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2nd month in and we are having some immense results, including a last minute winner against Wolves and a win against Man Utd! Its really a wonderful feeling when your newly signed young players performing well against the best teams in the world already. Although we got completed dominated the next one against Man City, the scoreline made it closer than it seems.

 

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Port Vale - Part 11: Season 2, July, Pre-Season & First Game of the Season

Pre-season started early at the start of July and we had a busy schedule lined up with 8 pre-season fixtures and the month ending with the first match of our League One campaign, at home to local rivals Crewe.

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Overall, we had an excellent pre-season campaign, with seven wins in eight games, one draw and only one goal conceded. Derby aside, the opposition were all League Two or below, but the purpose was to maintain confidence, build up fitness and fine tune the squad ahead of the season, and we did all of that.

A 6-0 thrashing of Halifax was the perfect way to start with Jaden Thompson-Brissett continuing from last year with a hattrick. Rodney, Agho and new signing Jake Taylor also all on the scoresheet. Jake Turner started pre-season in goal, originally as a trialist before we confirmed his signing midway through the month.

Amazingly the only goal we conceded came against local side Newcastle Town in the 92nd minute, after we had scored three times in the first 12 minutes. Young signing Romaine Mundle was on the scoresheet whilst trialist Connor Stanley grabbed a double. The former Manchester United trainee impressed in fits and starts, but not quite enough to earn a contract. He would later sign for Cardiff though to join their u23s squad.

Thompson-Brissett scored another double as we thrashed League Two Cheltenham, before young academy prospect scored a late winner against Cambridge in a heavily rotated side. By far the most impressive result was a 4-0 victory over Derby. The Championship side fielded a predominantly first choice starting line up, including the likes of Wayne Rooney, Mike Te Weirik, Jordan Ibe and Neil Taylor. Thompson-Brissett and Cullen deservedly put us 2-0 up and Agho scored twice late on to create an embarrassing scoreline for the Championship side.

Two final wins completed pre-season and it had been an excellent campaign. On a transfer front it had been a quiet month, with only the confirmation of Jake Turner's acquisition. A first choice keeper was still been targeted (we went into the Crewe game with Turner as our only senior keeper on the books), and a deal was very close. Number one target was former Manchester City shotstopper Daniel Grimshaw, who had been released after spending last season on loan in Belgium. Grimshaw had been offered a contract but was taking his time in accepting as he dwelled over various offers. Our second option was to sign Connall Trueman from Birmingham, who was available for transfer. A deal of 20k had been agreed with Brimingham for the 25-year-old who had done well on loan at Wimbledon in League One last year. Trueman was also happy to sign, but we were waiting for Grimshaw to reach a decision first. 

There was more activity on the coaching front as we moved to strengthen our coaching staff. Rob Edwards and Martin Mullholland both joined as coaches, whilst Tommy Travers joined as performance analyst. The most high profile additions were associated with the u23s, as former Blackburn defender Christopher Samba joined as a coach and even more excitingly Spain legend David Villa, joined as u23s assistant manager. Yes David Villa is at Port Vale. Unfortunately I couldn't persuade him to dust off his boots and play.

We entered the league season in positive mood and started with a home game against local rivals Crewe. Everything was going brilliantly for the first about 10 seconds, until Manny Oyeleke played a hideous pass straight to Callum Ainley, who was through on goal and blasted past Jake Turner. 20 seconds into the season and we were 1-0 down. This could be a long campaign.

Thankfully after that we cut out the errors and started to claw a way back into the game. In truth Crewe were the better team and we had to defend well, rely on some good defending and poor finishing to remain at 1-0. In the 59th minute though new Vale captain Nathan Smith headed home a freekick from vice-captain Tom Conlon to equalise the scoring. Both teams had chances afterwards to win it, but we were satisfied with a point to start the campaign.

Onto August next to see how the campaign progresses...

 

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Good starts for both Portsmouth & Port Vale. Great to see David Villa being employed (I have him as a youth coach at Parma just for the memories too).

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Not going to update you on Sheffield Wednesday till end of season but this just happened in me game. Couldn't turn it down, goodbye Nico :(

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Signed on a free two and a half years ago and sold on for a massive profit. Think Inglis will be an apt replacement for him, coming in for £1 million at the start of January.

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12 hours ago, Jogo Bonito said:

Very frustrating end to another long hard season. I admire your enthusiasm to come back stronger. With management like that, your players must be encouraged to get the job done this year.

I am very tactically stubborn which doesn't help me when we go through poor runs, as I am always relying on motivating and in game changes to try and turn it around, rather than changing the way we play.

Anyway, as promised, I have rehauled the squad a little bit. The biggest departure is Ollie Mehew, who leaves after three seasons, 53 goals and 22 assists. He's been a fine servant however would likely only be a squad player, meaning I couldn't justify his request for "star player" status and £400 per week. He has signed for division rivals Hendon so I will still renew aquaintances this season.

Andre Olukanmi was a key player for the first two years in the B2B role, however played sparingly last season and leaves at the end of his contract. Forwards Marcus Dinanga and Aaron Lomas also flattered to deceive and I couldn't justify their wages.

Coming through the door is one of my FM20 favourites, Devonte Aransibia. The powerful attacker can play right across the AM line and is left-footed, so suits my tactic perfectly. We also picked up full back Aaron Barnes on a free from Dulwich, who can play on both sides and is a big upgrade, while former Villa youth Kodi Lyons-Foster also joins on loan and can play right across the back four. With a determination rating of 20, I am hoping he can have a positive influence on the defensive group.

I also continued to use the loan market, finding a couple of real gems from Stevenage and Boreham Wood respectively. Pedro Pascoal looks a class above and can play a number of roles (although I will primarily use him as a B2B) and Gary Fitzpatrick, while raw, looks to be a really smart finisher with some pace.

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I still have quite a bit left in my wage budget as well, so once the first month or two has passed I may be able to find some better players who aren't interested now, but may be once they remain without a club.

A fast start seems to be the norm for us, but can we maintain it for longer?

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2 hours ago, oakesypvfc said:

Not going to update you on Sheffield Wednesday till end of season but this just happened in me game. Couldn't turn it down, goodbye Nico :(

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Signed on a free two and a half years ago and sold on for a massive profit. Think Inglis will be an apt replacement for him, coming in for £1 million at the start of January.

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As much as it sucks to lose a player you love, that seems like a good price for someone you brought in on a free.

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13 hours ago, hasdgfas said:

As much as it sucks to lose a player you love, that seems like a good price for someone you brought in on a free.

Yeah, definitely think I've got a good deal out of him.

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Port Vale - Part 12: Season 2, August

Six fixtures in August as we started to properly get into the early stages of our League 1 campaign, and overall a positive month, showing we had adjusted well to the step up. Results below followed by more detailed report as usual.

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August started with a trip to Burton in our second league game of the season, and ended with a 1-0 defeat. We arguably edged a tight encounter, but Steven Lawless scored the all-important only goal to secure Burton the spoils. For the second season in a row we then lost on penalties in the first round of the Carabao Cup, this time to fellow League One side Fleetwood.

Three tough fixtures loomed against Peterborough, relegated Coventry and Doncaster, but we stepped up excellently to secure 7 points out of a possible 9. Thompson-Brissett scored the only goal of the game early on against Peterborough and we defended excellently throughout, and the same player grabbed a late equaliser against Coventry the following weekend.

Before the Doncaster game we added Jordan Stevens to our squad. The 21-year-old winger joined on loan from Rangers for the season to add a bit more quality in the forward areas. Primarily a right winger, Stevens had spent last season on loan at Swindon from Leeds, before Rangers had bought him off Leeds over the summer. Thompson-Brissett's exceptional form then continued as he bagged a hattrick against Doncaster, taking him to five for the season already, and grabbing us our second win of the campaign. Two wins, two draws and one loss was a very decent start to the season after promotion.

Transfer deadline day loomed, and we had a busy close to the window by my standards. I had been looking to add a little more quality in defensive midfield and we made an important signing in the free transfer acquisition of former Blackburn and Northern Ireland international Corry Evans. The 30-year-old didn't fit with my normal transfer policy, but he is someone I had tracked over the summer and had previously not been interested. On a free transfer and at wages of £2k per week he was a low risk bargain, joining on a 1-year deal. 

Two other free transfers joined to go into the u23s squad, 18-year-old former Leeds centre back Alex Bray and 19-year-old Austrian u21 international Pascal Juan Estrada who joined after being released by Wolves. Both will primarily feature in the u23s, with Estrada the more likely of the two to play for the senior side and one with better potential.

Finally there was one outgoing. David Amoo was angered by the signing of Jordan Stevens, and confronted me about that. I assured him that he would still be considered, but would have to fight against his place, but he argued further and was highly critical. I decided not to stand for a potentially disruptive infleunce in the dressing room, and Amoo departed to relegated Wigan for a fee of £41.5k.

Our squad was now complete for the seaosn ahead, and the month finished with our first game in the Pape John's Trophy as we thrashed Wolves u23s 5-1. There were two goals for Cullen, one for Agho and first goals for the club for both Stevens and Max Robson to round off a pleasing month.

September here we come...

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So here is the result before the 2022 WC break.

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We got 2 important wins against Blackburn and Burnley, could've been three but we throw the match away, twice...

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10 points clear of the relegation zone, we should be optimistic about our chance staying up. Our rival Southampton is also having a good time, they were 17th the last two seasons.

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We have only 2 players called up for WC, Ronald Araujo and Vandevoordt, only Ronald Araujo would be starter for Uruguay, so maybe we will have some advantages against other teams have more call-ups.

Also I don't want Vandevoodt to get any international caps since I have the clause to increase his wage to 40000 p/w (from 20000 p/w) after 5 caps, so I will be rooting for Courtois for this reason :lol:.

Edited by dastrokes88
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o7

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He's now making just about as much as my entire wage budget. I wish I could have gotten more for him(he's good enough!), but his first professional contract had a release clause because he wasn't going to sign it otherwise, and by the time I went to go offer him a new one, his head was being turned by Premier League clubs.

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10 minutes ago, CityAndColour said:

@hasdgfas - how much money have you put into your youth academy? Seems like you're producing youth like a top flight side!

It feels like not all that much? We've upgraded facilities 3 times up to "Average", and I don't remember the cost of each one. It just feels like I've gotten really lucky with Youth Intakes. Although, that being said, none of them have really thrived much after being sold. Eroglu seems like he has the best shot. I hope he makes it.

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Sheffield Wednesday - Championship - Season 2026/27

Once again, last time I spoke to you, it was about the sale of Nico Williams and Inglis coming into replace him. We made a few more little signings in January but nothing noticable and boy has it been some kind of season. We started out pretty slowly, but found our feet around December, going on a run of eight straight wins. Once February hit though and we were into the playoff spots that we so desired, the squad couldn't handle the pressure. We were as close as one point from automatic promotion spots at one point in late winter, but just look where we finished.

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We completely capitulated, finishing six points from the playoff spots even while still holding 6th spot with around 6 games to go, was really tough to watch. A three point improvement from last year and going up four places, I guess I should be happy but it's hard to take it the way it panned out.

Who were our best players this season?

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Once again, the main pretenders, Whitaker and Laird were very solid for us once again and we will miss Laird as he has signed a pre-contract deal with Rangers after turning us down in January. Swann was disappointing this season, not hitting the 20 goal mark, he seemed to come in peaks and troughs. Him and Whitaker both sign for us on another year long loan, becoming staples of our team.

Where do we go from here? It feels increasingly hard work to motivate myself but it looks like it could be another summer of upheaval but we'll see. I think more than one more season in the Championship is too many for manager Daniel Oakes.

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Sheffield Wednesday Honours

League Two Champions 2022/23
League One Champions 2023/24
Championship: 12th place finish 2024/25
Championship: 12th place finish 2025/26
Championship: 8th place finish 2026/27

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Unlucky there @oakesypvfcas it promised more. Not a bad finish though.

As the new update is out, it might be time to consider a new club career?

Talking of updates, I spent my lunch hour checking out the new EFL squads. Some interesting ones in there, including the new Port Vale.

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22 minutes ago, Jogo Bonito said:

Unlucky there @oakesypvfcas it promised more. Not a bad finish though.

As the new update is out, it might be time to consider a new club career?

Talking of updates, I spent my lunch hour checking out the new EFL squads. Some interesting ones in there, including the new Port Vale.

What has Port Vale done?

Have they spent loads of money then ?

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32 minutes ago, Jogo Bonito said:

Unlucky there @oakesypvfcas it promised more. Not a bad finish though.

As the new update is out, it might be time to consider a new club career?

Talking of updates, I spent my lunch hour checking out the new EFL squads. Some interesting ones in there, including the new Port Vale.

You do intrigue me, but I'm not sure how many more 46 game seasons I can tolerate :idiot:

I'm guessing our new chairman/woman has been given some money in the update?

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22 minutes ago, oakesypvfc said:

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I think it is time my child :( 

That's a really good price. Hopefully you can use it to increase the quality of some other positions and get over that hump.

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My Blyth updates are going to be very slow for a while. I did a massive purge of the squad because a lot of them just aren't good enough, so I'm going to have to do a big rebuild. It takes a while to build a whole squad, so I'm not sure when I'll actually make forward progress here. It's been necessary for a while, honestly.

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2 hours ago, Jogo Bonito said:

As the new update is out, it might be time to consider a new club career?

You read my mind :). Spent the weekend trying to muster the courage to continue the Durham save, but once again the squad had been gutted - lost De'marlio to Stockport, as well as my best RW and LW, my star CM, my only LB and our best prospect at CB. Players who hadn't had a sniff of interest all summer were suddenly getting offers from everywhere as soon as I made an approach. Last night's update sort of put a nail in that coffin.

I need to have a good look around the new squads to find the next project, but thoughts as ever turn to Ipswich.

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Port Vale - Part 13: Season 2, September & October

A double month update here and two months of excellent success, that see us not only challenging for the playoffs, but even the automatic promotion places and the very top spot in League One. Not what I anticipated at the start of the season, but whatever we are doing is working. Results and full update below:

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September started at home to fellow promoted side Exeter. Whilst we had started the season promisingly, Exeter had been hapless, losing every game and languishing at the very bottom of the table. Despite the contrasting fortunes we had to work hard for our victory, Nicky Ajose opening the scoring for the visitors before Worrall and Thompson-Brissett scored to put us 2-1 ahead. Bowman equalised from the spot to make it 2-2 at half time, and in the 70th minute Worrall grabbed his second with what turned out to be the winning goal.

The rest of the month posed more challenging fixtures, but more routine wins. Nathan Smith headed in the only goal to secure a brilliant 1-0 win against Ipswich, before we very easily brushed aside Gillingham and Swindon, Cullen scoring a hatrick in the latter. I wondered if he would struggle in League One, but playing as an inside forward from the left he has found form, so much so that he is keeping Devante Rodney out of the team.

September started with a 1-1 draw against a struggling Oxford side, Mark Sykes equalising for the visitors after Tom Conlon had put us ahead early on. A 0-0 draw followed in the Pizza Trophy v Grimsby, but we finally won a penalty shootout and that ensured we would qualify for the second round with a game to spare.

The wheels came off against Portsmouth, who deservedly beat us 3-0 at Fratton Park. For the first time this season we were bullied, as the hosts played a direct, physical style, and we were completely unable to cope with John Marquis. He scored twice in the first half and they led 3-0 at the break. We were a bit better in the second half but there was no way back into the game. One potential fallability we have is that we are quite a small side, as I have favoured agile and pacy players. 

The Portsmouth game though was a mere blip as we went on to win the next four, scoring 15 in the process. Cullen bagged another hatrick against Fleetwood (and missed a penalty) in a 5-2 win which flattered the struggling visitors. If we had scored 7 or 8 it would not have been an injustice at all. A trip to the Valley saw Rodney and Thompson-Brissett fire us to a 2-0 victory, whilst Oyeleke, Stevens and Cullen saw us ease past Leyton Orient who were sinking down the table.

The highlight though was a 5-1 demolition of Wycombe, a side relegated from the Championship last season, as Jaden Thompson-Brissett produced the perfect performance, tormenting and terrorising the Wycombe defence as he scored all five goals and recorded a perfect 10 rating for his performance.

The month finished with a top of the table clash against Lincoln and a 2-2 draw at Vale Park in a thrilling game. McGrandles put Lincoln in the lead at the break before a crazy three minute spell just before the hour mark. Cullen equalised on 58 minutes, less than a minute later we were ahead as Thompson-Brissett scored again, but then a minute later Anthony Scully equalised for Lincoln. The goals ended there and an excellent match ended 2-2.

What a two months, who knows what the remainder of the season holds...

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@Jogo Bonito - Interested to hear what has changed for Vale on the update. Would like to see another Vale story alongside mine to see how they compare.

@warlock - Planning a trip back to the Football League? Any thoughts on next project?

@oakesypvfc - Still going in the right direction at Sheffield Wednesday, even if the progress is a bit slower than you would like.

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39 minutes ago, Dave92 said:

two months of excellent success

Yup, that's not a bad run at all. Hope you can keep it going through the winter :thup:

38 minutes ago, Dave92 said:

Any thoughts on next project?

Well, Ipswich would be right up there, as would Colchester. I keep threatening to take on Gillingham, too. Lots of possibilities, but plenty of time 'til FM22 arrives :lol:

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Lots of comments regarding the mention of Port Vale earlier. But all I had done was look at the squads and theirs seemed a reasonable base to work from in League 2. The owners seem fairly well liked and connected to the club, the stadium is capable of hosting a team higher up the pyramid again too. No idea about the finances or budgets as would need to have created a game as them to see that. I've never managed Port Vale but have ongoing games with Reading (will continue until the end of 21/22), Parma (will continue) and York (will continue). And I couldn't manage them with that diabolical home kit design, so unless anyone has a custom kit for them it's unlikely to be a new home for me. I do like the squad though - for the level ;)

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3 hours ago, Jogo Bonito said:

Lots of comments regarding the mention of Port Vale earlier. But all I had done was look at the squads and theirs seemed a reasonable base to work from in League 2. The owners seem fairly well liked and connected to the club, the stadium is capable of hosting a team higher up the pyramid again too. No idea about the finances or budgets as would need to have created a game as them to see that. I've never managed Port Vale but have ongoing games with Reading (will continue until the end of 21/22), Parma (will continue) and York (will continue). And I couldn't manage them with that diabolical home kit design, so unless anyone has a custom kit for them it's unlikely to be a new home for me. I do like the squad though - for the level ;)

How dare you criticise the nicest kits in the division :D

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1 minute ago, oakesypvfc said:

Just cos it's different :D

I love the away though, got it for Xmas off the missus.

There's a reason she didn't get the home one! Probably too embarrassed ;)

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Looking forward to the new saves from your guys with the new update, as for me, I think I'm going to stick to my current save until the next update, mainly because its going pretty well.

Back from the world cup, we've been very inconsistent, overall I'm satisfied with our result, except maybe the home game against Bournemouth. We had chance to go 2-0 but missed a penalty.

Good news is that Rodrigo Macedo is gaining his form, scoring in all situations, including a later winner against Leicester.

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Half season in, we still sit comfortably in midtable, however very close to europe competitions, in order to push for this, I asked for more budget (PL tv money is ridiculous) and sold some squad players and want to invest some star players for our team.

It's the same issue with most newly promoted team, there are very few players who want to join us even we are performing better than most other PL sides, finally we had to cash out 44m and break our wage structure for this guy.

He's still with Sheffield Utd in Championship, asking to leave, I think its the main reason he wanted to join us to play in division above, in previous two seasons with Sheff Utd in PL, he's performing really well, all we need is some PL experience and quality, is he worth 44m price tag and 50k p/w wage? probably not. But I think he's one of the best available options for us. Anyway its definitely better to just sit with 50m budget with no one to spend on. Very excited for the second half of the season.

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OK, took a quick look earlier at some clubs new transfer and wage budgets: 

  • Cardiff £500k (£1500 pw), Huddersfield Nil on both, Bristol City £1m (£1000 pw), Middlesbrough Nil (£5000 pw), 
  • Blackpool £20k (£1500 pw), Shrewsbury £100k (£5000 pw), Gillingham £25k (£3500 pw), Swindon/Hull/Ipswich/Accrington Nil on both (Hull have some massive funds coming in for Bowen but big owner debt), Peterborough £200k (Nil), Lincoln Nil (£3200 pw)
  • Port Vale £30k (£300 pw), Southend Nil (-£1000pw and transfer embargo until 01/01/21), Colchester Nil on both
  • Wrexham £100k (£6000pw)

Sorry, typo in Port Vale wages now corrected.

Edited by Jogo Bonito
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Feb & March

It started well, draw against Liverpool, first win against Southampton (Finally!) and Watford. After that its 3 losses, my longest streak so far, fortunately, we pull a win against Man City, Pep was sacked after the previous game, so they are a little vulnerable. After that we are back in form with 2 comfortable wins.

As for standing we are still in reach for euro spots, but its very close with so many midtable teams, I don't rate our chances highly. Anyway, we should be clear of relegation, that's all that matters in debut season.

 

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4 minutes ago, dastrokes88 said:

Anyway, we should be clear of relegation, that's all that matters in debut season.

Yeah, I feel like you have to be really happy with this performance. 46 points seems like a successful first season up at all, let alone before match day 30.

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Been busy with work for the last week and a bit (first time since May last year), so my FM time has dropped for the moment.

I've got Premier League and European clubs sniffing round a few of my squad, so, I'm dipping into my shopping list in case I need them, however, I've had a couple of medium length injuries, with Troyansky and Rollheiser being out for a month or two.

Got a couple of signings coming in in January to strengthen things.

Firstly, prowling round South America, has highlighted a playmaker for me to use behind the striker. He joins on loan, initially to the end of the season.

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Secondly, a lot of my weakness has been in the holding midfield role. Harry Arter has been good, however, he seems to have a tendency to leave a bit of a gap to the defence at times, and is prone to a few lapses. Ben Whiteman and Ryan Yates are OK on the other side of midfield for me, as they are mobile and do a lot of the ground work.

There was an initial thought to spend and bring someone in from overseas, as the English based players are expensive, however, the answer may be found in the U18/23s, with youngster, Brian Evans, who has shown remarkable physical and mental improvements this season.

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He is improving technically as well, and hopefully, a few matches for him will help this increase.

 

Also coming in, is Luca Dupuy.

He isn't quick, but, with composure, first touch, anticipation and finishing as good as this, he should have no issues getting into the good areas.

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This, however, is promising.

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@oakesypvfc Unlucky on the capitulation with Sheff Weds, but 80 points does seem like a rather unfortunately high 6th place to me. Having had a quick look online, 74 points would have been enough for a play-off spot for 3 of the past 6 seasons, with you only missing out by a point in another too, so it's a still a very good total you amassed there.

I'm still in pre-season with Huddersfield at the moment having waited for the update to arrive before starting the save. As always I start with the transfer window turned off so that I have to work with what I've got and with just a local pro reputation to make the challenger just that little bit tougher. 

They've got some promising youngsters that I'm looking forward to work with, but they are still a little bit over-populated in the experienced defender role, with Keogh, Elphick, Stearman and Schindler all entering the final stages of their careers.  I am a big fan of having a good balance of experienced players in the squad though, so i'd imagine I'll only release one of them come the end of the season.

I'd say I'm quite different to probably a lot of FM players in that I don't necessarily go after young signings that much. I like to be a bit quirky in the transfer market, bringing in different types of players and I definitely love an experienced signing. However, with the board really pushing for young signings, both to come in to the club and the first team. it's going to be an interesting change of tact for me and one that I'm looking forward to.

 

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2 hours ago, smplfc123 said:

I'm still in pre-season with Huddersfield at the moment having waited for the update to arrive before starting the save. As always I start with the transfer window turned off so that I have to work with what I've got and with just a local pro reputation to make the challenger just that little bit tougher. They've got some promising youngsters that I'm looking forward to work with, but they are still a little bit over-populated in the experienced defender role, with Keogh, Elphick, Stearman and Schindler all entering the final stages of their careers.  I am a big fan of having a good balance of experienced players in the squad though, so i'd imagine I'll only release one of them come the end of the season. I'd say I'm quite different to probably a lot of FM players in that I don't necessarily go after young signings that much. I like to be a bit quirky in the transfer market, bringing in different types of players and I definitely love an experienced signing. However, with the board really pushing for young signings, both to come in to the club and the first team. it's going to be an interesting change of tact for me and one that I'm looking forward to.

Excellent, one of the best picks in my opinion. Looking forward to it immensely too.

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@hasdgfas Yeah, I'm more than happy for the results, I would never image the wins against likes of Man Utd and Man City in my first PL season!

 

So here is the update before the final push of the season, we faced 4 of the big 6 in this month, although Arsenal is not that competitive this season, and we took an important win against them.

The battle for euro spots is incredibly close with 4 of us on the same points, 3 of us even on same goal difference. We will face 2 of them Newcastle and Brighton, which will be the deciders.

 

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12 minutes ago, Jogo Bonito said:

@dastrokes88 A really impressive season there. I only took Reading up one league and am really struggling much more than that. 

Thanks, I think the fixture helped me a lot, we don't have any long losing streak, the games against top teams are not that spread out but we can always bounced back against weaker teams. Also I basically threw the cup games (both out first round), turned out to be good decision.

Also I don't assume everything will have 50m budget after getting promoted, I know pl money is crazy but still...

Edited by dastrokes88
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Port Vale - Part 14: Season 2, November 2021

Short update here, but another successful one. 6 games this month, only 3 in the league but 5 wins and a draw in total maintains our exceptional form. At the end of November we are top of League One, after promotion last year and with the lowest wage budget of any club in the League. I have a couple more updates to follow, but then they will slow down as only in January 2022. Results below and more detailed update.

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November started with a 1-1 draw away at Rotherham in a game we were very disappointing not to win. Cullen opened the scoring from the penalty spot in the last minute of the first half, and Rotherham had a player sent off in the process of the penalty award. 1-0 up at half time and playing against 10 men, I expected three points. We had 23 shots, battered Rotherham but could not score. Typically with their one chance they then equalised late on to grab a point, the only goal we would concede in November.

The first round of the FA Cup followed and after a busy run of fixtures we used the next two games as a chance to rotate and give others a go. Against Havant, two of our young additions from Tottenham signed, as Romaine Mundle scored two and Eddie Carrington the other. Carrington was on the scoresheet again against Sunderland as we made it three wins out of three in the Papa John's Trophy, with David Worrall and Scott Burgess also scoring (Burgess' first goal since I have been manager).

The return to the league saw two more wins based around defensive solidity and controlling the game. Left backs proved the inspiration with Mitch Clark opening the scoring against Rochdale, before Jordan Stevens sealed the victory, and Vashon Neufville scoring the only goal against Grimsby. The month then finished with the second round of the FA Cup, for which we rotated heavily again, and secured another 1-0 win, this time Manny Oyeleke being the scorer.

Another super month. Brilliant defence and a wide range of different scorers, with Cullen and Thompson-Brissett only scoring once between them. We sit top of the League One and I am in dreamland. Surely this is too good to be true?

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1 hour ago, dastrokes88 said:

The battle for euro spots is incredibly close

Yeah, that's very tight indeed. An amazing season, regardless of where you finish :thup:

13 minutes ago, Dave92 said:

another successful one

Some good results there, and good going to be top of the division. Keep it up!

My plans for a new save took a radical northwards turn. Went to bed t'other night with thoughts buzzing about Ipswich and Colchester but woke up the next day with Norwich on my mind. The Canaries were one of my pre-launch picks for FM21 so it seemed like their time had come. Just about finished pre-season and it's a lot more challenging than it first appears. I knew there was precious little money about, but it soon became apparent that we're projected to fail FFP - not so much sell to buy, but sell to survive. Constant messages in my in-box suggesting another player we could get rid of "to help with FFP". 

Will post a proper update when the transfer window closes.

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Haha, the Ipswich fans will be burning effigies of you! I thought you were going to Southend but nope. Bernard Matthews and Delia will be happy - by the way, 15 years ago on 28th February was this lovely moment. Enjoy your time in Norfolk :lol:

 

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What do people do badge/qualification/career wise on the manager page when taking over sat league 1 & 2 teams?

 

I done a Southend save pre update and I gave myself too high badges, within 3 seasons I was getting offers from the likes of Monaco which kinda ruined my save for me.

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21 minutes ago, sufcdan said:

What do people do badge/qualification/career wise on the manager page when taking over sat league 1 & 2 teams?

I done a Southend save pre update and I gave myself too high badges, within 3 seasons I was getting offers from the likes of Monaco which kinda ruined my save for me.

Some go for low rep but generally it's reasonably safe to go with ticking the box that says it is suitable for the club. If you had three good years maybe that was partly why those offers came in?

I'm warming to a Southend challenge since the update, with the embargo appealing. Also knowing that you can release Nile Ranger immediately because not every tool is useful.

Edited by Jogo Bonito
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23 minutes ago, Jogo Bonito said:

Some go for low rep but generally it's reasonably safe to go with ticking the box that says it is suitable for the club. If you had three good years maybe that was partly why those offers came in?

I'm warming to a Southend challenge since the update, with the embargo appealing. Also knowing that you can release Nile Ranger immediately because not every tool is useful.

It was definitely challenging!

 

first season I was bottom until about Christmas and then went on an unbelievable run where I missed out on the playoffs by the last game of the season.

 

second season I missed out by one place again! Third season I was top the majority of the season and then had a real bad run towards the end and plummeted to the last playoff place. I won the playoffs and got promotion.

I have their finances pretty healthy and

a real decent squad for league 1, I think I’ll do well (if I carry it on or start over again now the update is out 🤷‍♂️)

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1 minute ago, sufcdan said:

It was definitely challenging! first season I was bottom until about Christmas and then went on an unbelievable run where I missed out on the playoffs by the last game of the season. second season I missed out by one place again! Third season I was top the majority of the season and then had a real bad run towards the end and plummeted to the last playoff place. I won the playoffs and got promotion. I have their finances pretty healthy and a real decent squad for league 1, I think I’ll do well (if I carry it on or start over again now the update is out 🤷‍♂️)

Sounds like a cracking three seasons. But yeah, not worthy of interest from Monaco :lol:

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1 hour ago, Jogo Bonito said:

15 years ago on 28th February was this lovely moment

Can't believe it was that long ago :eek:  Like it was yesterday:kriss:

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