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Petite Wages, Massif Profits


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Season 14: Lech Poznan

PKO Bank Polski Ekstraklasa

I took over with the club sitting in doodoo land, near the bottom of the league without having had a European campaign of any sort, and already dumped out of the cup. The facilities are as good as you'd expect; the financial situation less so. There're some good players at the club, and a few talented youngsters in the U-18s, but the main squad itself is horribly imbalanced, with only 2 DCs I'd have felt happy fielding while at Burton and at least 3 apparently 'first-team' AMRs. Fairly typical AI manager incompetence, admittedly, but without much by way of money there's limited scope to refresh the squad this season.

Key players

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Mielcarz is our best DC by some margin, if only because he can actually mark players. Even if he doesn't end up having quite as much potential as my coaches think, he should still be a very good player.

Pekar is probably my favourite of the MCs here when I joined. No obvious gaps in his game apart from his being-blown-over-by-a-desk-fan physique and, again, still looks like he has a lot of development. Very keen to hang onto him.

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Owczarek is probably not as good as he thinks he is (he already wants a move to a bigger club), but he almost certainly will be a top player in time. A very handy option to have on the left.

Cyfert is our Shadow Striker for now - his Finishing and Composure need to go up a bit before he'll do more than cover up top. But again, I like him - Vision is the lowest of the attributes I'd want to be higher and he's got good speed, which is good in basically every tactic I've got to work in FM21. 

November - February

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We had a run of bad luck with injuries, starting basically the moment I walked through the door. I wanted to have a few games to assess my Best XI before the January February transfer window, but that didn't happen. Oh well, I ended up trialling a fair few South American youngsters whose contracts were expiring before the scouting really started at the end of December. We're now up to 7th in the league - 8 points behind 4th and the last spot for Europe. That should be doable; Lechia and Legia both seem to have pretty good squads, but KGHM Zaglebie and Piask seem a rung below them on the ladder, so we could even get 3rd with a bit of luck.

Transfers

The winter window is always a bit of a tricky one to judge. Most of the time, you don't really want to do much. Unless, that is, your team sucks and is so lopsided Evil Superman is giving you an appraising look. 

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Not entirely dissimilar players, and Bunturi is probably the better player overall, but Vera is the one with the first-team spot for now - his 15 Tackling making him a better pick for our DLP-D role. That said, I expect Bunturi to take over at some point - his personality, Mental attributes and PPMs are better. Vera did apparently play 60 league games for Atletico National in 2041, though, which takes some doing.

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Rodriguez is the only player we've spent money on - £7,250 - after we'd agreed a pre-contract and then brought the signing forward. I'd earmarked him as our new DR, but he can fill in very handily at DC if we need it. Meanwhile, Oscar is a cheapo punt for a bit of emergency cover at centre-back. I want more speed and more Composure, but he's someone we can throw into a hole in a pinch and if his PA is what my coaches think, he should turn into someone very useful.

 

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It's squeaky bum time at the top of the league:

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We have the tougher end to the season, with matches against Piast (H) and Legia (A).

KGHM Zaglebie also have to play Legia, so I imagine Pogon will be the happier of all of us, given they're paying 2 dumpster fire teams.

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  • turnip changed the title to Petite Wages, Massif Profits

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Well

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Well well

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Well well well.

Bugger me sideways.

Pogon had a truly epic bed-******** experience, while KGHM got a great result against Legia and then couldn't force the issue against Widzew, even once the home team went down to 10 men with 25 minutes left.

Full wrap-up to come.

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Season 14: Lech Poznan

PKO Bank Polski Ekstraklasa

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A very good end to the season. With only a couple of games to go, I looked at the rules for league sorting, saw the "Results between teams" thing at the top and wailed silently to myself. In the end it didn't matter, as Pogon found a way to not just fall at the last hurdle, but somehow drag the hurdle under themselves and roll arse-first into a water hazard. We're only in the Euro Conference, but that's better than nothing, and should make us a marginally more attractive team to sign for in the summer than if we were just plodding through the league.

In terms of the squad, it's mostly a question of trying to cull the players on high wages and keep the talented youngsters. With a decent tailwind, I reckon I can raise £7m in sales, and try to reinvest most of that in signings. I am going to revert to my Dinamo strategy of finding good young players on Amateur contracts and trying to bring them in to sell on. I also plan to have the scouts out searching for cheap players because we do need to be able to turn players around for profits if we can. 

Youth Intake

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Looks good. M Kucharski has potential to be a good player, but also has 1 Determination, which is a red flag if ever there was one. Rymaniak does look like he could become a decent striker, but isn't good enough at any of his Physical attributes to be a convincing Target Man option for me. Elsewhere, there are some players of possible talent, but we'll have to see. 

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Season 15: Lech Poznan

PKO Bank Polski Ekstraklasa

Transfers

We didn't raise as much money as I'd thought we would. Mostly, to be fair, because our players aren't very good. We flogged 3 second-string wasters for modest fees - mostly to be rid of their wage demands - and then did some fierce negotiation with Lyon before selling our first-choice GK for £1.5m + 25% of next fee; roughly his market value. 

Still, when you've got a database as big as the one I'm working with, having a transfer budget is a help rather than a necessity. We only spent money on two players - £250k in total - but still managed to make the squad stronger overall. Not everyone we signed was on an Amateur contract, but there's talent to be had and I MUST HAVE IT.

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Sami is our new first-choice DL, fresh from Monaco's second team, he offers a good amount at both ends of the pitch.

Signing Lazarov meant we could sell our first-choice GK without losing much quality. He could do with developing some of his weaker attributes, but I'm happy with where he is for now.

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Jose was a pre-contract signing who we paid £210k to bring forward the signing of. McAngry can do a solid job at DC or a solid job at DR, fuelled by nothing less than burning rage at the world around him.

Alvarez was a bit of a punt, suggested by my scouts not much before deadline day. Two-footed and can play on either wing - where we do have a slight lack of quality - he was out of contract and his agent suggested £40k would be enough to get him. It was. 

The Best of the Amateurs

"Amateurs", I hear you scoff (you all sound like Jacob Rees-Mogg in my head). "Pray tell, what is the value in signing amateurs to do the job of a professional?" Well, Jacob-Rees Mogg is an idiot, so I'll tell you:

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Christoffer Kjerstad was on an Amateur contract.

Jens Bo Lohse was on an Amateur contract. 

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Michael Pfeiffer was on an Amateur contract.

Alexey Trofimov was on an Amateur contract (although his club actually released him before we signed him. Still, my point stands).

Competitions

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It's going well so far. I sent the second string team to play in Europe, which led to some rather nervy moments. But we qualified for the group, which is what the board wanted, and a couple of million doesn't hurt at this point. We're in a group with Valerenga, Djurgardens and Trepca '89, so I think we're in with a decent chance of finishing second and getting splattered by whatever Italian team drops out of the Euro Cup. 

In the league, we're also making good progress. KGHM Zaglebie are top, with 7 wins from 7 in no small part due to them making full use of Fiorentina loanees. We've got good strength and depth, though. The board want top 3, I want nothing less than to win the league and hit the Champions League next season. 

Finally

Of the two 5* players thrown up by last season's Youth Intake, one is doing more to impress than the other:

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Waldemar will get his debut before Christmas if he keeps this up. 

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Season 16: Lech Poznan

PKO Bank Polski Ekstraklasa

September - December

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So far, so good. The European campaign is going as predicted - we finished second in our group on goal difference - although we're facing a Spanish team in the next round, not Italian as I had anticipated. 

In the league, we're top by 3 points from Wisla, who are 10 points ahead of Pogon. We're scoring a decent number of goals, and the goals are spread around, which is usually a sign that we should be able to keep things going. We don't (yet) have many transfers arranged for February, but we've still got capacity in the wage budget to bring more amateurs in, which is always good.

 

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Season 16: Lech Poznan

PKO Bank Polski Ekstraklasa

Transfer Window

We did raise some money this time around. Our experienced ST moved back to England for £1.1m, the two experienced (and well-paid) Polish MCs moved to China and France for around £2.5m combined. Then Porto came in for Mielcarz (the good DC) and his £4.2m MRFC made me bargain a little lower than I wanted, although I reckon £3m + 50% of next transfer is decent if he develops well while he's there. Finally, on deadline day, Bayern and Porto both came hunting for Owczarek - I bargained harder this time, but the board did eventually accept £12.5m (half in clauses) + 40% of profit on next transfer. He had 10 goals in 17 games, so it wasn't a deal I wanted to accept, but the money was decent. We also flogged a few crapsters for small sums. 

Ins

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Caicedo was an end-of-contract pickup from Liga de Quito. Not great right now (physicals are a bit low), but should have scope to improve, and if we make a couple of million off him I'll be happy.

Fabra was another end-of-contract, this time from América de Cali. Scouts liked him, coaches like him a little less, but he's a fairly cheap option at AMC or ST.

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Pérez was our actual replacement for our experienced ST. Solid all-round attributes, can also play AMR and has a decent personality. He cost £250k, but I'm happy with that for what he should bring. 

Babic was a cheap pick-up from Hajduk. Still has to develop a bit more, but can do a job if we need him to. Coaches and scouts like him, he's on cheap wages and has the sort of PPM I want in an Inside Forward. 

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We brought a few more Amateurs into the club, Soma probably the best of them. Not great defensively, but good enough and should kick on now he can train full time (scouts think he has 4.5* PA).

With Owczarek leaving, Tomczyk gets promoted to the first team to take his spot. He's already pretty good and should get a lot better. I doubt he'll be with us for long!

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