the best offensive team in the league, and given how young they are, it can only get better from here.








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The ’25 Youth Class is known for producing Gareth Scullion, one of the greatest products that the Sophara Youth Academy has produced in its history. Along with Greek CD Thanasis Zlatkos and Nigerian CM Chinonso Essien, the Intake currently has three players still in the game after 15 years. It produced a total of six players who joined the Sophara rotation at some point, but it produced no club legend or icon. It was similar to the Intake before it in that its best player (in the ’24 Youth Class’ case, its best players) left the club before his prime and the players who managed to break into the starting lineup, even if only for a season, continued to play professional football even after leaving the club. Out of the other three players that cracked the rotation, RW Jordan Dixon, who retired in 2037, contributed the most to the club during his stay with Sophara United and went on to have the longest career. The other two players were English GK Junior Fernandez and Irish CM Alex McNulty, both of whom played for other clubs after leaving Sophara.




Northern Ireland – 102 Caps/5 Goals





Before Ben Gibson, it was widely considered that Scullion was the most talented and accomplished player that the Sophara Youth Academy had produced. He came out of the Youth Academy amongst huge hype in 2025, which was the team’s 4th season in the Vanarama National and had just finished in 15th Place. His influence was immediate – the team finished in 2nd Place and were defeated by Boston United in the Play-Off Finals during his rookie season, and then won the Vanarama National title the following year in 2027. He was one the club’s best players despite his young age during that title winning campaign, and it looked like he was going to do really well in the League One in his 3rd season – in his first 5 Games, he had registered 7.25 AR. Unfortunately for the club, the board received an offer of £4.7M from Premier League side Sheffield United that was accepted, cutting his Sophara United career short.

There was quite a buzz around his move to the Premier League in 2027 as he was coming from a lower league team, but it was anti-climactic. He spent the next three years on loan at different clubs, with the first being Luton in the Championship during 2027/28. He managed to earn his first Cap for Northern Ireland during that time before moving on loan to Swansea, also in the Championship, during 2028/29. His time there and in Cardiff the following year were the lowest points of his career – in both seasons, he registered a very low 6.56 AR.

Sheffield United, under Icelandic manager Jon Guoni Fjoluson (2028-32), finally gave Scullion a chance three years after signing him in 2030/31, promoting straight to the starting eleven. He would spend another three years with the club after that, never registering more than 6.68 AR as starter for the club in the Premier League. In the summer of 2034, after the club was relegated at the end of the 2033/34 season, Scullion was sold to Bournemouth for £23.5M, where he spent one season – also in the Premier League – and played better than he ever had for Sheffield United, registering 6.78 AR as a starter.

That season, his potential started to show again and he caught the attention of new Man City manager Christian Ilzer (2035-39, 0 Major Titles), who acquired him from Bournemouth in the summer of 2035 for £51M, a number most pundits believed was way too high for the player. Since then, he has seen his playing time dwindle slowly – his first three seasons with the club saw him be part of the rotation, but he was deemed surplus to requirements this past season and was sent on loan to Tottenham, where he won the Europa League title. He has found his form in the Premier League over the last few years, too, never registering less than 6.80 since joining Man City and hitting a career-high 7.01 AR in 2037/38.

He was part of the Northern Ireland team that made the Quarter-Finals during Scotland/Wales 2032 European Championship before losing to Belgium, the nation’s best performance in a tournament since the turn of the century. Currently valued at £21M and earning £125K per week, his contract with Man City expires at the end of the coming season and it is unlikely the club will renew at those wages. While he has had a long and relatively successful career, he never quite hit the heights his transfer fees and wages commanded.







Chinonso Essien was an enigma during his time with Sophara United, playing well at times and seemingly always involved in the big plays but at the same time capable of disappearing completely from the game. Coming out of the Sophara Youth Academy, he was named one of the top prospects of the ’25 Youth Class, a player who was capable of contributing immediately to the first team. He was a big part of the Vanarama National title winning team in 2027, starting in 40 Games and registering 10 Assists and 6.80 AR. He struggled, however, during the two years that the club spent in the League Two, but was still an important part of the team that won promotion to the League One in 2029. He stayed at the club for three more years during the League One days, finally leaving on Free Transfer to Ebbsfleet in the Vanarama National during the summer of 2032 after seeing his playing time dwindle with Sophara United.

He spent two years with Ebbsfleet and it was there that his career really took off on an individual level. With his talents well suited for the Vanarama National level, he won the club’s Player of the Year award during both seasons he spent there. In 2032/33, he registered 4 Goals, 11 Assists, and 7.02 AR and was then named Captain. The following season, he registered 17 Goals (career-high), 5 Assists, 6 PoMs, and 6.97 AR, but unfortunately he could not save the club from being relegated. Not wanting to play football at a lower level, he was sold to his current club Wrexham for £41.5K during the summer of 2034.

He has since spent five years at Wrexham, seeing promotion to the League Two during his first year with the club in 2034/35 and also seeing relegation back to the Vanarama National after three years in 2038. He was named the club’s captain in 2035, and he was named Wrexham’s Player of the Year in 2036, an award he has gone on to win four times in a row and which he is the current recipient of. In other words, since joining Wrexham, he has been the club’s most important player. His best season was 2036/37 where he registered 11 Goals, 13 Assists, 7 PoMs, and a career-high 7.31 AR. In the past three years, he has not registered below 7.17 AR, with the number coming during the season the club got relegated back to the Vanarama National league in 2037/38.

This past season, with Wrexham back in the Vanarama National, he was shortlisted for the league’s Player of the Year award for the first time and broke the club’s and the league’s record for Most Assists in a Season with 15 Assists although the club underachieved and finished in 15th Place. Nonetheless, Wrexham has officially anointed the Nigerian attacking midfielder as a Club Legend, one of only six people (four players, 2 managers) to be given that distinction. He is the club’s highest earner at £3.4K per week and is beloved the fans. He might have come out of the Sophara Youth Academy, but it is Wrexham that Essien will always be associated with. He spent the mid-2020s until early 2030s trying to break through rotations at Sophara, but from the mid-2030s he has been a hero at Wrexham.







 Thanasis Zlatkos has been with only two clubs during his career thus far – he broke through to the Sophara United main team in 2025 and has been a solid starter for League Two side Gillingham since 2033. Coming out of the Sophara Youth Academy, his carried 5/5 PA but only 1/5 CA during days when the club was lacking in talent. He developed nicely, however, and despite waiting a couple of years to break into the first team rotation after making his debut in 2025/26 during his rookie year, he carved out nice role for himself with the club during the late 2020s and early 2030s. He was an important part of the rotation in 2028/29 when the club won promotion from the League Two but by the time the club won the League One title in 2033, he had been reduced to only 2 Games that season. His contract was not renewed, so he entered the summer of 2033 as a free agent.

He was snapped up quick by League Two side Gillingham on Free Transfer, and he has since become an important member of the team, having played 6 seasons with them (all in the League Two) and is now entering his 7th season. His finest season to date came this past one (2038/39), where Zlatkos registered a career-high 7.00 AR from 38 Appearances as the club finished in 11th Place and continued to be a strong mid-table team as it had been over the past few years. Despite a relatively quite career, he has now played in a total of 330 League Games (119 with Sophara United) while registering a respectable 6.83 AR over his career.




Three other players went on to have careers in football from the ’25 Youth Class, with the most prominent of them being RW Jordan Dixon. Coming out the Youth Academy, he earned an immediate place in the first team rotation before leaving the club in 2030 with his finest season coming during the club’s Vanarama National title winning campaign in 2027. He joined TNS in Wales on Free Transfer during the summer of 2030 and went on to win the Welsh Premier League title 5 times, including 4 times in a row from 2032 to 2036. He also won the Welsh Cup twice (2033 and 2036) and the Nathaniel MG Cup once in 2036, the last season he played a game for the club before retiring in 2037 after playing in a total of 283 League Games over his career. Irish CM Alex McNulty was part of the rotation at Sophara United from 2025 until 2029 – he spent another 3 years with the club but played in only 3 Games total with none of them coming during his final season in 2031/32. In the summer of 2032, he moved to King’s Lynn on Free Transfer in the Vanarama North, spending two years with them before moving to semi-professional outfit Biggleswade Town. He played one season with them and finally called it quits at the age of 27 at the end of the 2035/36 season. The last notable player was actually Sophara United’s starter at GK during their Vanarama National title winning season in 2026/27, although it would be his only one. He would leave the club on Free Transfer in 2031 and join Lincoln, but he would never appear for the club before joining Gateshead for two seasons before retiring in 2035.




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Great job.

There was two player that caught my attention from start until now that i read you post. Mark Connor and Ross Mcdonald. From start i play the game, i always make aim to make player who become legend like ryan giggs and totti. Both your player really have good career. Sadly Mcdonald have to go and give a way to youngster. But after all, he has done great from bottom to top tier level. Continue mate. Cheers.

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8 minutes ago, Assist4nt said:

Great job.

There was two player that caught my attention from start until now that i read you post. Mark Connor and Ross Mcdonald. From start i play the game, i always make aim to make player who become legend like ryan giggs and totti. Both your player really have good career. Sadly Mcdonald have to go and give a way to youngster. But after all, he has done great from bottom to top tier level. Continue mate. Cheers.

Thank you so much for the kind words! It was painful selling McDonald and this looks like the season Connor gives way to Jones, but they are legends of the club and will always be given their dues! Just like Giggs, Beckham, and Scholes were legends for Man United in the 1990s and 2000s, so was McDonald and Connor in the 2020s and 2030s for Sophara United. 

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The Sophara United Youth Academy continues to keep us starved of defensive talent - the star prospect in the '40 Youth Class is a GK, the last position we need help in. Outside of that, there doesn't seem to be too much potential talent, and even our HPYD isn't too excited about this year's class after being spoilt the last few seasons.






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In the last 7 years, Arsenal (1st) has won the title an incredible 6 times in what has become the most dominating stretch of a Premier League team in the competition’s history. Led by newly crowned English Footballer of the Year in 22 year old Swiss RW Andrea De Carolis, who led the league with 20 Assists, 8 PoMs, and 7.68 AR in 33 Apps, Arsenal recaptured the PL title for the 21st time in its history, with former champions Man United (3rd) slipping 12 Points behind them. In between them and 8 Points behind Arsenal was Man City (2nd), who climbed back up the league after a 7th Place finish last season. Rounding out the Top Four was Tottenham (4th), who slipped one place from the previous year. The two Europa League spots went to Brighton (5th) and Chelsea (6th) – the former was newly promoted, having an exceptional season 5 years into tycoon Massimo Bonvin’s takeover of the club. The last European spot went to Watford (10th), while Everton (7th), Sophara United (8th), and Liverpool (9th) completed the top ten. Leicester (11th), the only survivor from last year’s promoted three, and Brighton were joined by Southampton (17th), who barely survived the drop by a comfortable margin of 6 Points, relegating newcomers Sunderland (20th) along with Fulham (18th) and Wolves (19th).

This was a decade that started out with Man City as the dominate team before Arsenal took over that mantle in the mid-2030s and have not let up since. Although there was no real standout performers that dominated the 2030s, Man City and Belgium legendary midfielder Alexis Castera and Sophara United GK Mark Connor both won the PL Footballer of the Year award this decade, with Castera winning it 3 times overall (’30, ’33, ’36) over a span of 6 years. He was an integral part of the Man City team that won the title 3 times in a row at the beginning of the decade. For the club that was clearly the PL team of the decade, they were led by 28 year old elite German striker Nikola Cvijovic and 31 year old legendary Irish CM Gerry McDaid. Cvijovic won numerous individual awards including the World Cup Golden Boot at South Korea 2034 after scoring 9 Goals in 4 Games (which led to his acquisition by Arsenal from FC Koln for £91M) and was a World Cup title winner at South Africa 2038 with his national side. McDaid is a product of the Arsenal Youth Academy, breaking into the first team in 2025 and having since played 416 League Games for the club.









One of the most accomplished managers of his generation, Niko Kovac (Manager, Arsenal) – who has been with Arsenal since 2027 – will have the unfortunate reputation of making 5 Finals in a row but only winning one of them. In a repeat of the 2038 Finals, which took place in Cardiff, Wales, Bayern Munich won its 8th Champions League title in its history. This comes from 15 trips to the Finals, including 2 in the last 3 years. This time the Finals was on home soil for the German team and they did not disappoint their fans in their home stadium in Munich, defeating Arsenal for the 2nd time in 3 years on penalties after a 1-1 draw in regulation time. The re-crowned Premier League champions were the only repeat Semi-Finalists from last year, which was only the 2nd time in their history they capture the CL award. Bayern Munich ran through giants to get the Finals, defeating Real Madrid (Semi-Finalists in 2039) in the Second Round, Liverpool in the Quarter-Finals, and Paris Saint-Germain (Second Round in 2039) in the Semi-Finals before defeating Arsenal. Meanwhile, the English team knocked out Inter Milan in the Second Round, Juventus (Quarter-Finalists in 2039) in the Quarter-Finals, and finally Barcelona (Second Round in 2039) in the Semi-Finals.

There were three standout performers this year in the CL. The first was Bayern Munich midfielder Alexandr Marchenko – the 28 year old Russian is classified as a “Legendary Attacking Midfielder” by the media, has a value of just under £85M, and gets paid £350K per week. He was the competition’s best player, registering 8 Goals and 7.62 AR in his 12 Appearances, leading his club to the CL title and winning the competition’s Midfielder of the Season award. His goal tally was equaled by teammate Obrendo Godlieb, the 25 year old Dutch striker who lit both the CL and Bundesliga on fire this season – in the CL, he played in 13 Games, registering 8 Goals and 7.58 AR while also capturing the CL Forward of the Season. Coming in 2nd to Godlieb in that award was Juventus’ 24 year old Spanish striker Markel – he was bought by the club for £100M 2 seasons ago and has scored 25 and 26 Goals, respectively. In the CL this year, he won the competition’s Top Goalscorer award with 9 Goals from 10 Appearances, also registering 7.74 AR as his team crashed out in the Quarter-Finals to former defending champions Arsenal – the 2nd straight year they have lost at that stage.

As the 2030s come to a close, the decade saw 2 teams make 8 of the 10 Finals (5 for Arsenal, 3 for Man City) while only winning a title each. In fact, from 2030/31 to 2039/40, 3 teams won the title twice during the decade – Atletico Madrid (’33, ’37), Man United (back to back in ’34, ’35), and Bayern Munich (’38, ’40) – with Chelsea (’36) and Juventus (’32) joining Arsenal (’39) and Man City (’31) as the teams that won the title once each. The English Premier League was once again the dominant force with a representative from the league in every Finals this decade while winning 5 of them. There was no real standout performers that put their stamp on the competition throughout the 2030s.








The improvement was slow but steady this year as Sophara United continued their slow climb up the table. In the 4 years they have spent in the Premier League, they have now finished 15th, 12th, 9th, and now 8th, respectively. Starting in the back, young GK Jones took over starting duties from club legend Mark Connor, and with better form from the defensive line, the 79 Goals Conceded last season dropped down to 73 this year. However, the league’s best offense last season (81 Goals Scored) was ranked 3rd best this year after registering 73 Goals Scored. The club competed for a European spot for most of the season before Chelsea pulled off a late push to grab 6th Place, but the club was compensated by recording a record-high 18 Wins in the PL along with a new record of 60 Points. In the FA Cup, it was another disappointing early exit after losing to Arsenal in the Fourth Round, while in the Carabao Cup it was an underwhelming Third Round exit to Chelsea.

The club moved up to a Category One Youth Level at the end of the season as the investment in Youth and Training continues to pay off. The move back to the Sophara United Stadium from Craven Cottage went down smooth and the attendance over the course of the season at 98% - a remarkably high number considering where the club was a few years ago. The Finances are in a good palace, with the club having nearly £200M in the bank, ready to be invested in the stadium and facilities.

Two former rotation squad members were sold this year – Max Atkinson (’27) was sold to League One side Sheffield Wednesday for £250K and Turkish CD Kenan Akbulut (’31) was sold to Turkish club Besiktas for £400K. Atkinson was hugely important for the club throughout the early and mid-2030s while Akbulut was a starter for three years in the mid-2030s.






For the first time since breaking into the first team in 2027, Sophara United and Premier League legend Mark Connor (’27) gave up his starting position to the more talented Carl Jones (’34) – the latter played in 25 Games as opposed to the former’s 13 Games. The two-time PL Footballer of the Year (2037, ’38) and the 9-time Sophara United Player of the Year (from 2030 to 2038) finally had to relinquish his hold on the No.1 starting position to make room for a player who has the look of a future England No.1 before long. The 29 year old started mentioning he wanted a new challenge and was looking to move on to a club that could guarantee him a starting spot, and it looks like the manager will try to facilitate his request during the summer.

As for Jones, the 21 year old GK’s first season as a starter can easily be considered a success. He registered 1.68 Con/90 and 7.36 AR in his 25 Appearances, along with 5 Clean Sheets and 6 PoMs. He continues to rate at a 5/5 PA talent, showing massive improvement over the last few years that has led him to be one of the hottest young GK talents in the world. He was called up to the England national team for the European Championship in Italy this summer as the team has been lacking a premier talent for the past few years. He is also expected to become the full-time starter at the position for his club with the potential sale of Connor looming. He’s already won 14 U21 Caps and his value has now risen over £18M having signed a new contract that pays him £70K per week – the 4th richest contract at the club currently. He was named to the PL Team of the Week 9 times this season and his 7.36 AR was not only the highest out of any GK in the league that played at least 20 Games, but was also the 3rd highest overall in the PL. He’s had a great teacher in Connor and he looks set to become one of the club’s most indispensable and important players over the next decade.






For the first time in many years, there was optimism coming out of the Sophara United camp about a full-back. Although his form was still not good, Pablo Cobo (’38) showed amazing growth and progress as a footballer over the past year. His ratings coming out of the Sophara Youth Academy were 1/5 CA and 4/5 PA – today, that stands at 2/5 CA and 5/5 PA despite only being 18 years old. The Spanish LB played in 35 Games a starter in his sophomore season, upping the 6.42 AR he registered his rookie year to 6.59 AR to along with his 2.84 TpG and 61 Interceptions, which was 2nd on the team and highest of any defender. The excitement around Cobo is real because his potential is starting to show – this is a player who could be a very good Premier League level LB if his progression continues down its current trajectory. He has shown phenomenal growth in his Defensive attributes (+6 for Marking and Positioning) and has developed very well in terms of his speed and strength attributes. The ’38 Youth Class was centered around 2 CMs that have yet to appear for the club (albeit 2 CMs with a lot of potential), but it has been Cobo who has been the star of the class so far. Now all that is needed is for him to start showing his true capability on the pitch, something which seems to have already started as his form improved drastically over the last couple of months of the season.

On the other side, veteran Max Newton (’30) again delivered another consistent season – last year, he registered 6.81 AR while this year it was 6.80 AR despite having to deal with his first Major injury of his career. In mid-January, he broke his collarbone in a match against Brighton and was ruled out for almost 2 months because of it. His 3.01 TpG was the highest of any defender on the team and was a strong improvement over the 2.35 TpG he registered last season. He ended up playing in 32 Games, but showed no ill effects from the injury after getting back into form. The manager has rejected several offers for Newton over the past 2 seasons, ranging from £500K up to £2M. Given that this was his 10th season with the club, the 26 year old’s value to Sophara United currently – especially given the complete lack of talent at the RB position behind him – far exceeds the official value. The coaching staff consider him of a decent player for most PL teams and is generally a player with no glaring weaknesses except for his Passing ability. The manager announced in his exit interview at the end of the season that he was happy with the year Newton had and was penciling in Newton for the starting RB spot next season from now. With the Youth Academy struggling to deliver quality full-backs to the team over the past few years, it looks like Newton’s job might be safe going forward in the short and medium term at least as he enters the prime of his career.





After suffering a devastating leg injury last season, Wayne Breen (’33 – Ireland: 34 Caps/ 2 Goals) was back in full-force, playing in 36 Games and registering a career-high 6.86 AR. The 22 year old CD repositioned himself as Sophara United’s premier defender as the current crop on the team lacks the talent the Irishman possesses. This was his 4th season as a starter for the club and has been fishing for a new contract, something he will probably get this summer. The only criticism that is echoed by both the team’s coaching staff and PL experts is that he has poor technique – otherwise, he is considered to be a decent player in the PL who can still improve. A leader on the pitch and in the locker-room, it is rumored he has his eye on becoming vice-captain if Connor – the team’s current captain – ends up leaving the club this summer, a decision that would make sense as he is certainly a highly influence member of the team. His 4/5 PA has been downgraded from the 5/5 PA he used to carry, but given his young age, he has been doing good on the pitch and maintains his status as the club’s most important defensive player.

The emergence of rookie Mohamed Koroma (’39) – who is English/Sierra Leonean – has pumped further excitement into a defensive line that now features 2 potential solid players who haven’t yet turned 19. The decision to start Koroma came as surprise to most, including the backroom staff at the club, but the manager stuck with the youngster throughout the season despite the obvious growing pains. He played in 33 Games, registering 1 Goal, 3 Assists, 1.09 TpG, and 6.58 AR. What is most impressive about the 17 year old is his speed – he is easily one of the quickest CDs in the PL today. He came out of the Sophara Youth Academy with ratings of 1/5 CA and 3/5 PA as he was not considered one of the more talented prospects, but one year in it is Koroma who has earned a starting spot and now carries ratings of 2/5 CA and 4.5/5 PA. His rise through the team ranks has been quick and aggressive, as has his progress as a player. He joins LB Cobo as the two most exciting defensive prospects on the team today.

Making room for Koroma in the starting lineup were Ellis Champions (’29 – Scotland: 3 Caps) and Omar Everett (’29 – Jamaica: 91 Caps/8 Goals), with the former playing in only 11 Games (2 Starts) and the latter in 25 Games (12 Starts) thanks to his ability to cover both the RB and CD positions. Everett might continue seeing significant playing time thanks to that versatility, but it looks like Champion has begun the process of being phased out for more talented players as this was the first season since his breakout season in 2030/31 he has played in less than 30 Games.






The CM position remained the squad’s deepest, especially with the new talent coming in over the past couple of youth classes. The star in the middle of the pitch for the team, however, is 23 year old Jishua Tyrell (’33 – England: 10 Caps/1 Goal), who despite his maddeningly inconsistent form is one of the club’s most talented players. The English/Bermudian playmaker has seen bids as high as £70M but the manager remains insistent on keeping him at the club even after he registered 6.71 AR this season, a mediocre number that was lower than the 6.80 AR he recorded last season. All of his major numbers were down – from 11 Assists he only had 4 Assists this year while also dropping to only 1 Goal from 4 Goals last year. There have been questions about whether the Sophara United system might be to blame for his lack of form, but a player of his talent and stature should be able to play in any system. The manager has publicly called him out and has stated that Tyrell needs to do better next season, something that didn’t go down well as the CM increased his vocalization of wanting to leave for a bigger club. He missed out on the Italy 2040 side (Jones, Gibson, and Craig will all be representing England) because of his dip in form and he will be watched closely next season. Hopefully, he will not be one of those players that tantalizes with talent only to never live up to their potential.

Arinze Mbah (’28 – Nigeria: 56 Caps/2 Goals) lost his vice-captain designation to Gibson at the beginning of the season but it had no effect on him – in fact, the 6.88 AR he registered was his highest since the club joined the Premier League 4 years ago. Although he led the PL with 77 Fouls (he was also tied for 1st with 2 Red Cards), Mbah also was again the PL leader with 146 Tackles Won and 5.35 TpG. Simply put, Mbah is a workhorse in the middle and possibly the toughest player in the PL currently. The 27 year old Nigerian is 21 Games away from playing a total of 400 League Games for the club, with a career average of 6.77 AR over the course of the past 12 years since he joined the main team. So far, he has kept the young talent at bay and is in no immediate danger of losing his spot in the starting eleven, even though the critics continue to say his ability is not up to Premier League standard. He is one of the manager’s favorite players thanks to his maturity and leadership, and despite questions about his durability, his consistency has also been a plus over the last two seasons.

Third year English/Guinean CM Boubacar Diallo (’37) continued to push for a bigger place in the rotation, playing in a career-high 19 Games (10 Starts) and registering 1 Goal, 3 Assists, and 6.72 AR, a good improvement over the 6.54 AR from last season. The manager made a decision not to send the young CM on loan and has instead watched his development close by as he has become part of the first team and it seems to have been the right one – Diallo has shown solid progress in all major aspects of the game, including significant improvement in the Physical attributes he carries. For example, he has now improved +6 Points in Stamina and +4 Points in Strength. His Passing skills have also improved well - +4 in Vision and +3 in Passing. The jury is still out on just how good Diallo can become – while he does have his fans, there are some pundits and experts that say he doesn’t have the look of a player who can become a meaningful contributor for a team in the Premier League.

Three young prospects that have generated excitement inside the Sophara United camp will be looking for opportunities to prove they belong in the first team next year, two of them sophomores and one of them a rookie. Xavier Maddison (’38), who has been dubbed by the media as the “new Jim Baxter” - one of Scotland’s finest ever footballers who played in the 1960s – spent the season on loan at League Two side Forest Green. He did not have a good year (32 Apps, 2 Goals, 3 Assists, 6.55 AR) and he has yet to make his debut for the club, but the word out of Sophara United is that the U19 Scottish international is set to feature next season. Also part of the ’38 Youth Class with a 5/5 PA is Eoin Hastings (’38) – Hastings spent his season on loan at Dulwich Hamlet in the League One, where he registered 29 Apps, 1 Goal, 3 Assist, and 6.83 AR. Equally comfortable at CM or CD (where he was re-trained to play his rookie year), he also has yet to make his debut for Sophara United but could also be in line to have that happen next season. The final prospect at the deep CM position is Sam Martin (’39), a rookie who actually was part of the rotation at the club this season. Considered perhaps the most talented player in the ’39 Youth Class when they graduated, Martin played in 12 Games (3 Starts), registering 2 Assists and 6.73 AR. Most significantly, she showed very strong growth in training, upping his 4.5/5 to 5/5 PA and showing development in all key categories. While both his Attacking and Defensive instincts still need work, the technical aspect is already there and he has great speed that he will be able to utilize. Out of three listed, it might be Martin who has generated the most buzz and most likely to feature on a regular basis next season.









After going through some changes, the winger positions on the team are back to being up to standard with both flanks being the recipients of some solid form this season. Down the right, Tyler Craig (’36 – England: 2 Caps) not only has become one of the most exciting young wingers in the PL but has also earned himself a couple of Caps for his national team, also getting called up to the Italy 2040 team as England prepares itself for the European Championship. The 19 year old RW had a fantastic season – in 34 Apps, he registered 8 Goals, 12 Assists (career-high), 3 PoMs (career-high), 80% Pass Completed, 5 Clear Cut Chances (2nd on the team), and 7.03 AR, which was also a career-high and nice jump from the 6.88 AR he registered last season. Four years into his Sophara United career (2 as a starter), Craig has now become one of the club’s most important players, signing the richest deal in club history which pays him £85K per week. Last year at this time, he had a valuation of £13.5M – today, it is more than double at £30M. He can play on either flank as well as at CM, making him one of the most versatile players on the team. He has become faster, stronger, and better with the ball at his feet – the only thing missing now is more consistency and better ability driving the ball forward. That being said, he is easily one of the most exciting young players in the Premier League and will surely be the subject of some heavy transfer bids from the larger teams.

Down the left flank, 21 year old Welsh international Kurtis Thompson (’35 – Wales: 5 Caps) has been doing his best Ryan Giggs impersonation as he delivered his finest season to date. In 36 Appearances, he registered 9 Goals, 12 Assists, and 6.99 AR – all career-highs. He has proven himself not only capable of playing good football in the toughest league in the world but has also proven he can excel in it. He has been getting attention not only from other PL clubs but also heavyweights around Europe like Atletico Madrid, but the manager has stated categorically that no price will be able to sway the club into selling the LW. Part of what has become known as the Craig-Thompson collaboration given their similar ages and talents, the Welsh winger can be counted as one of the fastest players in the PL. This was his 3rd year as the club’s starter and his first year being named the Welsh Young Player of the Year, also being named in the PL Team of the Week twice. He will be watched with intrigue and excitement next year as his journey into stardom continues next season.

After spending the last two seasons on loan, 20 year old English/Nigerian RW Tosin Okoye (’36) finally made his debut for the club, playing in 21 Games (2 Starts) and registering 3 Goals, 1 Assist, and 6.80 AR. Both with Telford in the Vanarama National during the 2037/38 season (36 Apps, 14 Goals, 5 Assists, 5 PoMs, 7.10 AR) and Preston in the League One during the 2038/39 season (45 Apps, 23 Goals, 9 Assists, 8 PoMs, 7.18 AR), he proved himself a star both seasons he was out on loan. In fact, he was named Telford’s 2038 Player of the Year and Preston’s 2039 Player of the Year after breaking the club record for Most Goals Scored in a Season with 25 Goals. He has been labelled the “Next Michael Owen” by the media because of small stature and speed, although he will be lucky to see the heights the former Liverpool striker reached.






The most valuable player on the English national team at £70M, Ben Gibson (’34 – England: 22 Caps/7 Goals) captured his first (most likely out of many) PL Top Goalscorer award with 31 Goals this season, setting a new career-high and scoring the most of any player in a single season since Mohammed Salah scored 32 Goals for Liverpool back in 2017/18. He also won his 2nd consecutive Sophara United Player of the Year and was named to the Premier League Team of the Year for the first time. This was after becoming the second Sophara United player to capture the World U21 Footballer of the Year (Kieran Christie was the first in 2036) and also being named the PL Player of the Month twice this season in January and April. Along with his 31 Goals, he also registered 10 Assists (the second straight season he has at least 30 Goals and 10 Assists), 81% Pass Completed, 51% Shot Target, and 7.38 AR, down from 7.47 AR last season. At this point, he is considered one of the world’s global superstars and as been described as an “elite striker” with no real weakness. The battle for Sophara United is keeping him at the club – offers of £100M have been rejected with the hope that Gibson will look to renew his contract with the club, but so far his insistent on a low Minimum Release Clause has been the sticky point. This is the 3rd straight year he has scored at least 20 Goals and it has been 5 consecutive seasons where he has registered at least 9 Assists.

This was not a good season, however, for the former World U21 Footballer of the Year Kieran Christie (’32), who tore his hamstring in November and then broke his foot in March – he had still not recovered after the season had ended. He only featured in 21 Games, registering 10 Goals, 5 Assists, and 7.10 AR along with 69% Shot Target. The 24 year old, who has shown great loyalty to the club over the years, was reassured by the manager that his importance to the team has not diminished and that his starting spot alongside Gibson was waiting for him upon his return to action. He was twice named to the PL Team of the Week this season, and despite his injury this was the 2nd straight season he recorded over 7.00 AR. He only needs 5 Games to reach 300 League Appearances for the club and he is already at 155 League Goals with a 7.00 AR career average. When he comes back from his broken foot, he will hopefully have no long-term consequences and will be joining a team that is slowly starting to make noise in the upper echelons of the Premier League.








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One of the weakest classes during the club’s formative years, the ’26 Youth Class initially looked to be an exciting one. In hindsight, it produced only one player that had potential to play for the club in the long term, Joel Davis, but he was sold by the Sophara United board for what seems like a very high amount of £3.8M now after 2 seasons as a starter. The other 5/5 PA prospect was Duncan Cooper – the CM barely played for the club despite high praise at the time for the staff, left on Free in 2034 and since then has played for 3 clubs (albeit as a starter) in the Vanarama National and Vanarama North leagues. Douglas Noble was, for a short time, a potential future starter at LB for the club but never got it going, leaving on Free during the summer of 2033 back to his home country of Scotland. He has since made a nice career for himself in the Scottish lower leagues, highlighted by 6 strong seasons with Peterhead from 2034 to 2040 in which he only registered one season below 7.00 AR before joining Raith on Free this summer. Kim Rune Hansen, the only Norwegian thus far to come out of the Sophara Youth Academy, has had a great career in the English lower leagues – after leaving the club without playing in a single game in 2029, he joined Folkestone in the Vanarama South on Free. They got relegated that season, but the CM has stayed at the club since, getting named the club’s Player of the Year 3 times since and becoming their record holder in total Assists (132) as well as having broken their single season Assists record with 20 in 2035/36. The last player still in football is Zimbabwean GK Kudakwashe Mhlanga, who left the club in 2029 and joined his then teammate Hansen at Folkestone. He has since joined 5 other clubs, most recently Mansfield, all on Free but has unable to break into a starter’s position throughout his career.

The only notable retired players from the ’26 Youth Class are Simon Burley and Kayne Fosuhene – the former was part of the rotation during his rookie and sophomore years before becoming a surplus to requirements and leaving the club in 2031 and joining Billericay (where he would go on to play in 223 League Games), while the latter only made 25 Appearances for Sophara – all in the 2027/28 season – before leaving in 2029 and joining Drogheda United and making 134 Appearances for them before his retirement in 2034.









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10 minutes ago, deez0r said:

If you could get a couple of centre halves in and a right back you could definitely push for the CL spots soon. Elsewhere the team seems high on quality!

The team's overall talent level is definitely going up thanks to the investment in Facilities. But you are spot on - I need those CDs to have any hope of competing. 

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Sophara United had 4 players called up to Italy 2040 – England had 3 Sophara representatives in Ben Gibson, Taylor Craig, and Carl Jones, with the last player being Wayne Breen with Ireland. They would actually face each other in the Second Matchday of Group Stage E, with Ireland coming out as the surprise winners after defeating England 3-2 – both Gibson and Craig scored in that match. It did not matter in the long run as both teams qualified into the Second Round, where England defeated Holland 2-1 with Gibson finding the net for England’s first goal, and where Ireland embarrassed England 2030 World Cup champions Switzerland 3-0 with Breen registering 7.1 AR in that match.

Entering the Quarter-Finals stage, England – with Ben Gibson leading the way with 3 Goals in 4 Appearances and registering a team-high 7.30 AR and Craig the team’s 2nd leading scorer with 2 Goals – faced off against an impressive Greece side that were also Quarter-Finalists at the last World Cup (South Africa 2038) where they fell to eventual champions Germany. Ireland was lining up against heavyweights Spain, a team that were defeated Finalists at Euro 2036 in Germany and were Semi-Finalists at South Africa 2038. The other Quarter-Finals matchup saw surprising Scotland (who had knocked out France in the Second Round) line up against Portugal and Russia (who knocked out the defending champions Germany) against Italy.

It was not to be for Gibson and Craig, who both played in the Quarter-Finals loss to Greece, as the English team – despite being favorites – crashed out of the tournament with a 2-1 defeat. Gibson again scored, bringing his tally to 4 Goals in 5 Appearances, marking Italy 2040 an individual success despite the slight underachievement by the English side. Craig came on as a substitute and finished the tournament with 2 Goals and 6.88 AR – Gibson was England’s best player with 4 Goals, 4.21 XG, and 7.24 AR, leading the team in all three of those statistics. The final Sophara United player in the tournament, Wayne Breen, also exited in the Quarter-Finals after a 1-0 defeat to Spain after not playing particularly well (6.4 AR) although the Irish team did overachieve this tournament.

Spain faced off against Portugal in the Semi-Finals while Greece lined up against Russia – only Spain were repeat Semi-Finalists from Germany 2036, while the last time Greece and Russia were at this stage were in 2004 and 2008, respectively. Portugal were looking to make it back into the Finals for the 3rd time, with their most recent being at Spain 2028 where they lost to Italy. It was the Greeks that ended up defeating the Russians to make it back to the Finals for the 2nd time in their history, having waited 36 years for the trip – instead of Lisbon, however, this time it was going to be the San Siro in Milan. It was going to be the same opponent as last time, however, with the Portuguese making quick work of the slightly favored Spanish team, defeating them 3-0 in an empathetic win against their rivals.  

At the San Siro, it took all 120 minutes available to Greece to defeat the Portuguese a 2nd time in the Finals – in 2004, Greece won because of its strong defensive backbone. At Italy 2040, Greece scored 13 Goals in its 7 Games and did not keep a clean sheet once. They did have 28 year old Inter Milan striker Miltos Petropoulos, one of the finest players in the world who carried the Greek team to its 2nd ever European Championship title, scoring 4 Goals and registering 4.26 XG and 7.77 AR in his 7 Appearances. Despite his heroics, the tournament’s Best Player award went 28 year old Italy and Man United striker Riccardo Zecca, who had an incredible tournament in his own right after scoring 5 Goals in just 4 Appearances and registering 8.57 AR. There was no doubt that Petropoulos was the tournament’s MVP, however – without him, Greece would not be crowned Italy 2040 champions.





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