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(FM21XB) "Not all of those who wander are lost" - a meander through FM21.


withnail316
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May (part 2)

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Heart breaking. Our only home defeat of the season put the title within Gateshead's grasp, and they didn't let go. The final day mauling was perhaps inevitable, considering the pressure. The biggest blow though was losing 17-goal striker Joe Piggott to injury, that will rule him out of the play-offs. 

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Our second place finish puts us straight into the semi final, which is a single game at home with the winners off to Wembley for the final. First off, Chester will travel to Brackley while Hereford host Alfreton in one-off quarter finals. We'll meet the winners of the Brackley v Chester tie. 

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Play-offs
National League North - 2020/21

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Two exceptionally tight semi finals, us against Chester who had won five games in a row, but Emmanuel Dieseruvwe's 23rd goal of the season was enough to send us through. Boston meanwhile suffered defeat to Hereford, who had finished 9 points behind them over the course of the season. 

The final was to be played in York, much to my surprise, in front of a capacity crowd. 

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Job. Done. We're going up!!!

Final league table

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York City
Season summary 2020/21 - National League North

League
Media prediction: 2nd
Finished: 2nd (promoted via the play-offs

Cups
FA Cup: eliminated in the 3rd round by Sheffield United
FA Trophy: eliminated in the 5th round by Weymouth

Top scorers
Emmanuel Dieseruvwe: 24 goals in all comps (20 in the league)
Joe Piggott: 17 goals in all comps (14 in the league)
Jake Cassidy: 11 goals in all comps (8 in the league)
Harry Bunn: 11 goals in all comps (8 in the league)

Top assists
Michael Duckworth: 16 in all comps

Positives
There's a lot to like about my first season in Yorkshire. Of course I'm delighted with how things went on the pitch (even if I'm disappointed we missed out on the league title) and off the pitch, there's so much to be positive about too. We've almost £2m in the bank, which I would hope will help fund a decent increase in budget next year, while I'd also like to spend a bit more on the youth facilities. We've also been able to secure new contracts for about half of the first team squad, meaning I'll only have to recruit 10-12 players for next season. Much better than the 20+ I was looking at not that long ago! All in all, I can't really complain. 

Concerns or disappointments
Nothing really to add here this season. The club is in a good place. 

Ambitions
While my intentions are for this to be a career with many ports of call, I want to get this club into and established in the EFL before I even think about moving on. 

Surprise of the season
Very few "shocks" this year, but I guess a nice surprise was going so far in the FA Cup. 

Manager's Player of the season
Difficult to look beyond Emmanuel Dieseruvwe, but an honourable mention for young defender Ted Moulden

Attendances
Lowest attendance: 4,465
Highest attendance: 8,512 (sell-out)
Average attendance: 7,089

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9 hours ago, Deisler26 said:

Promotion!! Great work!

Thanks mate. 

21 minutes ago, g1nh0 said:

Nice job on the promotion! Got a fair bit of cash in the bank too (Y)

Thanks, man. Delighted to have gone up. The board made an insane amount of money available for transfers considering we're a non-league club. I won't spend even 10% of it. 

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York City
Season preview 21/22 - National League

Club culture and plan

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Media expectation: 18th (of 24)
Board expectation: secure a mid-table finish

Transfer budget (remaining): £415,000
Wage budget: £36,622p/w (£10,800p/w under budget)

A short pre-season then (the play-off final was played on June 19th, while the new season begins on July 31st) and we're ready to get going again. I have to admit that the board were incredibly generous in terms of budget for the upcoming season, offering me initially more than £750,000 for transfer fees. While that's obviously great, I've planned to keep my powder dry there in hope of an upgrade of our facilities over the upcoming season, while my scouts have also struggled to identify targets worthy of spending substantial funds on. 

While I'm grateful for their generosity, I'm less impressed with the club culture that's been imposed on me. I've no intention of playing direct football, while I'm also more concerned with attacking football than being sound at the back. Hopefully there isn't too much of a disagreement over the coming season, but it is something that could make me reconsider my idea of staying until we're established in the EFL. Time will tell, I suppose. Nevertheless, the rest of the board's requirements are fair enough. I've no issue with midtable this year, and pressing towards the play-offs in future. 

I did ask the board the day after the play-off final to consider expanding the ground, but we only filled 83% of the capacity last season, so that was rejected. I also asked for a new contract, which was turned down, as was my request for a facility upgrade. Ah well, next time. 

Transfers

It's been a very busy summer in terms of transfers, although at time of writing, we've only spent £25,000 on incoming deals. No fewer than NINETEEN players have left the club at the end of their contracts, with the vast majority being fringe and reserve men. The most notable were centre back Kieran Kennedy, who has joined Yeovil, full back Scott Barrow, and first choice goalkeeper Peter Jameson. I had also expected to lose winger Harry Bunn, but the day before his contract was due to expire we sat down again, and he signed a new three year deal. We've also let experienced centre back Matty Brown join Torquay United on loan for the rest of the season, left back Sean Newton has been listed and is attracting NLN/S interest from several clubs, and winger Ashley Harper is also likely to move on in the coming days. 

in terms of transfers in, we've signed loads this summer, probably more than I intended, if I'm honest. First up we've extended the loan of striker Joe Piggott for another year from Wigan, and he's been joined on loan by fellow striker Jake Hutchinson from Colchester. Another on-loan man Armani Little was snapped up on a free from Torquay, goalkeeper Ryan Boot joined for £1,000 from Solihull, while midfielder George Glendon was snapped up for free from Chester after performing well against us last season. Young Polish goalkeeper Marcel Wusiewicz had rejected a chance to join us on loan from Burnley last season, but he was happy to come in on a free as our back up this year, while Jake Andrews will offer competition for Bunn on the left. He also joins on a free, from Torquay. Defender Alex Finney joins from fellow NL side Aldershot, also on a free, and he'll compete with £10,000 signing Lewis Baines to play alongside Ted Moulden at the heart of the back four. Baines joined from Chorley, and was outstanding the day they beat us 4-0 last season. Jack Iredale was the last player we payed a fee for, the left back costing £14,000 from Cambridge United, and he'll face competition from Jack Armer, who is on loan from Carlisle. Ben Hughes can offer competition all along the right flank, and joins on loan from Sheffield Wednesday, and finally young Aiden Steele was released by Crystal Palace, and he'll offer decent back up in the heart of midfield this season. 

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August (well, almost)

I don't have time for one more game this morning but I really wanted to get an update in, so here we go.

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I'm absolutely delighted with how the season has started. The wins against Bromley and especially Wrexham were absolutely brilliant, while the point at Meadow Lane was a true backs to the wall defensive performance. An excellent start. 

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A few bits of news. 

First up, the board agreed to a pretty major upgrade. 

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Ideally it would have been my youth facilities instead, but I'll take it. 

Next up, I got my managerial report.

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All pretty good then, despite their frustration at our (open, attacking, short passing) style of play. As a result:

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September

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A pretty good month, although the Dorking defeat was a terrible performance against one of the worst teams in the league. The draw with Dagenham was frustrating as well, as they scored in the 88th minute. Still, things are looking good, despite us losing Jake Hutchinson for up to 3 months, In response, we signed free agent Andy Dallas, who had scored 16 goals in the NLS last season, and he scored for us on his debut. 

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October

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Our league form has been absolutely impeccable over October, we've put in some outstanding performances over the course of the month, and scored plenty of goals too. The FA Cup defeat was a real shame, but I had made 11 changes for a game against a side who are in the bottom half of the NLN, and we absolutely dominated the game, but it wasn't to be. Never mind. 

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It's ludicrous we're seven points clear, but I'll take it!

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Just made a decision to spend £80,000 on improving the centre of our midfield. 

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It's a lot of money, but it means I've got four CMs I'd be happy to use in both the NL and LG2. He had been one of the top performers in the NLN for Fylde, and I'm sure he can make the step up. 

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December

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A big month, and an undefeated one. The draw with Aldershot was irritating as we were 2-0 up at half time, but they were the only league goals we conceded this month. We're just beginning to look quite solid back there. 

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In other news, Joe Piggott, the Wigan striker who is on loan for his second seas on with us, has just signed a permanent deal with us. He's cost us £18,000. However, I'm expecting to lose our best player next month. Ted Moulden, the former Bolton youth I signed last season, is now rated as an excellent League One central defender. He is being chased by a few clubs, and he has a release clause worth £250,000 in his contract. I would be very surprised if he's still with us when February arrives. 

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February

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Despite two frustrating draws against sides in the bottom half...

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...we find ourselves six points clear at the top, with 11 games to play. 

We're also just a two-legged semi final away from a trip to Wembley in the FA Trophy. We'll meet Leyton Orient, with both games being played in March. 

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March

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An excellent month sees us move to the brink of the EFL, while we've also booked a trip to Wembley in the FA Trophy. Admittedly, that was booked the hard way after the defeat at home, but we were magnificent in East London in the second leg. 

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One more push!

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York City
Season summary 2021/22 - National League

League
Media prediction: 18th
Finished: 1st (promoted as champions)

Cups
FA Cup: eliminated in Fourth Qualifying Round
FA Trophy: Winners

Top scorers
Emmanuel Dieseruvwe: 28 goals in 52 games (26 in the league)
Jake Hutchinson: 12 goals in 32 games (8 in the league)
Andy Dallas: 11 goals in 30 games (8 in the league)
Harry Bunn: 10 goals in 46 games (10 in the league)

Top assists
Michael Duckworth: 13 in all competitions
Emmanuel Dieseruvwe: 12 in all competitions

Positives
Well, where do we start? Considering I would have been happy with a mid-table finish, we've been absolutely magnificent. Just five league defeats, only 31 goals conceded in 46 games, four players into double figures with goals scored, and a winning visit to Wembley in the trophy. Lovely stuff. I'm also confident that the vast majority of the squad can stand up to the challenge of playing in the EFL, so I'm not going to go too crazy in the transfer market this summer, either. I'd like another centre back, possibly a right back, but I'm happy enough with what we have. We also have around £1m in the bank and two or three young kids who aren't too far away from breaking into the first team squad, so all in all, things are looking great. 

Concerns or disappointments
Naturally, I was disappointed to crash out of the cup so early, but very few.

Ambitions
I am considering whether it's time to start looking around for my next job, but I'm not convinced I'll leave this summer. 

Surprise of the season
Expected to finish in 18th, yet winning the title? Yeah, I'll take that. I was also really pleased with the performance of Emmanuel Dieseruvwe on making the step up. He's had a magnificent season. 

Manager's player of the season
Michael Duckworth. Practically ever-present, and absolutely brilliant on the right flank. 

Attendances
Lowest attendance: 7,553
Highest attendance: 8,512 (sell-out)
Average crowd: 8,197.

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