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[FM21] Can I manage a journeyman save?


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December 2027 update

Forgot to do this one before the end of year posts!

One final result before the players go on holiday until the next round of European football as we qualify in style!

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Posted (edited)

Pre-2028 season squad review

I have a number of players out on loan, so before I get into transfers, I wanted to review my depth of squad and assess what we need going forward.

Goalkeepers

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Johnsgard is now number 1 for me. He scores goals, and is okay at stopping them, with potential to grow. Hoff Tjore has accepted a backup role, which he will keep for next season. Niia is a good prospect. I will see how he develops in the youth team and potentially keep Tonnesen at the club as the Tromso 2 goalkeeper until the end of his contract.

Defenders

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In terms of natural LBs, we really only have Garbutt. Nicolaisen suits the role, and has done well, but I can't help but think he takes up a foreign spot in the squad and isn't really justifying that space. If we can replace him with a Norweigan I think I will. Waage can play there if we have an injury crisis.

At CB we have a huge depth of talent. Nava, Kolberg and Haraldstad are the best three, but behind them you have Strand who has had a reasonable season at Lillestrom on loan, while Olesen has a lot of potential but won't have a place in the squad unless I can ditch Nicolaisen. Lundberg has potential, and is likely to go back out on loan. Winter will remain in Tromso 2's squad for next season. Bo Martinsen looks best at CM (BWM) so will potentially be involved in the squad next season despite his age.

At RB we have Munksgaard still justifying his foreign status in my opinion. Young players Lange and Eide are unlikely to make the grade, but will stay in the youth and reserve teams just in case. Otterstad is leaving as I didn't realise he was out of contract. Kruse and Bednar can play at RB, but Waage is our main backup. He is a weak link perhaps, but he can play across the back which gives us options. If a good Norwegian right back becomes available, I think I'd move for one. 

Midfielders

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At CM Kruse and Bednar will fight it out for the BWM roll next season I feel. The DLP role will likely start with Hansen, although he will rotate with Robertson. Perhaps they could be improved upon, but I'd like to give our home grown talent a chance. I'm not sure how much game time Njoten will get. It likely depends how much impact Martinsen makes if I promote him. Behind him we also have Lyngvaer and Vegsund. Vegsund had game time before he left refusing to sign a contract, but I'm inclined to send him back out on loan, while Lyngvaer plays for Tromso 2 next season. Aune and Xuan aren't really good enough, but they do a good job of being squad players for Tromso 2 and preventing them from being relegated.

At AML Tangen is technically our strongest player. However, Marlon is likely to continue to hold down the role unless he decides he wants to leave again! I'd really like to give Yndestad more game time so will get rid of Blackburn (in the below list of forwards) as he hasn't justified taking up a foreign spot in the squad at all. Stupid signing, just because he was free!! Yakimov might get some games in the cup perhaps, depending on Yndestad's game time.

At AMR Hartivksen and Tangen will battle it out to start. The former has pace to burn, the latter has skill and guile. It's good to have two different options to be honest and having Tangen this season meant we weren't so reliant on Hartviksen doing it all himself.

Forwards

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Ferlin is the new star of our strike force. Lappalainen-Uusitalo is also a crucial part of our squad. Odubeko did well, but as previously stated his PPMs don't really match his attributes and role preferences, and as a foreign player I'd probably replace him if a big bid came in for him. That said, I'm also happy to keep him. Nobody else is really worth mentioning on this list! I would like a young Norwegian striker if possible to complement the others. They're harder to come by in this save, as none of them seem to be able to finish!

Overall transfer priorities:

A Norwegian LB

Potentially a Norwegian RB 

A Norwegian striker (young)

I usually go into the off season with a larger shopping list, so I'll have to be careful this time and try not to pick up too many foreign players on free transfers! I have a feeling I've already signed at least one...

Edited by Jtomsett11
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Pre-season 2028

Not much really happened over the short winter break. We return in January with much the same squad. Part of this is due to the foreign player limits. We did agree to sign Kesitalo on a free transfer, but along with Blackburn he is likely to head out on loan as there's no room currently for them. My scouts initially rated him as 5 star potential, so a little disappointed now he's arrived and I'm less inclined to try and shoe-horn him in by selling one of the other foreign players.

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In terms of transfer targets, I could secure neither a right or left back who I felt was value for money or would improve the squad. We did manage to bring in a young Norwegian to supplement our striking options though. At £60k he's worth a punt as we have nobody in our own youth set up. I did secure another young striker who has pace and finishing attributes in the high teens, however he broke his ankle so failed a medical. I will go back for him in the next transfer window.

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One outgoing was backup keeper Tonnesen. This will just allow me to move Niaa to the Tromso 2 squad for more match experience.

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If progress hasn't been made with the squad, it has with the facilities. I also secured my final coaching badges. 

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We also decided to sell a clause on Kirkegaard which I feel was a fantastic deal. He's unlikely to sell for above £2million in the future in my view, so this takes our total income from his sale to £3 million. Not bad!

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Looking ahead to the first month of the season, we have the Super Cup against Bodo/Glimt and then our European knock out tie. I think this will be a hard game.

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March 2028 Update

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Bar the Super Cup, where we were waaay off the pace, this has been a good month. We struggled to score from the first leg against Vit. Guimaraes onwards and a lot of that is down to Lappalainen-Uusitalo being injured. He may not be the most natural deep lying forward I've ever had, but he's really effective and it's noticeable when he's not playing. Tangen has also been injured meaning we're very short of options going forward, resulting in some tired players. I'm not sure whether to spend money bringing in backup, or rely on our youth players to fill the gaps. I prefer the latter option, as the quality of Norwegians we can bring in still doesn't look great.

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Not really much point in the league table at this point, but here it is:

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We've drawn Utretch in the Quarter finals of the Europa Conference League and I suspect that may be the end of the road. Their squad is significantly better than ours, with 5 players worth more than £10 million.

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Still, we've been pulling in the crowds as we can't play at our own stadium, so the finances are ticking along nicely from this run!

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April 2028 transfer deadline day

I feel like I needed a whole post just on this one day. Having done nothing all transfer window, Nicolaisen got very upset when I rejected a £300k bid for him from Al-Ettifaq. I also received a very promising initial scout report for a young Colombian left back at the same time, and decided to trigger his £1.2 million release clause and sell Nicolaisen. This probably happened within 2 hours on the deadline day, with Nicolaisen leaving the next day. The media asked if it was a panic buy, and the answer is yes, mostly. I did want a LB potentially, but the idea was to buy a Norwegian. However, I'm a sucker for a young player with significant potential.

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Nieto is still raw, especially in terms of technicals. However, I like his mentals (mostly) and he's physically quite impressive. I'm hoping he can improve across the board, but I'm happy to play him as first choice now with Garbutt as backup. Ouch, only just noticed he's on £5k a week. Definitely an element of panic buying as I thought it was £3k :lol:.

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We've also had a number of bids for Ferlin come in. At the end of April we're up to this:

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I'm very lucky that the board are happy not to intervene. Our finances are okay, but I know a lot of boards would be accepting these sorts of bids. 

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April 2028 update

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This was a seriously intense month. 9 games is the most I've played in one month in Scandinavia so far. With a squad of 23 players, it definitely pushed us. 

First off, the league. A really strong start to the month was followed by a tough game against Bodo/Glimt who appear to have our number this season. To be fair, we missed a penalty and got robbed of the ball on the halfway line for their goal. Missing penalties is becoming a thing, as Johnsgard missed his 4th of the season (he has scored 1) against Viking to leave that game a lot closer than it should have been. Against Lillestrom, I took him off the duty and Ferlin scored to equalise. I was very frustrated by our inability to get the winner, before Odebuko smashed one in from 30 yards in the 86th minute.

That result keeps us top by a point, although a small gap is opening up to third. We're also 30 unbeaten now.

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The cup saw two relatively comfortable wins to see us through to play Stromsgodset, although in both we were drawing until the 70th minute before substitutes helped to get us over the line. I did entirely rotate the squad though to try and rest key players, so that may have contributed to our poor first half performances.

In Europe, we bow out to Utretch. I actually feel we were much better than the 5-2 aggregate suggests. Johnsgard missed ANOTHER PENALTY and we conceded 3 in 25 minutes in the first leg before playing much better in the second half. Haraldstad then sold Johnsgard short with a horrible backpass for them to win 4-1 and we weren't ever likely to make up the 3 goals in the home leg. 

 

 

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May 2028

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This was a really solid month until the game at Valerenga, where Marlon our LW got sent off after 12 minutes. It completely ruined the game and left me fuming. I probably went a bit too gung-ho when we went 2-0 down and if I'd stayed slightly more cautious we may have actually claimed something from the game.

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June 2028

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I find this really interesting, as they're a yo-yo side currently. Looking at a lot of our players and they're currently playing for the team and were definitely produced elsewhere, so I'm not sure what the definition is for 'produced'. Either way this is a positive, and something I hope we will improve before I leave.

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We started off June how we ended May. I did rest players in the cup, but not to the extent that we should have been beaten 4-1. The bigger problem was the number of key players unavailable due to international duty. 

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 The board aren't very happy about this, or the super cup defeat before the season started. When we do lose, we tend to do so heavily!

One player in particular stood out for Haugesund. Our former left back, Nyhagen of the long throw. He scored a belting free kick and got two assists. Painful!

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Our league form was then much better for the final two games of the month. We still lead Valerenga by a point, and they are the form team. I'm hopeful they'll drop points at some point!

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We've had two standout players who make a difference this season, Ferlin and Lappalainen-Uusitalo. Marlon has also played very well apart from his sending off that cost us against Valerenga, but Ferlin tops the goal scoring charts this season and Uusitalo is providing lots of those goals. When you consider he's only played 9 games due to injury, those 6 assists become more impressive. For anyone who has been following or reading my posts for a while, you may notice Henrik Hardarson was with me at IF Karlstad. I did consider buying him for a while, but couldn't afford him and then had already bought Ferlin, who is definitely a better player.

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June 2028 part 2

Having said that Lappalainen-Uusitalo and Ferlin were our standout players, I went back to check whether that was right. I don't appear to have been too far off and I'd stick to that statement even though the former is further down the average ratings.

In terms of other high performing players; Kolberg has also been a key player this season, and is scoring from free kicks and corners which is very useful. Hartviksen is having a good season, but not up to the standards he has achieved in the past. Notably our player of the year for last year Tangen is right down this list. I'm pleased that my young LW Yndestad is up there with 6 assists in 17 games so far. He's not as good as Marlon, but Marlon's form has dropped off recently and Yndestad is going the other way, picking up the slack.

I still can't get either of my DLP(s) decent ratings, and Robertson and Hansen occupy two of the bottom three average ratings. I've always struggled with getting this role decent ratings, but it doesn't appear to overly affect the efficiency of the tactic so I'm not overly bothered.

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July 2028

A strange month this one. In the Eliteserien we were average and it's pushed us down into second (I did forget the screen shot), but we coupled that with ridiculous high scoring wins in the Champions League Qualifying.

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We face Dinamo Zagreb in the third qualifying round, who we played last year in the group stages of the Europa Conference League. I'm quietly confident about this tie.

We had a couple of big-ish bids for our players this month. First up, this for Ferlin. While he's not bothered, neither am I! If he gets too unhappy I'll consider anything closer to £10 million with a next sale clause. 

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We also had a bid for Nava. He's a big guy but his pace is a bit restrictive, but again I'm happy to keep him unless offers come in at a much higher level.

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We also had one of our academy kids poached for the first time in this save.

The big news happened halway through the month, with top scorer Ferlin injured. This could be a problem and we did look toothless against Kristiansund without him. 

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August 2028 transfers

We did a little business this month.

Firstly, we had a few players already signed to arrive. 

Sabelo arrives to rotate in the DLF role and to be honest will likely signal the end for Odubeko who isn't really suited to either forward role. I may sell him at the end of the season if we can't find someone to rotate with Ferlin.

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Next we bought in two young Norwegians to go into the reserve squad. I'm more excited about Skeide. If we can improve his finishing and composure I think he could be a great striker.

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We also then had a number of players on trial. I made a mistake by removing the English leagues as I wanted them as view-only and couldn't seem to get it to stick as view-only so removed them. Having now added them back, they've reverted to playable which has meant a number of players suddenly added in and seemingly club-less. I didn't really realise this until I'd signed one, so I'm not sure if I've exploited the game or just gotten lucky in that nobody else wanted him. Azeez arrives to play in the DLP(s) role. 

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Posted (edited)

August 2028

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A much better month in the league and a poor month for Valerenga sees us back to top spot despite our latest failed attempt to beat Bodo/Glimt. We've survived without Ferlin for most of the month and still managed it which is very pleasing!

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We've also done extremely well in the Champions League this month. We eased past Dinamo, and after a tense first leg against FH we blew them away in the reverse fixture to seal our place at the table!

However, that may be the extent of our progress. This is a tough group. I'll be pleased if we pick up a point!!

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The finances from the Champions league is really what it's all about at this level. Nearly £14 million can really accelerate progress.

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We've scored 48 goals so far in the Champions League. It's kind of warped some of our players stats for the season!

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Yndestad had 3 successive 10 ratings, while Lappalainen has scored 12 goals in the Champions League so far! Ferlin, only just back from injury, is the only player to have missed out on the chance to boost his numbers. 

Edited by Jtomsett11
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Love following this career - awesome result against Barcelona just now too! How far do you think that you can take Tromsø? Getting itchy feet yet? 

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21 hours ago, Gizmo7 said:

Love following this career - awesome result against Barcelona just now too! How far do you think that you can take Tromsø? Getting itchy feet yet? 

Thanks, nice to know it's not just interesting to me :lol:! Yes, it was a complete surprise but to be honest after a few dodgy moments in the first half we did deserve the win. I think it may be the only one from this group though! While it would be nice to win a European competition with them, I imagine that could take years, and our best chance would be the Euro Conference League which we're unlikely to play in if we are successful and keep winning the league. I think Denmark is the next point of call, but perhaps another year or two at Tromso wouldn't hurt!

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September 2028

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The Barcelona result is obviously the standout moment of the month. We did really well against United as well, and were unlucky to concede from a deep cross and a free kick. We're looking good in the group at the moment, but I look at the quality at Monaco and I just can't see us getting results unless they under-perform.

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The Odd draw was frustrating. We should have won, but just couldn't get ahead in the game and had to peg them back twice. Fortunately, we're still top by goal difference after a great performance against Viking, who had won 5 in a row when we played them. It's getting tense!

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A quirk of our season. I don't know how they are allowed to include qualifying in this and I'm sure in real life they don't (surely?!). 

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And really bad news for the next, and crucial months ahead. Lappalainen has been a key player for us, even if those stats are distorted by our Champions league qualifying.

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October 2028

The month started off with a really tough game against Sarpsborg. They've improved massively as I'm sure we used to beat them for fun. They have a number of young players (many of whom we are after). We snuck this one after coming back twice, and Robertsen scored a rare goal to seal the three points.

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We did very well in the league for most of the rest of the month, but we fell to defeat against Molde. It really didn't help that Ferlin picked up an injury the day before the game, meaning both our first choice strikers are out injured. Ferlin in particular is on the verge of beating our record for most goals scored in a season.

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That loss leaves us second again. Next game? You've guessed it! First vs. second. We do have a game in hand, so if we win I think the title will be ours. I really hope we manage to do it, otherwise it'll feel we've let this slip away!

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The Monaco result was expected, but they scored two long range efforts early on and we just couldn't turn it around. I really think we'll do well to even get 1 more point. 

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November 2028

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A huge result to start off the month. Two good goals, with assists from Hartviksen puts us back on top. We now have a game in hand and we're two points clear, making the rest of the season a formality.

We beat Lillestrom 4-1 to put us 5 points clear at the top!

However, our next game sees us play Rosenborg and we've got 5 players out due to injury or international call-ups which really isn't helpful. 

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We don't start well at all and we are 2-0 down in the 80th minute. However, we win a penalty in the 81st minute which Bednar slots home as I took Hoff Tjore off penalties earlier in the season when promoting Johnsgard. Then, in the final seconds, Odubeko drove forward on a counter attack from their corner and finishes superbly to seal a 2-2 draw. That result means we go into the final game 3 points clear with superior goal difference. We've all but mathematically won the league.

The final day isn't pretty and we draw 0-0 with Brann, but a point was all we needed!

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On a side note, I love the bit about recording 'their lowest' finish since 2026. What a terrible description of finishing 2nd, 1st and 1st since being promoted :lol:

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We're obviously out of the Champions League, with a 4-0 defeat against Barcelona our heaviest loss yet. I think the best we can hope for is to qualify next year and have a better group stage draw and maybe finish 3rd! 

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A couple of other notable moments this month:

Skeide came on and looked quite good. I may keep him in the first team next year.

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If I had room, then potentially I'd add Blackburn to the first team squad, but I'm not sure he merits it and he is playing in the third tier. 

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Finally, the youth intake look reasonable. A good pacy striker who can finish would be perfect!

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One more European tie against United and then I'll round up the season.

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December 2028

We finish our Champions League campaign with a very respectful draw against United. We came back from 2-0 down to earn the near £900k in prize money for a draw and it was a pretty thrilling end to our season. Although we finish bottom of the group, 4 points is a very good return from what was essentially a Group of Death (at least for us!). I don't think we were far off a draw with Monaco either which would have seen us through to the Europa League knockouts.

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End of Season 2028

It's been another really good season. All 4 seasons here at Tromso have been very successful. We've been promoted, won the league twice, won the cup once, made the quarter finals of the Europa Conference League and competed in the group stages of the Champions League. 

I feel I still have a couple more seasons here. I'd like a real crack at a knockout stage of either the Europa Conference or (more likely) the Europa League, and if we can win three championships in a row I'd be delighted. I also want to leave the club in really good standing. IF Karlstad, who I started with, were relegated to the Swedish First Division before I accidentally removed the Swedish leagues rather than make them view only. I did get them promoted twice in a row so they're still higher than when I started, but I'd like to think Tromso will still challenge for the league when I leave. I have a plan in mind, but I'll post about that in the next post.

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Save goals

We've established not using the player search page and only searching through our scout reports and shortlists. I'm happy staying at Tromso for now, but know I will be moving sooner or later and most likely I will move to Denmark as we progress in terms of the league quality. Goal scoring keepers was the other aim. At the end of last season I was very positive about Johnsgard. I thought he might get double figures this season. Instead, he not only missed a gluttony of penalties, (4) and only scored 3, but he also lost his impact in goal. I've lost count of the number of times I saw "Johnsgard will be disappointed to have let that in at the near post"'. I'm seriously considering going big and buying a goalkeeper for the first time (checks back) in the entire save. 

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Player performances

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For me, this season has been all about Ferlin. If it wasn't for some badly timed injuries I think he'd have done even better. His finishing isn't the best, but I've really struggled to find any Scandi players with high finishing to be honest so 13 is the highest I've had at Tromso. 25 goals last season once you take into account the Europa Conference knockout stages where he scored 4 more in 4 games, and 26 this season. Let's see what he can do next season!

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In terms of the rest of the squad, I'll review anyone who played any first team minutes, or is in and around the first team squad.

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Goalkeepers

I've already discussed this above. My assistant manager changes his view on Johnsgard's potential more frequently than he's played it feels like, but he seems settled on 4 stars now. Hoff will go if I bring in another keeper.

Defenders

Kolberg and Haraldstad have been the predominant pairing at CB. Two tall, strong players, they've worked well and scored 15 between them. Yes, Haraldstad scored 4 of those in one game in the ridiculous qualifier against Lincoln, but still, this is a strong return. Strand wasn't getting enough game time, so went out on loan. He's likely to stay out on loan as young Martinsen is coming through, and can play at both CB and CM and a ball winning midfielder. Martinsen can jump as well as Strand, is better on the ball and is faster with greater potential. He played well in the two appearances right at the end of the season. Nava is the other centre back. With 17 jumping he should be a beast, but he is slow (ish) and I favour him less and less. He is rated as my best CB often (as I said my assistant changes his mind a lot), but I'm not 100% sure. I may sell and gamble on having Martinsen as number 3. That's a big risk though isn't it. Food for thought.

We finished with fewer points this season. I think it's largely down to the huge increase in the number of games we've played, but also it may be down to declining contributions from our LB and RB. Nicolaisen and Munksgaard have gone, and the main men became Nieto and Bednar, who was bought in on a free to rotate with Kruse in CM, but became a useful option at RB. They only picked up 7 assists between them. Garbutt, our other LB, picked up 0 assists! I need to work on their PPMs as none of them get forward often, or I bring in more attacking full backs. Waage played fewer and fewer games this year. I may keep him in the B team next year so I have cover as he can play anywhere across the back. Lundberg doesn't look like he'll make the grade to be honest.

Midfield

Our CMs this year were Kruse, Hansen, Bednar (occasionally), Robertsen, Azeez. Kruse and Bednar have good ratings and are both highly effective at breaking up play. None of my DLPs did particularly well. Hansen got the most assists, but they were again in ridiculously high scoring qualifiers. Robertsen is useful as he's home grown, and I'm more inclined to trust him than Hansen and open up a space for Martinsen in the squad as he can play both CM and CB as mentioned above. Azeez was signed to much fanfare, and his passing does look good, but he isn't creating assists. He isn't even that high for key passes. I may persist with him to give him time to settle in. Njoten went out on loan when Azeez came in. I've never been that impressed by him, and may look to sell both him and Vegsund as they near the end of their contracts. 

In terms of wing play, all players involved were very successful this year. On the left, Marlon contributed to 24 goals, and Yndestad to 27. Bear in mind Yndestad scored and assisted multiple times in the Champions League qualifiers though. Despite this, he did really well and despite my assistant now only rating him at 2 stars current ability I will keep my faith in him. On the right, Tangen wasn't as good this year except in those qualifiers again, but Hartviksen was approaching being back to his best by the end of the season. Against United in the final group game of the Champions League he was sensational. Again, he's not highly rated, but I won't be moving him on if I have a choice. 

Kesikitalo and Blackburn... I just don't think I can find room for them with the foreign limits. If I can I'll sell them, without ever really giving them a chance.

Forwards

Ferlin and Lappalainen I've waxed lyrical about before. Sabelo didn't do much upon his arrival, but he's young with the potential to count as home grown, so we'll give him time. Odubeko had a reduced impact this year, but did pop up with goals in important moments. His PPM of 'plays with back to goal' does not suit him though, and as he's entering the final year of his deal and is foreign, I'll get rid if I can get decent money for him.

Stensrud actually played really well when called upon. 3 league goals in 3 starts. Not sure why I didn't play him more to be honest. When the next chance came, Skeid was the one promoted due to his potential ability. I may take a risk and have him as striker number 4 next year. However, I know that the others get called up for internationals so it's potentially a huge risk.

 

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Issues with home grown players

Before I move on to the transfer window, I thought I'd highlight what has been my biggest issue with Tromso, that of the home grown player, or more specifically, the foreign player limits. You are allowed a squad of 25, which includes youth players. Only 9 can be foreign, or non home grown. Let's take a look at the quality of my home grown players.

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If you look at the current ability, it's pretty damning. Yes, 3 stars is 'good' for the level we're at, but rival teams have many 4-5 star players when scout reports come in, and to challenge in European football, we need higher quality players. Even with the 3 star players, we only have 3. Marlon is only there due to having spent 3 years with us. 

This is why I almost can't resist a good foreign player. They're just so much cheaper and more available, and is why we end up with problems registering them as I sign too many in an attempt to improve the team. If we look at the potential of my home grown contingent, the future looks good. We should have a good half dozen or so high quality Norwegians within the next few years. However, I'm unlikely to be here then due to the nature of this save. 

Previously, with limited resources, I've brought in foreign players, usually for free, and then sold them on to finance further foreign players, improving the side this way. What's different now is that I have £12 million in the bank even after facility upgrades. My plan therefore is to buy 2-3 high quality Norwegians and attempt to only have 8 foreign players in the squad as we start the season, allowing me to purchase an 'extra' if a good option comes up. Norwegians do not come cheap, especially not the good young ones who haven't either moved abroad or signed up to a high reputation side for higher wages than we're likely to offer. I'm therefore unlikely to get good value for money, so the aim is to spend big on quality. Let's see how I do!

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Closed season 2029 transfers

I set out in the transfer window to overhaul my foreign contingent. I was prepared to spend over the odds to secure Norwegian talent. 

The first transfer I made was a mistake. I thought I had 'trained in Norway' filtered on the scout shortlist for goalkeepers, when in reality I didn't. Sorensen comes in on a free, but is foreign. I think I'm going to keep him in the reserves until he's happy to be loaned/ transferred out. A hugely irritating mistake!

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The next transfer in was actually Norwegian! Dale is a RB with more attacking intent than Bednar (he often plays at RW) but comes in for £3 million, rising to £3.6 million, our highest fee paid yet. I hope he will be worth it and provide more assists. He also has room to grow still.

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Next comes in a replacement for Odebeko. Molenaar isn't Norwegian, but he is free (although I paid £200k to seal the deal now rather than in August when his contract ends) and can definitely finish. I'll work on his pace as if we can get that up maybe 2 points, he'll be really effective. I decided I couldn't gamble on just having Skeide as number 4 striker due to international call ups.

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Next up, we have a Russian with dual Norwegian nationality. Martynov has been on my radar for some time and is likely to play as a full back but with either attack duty or on overlap. His crossing should be a real asset. I did have to pay an extortionate £4.5 million for him, with some of the payments spread over the next two seasons. 

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At this point I found a goalkeeper I could definitely work with. £4 million is definitely expensive, but he's Norwegian! Decisions and composure were the only negatives, but he's better than any other Norwegian keeper who would come to me, and he can still improve.

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Overall transfers in since the end of last season:

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Transfers out since the end of last season:

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We get rid of Hansen, Odubeko and Keskitalo for enough money to cover 2 of our incomings. Most of these have sell on clauses. We also ditched Nieto, despite him being pretty solid. I would have preferred a lot more money for him, as Porto were interested at one point, but he's now not needed and he's foreign and I really, really don't want to deal with the hassle of registration issues from now on. 50% sell on should gain us some more money in the future.

Our bank balance is now £6.5 million, so we do need to qualify for Europe in one form or another this season. However, we've improved LB,RB and GK, added a better ST option and we've now got 9 foreigners in the entire squad, including mistake signing Sorensen, who we will probably get rid of. I may register him and rotate him to generate interest for now. 

I feel much better about the team now to be honest, and much happier continuing with some better 'home-grown' players alongside my own youth prospects.

 

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Youth intake and season preview 2029

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I'm pretty happy with this intake. Usually the ratings go up straight after I sign them, and this is the first 5 star potential player we've had through from the initial intake ratings.

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His mentals might not be brilliant, but I think Reinholtz looks pretty impressive. I think he'll stay in the U18s this season, with potential for some game time next year.He needs time to work on those required mentals and his pace. I've only just noticed he's 6'5" too. Oh he's exciting!!!

As we approach the start of the season, a couple of things of note have happened. Our facilities have improved across the board, while we're the highest rated side in Norway! An excellent achievement. I'm hoping Champions League qualification will allow for further improvements of the facilities and also improve our reputation at the same time.

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Essentially the goals this season are to win the league again, qualify for the group stage of the Champions League and I'd also like to have another crack at the cup. I think we've got the squad for it. Notable promotions for Martinsen and Lyngvaer who can both play CB and CM as well as Skeide who made a brief appearance at the back end of last season. Although we have 5 strikers now, international duty will inevitably mean Skeide gets his opportunities to impress.

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March 2029

Bednar got sent off after 5 minutes having edged Kruse out of a starting CM BWM spot due to fitness, but we did well to hold on until penalties before losing. Better than last season, but also really frustrating.

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Just over a month until we kick off against Haugesund at home, a nice easy game (hopefully) before we face Brann away. 

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April 2029

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We've been given great odds to win a third title in a row, and that's my minimum expectation this season after our transfer splurge.

It's a brilliant start to our campaign too.

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One goal conceded and 18 scored in 4 league matches. Ferlin has been brilliant so far, as has Hartviksen who has 4 goals and 3 assists in 4 games. Beating Brann and Odd so convincingly away is very impressive, despite both sides having average starts to the season.

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May 2029

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We start May with a routine cup win which involves Skeide getting his first 2 goals for the club. 

I also reach 300 games in management during the month.

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It's another very good month. The only blip is a 2-2 draw away at Bodo/Glimt, but considering they're third and we always struggle to beat them I'm actually very pleased as we came back twice. Lappalainen-Uusitalo got the equaliser in the 80th minute to keep us unbeaten.

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We also earned a new defensive record; Karlstad has made a real difference to the team. One thing I forgot to mention was that I have noticed the coincidence of his name with my first team of this save, IF Karlstad!

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We're also through the the fourth round of the cup. We've rotated the squad completely for the cup games to give a few players minutes, so I was pleased to beat Stromsgodset.

In terms of how the squad has performed so far, the usual suspects are doing the business. Ferlin is keeping up a goal per game, although he is on penalties this season as I've temporarily halted my goalscoring keeper mission to try and get a 30+ league goal scorer. I've been really impressed with Azeez this season, who is playing much better than his half season with us this year and he has the highest rating of a DLP that I've ever had on this save, so that's really pleasing. The biggest disappointments have been Tangen, who I am thinking of selling (he's only played in the cup) and Molenaar, who has just not looked good enough in his starts or as a sub. Bednar hasn't seen much game time since his red in the super cup, and I think I'd accept any big bids for him. His versatility is important though, as he's second choice RB and BWM essentially. I'm hoping Sabelo steps up, he's been pretty poor despite exceptional stat growth.

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One other player to mention is former player of the year Hartviksen. It feels like he's back to his best after some superb performances at the back end of last year and the start of this year.

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Man city won the Champions League, so we got some extra money. 

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I also find this very amusing:

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Those qualifiers of three consecutive 10 ratings! I really feel this isn't very realistic, but it's something for him to tell his grandchildren about one day!

 

 

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June 2029

I've agreed to two sales ahead of the transfer window in August.

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Neither player was getting much game time. I would rather bring on youth players if I need to. In terms of RM, we may be slightly short, but AMR we can play Hartviksen, Sabelo, Dale, Lappalainen and Skeide. RB we have less depth, but Dale is the first choice, Bednar back up and Kruse can also do a job there. There are also some reserves and youth players who could do a job if needed.

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This seems like good news for the league to me. The move to Champions path Third qualifying round would affect us next year I believe, not this coming qualification, where we will still enter at the second round.

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June saw us lose our first game of the season. We struggled against Kristiansund throughout. It means the league is now looking tighter. The next game is crucial as we play Stabaek at home. If we lose that, they could go level with us on points with their game in hand which is away at Molde. To be honest, I think we should beat them. We beat them easily in the cup to secure our first semi final appearance for a while, and they're massively overachieving in the league. They have one player valued on £1 million, we have (he says without checking) at least 10. I think Marlon is worth £3 million. If we beat them and continue our current form, I think we'll walk the league. It's overall still very satisfying. I feel I've been justified in my winter spending.

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July 2029

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Overall we've stretched our lead to 7 points, with Molde now the closest side to us. However, I'm really disappointed with the Haugesund result. This is a team we beat 7-0 on the opening day of the season, although we did get thrashed by them in the cup last year. I suppose I just have really high standards now and expect us to win almost every game. Despite this loss, I think we're very well set for the title. 

A good result in the champions league also sets us up nicely for the home leg!

The outgoing sales last month meant we set this record:

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I very nearly accepted a £10 million, rising to £13 million plus 50% profit clause deal for Bednar, however on reflection I think his role is too important in the squad and I couldn't see anybody who could replace him currently, so I cancelled it at the last minute. I am surprised he wasn't more upset, as this was a move to the Premier League. In fact, I've been quite surprised that my players aren't really bothered by bids from English teams currently. The top two leagues are loaded there now and playable, so I'm sure the lure should be stronger, even just for the wages in the Championship.

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August 2029

August finally saw Molenaar begin to play a role in the squad, with 1 assist prior to this double. I realised he has pretty good stats to play as a DLF, and with Sabelo doing well at AMR now I think he's becoming more important to the squad. Funny how signings work out sometimes. Sabelo, signed to play DLF thriving at AMR, while Molenaar, signed to play as backup AF playing in the DLF role.

 

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The league couldn't have gone much better this month.

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Yes, one draw, but we played 9 games this month with a small squad, so to get over the line with 3 wins and a draw is great. We extend our lead at the top again, and it's going to take something massive to derail us I feel.

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Ferlin has been banging in the goals, and continues to score at just over 1 a game in the league as he's only played 19 league games. He's also missed 4 penalties now. Obviously I just don't have luck with penalties whatsoever, whether it's my keeper or a striker!

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In the champions league, having dispatched HJK, we got a really tough draw in Kobenhavn. In fact, it couldn't get much tougher than that. Kobenhavn won their champions league group last year (I'm not sure how far they got without checking)!

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The first leg went well, although we missed some really big chances. 16 year old Skeide came on to score the equaliser, but he also missed a gilt-edged chance minutes before. Marlon also missed a sitter early on.

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We came into the home leg feeling positive. We started really well, and again Marlon should have scored early on. We hit the bar from a corner, and Ferlin missed a one-on-one that to be fair wasn't particularly easy.

In the end, it came down to penalties. Bloody penalties! Yndestad, who had come on to equalise after they scored a free-kick, missed the fifth penalty which would have won us the tie, and then they scored and Bednar missed.

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In some ways I'm gutted. I really wanted a crack at the group stage, and the money would have taken us to £20 million bank balance. As it is, we've probably got a much better chance in the Europa League.

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We still get some money, and should be able to qualify really. At worst we should qualify for the Europa Conference League knockouts! I still feel a little flat though as I thought we'd done enough over the two legs against Kobenhavn.

In other good news, the stadium expansion is complete. Capacity has nearly doubled in my time here, and that can only benefit the club going forward. 

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I am starting to feel that I will finish this European campaign and perhaps move on when we're knocked out of Europe, perhaps to coincide with Denmarks end of season as that's where I'd like to pick up a job next. I've got youth players galore here who I could bring through, and I could aim to win 10 titles in a row etc. etc. However, that's not the point of this save. I've managed in two countries so far that I've never managed in before, and I'd like to keep expanding my horizons. Denmark would move me back to the 'normal' season that I'm used to and there are clubs like Kobenhavn who have serious European weight. That could be my target in Denmark. Let's see how this season pans out, but I'm not really interested in walking the league year after year here in hope of winning a European trophy. I want to leave the squad with quality and the club with good facilities and money in the bank so they can continue the success after I leave.

I may also just be upset that I'm not in the Champions league and slightly overreacting :lol:

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September 2029

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Three Eliteserien games, one cup and one European game this month. As you can see, mostly it's been very successful. We've started the group stage of the Europa League well, and I think we should qualify easily. The cup win was tense, but sees us into the final where we face Kristiansund.

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The league mostly went well, but Bodo/Glimt are definitely our new bogey team.

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We lost, obviously, to extend that run to seven games. We probably should have beaten them!

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On a positive note, Ferlin has stepped up his goal scoring efforts. With 7 games to go he has 24 goals in 23 games (22 starts). The all-time record is 30, so he might achieve that. He has 27 in all competitions, so we have 5 group games, 1 cup final and 7 league games left for him to maximise his returns. He should definitely get to 40, but can he get to 50? I don't think I've had a striker get 40 goals for a long time, and that was in the 38 league game realms of English football. His efforts have reignited my enjoyment of this part of the save, as the league still feels inevitable and so this gives me something to work on aside.

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7 points clear with 7 games to go. I know it's not completely won yet, but I just can't see us dropping points in more than a couple of these games and we have a relatively simple run in. 

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October 2029

Well Ferlin has stepped up another gear, a gear which I didn't think he had to be honest. 11 goals this month in just 5 games in all competitions. He now has 29 in the league and 38 in all competitions. 

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4 league games, 3 Europa league group games and 1 cup final to go. If he carries on at this rate he'll break the 50 barrier. Either way, 4 league games to go, he only needs 2 league goals to break the league record held by Odd Iversen who got 30 back in 1968/69!

Partly as a result of Ferlin's efforts, we had a perfect month.

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We're still only 7 points clear, but with just 4 games to go now. I can smell title number 3! If we win our next game away to Stabaek, who've dropped off horribly after their early season form, the title will be ours if Bodo don't win. 

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And yes, we did beat Sporting 5-0 away. Ferlin got a hat-trick before half time. I feel we could go deep into this competition with a little luck in the knockout round draws.

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November and December 2029

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We didn't have to wait long to lift the trophy! Even better, Ferlin bagged 4!

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That's 33 in the league now! The record is his!

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The rest of the season went very well, bar the cup final where we just couldn't find a way past Kristiansund. 

Records broken:

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In the end, Ferlin ends on 49 goals for the season from 43 games.

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That £1.9 million is looking like money very well spent now. I can't quite believe Ferlin's consistency this year. I've never had this sort of consistency from a striker on FM, or not that I can remember anyway! In the end, I was gutted he didn't finish on 50 goals. Against APOEL he scored in the 86th minute and could have scored again in the 90th, but missed having run through from half way. 

So this is how the league table looks at the end of a season where we only dropped 13 points.

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And in the Europa League, we go through comfortably. Ferlin, of course, is top scorer at this stage.

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The cup loss was disappointing, but we won't dwell on that in what was otherwise a really good season!

Full season and player review to follow.

 

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End of Season 2029 review

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It's a third Eliteserien win in a row and in total my 6th season out of 8 full seasons and one half season where I've finished top of the league I'm competing in so far in this adventure. This has to be one of the most satisfying in the end, as we've achieved a higher points total than ever before in the Eliteserien, and only 6 points off our record haul from our promotion season when I first took over. We conceded fewer goals, mostly I think due to our defensive and goalkeeper additions, and in Ferlin we have a record breaking striker. Top scorer three years running, he has improved year on year and this year barely missed a single game through injury. He didn't hit the magic 50 goals, but 49 isn't bad in 43 games!

As a club, we've moved forward significantly. Training and youth facilities are now excellent, while the stadium is again being expanded to 14,000 seats if I recall the news item correctly. Our bank balance is strong despite significant expenditure. I think my team here is nearly over, but I'd like to see what happens with the European campaign before I move on. 

It must be said the one aspect, or aim of my save I didn't work on this year was goal scoring keepers. I parked that to allow Ferlin to nearly hit a half century, and I'm happy I did so. However, I'm going to return to this at my next club.

The squad

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By the end of the season, these were the players in the first team squad.

Goalkeepers

Karlstad had a brilliant start and made a huge difference early on in our campaign. Some errors around the half way mark allowed Sorensen quite a bit of game time and he impressed overall. I said I wouldn't play him as I signed him thinking he was home grown, however, due to shipping out a number of foreign players last year I did have room for him. I may allow him to leave if I can get good money for him, as he isn't any better than Karlstad and Karlstad is home grown. 

Defenders

Kolberg and Haraldstad played the majority of games together at CB once again this season. Both chipped in 6 goals each which was impressive. Nava also played a lot (not in the screenshot), but a £5 million bid came in from Besiktas in November and once that was agreed I put him in the reserves to allow more game time for Martinsen and Lyngvaer, who also appeared at CM in the BWM role. I haven't quite decided on Lyngvaer as his personality puts me off, but he will probably stay in the squad as he is Norwegian. Martinsen will get increased game time now Nava has gone.

Dale and Martynov didn't increase our assists from RB and LB respectively when they joined, but they have added solidity and often start attacks. Roughly a key pass a game shows they are having an impact. Garbutt played a lot more than I thought he would as Martynov was out injured quite a bit. He actually did really well, and is a solid choice now having been a bit iffy last season. Bednar played a bit at RB, as did Kruse. 5 of Kruse's assists came in one game from RB, cutting in on his left foot and swinging in crosses. It worked once then never worked again!

Midfield

Azeez improved so much this season. 10 assists yes, but 133 key passes averages at 3 a game. Nobody else gets close to these figures. Really pleased and although his 6.95 average is just below 7, I've usually been seeing 6.6 or lower for this role so this is very pleasing. So many of my players just need that time to settle in. Robertsen was injured for 7 months. It did allow Martinsen and Lyngvaer more game time, as when resting Azeez I often used Kruse or Bednar there. When not using them at DLP, Bednar and Kruse rotated at BWM. Both have 16 pace, and this element is so important for my team as it allows them to catch up with players if they get beyond the pressing of the forwards.

On the wings, Marlon (LW), Yndestad (LW), Hartviksen (RW) and Sabelo (RW) all chipped in. Using Sabelo at RW really improved things for me, as it gave me a much better option for when Hartviksen wasn't doing it. I have no desire to replace any of these players. Sabelo is looking a potential star, so if he goes it'll be for big money.

Forwards

Lappalainen remains my first choice DLF, but Molenaar came in more towards the end of the campaign, and some of his 8 assists were delightful. I have a feeling he should settle more next year if I retain faith in him. Ferlin, well I've spoken enough about him above!

Other squads

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A few familiar names in the Tromso 2 squad. Johnsgard was a regular before we demoted him this season. I'm not sure whether to sell him, or keep him in the second team as a backup. A lot will depend on whether Sorensen goes.

Skeide played a few games rotating with Ferlin, but towards the end of the season I dropped him down to give him game time as Ferlin was just so good. Him and Reinholtz should feature more next season.

Olesen may play now that Nava is on his way out as I could bring him in. However, his potential just dropped from 5 to 4, and there's definitely better CBs I could bring in. 

Aasen and Grimen have huge potential, but aren't yet suited to my first team. Loans may follow when they hit 18.

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The U18s with biggest potential are usually promoted to Tromso 2. However, Granli is the best here not yet promoted. If I can give him some first team action next year I will. Schjetne is also perfectly suited to DLP role so may play some cup games. 

I need to shuffle the pack with Tromso 2, as I like one player in each position in Tromso 2 and the youth team so that they all get good game time. Anyone over 18 will go out on loan or be sold, or promoted to the first team.

Other news

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Ah yes, 18000 capacity we will have during most of next season, more than I thought!

Thoughts for the future

So, I'll play the European campaign, then resign and look to jobs in Denmark. Going through the squad in this post already makes me feel sad that I'm planning to leave, but I do feel I've achieved enough here to warrant a move to a league that may only be just above us in the coefficients currently, but in reality has significantly higher player pull and financial might (especially in the top teams). I'll keep an eye on job security as their season continues as it's likely we'll be looking just after the winter period unless we pull off a miracle and make it to the final of the Europa League!

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Pre-season 2030

I've found this a tough one to get through. I know I want to leave the club, but at the same time want to finish the European campaign off first. That's meant selling and buying and preparing for a season I'm likely to play less than a third of before resigning. At the same time, when the youth intake came through, it really was a golden generation. If these players all reach their potential, it's likely 7 of them would be in the first team or in the squad just from one year! This made me want to stay here for longer. However, I'm determined to leave anyway. Denmark will be a real challenges as I'll show once I've resigned (Kobenhavn have been completely dominant).

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Transfers

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Ignoring the loans which are all for development purposes, two major transfers stand out. Nava and Bednar leave for nearly £15 million which is huge money. Bednar is immediately worth £15 million for Brighton. Neither wanted to stay due to interest in them, and to be honest I had ready made replacements lined up for both. Olesen is the other notable departure, I was going to give him a chance, but Mork became available and I would rather him as my 9th foreigner. 

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Mork replaces Nava's height, but I think he has more about him than the American did. I'll work slightly on his pace, but he looks brilliant to me. It's a shame I'll only use him for a short time!

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Makhetha comes in as the perfect replacement for Bednar. I'm really pleased with him. 

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Fagerhoi is for the future, but may get some game time this year.

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Squad for the season

Not too many changes. I have plenty of young players worthy of promotion, but will try and give game time to the oldest and most promising. Reinholtz is definitely top of this list. He's being touted as the next Erling Haaland!

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We're favourites for the title again, so it'll be interesting to see how this squad does once I leave. I've tried to ensure nobody important is out of contract soon, and although I may come back for some of the youngsters (Sabelo is now a wonderkid), this squad should have enough to maintain their dominance in Norway for a few years yet.

Europa League

This is the reason I am still here and not job hunting in Denmark. 

The draw has not been kind...

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March 2030

You wait a whole year for a goalkeeper to score a free kick, then two come along in one month!

Firstly, Karlstad set us on our way in the super cup. I've also put him back on penalties, but he's missed 2 already this month :seagull:

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The next free kick goal was in an unlucky 2-1 defeat to Inter Milan. Sorensen's was arguably the better free kick as it was from further out and right in the corner.

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That away goal, although we then conceded, could prove vital.

We rested most of our team in the league, resulting in Reinholtz becoming our youngest scorer in a 1-0 win against Stabaek. We should have won this one more convincingly, but a win when you rotate is a win!

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On to the second leg against Inter. We took an early lead through Marlon, who got lucky when his initial shot rebounded back into his path. Our chances were hit when Azeez went off injured. Robertsen wasn't in the squad, so ball winning midfielder Martinsen took over instead. Inter quickly equalised, but then scored a horrible own goal to tie things up on aggregate and on away goals. 68 minutes played, and the main man from last season, Ferlin, received the ball in the box and slammed in a brilliant volley. We held on relatively comfortably to knock out Inter, who've won the (inactive) Serie A three years running and have a worldwide reputation. A significant moment in our history!

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We draw another Italian side in the Quarter finals. Fiorentina should be a much easier match and we have the confidence now that we can beat significantly better sides. 

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Overall, a perfect month. The Super Cup win is our first for three years and makes it 2 wins out of 4 attempts. 100% in the Eliteserien is important, but more importantly we're now deep into the Europa league knockout stages. It means I'll be sticking around for at least 3 more league games and the first round of the cup. 

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April 2030

The free kick keeper goals just keep coming!

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In fact, the goalkeeper goals in general keep coming.

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Sorensen is in on the act too, with a penalty. I've noticed Ferlin's goal return has dropped significantly as a result of keepers being back on penalties and only realised that 16 of his goals last year were penalties! Still, 33 normal goals and 16 pens is still brilliant work. Both keepers have missed multiple penalties as well. I am yet to find a keeper who consistently slots home the pens!

Goalkeeper goals aside, this has been a brilliant month. We just keep winning in the league, and have set records along the way.

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We're already 2 points clear with a game in hand. Beating Bodo was a big step as it's been 7 games since we beat them!

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On to Europe. 

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A great first leg result. Garbutt is becoming more and more important to us in the big games, easing out Martynov at LB from starting the European ties. He got the key assist for Mork's first goal (he's going to be a weapon with 19 jumping) for the club. Lappalainen scored a really good header late on to seal a deserved victory.

We built on that with an early goal in the home leg, and although we did then concede, we saw out the game in relative comfort.

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So, it seems I'll be staying a little longer, to play the Semi Final of the Europa League. In real life no Norwegian side has ever made it past the quarter finals of a European competition, although I haven't checked if this success has been surpassed in FM world (will do that later when on the game). I feel we could become a real fixture of European competition with time. Obviously I won't be there for that; I still feel I want to make an impact in more leagues as this one is becoming far too easy if I'm honest. I've also never done a save with more than 2 clubs, so a third would be a record for me!

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We also came through the cup unscathed despite much rotation! A great month, and players will be nicely rested ahead our semi final against...

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May 2030 Europe update

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Well this is going to be hard. Ferlin pulled a late goal back, but we were taken apart by Vinicius once he scored the first. They were significantly the better side to be honest.

Our fans didn't fancy us for the return leg...

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We actually began really well, on the front foot and we took the lead after a mix up in the Spurs defense. We missed a couple of really good chances too. However, once Spurs equalised it was never likely to happen.

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We can hold our heads high after the home draw. I honestly don't think this side is anywhere near the level of Tottenham, but we also shouldn't be at the level of Inter or Fiorentina, so we need to be incredibly proud of our performance.

Alas, for me I think that is time to call it a day here. Denmark awaits as I edge further south on my so-far Scandinavian tour.

We leave the team sitting pretty in the league:

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I also leave a very talented squad behind. I just hope whomever takes over retains the core of the squad, as they should retain the league with ease. One regret is how well Karlstad has started the season in terms of goals and performances in goal. Maybe I could have gotten into double figures for a goalscoring goalkeeper for the first time in this save with him?! Nevermind! 

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I think I leave the club as a whole in a pretty good state too. Stadium capacity will have more than doubled since my arrival as well.

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The goalscoring keeper challenge is also well and truly back on.

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Job hunting in Denmark

As I've said before, the next step for me is Denmark. This is how job security looks. FC Midtjylland may be a good choice if they end up firing their manager. It wouldn't be a step up as such, but would give me a chance to try and knock Kobenhavn off their perch. They've won pretty much every league going (I think it's 7 in a row). I wouldn't be against taking them over and trying to win a European trophy with their financial might, however it would take Stimac being poached by a bigger club for this to happen. Copenhagen is actually somewhere I've been before and I loved the city, so would be a potential eventual destination in Denmark if I treat my next club as a stepping stone. I'm not prepared to drop down the divisions with this one as I'm now used to a certain standard of football.

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New job 8th August 2030!

Well this is very pleasing! Kobenhavn have some serious pedigree and I'm sure I can give them some European adventures given my success with Tromso. I'll have a look through players and staff and the current situation of the club.

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Kobenhavn August 2030

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This was the only thing I asked for in the interview and they approved it. 

Otherwise, the facilities are superb.

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The finances are also very strong. The budget gives us a good amount to work with too.

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The club are currently half way through a very busy period in August. They've done very well so far, so this will be about continuing the good work of Igor Stimac.

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Indeed, if we look at how they've done, they've won every league since the game started!

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However, no European trophy, so that must be my aim here before I consider moving elsewhere. I'm really excited by this!

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Kobenhavn squad review August 2030

So, lets take a look at the squad. I've included all players at the club in this view. After looking at this, I decided to go with the same 4-2-4 formation I used with Tromso, so will discuss the following in that context.

Goalkeepers

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Straight away we can see the glaring problem at Kobenhavn. The goalkeeping options are not good. Harm looks a prospect, but he's got 3 determination as well as being unambitious. That's a really poor personality for development. I've not got long to solve this problem. Perhaps I'll return to Tromso for new free-kick scoring Karlstad...

Defenders

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Nelsson is the standout player here, with Wober close behind. Both are over 30 which is of concern to me, while I don't like seeing players jaded 6 games in to the season. The biggest problems here are the lack of depth. We have 3 CB/DMs (Nelsson, Bojdys and Winther), 1 RB who is leaving in January, and 1 LB (Wober's natural position). Our next best player, Cham is out on loan. The fact Boysen may be in the squad is worrying. I need depth here quickly. I could go three at the back, but with no real wingback options this isn't really viable. 

Midfield

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I'm pretty pleased here. Grcic looks a good DLP, while Panic, Priske and Kwang can all operate there or potentially as DLF or Priske as a AF. Bojdys is the only player who suits a BWM role, so I may need to bring in another as Laursen and Cham are out on loan. I'm going to give everyone bar Blomme a go over the first few games and then may loan Kwang out, but will retain him for now. Singh is a weird one as he can play across the midfield roles, but doesn't look brilliant for any of them!

Attacking midfield

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So this is where all the squad depth is! Daramy and Obiang are clearly two of the best players at the club. Daramy has the dreaded 'rst' symbol though, so likely we will need to send him off on a holiday. That'll leave Obiang on the left and Thomsen, who was a potential target for me at Tromso, on the right. Lukic, Gillberg, Steffensen and West look closest to playing backup roles. It's likely some will be stuck in the reserves and some will go on loan if they're 18 or over. Not sure what it is with these older 'amateur' player Kobenhavn have...

Forwards

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I've included a few of the players from attacking mid/ midfield slots (which I've tried not to do for the other sections as repeating players doesn't help me organise the squad) as there's only one natural striker at the club. Campana has been bought and sold for around £100 million in his day, including a £40 million purchase by PSG. I'm not wowed by him, but he's capable of playing at both DLF and AF. Thomsen will not play as a striker, but Daramy might. Just realised I've cut him off the top of the image! Panic is better at DLF, as is Kwang, while Priske could do a role as an AF. His favoured role in shadow striker. 

Summary

We've got huge issues in defense and in goal. Quite a few of our players are also getting on a bit and I would prefer to move these on. The club want us to spend all £11 million of the transfer budget, so we will probably aim to do that on defenders and a keeper. I am very tempted to go back to Tromso for a few players. 

Regardless of the weaknesses of the squad, we are significantly stronger than our domestic rivals. Therefore, strengthening will be about getting the balance right to try and do well in Europe consistently. 

I'm going to play a few games and then will evaluate further I think.

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Squad review part 2

Before I play any games, I've now selected my team based on my review above. It looks like this. Emil Thomsen is my only starter who has not previously been getting game time. Winter and Priske will get more game time for now while Nelsson and Daramy rest and recuperate from the huge 4 and 5 games they've played this season respectively. :rolleyes:

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In Denmark, the registration rules are much easier. You need a minimum of 4 players trained at the club for 3 years before their 21st birthday, and 8 trained in Denmark before the same date. Much easier to meet than Norway and Sweden's rules. The only oddity is the requirement to have a goalkeeper on the bench, something I almost never normally do. Don't get comfortable on the bench Svennings, your days are numbered!

I'll do some player profiles and updates at the end of August 2030 as I'll know a lot more about the squad by then! The scouts will be out looking for a goalkeeper and defensive reinforcements.

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Posted (edited)

One day into the job and our only left back (who is really a centre back I've realised) is out.

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Excluding Nelsson, who is currently on holiday, we have 0 LB, 2 CB and 1 RB plus one very young and terrible LB/CB option. We need emergency reinforcements!

Edited by Jtomsett11
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Transfers August 2030

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I'm only responsible from the 9th August. I've let two players go on loan, one to Tromso (how could I turn their offer down?!) and one to AaB. Both are young-ish right wingers and there's better ones in the squad in Thomsen, Daramy and Lukic. 

Incomings, we have a LB on loan. I asked my DoF for a loan recommendation and signed without scouting which is something I normally avoid, however with Wober out injured we had very little option but to go in for an emergency. He's a pretty good signing considering that!

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Next, we bring in a LB who I actually see as a CB. Avbelj came recommended by one of my scouts who already had good knowledge on him. If we can develop his pace slightly he'll do well for us in either role, although he'd be a very defensive full back.

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Next we come on to the Tromso boys!

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We bring in Reinholtz, who has 5 star potential (4.5 gold on the scout report) so this could be a brilliant deal for us in the longer term. With a bit of development he will be quality!

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Karlstad comes in for the here and now. He's immediately worth £6.5million, so I'm pleased with this signing. Let's get him on free kicks and penalties and see how he does. Mostly I've signed him as he made a big difference in goal for me with Tromso. 

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And finally, we bring in Martinsen. He's significantly lower rated than his scout report, but to be honest I just needed another midfielder who could play as a BWM and Martinsen was impressing me with Tromso. Can he make the step up? If he improves a little in key stats I think he'll be a good rotation option for a few years. I love his personality too. That's probably it for former Tromso players, although I'd happily go back in for CB Tomas Mork if we can get him for a reasonably price. He currently isn't interested in moving as I'd only just signed him for them.

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August 2030 update

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A good start as the team get used to my style of play. We were 4-0 up at half time against AGF before they scored 3 quick goals. A corner finished the game off for us, and we were much better defensively for the rest of the month, conceding just once. 

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I obviously can't take much credit for this record as only 6 of the wins are mine!

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Karlstad had a good debut!

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We're rewarded for our European progress with almost as tough a group as I had with Tromso. Barcelona, check. Bayern instead of United. Roma instead of Monaco. Can we finish third? That's what we'll aim for this season as I think we could make some headway in the Europa league.

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Overall, a great start and we've got a little more depth to the defense and a better goalkeeper now. We still need a new RB for January, but that's slightly less pressing and I can allow my scouts to focus on this over the next few weeks and months.

 

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