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Hi,

After issues with my attempts to run a Arsenal Women Football Club save on FM21 I have reverted back to FM19, which I feel allows me the ability to manage women team in most realistic setting and manner possible. I have not spent any real amount of time on a Football Manager game since 2007, and during that time my interest in the sport disappeared completely, until I had a daughter and through her found a love for the game again - with the women side of the sport.

Given the time lapsed since I last had a run at Football Manager, I am not setting out with any particular footballing philosophy and intend to evolve my knowledge of both the game and IRL football tactics as I go along by slowly progressing and allowing myself the time to analysis absolutely everything. I expect to only simulate one game per week, allowing me plenty of time to assess every step.

In this first post I wanted to outline the state of the women's game in England and how I plan to reflect this situation during this save. The top tier of English women's football, FA Women's Super League, is a fully professional league; requiring clubs to offer their players a minimum 16-hour a week contract and to form a youth academy.

The top three teams in England, by some distance over the last the last 6 years have been; Chelsea, Manchester City and Arsenal. All three clubs (as are almost all women teams) are subsidiaries of the male clubs, who fund in full their staff wage bills, which allows these clubs to circumvent the Salary Cap rule must not spend more than 40% of their gross annual operating budget for each 12 month period - in the last available financial statements for each team, losses totaled £3,238,166 (excluding costs borne by their parent companies) the order of recent final league standings reflected losses incurred; 1. Chelsea £1.8m, 2. Man City £910k, 3. Arsenal £519k. 

Clubs play at small lower-tier men club grounds with low attendances; Arsenal avg. 2.209, Man Utd 2.101, Reading 901, Everton 400 - resulting in very little match-day revenue. However the league sponsorship deal with Barclays valued at £10m over 3 seasons has seen an injection of prize funds into the WSL, with £500k divided according to league position, with the winner receiving £100k, 2nd place £67k, 3rd £60k and so on. The Women's FA Cup prize funds, with the winner awarded £25k, and the runner-up £15k provide little financial reward, with those clubs at the lowest echelon of the sport losing money to participate in the early rounds. The silver lining to this lack of present sustainability is a newly signed tv deal with the BBC, BT and Sky worth £24m over 3 seasons. WSL clubs will receive 75%, approx. £6m to be shared amongst 12 teams, £500k each. Whilst this boost is some way from balancing the books at the larger teams, the additional exposure may increase revenues in other areas, i.e. attendance, merchandise, sponsors. 

Using StuartFM Women Database 3.0 and his Women's Database Add-on some minor tweaks; removing all teams budgets - I will play the save to the best of my ability whilst ensuring it feels as true to real life as possible. That means;

No transfer fees
Short-term contracts 1-2 yrs

I intend to base the wage structure on calculation of *0.08. Two examples of this method;
1) Miedema. £55,000 p/w * 0.08 = £211,200 p/a
2) Evans. £22,000 p/w * 0.08 = £84,480 p/a
I expect this figure is incorrect in both cases IRL, however it does seem when used across team to be somewhat reflective of overall budget.

Existing Arsenal Women 

Team Philosophy

The recently departed Joe Montemurro four seasons at Arsenal regularly saw fewer than their seven allotted substitutes for WSL matches named, as the Australian preferred to operate with a tight squad, staffed with players that can play multiple positions.

The decision to rely on a small group came under scrutiny when the squad experienced what appeared to be ever frequent injuries. “I know the risks and I tell my superiors that at Arsenal I don’t want to work with a big squad because working with smaller squads can give greater care to players and really develop them into your style and into your plan for the team,” Montemurro explained. “My utopia is having 16 or 17 players who you can put into the team at any one time and not detect any real change in the way you play. But I know it’s risky and I take full responsibility for that.”

Tactics

“We usually play with a 4-3-3 but in reality it’s fluid and we make small tweaks for every game, so sometimes we might invert the full-backs and ask them to move into central areas, for example. Or we might overload in certain areas or identify spaces where we know we can hurt the opposition.”

1.png     2.png

“The quality of the squad allows us to make in-game adjustments, and that’s what I mean when I talk about the care we can give players. We can give them the tools to play different roles or to react to things that happen in-game so that we can make these adjustments when we need to.”

Name Position
Pauline Peyraud-Magnin GK
Manuela Zinsberger GK
Harper Shearer D (R)
Louise Quinn D (C)
Lia Wälti D (C), DM, M (C)
Leonie Maier D (RC), WB/M (R)
Leah Williamson D (RLC), DM, M (C)
Tabea Kemme D/WB/M (RL)
Emma Mitchell D/WB/M (L)
Viktoria Schnaderbeck D (RLC), M (C)
Lisa Evans D/M (R), AM (RL), ST (C)
Katrine Veje D/M/AM (L)
Jennifer Beattie D (C), ST (C)
Clara Rose DM, M (C)
Kim Little DM, M/AM (C)
Jordan Nobbs DM, M/AM (RC)
Katie McCabe WB (L), M (LC), AM (RL), ST (C)
Sophia Clark M/AM (C)
Daniëlle van de Donk M/AM (C)
Abigail Stephenson AM (C), ST (C)
Beth Mead AM (RL), ST (C)
Danielle Carter AM (RL), ST (C)
Vivianne Miedema ST (C)

Stats (20/21)

Possession (calculated as the percentage of passes attempted) - 63.5%.
Goals For - 63 total. 2.83 avg.
Goals Against - 15 total. 0.68 avg.

Head-to-Head (2018-2021)

Chelsea. W1, L5, D2
Man City, W3, L5
Man Utd, W2, L1

Final League Positions

2020-2021, 3rd
2019-2020, 3rd
2018-2019, 1st
2017-2018, 3rd
2016-2017, 3rd

Last FA Cup, 2014-2015
Last League Cup, 2017–18

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Posted (edited)

Club "DNA"

I decided initially to focus on six mental attributes and three technical attributes to enable me begin forming opinions at the early stage of the kind of player I want in my team.

Mental Attributes
> Anticipation
> Composure
> Concentration
> Decisions
> Teamwork
> Work Rate


Technical Attributes
> First Touch
> Passing
> Technique

Edited by Arsenal_WFC
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Posted (edited)

Season 1 Expectations

League – Champions League Qualification
F.A. Cup – Reach Final
League Cup – Reach Final
UCL – Reach Quarter Finals

Increase in weekly wage budget by £5k, giving me approx. £90k available.

Season 1 Team

Spoiler

 

The colour coding below follows; red - not acceptable, yellow - target range, green - exceptional

Name Position Ant Cmp Cnt Dec Det Tea Wor Fir Pas Tec Total
Pauline Peyraud-Magnin GK 11 12 13 15 12 12 11 6 11 9 112
Manuela Zinsberger GK 13 13 15 16 12 12 12 5 12 9 119
Louise Quinn D (C) 14 5 11 14 19 10 10 11 11 10 115
Carolin Simon D (C) 13 9 12 15 8 10 11 6 11 10 105
Lia Wälti D (C), DM, M (C) 14 11 13 16 9 15 15 12 16 13 134
Leonie Maier D (RC), WB/M (R) 13 14 12 15 16 13 14 13 14 13 137
Leah Williamson D (RLC), DM, M (C) 12 18 12 12 14 9 13 15 17 15 137
Tabea Kemme D/WB/M (RL) 12 11 11 14 12 11 12 14 12 13 122
Emma Mitchell D/WB/M (L) 11 10 11 11 11 13 15 12 12 12 118
Rumi Utsugi D (LC), DM, M (C) 14 11 11 15 2 11 11 12 14 12 113
Viktoria Schnaderbeck D (RLC), M (C) 12 13 12 15 15 12 10 13 15 13 130
Lisa Evans D/M (R), AM (RL), ST (C) 11 11 12 11 12 13 15 13 12 12 122
Katrine Veje D/M/AM (L) 11 13 13 14 11 13 13 15 13 11 127
Jennifer Beattie D (C), ST (C) 13 13 13 12 14 8 11 14 13 13 124
Kim Little DM, M/AM (C) 14 15 15 14 16 15 16 16 17 16 154
Jordan Nobbs DM, M/AM (RC) 15 13 15 14 18 14 20 15 14 15 153
Katie McCabe WB (L), M (LC), AM (RL), ST (C) 10 11 7 14 11 11 11 13 11 14 113
Julia Spetsmark M (C) 11 11 11 15 11 11 11 15 15 15 126
Daniëlle van de Donk M/AM (C) 14 13 14 14 16 15 19 15 15 15 150
Leicy Santos M/AM (C), ST (C) 12 15 7 15 12 11 8 15 14 15 124
Beth Mead AM (RL), ST (C) 11 13 11 12 15 15 16 13 13 14 133
Danielle Carter AM (RL), ST (C) 15 8 12 15 10 12 13 15 12 15 127
Vivianne Miedema ST (C) 16 19 16 15 14 14 8 16 14 16 148
Lynn Williams ST (C) 14 13 12 15 15 11 9 15 11 11 126
Ashley Hatch ST (C) 14 8 10 14 13 10 11 14 11 13 118

 

Season 1 Injuries

Spoiler

Player    Date Injury    Time Out
J. Nobbs     17/08/2018    4 weeks
J. Beattie     21/08/2018    2 weeks
K. Little     10/09/2018    5 weeks


 

Edited by Arsenal_WFC
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Tactics

1

In a move away from the solo forward favoured by the previous manager I settled on 2-3-2-1-2 formation. I felt with this formation I can utilize the best players at the club. 

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Season 1 Transfers

With no transfer budget, I looked at loan options to increase the team to a level I felt was large enough to sustain a challenge on all competitive fronts whilst also allowing me ability to rotate players.

2

Looking to NSWL clubs for players, the wage budget impact was almost zero. £2.4k p/w total for the 4 players. Santos from Atlético Madrid in comparison, impact was £6k p/w.

After 3 friendly games I felt there was a need for another centre-back, so I went and got Carolin Simon from Bayern Munich on loan.

3

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Season 1 Pre-Season Results

4

The club on my arrival had just 2 friendlies organised, 1 of which was abroad. I cancelled those and booked in 7 to keep the players busy and build match fitness.

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Posted (edited)

Arsenal - Aston Villa
#1 - Conti Cup #1

Spoiler

 

1 1

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     M. Zinsberger - - -   6.9
DCR     L. Williamson - - -   8.8
DCL   PoM J. Beattie - 4 1   9
WBR     L. Maier 1 3 1   8.6
WBL 69   K. McCabe - - -   6.7
MCR     K. Little - 1 1   8.1
MC 74   J. Spetsmark - - -   6.7
MCL     V. Schnaderbeck - - -   7.1
AMC     D. van de Donk - 1 -   7.1
STCR     V. Miedema - - - 2 8.8
STCL 74   B. Mead - - -   6.7
S1     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   -
S2     L. Quinn - - -   -
S3     K. Veje - - -   -
S4 74   L. Wälti - - -   7.4
S5 69   T. Kemme - - -   6.9
S6 74   D. Carter - - -   7.6
S7     A. Hatch - - -   -

 

 

Edited by Arsenal_WFC
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Posted (edited)

Birmingham - Arsenal
#2 - Conti Cup #2

Spoiler

 

1 2

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     M. Zinsberger - - -   6.9
DCR 69   L. Williamson - - -   6.9
DCL     L. Quinn - - -   7.5
WBR     L. Maier - 1 -   6.7
DM 69   L. Wälti - 2 -   6.9
WBL     T. Kemme - - -   6.7
MCR     K. Little - - -   7.2
MCL     V. Schnaderbeck - 2 -   6.9
AMC     D. van de Donk 1 3 -   7
STCR   PoM V. Miedema - - -   7.5
STCL 77   A. Hatch - 1 -   6.3
S1     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   -
S2 69   C. Simon - - -   6.8
S3     K. Veje - - -   -
S4 69   R. Utsugi - - -   6.8
S5     K. McCabe - - -   -
S6     B. Mead - - -   -
S7 77   D. Carter - 1 1   6.9

 

 
Edited by Arsenal_WFC
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Arsenal - Blackburn
#3 - Conti Cup #3

Spoiler

 

1 2

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     M. Zinsberger - - -   6.9
DCR     L. Williamson - - -   7.8
DCL     L. Quinn - 1 1   8.3
WBR     L. Maier 1 1 1   8
DM     L. Wälti - - -   7.5
WBL     T. Kemme 1 1 -   8.4
MCR 63   K. Little - 1 1   7.4
MCL 45+3   V. Schnaderbeck - - -   6.7
AMC     D. van de Donk - 1 -   7.9
STCR 45+3   V. Miedema - - - 2 9
STCL     D. Carter - 1 -   6.6
S1     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   -
S2     C. Simon - - -   -
S3     L. Evans - - -   -
S4 45   J. Spetsmark - 1 -   6.7
S5     K. McCabe - - -   -
S6 45   L. Santos - 1 -   6.6
S7 63   A. Hatch - - -   6.6

 

 

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Everton - Arsenal
#4 - Conti Cup #4

Spoiler

 

1 2

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   6.9
DCR   Yel L. Williamson - 1 -   7.1
DCL     C. Simon - - -   6.9
WBR 60   L. Maier - - -   6.7
DM   Yel R. Utsugi - 1 1   7.1
WBL 60   T. Kemme - - -   6.5
MCR     J. Spetsmark 1 1 1   7.6
MCL     V. Schnaderbeck - - -   6.8
AMC   PoM B. Mead - - -   8.3
STCR     A. Hatch - - -   7.1
STCL 60   D. Carter - - -   6.4
S1     M. Zinsberger - - -   -
S2     L. Quinn - - -   -
S3 60   L. Evans - - -   6.6
S4     L. Wälti - - -   -
S5 60   E. Mitchell - - -   6.7
S6     D. van de Donk - - -   -
S7 60   L. Williams - - -   6.5

 

 
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Ajax - Arsenal
#5 - WCL #1

Spoiler

 

12

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     M. Zinsberger - - -   6.9
DCR     L. Williamson - - -   6.7
DCL     J. Beattie - - -   6.7
WBR     L. Maier - - -   7.3
DM     L. Wälti - - -   6.9
WBL     E. Mitchell - - -   6.4
MCR 69   J. Spetsmark - 2 1   8.3
MCL     K. McCabe - - -   6.5
AMC 69   D. van de Donk - 1 -   7.3
STCR 69   V. Miedema - - -   6.8
STCL     B. Mead - 1 -   6.8
S1     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   -
S2     C. Simon - - -   -
S3     T. Kemme - - -   -
S4 69   L. Evans - - -   6.7
S5     K. Veje - - -   -
S6 69   J. Nobbs - - -   6.7
S7 69   D. Carter - - -   6.6

 

 
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Posted (edited)

Brighton - Arsenal
#6 - WSL #1

Spoiler

 

1 2

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     M. Zinsberger - - -   7.1
DCR     L. Williamson - 1 -   7.3
DCL 69   J. Beattie - - -   6.8
WBR 79   L. Maier - 1 1   7
DM     R. Utsugi - 1 -   7
WBL 69   T. Kemme - 1 -   6.7
MCR     J. Spetsmark - 2 -   6.9
MCL     V. Schnaderbeck 1 1 -   6.9
AMC   PoM D. van de Donk 3 4 1   9
STCR     V. Miedema - 1 - 2 8.8
STCL     A. Hatch 1 1 -   6.3
S1     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   -
S2 69   L. Quinn - - -   6.8
S3 79   K. Veje - - -   -
S4 69   L. Evans - 1 -   6.8
S5     L. Wälti - - -   -
S6     B. Mead - - -   -
S7     D. Carter - - -   -

 

 
Edited by Arsenal_WFC
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Arsenal - London City
#7 - Conti Cup #5

Spoiler

 

12v

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   6.8
DCR     C. Simon 1 1 -   7
DCL     J. Beattie - 1 -   7
WBR     L. Evans - 1 1   6.9
DM     L. Wälti - 2 -   7
WBL     K. Veje - - -   6.5
MCR 73   J. Spetsmark - 3 -   6.9
MCL     J. Nobbs - 1 -   6.3
AMC 61   L. Santos - 1 -   6.6
STCR     L. Williams - - -   6.5
STCL 73   A. Hatch - - -   7.2
S1     M. Zinsberger - - -   -
S2     L. Williamson - - -   -
S3     T. Kemme - - -   -
S4     E. Mitchell - - -   -
S5 61   B. Mead - - -   6.5
S6 73   K. McCabe - - -   6.7
S7 73   D. Carter - - -   6.7

 

 

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Arsenal - Fiorentina
#8 - WCL #2

Spoiler

 

1 2

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     M. Zinsberger - - -   6.9
DCR     L. Williamson - - -   7.1
DCL 62   J. Beattie - - -   7
WBR     L. Maier - - -   6.6
DM 62   L. Wälti - 1 -   6.9
WBL     E. Mitchell - - -   6.8
MCR     V. Schnaderbeck - 1 -   6.8
MCL     J. Spetsmark - - -   6.8
AMC   PoM D. van de Donk - 1 1   8.3
STCR     V. Miedema - 1 1   7.7
STCL 75   B. Mead - - -   6.7
S1     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   -
S2 62   L. Quinn - 1 -   6.9
S3     K. Veje - - -   -
S4     T. Kemme - - -   -
S5     K. McCabe - - -   -
S6 62   J. Nobbs - - -   6.6
S7 75   D. Carter - - -   6.7

 

 
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Arsenal - Bristol City
#9 - WSL #2

Spoiler

 

1 2

Pos Time S Name ChC Key Ast Gls Rat
GK     M. Zinsberger - - -   6.9
DCR   Yel L. Williamson - 1 -   7.2
DCL     J. Beattie - - -   7.2
WBR     T. Kemme - - -   6.6
DM 73   L. Wälti - - -   6.9
WBL   Yel K. McCabe - - -   6.6
MCR 73   V. Schnaderbeck - - -   6.9
MCL     J. Nobbs - - -   6.8
AMC     D. van de Donk - 2 1   7.4
STCR 81   V. Miedema - - -   7.1
STCL   PoM A. Hatch 1 1 -   8.3
S1     P. Peyraud-Magnin - - -   -
S2     L. Quinn - - -   -
S3     K. Veje - - -   -
S4 73   R. Utsugi - - -   6.8
S5 73 Yel J. Spetsmark - 2 1   7
S6     L. Evans - - -   -
S7 81   B. Mead - - -   -

 

 
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