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[FM22] Pour L'Eiffel - Mission Paris


karanhsingh
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Congrats on the league win (and lack of a takeover!).  Those are some generally excellent players for a Ligue 2 side so it's no wonder.  That young Fatawu is something else.  A bit lacking in the bravery, teamwork, and work rate, but sometimes you got to just let really good players go be really good players...

Good platform for heading into Ligue 1.  Will obviously be trickier, but you got a good side going!

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15 minutes ago, 13th Man said:

Congrats on the league win (and lack of a takeover!).  Those are some generally excellent players for a Ligue 2 side so it's no wonder.  That young Fatawu is something else.  A bit lacking in the bravery, teamwork, and work rate, but sometimes you got to just let really good players go be really good players...

Good platform for heading into Ligue 1.  Will obviously be trickier, but you got a good side going!

Thanks. Yes they did have a good base to build on. Fatawu is definitely the "diamond in the rough" - let's see how long we can hold onto him...

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1 minute ago, karanhsingh said:

Thanks. Yes they did have a good base to build on. Fatawu is definitely the "diamond in the rough" - let's see how long we can hold onto him...

You should get good money for him though if/when he does leave.  Just not to PSG!  Anyone but PSG!

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Just now, 13th Man said:

You should get good money for him though if/when he does leave.  Just not to PSG!  Anyone but PSG!

Oh I am definitely not selling anyone to the evil empire!

In fact I want to do the reverse, get players from them on loan and eventually try to sign them cheap/ free. Like El Chad.

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Meanwhile in another part of Paris, PSG somehow sh*t the bed for the 2nd time in 3 seasons and failed to win Ligue 1 :lol:.

Btw from this coming season, the league reverts to an 18 team structure with 2/3 teams getting relegated.

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So this is apparently why Musa Al Tamari has been struggling a little bit since joining us.

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It's been a year and he still doesn't speak a word of French! He's slower at learning the language than Emily from Netflix :lol:

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The above news item was followed by this, after which he asked for a leave of absence.

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30 days :eek: he basically misses our entire pre-season... I am hoping he will be able to settle in better once he's back, otherwise his days in Paris may be limited

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Summer of '23

Once again, it turned out to be a busier transfer window than expected.

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Joris Gnagnon was our most expensive acquisition, partly due to loanee El Chad picking up a serious injury that would keep him out of the first few months of the season. He has been a bit of a journeyman so far and we hope he can find a good home in Paris.

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Coming in next is our new right back Nathan de Medina. He seems like a solid all-rounder and I am very happy to get him in on a free transfer.

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Alexis Claude-Maurice joins on loan for a season with us paying his wages. With Al Tamari having all sorts of issues and Bangoura rapidly declining, we definitely needed a new attacking winger.

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Gideon Jung came in from Germany on a free and is our 2nd Ghanaian now alongside Fatawu. He should prove to be a good squad player for both the DM and DC positions.

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Kalonji was picked up by the scouts and is one for the future, he has gone out on loan for the season.

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Finally an unplanned signing on deadline day as Ante Coric joined on a free transfer, after Said Arab got hit with a bad injury which means he will be out for 4-5 months too.

And with that, here is the summary of all the moves:

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EDIT - I however feel like I might have dropped the ball on Fatawu. What I should have done is given him a new contract right when we got promoted. I didn't do that, and by the end of the window he had Sevilla & Villarreal bidding for him. Managed to get him to agree on a high asking price so he is staying for now, but he won't sign a new contract and has just 2 years left to run.

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Look at Laura having a Rhys Healey-esque season in terms of goals! ;) All can be forgiven for the Toulouse battering - although what a result that it, wow. 

Recruitment this summer appears smart. The free market has been used with great effect.

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Said Arab is a great talent. Unfortunately, he spends most of his time swathed in bandages like a mummy!

I had him during my Clermont save...

Good work finding a comparable player to sub for him!

 

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11 hours ago, rmcf2017 said:

Red Star FC is the one true Parisian club

There's also Racing :brock:

7 hours ago, DefinitelyTaylor said:

Look at Laura having a Rhys Healey-esque season in terms of goals! ;) All can be forgiven for the Toulouse battering - although what a result that it, wow. 

Recruitment this summer appears smart. The free market has been used with great effect.

Thanks! Yes Laura has been doing his best Healey impression :cool: meanwhile your boy has also been doing well and was one of the top scorers in ligue 2

7 hours ago, Hootieleece said:

Said Arab is a great talent. Unfortunately, he spends most of his time swathed in bandages like a mummy!

I had him during my Clermont save...

Good work finding a comparable player to sub for him!

 

Lol, sadly that is too right. I feel like every time he gets fit he only goes and gets injured again. Not sure how long he will last as it's also affecting his (lack of) development. 

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In a separate development over the summer of 2023, AFCON took place and Nigeria were crowned winners, beating DR Congo in the final.

As happens after every major international tournament, there were a number of managerial departures and Demba decided to apply for a few of them. But there was only one dream job in his mind.

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And so there is now an added dimension of international management to the save.

The goal with Senegal is simple - win the AFCON. I did not realize this, but they have actually never won the tournament which is surprising when you consider the relative strength of the nation. They have reached the final twice, most recently in 2019 when they lost to Algeria. In game, they also finished runners up in 2022, before losing in the quarter finals in the most recent edition.

First order of business was to convince Sadio Mane to come out of a premature retirement.

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Now, I don't usually do monthly reports, but I had to take a screenshot of this because I don't know when (or if) it will happen again!

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Stop the count!! :D:D:D

A scarcely believable start to the season with 3 wins out of 3, against Lens, Lyon & Bordeaux.

Spoiler

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I must say, that it felt good to be doing the "FMing" to the AI for once :cool:

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Also, this popped up in the news feed. Good on you, Mr. Chairman! Please keep those pesky tycoons away!

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I also noticed that our sponsorship income is precisely 1% of that of PSG. How's that for a stat? Will be interesting to track this over time.

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Congrats on the promotion and great start to the new season! I hope the results continue to go your way, and hopefully pick up a win whenever you play PSG. I just started playing with Paris FC recently and it's been pretty fun.

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Crazy on the leave of absence business! Never had something quite like that. Plus lots of nasty preseason injuries!

Still, great start, and great transfer business.

Now the chairman just needs to stay strong! Being PSG 2.0 would ruin the whole thing.

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7 hours ago, JaytheGreat said:

Congrats on the promotion and great start to the new season! I hope the results continue to go your way, and hopefully pick up a win whenever you play PSG. I just started playing with Paris FC recently and it's been pretty fun.

Thanks mate! How's your save going with them?

6 hours ago, 13th Man said:

Crazy on the leave of absence business! Never had something quite like that. Plus lots of nasty preseason injuries!

Still, great start, and great transfer business.

Now the chairman just needs to stay strong! Being PSG 2.0 would ruin the whole thing.

Yes me neither was first time seeing this. Quite interesting. 

Thanks and yes totally agree with you regarding the takeover nonsense. 

3 hours ago, extudassex2 said:

Just catch up and congrats are in order for the promotion and a really good market. Even better the chairman keeping those petrodollars away!

Thanks bud! Absolutely..

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Time for another update as we reach the mid-way point of our first season in Ligue 1.

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Well, we obviously couldn't keep up the 100% record from the first month, and indeed we lost 3/4 games in September. But its still been pretty good overall.

The first derby against PSG - well the less said about it the better :mad:

Here is the table going into the winter break:

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We are right in the mix for the European places which is good to see and gives us something to aspire to.

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Fatawu is without a doubt our best player and biggest threat. In fact he just missed all the December games through injury and it reflected in us being able to score only one goal in those 3 games. Laura is top scorer with 10 goals and good to see that he has carried over his form from the last season.

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Also, THIS happened in December too!

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I was pretty shocked to be honest! Clearly the wider footballing world has been taking note of his performances.

Sadly, on January deadline day, this happened as well:

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So the thing is that he had absolutely no intention of renewing and wanted to leave for a bigger club. Tried to get him to stay but it wasn't working. I first asked a couple of clubs for loans back till the end of next season, but had to eventually settle for a loan till the coming summer. Really sad to see him go but hopefully we can invest the money wisely.

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Immediately after the transfer, the Chairman sanctioned a massive upgrade to the training facilities which was good to see.

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And here is the summary of the Jan window - we also sold off Diaby Fadiga who was complaining a lot and not really playing much -keeping him on loan till the summer too while we find a replacement striker.

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9 minutes ago, karanhsingh said:

Thanks mate! How's your save going with them?

Pretty well, won Ligue 2 and currently in 15th in December but defending is becoming an issue. Trying to sign players from Paris and France so far got Prince - Desir Gouano, Jean - Kevin Augustin, and Pape Cheikh Diop on frees.

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5 minutes ago, JaytheGreat said:

Pretty well, won Ligue 2 and currently in 15th in December but defending is becoming an issue. Trying to sign players from Paris and France so far got Prince - Desir Gouano, Jean - Kevin Augustin, and Pape Cheikh Diop on frees.

Nice, Augustin should be good! Pape Cheikh Diop is in my Senegal squad.

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45 minutes ago, SixPointer said:

Always sad to see a potential superstar leave the club. But sensible getting money in before running his deal down. 

Yes and also i find that unhappy players don't perform too well. So don't like to unnecessarily hold onto them. 

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Sad to see Fatawu go but it makes sense. 12m is nothing to scoff at for a young player - wish you could’ve gotten more, but can’t risk the contract running down and an upset player!

Fantastic first half of the season though! 4th place! Europe beckons! You think you can keep it up? Seem to be going strong (other than one game we don’t talk about).

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3 hours ago, 13th Man said:

Sad to see Fatawu go but it makes sense. 12m is nothing to scoff at for a young player - wish you could’ve gotten more, but can’t risk the contract running down and an upset player!

Fantastic first half of the season though! 4th place! Europe beckons! You think you can keep it up? Seem to be going strong (other than one game we don’t talk about).

Yes in hindsight I feel like we maybe could have got more for him. But it all moved really quickly on deadline day.

I do feel we can get a top 6 finish and some sort of European qualification this season. Especially if Fatawu can keep up his form. Also we will need uefa money sooner rather than later because there is basically no money in the French league. 

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The first decent affiliate club is here.

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It's been a real struggle so far to get them to agree to add any sort of affiliates. I wish they would give me the option of some African sides like ASEC but I don't see it happening anytime soon.

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Also the youth intake arrived and it was sadly under-whelming once again. At best we may get a back-up keeper out of it.

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The AML is slow and can't pass so I don't see him amounting to much.

We are now up to excellent academy coaching & exceptional youth recruitment, and I got a better HOYD in. We had better get a good intake next year.

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Now for the good stuff... let's see how the rest of the season went!

The fixtures from the second half of the season:

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We were decent, without being great. Jan saw an early cup exit and an embarrassing defeat in Lyon. Feb was excellent with 3 straight wins. March saw an unlucky home defeat against our Parisian neighbours, as you can see below. We did finish the season with a flourish, including a heavily undeserved & ridiculously lucky win in Marseille.

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But where would that all leave us? Well, we were 5th heading into the final day of the season, pretty much settled on qualification for the Europa league.

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Amazingly, while we held on for a nervy 1-0 win (that relegated Lens) somehow both Nice & Lille conspired to lose, handing us 3rd spot in the league!

Which means:

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Unbelievable, and honestly, scarcely deserved too. I think this is the only time in FM my team has actually finished above our "rightful" place as per the xG table.

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Quick look into the financial ramifications of this season:

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That's a pretty decent amount of money for the league finish. In fact, it's slightly more than what we got for TV rights.

You'd think the board would give us a nice hefty budget after qualifying for the Champions League?

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WRONG! This is why I love France :lol: As I said when starting the save, it's gotta be bargain basement all the way..!

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Our sponsorship at least is trending up, and so are the attendances. Slow & steady progress.

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I hope soon we will be selling out the stadium on a regular basis.

We did manage to convince the board to put some of the prize money into more upgrades:

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By the time this goes through we should be up to excellent training + youth facilities both.

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And finally, what about the recognition for the team for delivering a fantastic season?

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These are the final squad stats - ignore the numbers for Fatawu as this only reflects what he did after re-joining us on loan in Jan. In total, he finished with 9 goals & 14 assists in the league. A monstrous season.

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Which means he was tied with Hakimi for most assists in the league, also finishing ahead of a certain Argentinian.

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We had 2 out of the top 3 for best African players in Ligue 1 - Fatawu (of course) and our RB from the Cape Verde Nathan de Medina @Cheez3y

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On loan defender "El Chad" wins the award for the best rookie of the season. PSG have agreed for us to have him for next year too, thankfully. Good for him too, as no point going back to rot in their reserves.

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Finally, also happy to announce that Demba got manager of the season!

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And a new 4 year contract with a hefty bonus for winning Ligue 1. Can we do it within this time-frame?

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13 minutes ago, SixPointer said:

Stellar season my friend. Champions league football makes such a difference financially! Good to see Ba collecting manager of the year truly deserved 

 

 

Cheers bud. Well we still have qualifying to go for the champions league but I'll be happy enough to be playing europa as well. 

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Wow! Champions League in your first year!!! Even if lucky and you can’t replicate it (who says you can’t though?) the money will really help build the foundations.

Also, glad Ba deservedly got the Manager of the Year. I’ve had overachieving managers not get it in favor of the title winners…

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1 hour ago, 13th Man said:

Wow! Champions League in your first year!!! Even if lucky and you can’t replicate it (who says you can’t though?) the money will really help build the foundations.

Also, glad Ba deservedly got the Manager of the Year. I’ve had overachieving managers not get it in favor of the title winners…

Cheers. Yes i know what you mean about the manager of the year awards. 

Will be very difficult to repeat a top 3 finish but i would be happy with any sort of European qualification again. 

 

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Youth Development

You may recall that we had two promising young DMs on the books - Mehdi Nouri, a French/ Moroccan youngster who came through the academy during the 1st season and Emmanuel Kalonji, a French/ Congolese national who was snapped up on a free transfer from Chateauroux. 

So they have both spent the last season on loan at Ligue 2 clubs and had plenty of playing times. Also recently both of them got picked for and played for the French U19 side as well.

I am really happy about the way they have been developing, Nouri especially, and plan to integrate them into the first team squad this season. Diakite's loan has not been renewed, and Gideon Jung was asking for a bumper new contract (no idea why he felt he deserved it) so he was allowed to leave the club, paving the way for the youngsters.

Here they are now - I plan to utilize Kalonji as a regular DM and Nouri as a Volante on support in my 4-2-3-1 setup.

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13 hours ago, karanhsingh said:

Youth Development

You may recall that we had two promising young DMs on the books - Mehdi Nouri, a French/ Moroccan youngster who came through the academy during the 1st season and Emmanuel Kalonji, a French/ Congolese national who was snapped up on a free transfer from Chateauroux. 

So they have both spent the last season on loan at Ligue 2 clubs and had plenty of playing times. Also recently both of them got picked for and played for the French U19 side as well.

I am really happy about the way they have been developing, Nouri especially, and plan to integrate them into the first team squad this season. Diakite's loan has not been renewed, and Gideon Jung was asking for a bumper new contract (no idea why he felt he deserved it) so he was allowed to leave the club, paving the way for the youngsters.

Here they are now - I plan to utilize Kalonji as a regular DM and Nouri as a Volante on support in my 4-2-3-1 setup.

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They look promising, especially Nouri. I'd be a bit worried about Kalonji's bravery though, especially in his position.

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Summer of 2024 - transfer special

First a quick word on the loanees. Villarreal obviously would not let us have Fatawu back for another season. So one BIG priority was getting his replacement. Diakite as well - Gladbach were asking stupid money. I had to let him go, but I believe he will soon be back with us. Claude-Maurice on the left had a good first season with us, and securing him permanently was also a priority. Diaby Fadiga finally left the club, so we would also need to get a good rotation option for Laura up front. Apart from this, I wanted to further strengthen the squad in the wing back positions (our LB Florent Hanin retired), and get in a new GK to compete with Ben Mustapha as well.

Let's see how we got on:

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First we have the new Goalkeeper.

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To be honest, I didn't get my first choice as the Belgian Vandervoort decided to move to Mainz in the Bundesliga over us. However, Larsonnier was arguably the best keeper from Ligue 2 and should be a decent acquisition for us.

Next up - Alexis Claude-Maurice

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"ACM" had a good season with us on loan and he joins on a free transfer as his contract with Nice was up. I am hoping he can keep up his form.

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Arthur Zagre is another decent looking free transfer to replace Hanin who retired. He will share LB duties with Amilcar Silva. @Cheez3yI guess he is also one of your favorites ;) 

And now the big one. The Fatawu replacement.

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Edon Zhegrova is the man. Kosovan international coming in on loan from Liverpool. He speaks French from his time at Basel. 2.4 million for a one year loan deal is certainly very expensive, but I was keen to get in someone of the same quality. Also, his contract with Liverpool is up at the end of the season, so I am hoping there just might be a chance to grab him on a free transfer if we develop a good relationship.

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Past FM wonderkid, William Geubbels is the next one in, on a one season loan as our budgets were pretty much exhausted by now. He will provide a strong rotation option for both the LW and SC positions. Fresh off a great season in Ligue 2, I hope he can make the step up.

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Finally, another free transfer to strengthen the squad, is "RPG" who's contract at Mainz was up. He should provide a really good option to cover both RB and LB for us.

And now two very promising young players who have joined up as well:

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Francoise Dia was noticed in the Senegal youth teams when I took over. I think if he develops well, he could turn into a real quality CB for us. However this season he has been sent out on loan to Chateauroux for a season - hopefully they can develop him as well as they did Nouri.

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Michel Fofana is again very exciting and was noticed at the AFCON U-20 where he scored 3 goals for the Ivory Coast. I initially planned to keep him around as a back-up for Laura but after signing Geubbels, decided to send him out on loan for the season to Dijon in Ligue 2 where he should get regular football.

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1 hour ago, karanhsingh said:

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Arthur Zagre is another decent looking free transfer to replace Hanin who retired. He will share LB duties with Amilcar Silva. @Cheez3yI guess he is also one of your favorites ;) 

And now the big one. The Fatawu replacement.

 

My boy!

He still looks almost insane as attacking wingback. They butchered a bit his positioning and marking/tackling.

But as free one, this is an amazing pick up.

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