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[FM22] Matryoshka


_Ben_
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This is certainly not a ‘look at me’ section, nor an endorsement of any of my other threads, merely a chance for me to keep all of my old work in one place and a chance for people to see the development of my thinking over the last few saves and how I’ve reached where I am now with my playing style.

 Pre-FM19 I was active on a few other boards, namely The Dugout and FM Now – but the few re-incarnations of these sites mean that I no longer have any previous saves anywhere online.

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I have been playing CM since 2001/2002 but my style has massively developed over the last few years. The early FMs would see me try and create dynasties, particularly in Italy, where I, to this day, have a soft spot for a lot of lower league teams. I have managed a range: Pistoiese, Milazzo, Messina, Castel di Sangro, Calcio Catania (the other one), Venezia, Cesena and many, many more! A lot of the time, I holidayed games and paid very little attention to what was going on with my players – merely just signing the best ones each window, sticking them into a downloaded tactic and leaving it to holiday for a few hours at a time.

It wasn’t until FM17 when I wanted to make a change to how I played…

 During that version, I spent time with First Vienna, under a Japanese moniker inspired by a FM16 player I had – although I can’t remember who he was or where he was from. After nearly twenty seasons, I had developed a wide range of feeder clubs who were providing great youth players to me and was rewarded with an in-game son, too. Later in calendar year, I started with Lyn, in Norway, where I used an Ivorian manager to bring an African feel to the club, before moving to the Norwegian national team and then the Ivorian. I think I became the first manager, in save, to win two successive World Cups with different nations.

FM18 saw a brief stint (well, for me) with Le Mont in Switzerland, where I took a seventh-tier team to the top tier before the in-game mechanics made it impossible to continue. Following that save, I used a Rwandan manager and dominated world football with BX Brussels, a club that is owned, in real life, by Vincent Kompany. I was also lucky to have a son in this save too, and he went on to be the all-time top scorer for Rwanda and, eventually, my assistant manager. This was the first save that I played without attribute numbers on – as there was a feature, at this time, that allowed the use of graphical bars instead.

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[FM19] Not all that glitters is gold was my starting save from FM19 and saw me take over Beira-Mar, a fallen giant(ish) of Portuguese football. As FM19 removed the graphical bars, I played this save with numbers but really got into the player development side of the save and this save also saw my hatred for attribute stars rise as key player and club legend Andre Folha was only rated at three times despite being the best scorer in Europe! A couple of issues arose, maybe as I started with the Beta game, so I ended after a couple of league victories.

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[FM19] One night in Serravalle… saw me take a plunge into the depths of Sammarinese football – playing the save without attributes (back to bars) and without CA and PA stars. It took a while and I rose through the depths of Italian football, building a squad largely from youth players with a selection of ‘marquee’ signings – players who I brought in, with great personalities to be team leaders and standout stars. I brought in some additional data captures using Microsoft Excel to track the development of some of my younger players. This game, for me, was important as it was the first time I had developed brothers from the academy and also saw me sign Dario Samaniego, who went on to become the manager in my first FM20 save…

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[FM20] Tequila and Mariachi? Was my first foray into FM20 and started with my using a skin that removed all sight of numbers from the game, relying on attribute ‘bands’ instead. I didn’t solely go youth only but towards the end of the save I spent the majority of my time developing players using a much more in-depth Excel system to track personalities. This save also saw an in-game son, Dario Samaniego, who spent a lot of time in the first team but sadly never reached the same heights as the squad. In this save, I developed the best first team that I think I have ever done before and was lucky enough to develop a lot of quality players from the intakes.

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[FM20] Voltaço saw me leave Europe and head to Brazil where I tried to create a talent factory that would see as much young, Brazilian talent moved on to Europe. In the end, over £500m of talent was moved on as I played a lot more with the in-game intricacies and made massive use of the ‘squad’ feature, building two teams to feature in the State Championships as well as the League. I think that the squad that was assembled was amongst the best I have ever done.

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[FM21] Hometown Heroes was my first FM21 save and I plumped for something I haven’t done for a long time – manage in England. What is more, I went to my hometown, Redditch United. Not only did I manage to take one of the worst sides below the Vanarama North all the way to an established Premier League team over a 25+ year career, I did so whilst building a solid recruitment and development model. I attempted to set up scouting ‘areas’ focusing on both my in-game manager’s back story, but also places significant to the past and present of Redditch. I also dabbled in youth development through specific pathways for u23 players, building on key areas, all whilst focusing on players from as local to Redditch as possible. In the end, the save fell short as the riches of the Premier League go against pretty much everything I stand for as a football manager.

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[FM21] Swiss Army Knife was my final FM21 save and, in all honesty, the best save I’ve ever had. After holidaying for five years, Joao Fernando, the best player from my Volta Redonda save, took over fourth tier Meyrin, before moving to Fribourg and onto Luzern, who themselves were down in the second tier. It’s the first save in which I’ve moved clubs and this was a key part of the ‘realism’ factor that I’ve grown super keen on. I moved away from Excel (or, at least, screenshots of tables) and moved towards using notes in game and then using data collected to create more visuals than ever before – both for own team performances and players I wanted to recruit. In terms of depth – this save had it all for me as I spent countless hours learning about tactics from watching more games, tweaking and evolving player roles and the training that the team undertake. One Europa League and seven league titles were won in a wonderful ten years in Lucern.

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The manager

6886435a8e1f13d9b7e1ecbdbc485ac5.png

Who else?!

I had long considered a foreign manager, either Toni Gonzalez or Anderson Costa from my Swiss adventure, but eventually settled on a Russian in the form of my favourite Luzern left back, Nikita Zakharov. Nikita possessed a bullet throw and was instrumental in seeing us make those marginal gains and win the Europa League. I could not withhold a dream move to Turin though but he made the club €51m richer. I have always been a sucker for an alternate universe manager and Nikita follows in the footsteps of the likes of Joao Fernando, Neyveson and Dario Samaniego - three legendary players for me in my FM career. As I said - it was more about the impact that he made rather than the development I got from him (although I did convert him from a winger!)

Here is a little more about him (and some Wiki links for a bit of extra reading should you wish)…

Nikita hails from Ryzdvyanyy (Russian: Рыздвяный), which is an urban locality (an urban-type settlement) in Izobilnensky District of Stavropol Krai, geographically located in the North Caucasus region in Southern Russia. The town has a population of just 7,710 (2010 Census); showing a slight increase since the breakup of the Soviet Union [7,468 (2002 Census); 6,284 (1989 Census)]. This small town is just an hour and a half drive from the equally small town of Privolnoye, birthplace of the first and last Soviet Union President, Mikhail Gorbachev.

7a60002861e7a3e37fabda924ebe5fb4.png

Stavropol Krai is bordered by Krasnodar Krai to the west, Rostov Oblast to the north-west, Kalmykia to the north, Dagestan to the east, and ChechnyaIngushetiaNorth Ossetia-AlaniaKabardino-Balkaria and Karachay-Cherkessia to the south. The western area of Stavropol Krai is considered part of the Kuban region, the traditional home of the Kuban Cossacks, with most of the krai's population living in the drainage basin of the Kuban River.

It is one of the most multi-ethnic federal subjects in Russia, with thirty-three ethnic groups with more than 2,000 persons each. Norwegians aren’t listed on the ethnic groups that populate the area but I have retained the dual nationality that Nikita had when he arrived at the Rosenberg academy.

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What a great read once again.. after reading those opening posts i can't wait to start myself and i'm really in doubt if i'm going to wait till 9 november.

You are triggering me not only to start a big (detailed) save with a special project but also giving me vibes to think about restarting my real tife youth coaching situation :) 

Go and write a book ! :)

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Fantastic preview! Will definitely follow!

And I`m from Khabarovsk - the Far East of the Russia! So would love to help you if you have any questions about the country and Russian football.

Edited by Vladis
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I should be jealous! Of course I pick the country @_Ben_ picks for my save! I know that I can't compare to the Tactical Analysis, Training, and Squad Building that you do!

Anyway let's Tame the Bear together!

Pyotyr Romanoff says hello from the other end of the country.....Kaliningrad.

I will be the light reading.....

While you are the Dostoyevsky.... 

 

Edited by Hootieleece
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51 minutes ago, Makoto Nakamura said:

I can't wait to see how this plays out, I love Russian lower league, especially in the Far East, managed Nogliki back in around FM14 and they're definitely worth a shot! Best of luck, I'm definitely following!

Thanks Makoto! 

39 minutes ago, Hootieleece said:

I should be jealous! Of course I pick the country @_Ben_ picks for my save! I know that I can't compare to the Tactical Analysis, Training, and Squad Building that you do!

Anyway let's Tame the Bear together!

Pyotyr Romanoff says hello from the other end of the country.....Kaliningrad.

I will be the light reading.....

While you are the Dostoyevsky.... 

 

Don't be silly! I just enjoy using 1000 words when sometimes a picture would suffice but I really enjoy reading your games and Baltika is certainly a place that interests me, geographically.

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On 31/10/2021 at 11:05, _Ben_ said:

I have also been busy on Excel building an interactive statistics analysis tool as well a comparative analysis tool and just some pretty standard data visualisations.

Well done on the captivating first post!

Nerd question - how are you accessing the game’s attributes and statistical data to populate the player info in your tools? Not sure I’d ever do it personally as it overlaps too much with my professional life but I’m extremely curious how it works after years of assuming it wasn’t accessible.

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On 31/10/2021 at 19:34, Carambau said:

This is one of the most interesting saves I have ever read on here. Can´t wait to read more :) 

On 31/10/2021 at 22:49, withnail316 said:

I love the look of this save. Looking forward to following along. Best of luck, mate. 

23 hours ago, DefinitelyTaylor said:

Looking forward to this. The sheer amount of detail into introductory posts have me captivated. Russia has been home to a good couple saves for me personally, so I expect an enjoyable read here.

19 hours ago, Ceching You Out said:

Well done on the captivating first post!

Nerd question - how are you accessing the game’s attributes and statistical data to populate the player info in your tools? Not sure I’d ever do it personally as it overlaps too much with my professional life but I’m extremely curious how it works after years of assuming it wasn’t accessible.

Thank you all, again!

As for the data, @Ceching You Out, it's exported from a view I have in game. I certainly do not have the time to export it manually so just print screen and then copy and paste over. There are, annoyingly, some things that it misses but it does a decent job for me!

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Thanks for the extra history :)

How do you get the data for the National/Youth team graphs? I’d never thought of newgen template before. Which is why I’m wondering to get an idea how much I’ll be expecting certain types of players to come through.

Truely creative players in a completely youth only could be tricky getting to get in Russia.

I still remember Arshsvin v Liverpool. He was unbelievable in that game, and definitely in his pomp at that point.

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16 hours ago, Hootieleece said:

That is really interesting about the Newgen Template for Russia....

To be clear, this is not the newgen template. I just wanted to see what type of player Russian's create (obviously pre-game) but I guess that there will be some overlap with how the game produces them. 

12 hours ago, Sonic Youth said:

How do you get the data for the National/Youth team graphs? I’d never thought of newgen template before

Just an average of all of the visible attributes from players within the national teams.

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2 hours ago, _Ben_ said:

Just an average of all of the visible attributes from players within the national teams.

That makes sense, and what I thought you were going to say. Basically a custom view of all player stats in the national sides is set up and then copied and pasted into excel? If so, not too long a process :thup:

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What a magnificent thread this is already and the full game has only just come out. Thoroughly enjoyed your last couple of threads with Redditch and the Swiss Army Knife but have only ever really lurked. 
 

Before I babble too much I just wanted to say thanks for some incredible writing, it’s really interesting seeing how you approach the game and I’ve even been inspired to take some of your methods into my own saves. 
 

Very much looking forward to seeing how the rest of this pans out! 

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I had somehow managed to miss this thread! Excellent intro, can't wait for you to get started!! I'm following this!

 

On 31/10/2021 at 17:05, _Ben_ said:

I have also been busy on Excel building an interactive statistics analysis tool as well a comparative analysis tool and just some pretty standard data visualisations.

This is what I'm most interested in! I'm planning/building something really similar right now, I look forward to seeing more of this!!

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Great thread already. I'm thinking of getting back into FM, haven't played since FM10. I love your detail and it does help me understand what's new, and how to approach it. Especially training is much more complicated since then, so I look forward to your analysis.

Back in 2011 I considered moving to Moscow, but ended up in Shanghai instead, funny how life turns out sometimes.

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6 hours ago, Shrewnaldo said:

hey, @_Ben_ - have you seen there are some bugs with the Russian league? Some stuff on twitter about it - 

 

 

Not sure if your league edit will supercede this anyway?

I just want to get it started! There seems to be a few databases in the works from people but any editing doesn’t seem to override the prize money bug, so I’ll have to wait for a hot fix or similar. 

Thanks for the heads up on this. 

Edited by _Ben_
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I got $27.5k for coming in second in the RNL in my save. I didn't know if it is supposed to be more!

 

Edit.  I just checked the prize money rules for the 22-23 season in my FC Baltika save, but it might be a few days until If the totals are applied in game. (until I play that far)

(Screenshot)

4xRjEl.jpg

This is a save that started in the Beta.

 

Edited by Hootieleece
edited to become gramatically correct
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