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[FM22] Tony Pulis rebuilds Stoke (season 4, ambitions of Europe)


lied90
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This thread will be a direct counter to another Stoke save going on: But can he do it on a cold windy night in..

While rebuilding Stoke to become a positive football team with ambitions of champions league football is ...... admirable. It's also pure blasphemy in the eyes of hoofball lovers (there are dozens of us...DOZENS!).

So here it goes, an attempt to bring pulisball back to life at Stoke, the once feared team who has dropped like a rock after sacking Tony Pulis back in 2013. There is a lot of work to do as previous managers have struggled to find a clear identity, looking forward people should have no issues sticking labels on Stoke as a football team.

Team analysis and transfers

The team has a few very talented players. Tyrese Campbell is a top talent for a championship club and should be a perfect partner for a taller, more brute type of striker. Joe Bursik in goal is a very high potential GK, and with 16 kicking attribute he should be able to hoof it to our strikers. Harry Souter, Ben Wilmot and Josh Tymon are also fairly young and can provide a solid platform for Stoke to grow with Pulis at the wheel.

Jordan Thompson is a versatile midfielder with high work rate, stamina and aggression, the important stuff. We have two young fast wingers on loan in Sima and Philogene-Bidance, capable of getting past players and putting in a cross.  Liam Moore is our long throw specialist with 18 long throw, he will primarily play as a defensive fullback, a signature Pulis role.

What the team lacks is a proper target forward. With almost zero money to spend we had to take a look in the free transfer marked and SORT BY HEIGHT! Thankfully, a mythical beast shows up among the names of desperate players looking for a home, former Arsenal legend with an X-factor, Yaya Sanogo. Standing at 194cm he will be a easy target to spot for of GK and CBs when clearing the ball. Not much to say about transfers out, Joe Allen is off to Krasnodar in Russia just to offload our wage budget.

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The tactic

The tactic will be constructed by sticking to a few key points:

1. In order to play hoofball, the ball needs to go from our defense to attack as directly as possible. We achieve this by having the GK kick it long, same with our CBs. Our fullbacks will be instructed to cross from deep.

2. Make the most of set pieces. We have Harry Soutar who is a giant at 201cm, making Sanogo 194cm look like a midget. Both will be in key areas during corners, free kicks and long throws.

3. Keep it simple stupid. Everyone has a clear role in the team and we don't use fancy roles. Wingers cross, midfielders work hard up and down, goalscorer+target forward up top, CBs hoof etc.

4. Adaptive defensive lines and minimize risk. We will start with standard LOE and DL in most matches and adapt to the opposing team/how the match is going. If they abuse the space between midfield and defense, go with high+standard. If we can't handle the pressure in defense, go standard-high or high-very high. Don't be afraid to defend a lead and waste time.

 

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Results

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Looking forward

We started the season with conceding too many goals but started to improve after making a few changes to the tactic and changing my approach during games. We have now looked fairly solid going into 2022 while sticking to our key principles. We make few passes and are very inaccurate, we make lots of crosses, we make lots of headers and win a large amount, our GK has frequent passing to our TF.

The main job will be to recruit the right kind of players going forward, and we might have to sell Tyrese Campbell to finance it. He won't sign a new contract and PL clubs are showing interest. Steven Fletcher and Phil Jagielka is on the way out to free up wages. We don't have a transfer budget, and we have already loaned a hoard of players, so our options are very slim in the short term. I'd like to find a Walters type player who is hard working and can play in multiple roles (pressing forward, winger etc), and a solid midfielder capable of covering a lot of ground that tackles without hesitation. Starting a next season we also have to look for our own wingers, as we are very reliant on loaned players at the moment.

 

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Edited by lied90
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1 hour ago, karanhsingh said:

Love it! Hope you're making use of the long throws as well. 

Three goals from long throws so far, one direct header, one scramble, and one longshot after the keeper punched it out. I've only used long throws on the right side so far, one the lookout for a second player who has a decent throw.

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13 minutes ago, lied90 said:

Three goals from long throws so far, one direct header, one scramble, and one longshot after the keeper punched it out. I've only used long throws on the right side so far, one the lookout for a second player who has a decent throw.

Lewis Strapp - Can't remember which club in Scotland, he's a LB/LWB but got me 10+ assists from long-throws in my Plymouth season (21/22) in League one.  Decent stats too.

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19 minutes ago, Nessaja Wolf said:

Lewis Strapp - Can't remember which club in Scotland, he's a LB/LWB but got me 10+ assists from long-throws in my Plymouth season (21/22) in League one.  Decent stats too.

I had a look but he looks like league one/league two lvl. I have Josh Tymon as LB, he has 14 long throws but he's been injured for large parts of the season.

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Posted (edited)

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Winter Transfer Update

In order to get some depth we got Shipley in from Coventry and Madine from Blackpool. Both would be out of contract in the summer so we signed them for just a few thousand pounds each. Jagielka and Fletcher left, both being rather old on high wages. Madine fits right in as a TF, big bonus that he argues with the ref and winds up opponents. Shipley can play out wide and in the center, and will get lots of matches in both positions. With these signing the club is starting to look more and more like a Pulis team. Tyrese Campbell is rumored out to lots of club, more than I can count. We rely heavily on him and demand £20mill, which no club seem willing to pay.

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Jan results

We continue with our good form and move into the play off spots.

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Edited by lied90
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Posted (edited)

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2021/22 - Fighting our way back up

We are on a hell of a run from December until the end of the season, barely losing points. Scoring goals from crosses, corners, throw ins and balls into space chased by Tyrese Campbell. The media confronts us about or route on style on the regular, which we proudly defend.

Shipley in particular have proven to be a very good signing, performing all over the midfield. We have made a habit out going for a smash n grab and then trying to defend our lead, which has resulted in very few highlights in the final 20min. Apart from the loss against West Brom, we have been unstoppable.

 

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The Play-off

This should end up being a thriller. Fulham dominated in the first leg, Mitrovic was bullying our defense. We looked clueless and I had more or less given up hope before the return fixture.

Luckily my players had more determination than me. Despite going a goal down in the second game, and missing a pen, the players pulled trough and scored four goals.

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Play-off Finale - Blackburn vs Stoke

Our previous league game vs Blackburn was 3-3 free for all, so the fans headed to Wembley with high expectations. Blackburn started with their usual 433 formation with Diaz leading the line, while we fielded a full strength squad in our standard 442. I felt like we looked the more dangerous squad for most of the match, but we didn't score before late in the game.

 Bursik hoofed it to Madine, who nicked it down to Tyrese running into space, who dribbled past the GK and slotted it in.

In the 89th min, Thompson finds Shipley who taps into the goal, sending Stoke in the PL and himself into the Stoke history books.

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Looking forward

Next season will involve a full squad overhaul. We had 6 players on loan, who all played a large amount of games. We have even more players who are out of contract and won't be renewed.

Next post will be a bit long as I'm planning to have a clear idea of how to create a Pulis team, and all that involves. While the players we have now can play Pulisball, they aren't extreme enough to be a Pulis team, which will change this summer.

Some stats

Spoiler

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Spoiler

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Edited by lied90
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Posted (edited)

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Squad overhaul

Before the transfer window started I had a very specific plan for what kind of players I wanted in my Pulis team. I already knew what ype of players Pulis like to use and intend to replicate that.

GK:
Begovic was the ideal Pulis GK. He had a incredible reach and was a good shot stopper. Joe Bursik is more like a mentally stable Jordan Pickford. I will keep Bursik as he is a HG player.

Fullback:
Pulis prefers fullbacks who can defend and have a high work rate. Marc Wilson, Andy Wilkinson, Higginbotham and even Huth played as fullbacks for Tony Pulis. Not exactly Cancelo or Jordi Alba type players.
We currently have zero right backs and one left back, Josh Tymon. Tymon should be fine at LB, he can throw a long ball and is a good allrounder. So we need a backup LB and two RBs.

CBs:
The ideal Pulis CB pairing for Pulis is for me, Ryan Shawcross and Robert Huth. Both are no nonsense CBs and very athletic.
Harry Souttar has the height and strength, but his acceleration is lacking even for a Pulis team, he also has low bravery. Ben Wilmot is a good defender, just not extreme enough for a Pulis team.
I think we need two CBs good enough to be starters, preferably brave, aggressive and athletic.

Wingers:
Also here, I have no doubt what type of player Pulis prefers. Pulis praised the ability of Matthew Etherington and Jermaine Pennant. Two wingers who could create something on their own with pace, dribbling, and flair, which they have to if their supporting fullback mainly defend. On the bench there would often be a wide midfielder type player who could be subbed in when needed.
Two of our wingers are gone after being on loan, so we are are left with Jordan Shipley and Jacob Brown, neither are PL lvl. We need a starting RM and LM, both have to be pure wingers who can cross it.

CMs:
Hardworking players above all else. Rory Delap, Glenn Whelan, Dean Whitehead, Salif Diao and Wilson Palacios featured a lot. The only really creative player I can think of that Pulis deployed as a CM was Charlie Adam.
Jordan Thompson, Sam Clucas and Jordan Shipley will be with us next season. All of them hardworking, just not PL starter lvl. We also have Etebo coming back from a loan spell at Watford, who is a decent box to box player with high work rate, tackling, strength, pace and dribbling.
I'll be looking for a insanely hardworking, aggressive CM, someone who screams Tony Pulis, and a slightly more creative player who also works hard.

Strikers:
Here we have some variety, except when it comes to height as all Pulis strikers are at least 183cm+. You had Ricardo Fuller, tall, strong, fast and also unpredictable (just not very consistent), a advanced forward type.
Cameron Jerome, tall'ish, very athletic and hardworking, would do well as a PF. Jonathan Walters, probably had 20/20 work rate and teamwork without much technical ability. Kenwyne Jones, very strong TF. Crouch, more of a complete forward than TF imo.
We currently have Tyrese Campbell and Madine, so we need two new strikers.

Transfers out:

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Transfers in:

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Stoke takeover:
The transfer embargo screwed things up a bit. The plan was to bring in Mitrovic from Fulham until the takeover broke the deal, and Mitrovic ended up going to Burnley instead. Luckily, no clubs had any interest in the other players we wanted, so we managed to save those deal.

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The new guys

The Senegalese CB duo:
Pape Cisse and Ouysseynou Ba both came from Olympiacos, both represent Senegal, both play CB, and both are tall, strong, aggressive, brave and overall athletic.
They are not to be confused with former Newcastle striker duo Cisse and Demba Ba.

Officiel - Olympiacos : Pape Abou Cissé et Ousseynou Ba Champions de Grèce  - Gaindés Football
Cisse and Ba will have to adapt to slightly harsher weather in the future.

Furlong, Dummet and Ferrer:
Furlong and Dummet could be used as Cbs, for us they are FBs all day, the way Pulis intended. Ferrer comes in ion loan to give some RB cover.

Wallace and Diangana:
Both poached from former championship rivals, Millwall and West Brom. They will occupy each their wing and be instructed to hug the line and cross it.

Travis and Grimes:
Again, both poached from former championship rivals, Blackburn and Swansea. Travis is a perfect Pulis midfielder, 18 workrate, 19 bravery, 17 aggression, 18 stamina, 18 determination, 15 leadership. He winds up opponents and gets the crowd going. He is our new captain!
Grimes is more versatile and likes to behave more like a playmaker than a BWM.

BENTEKKERS! and some guy from Ukraine:
Benteke is our backup plan after the Mitrovic deal fell trough. He has the physical attributes of a TF, just a shame he lacks the work ethic that Mitrovic has.
Dovbyk might not be a familiar name for most. He is described as a powerful striker, he also has 15 pace and acceleration. He scored 24 goals in 29 league games this season and earned a transfer to Stoke (lucky boy). He can't really dribble or pass, but he can run, jump and blast it with power! Benteke is 191cm and Dovbyk is 189c, a feared aerial duo. We also got Onisiwo on loan, a poor mans Ricardo Fuller is a good description of him.

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Benteke told the press that he looks forward to playing for a proper manager for once.

 

Bye Bye Tyrese

Selling Tyrese was a hard decision. Ultimately, I decided that I wanted to keep the save realistic, and it was hard to deny that a newly promoted club with a limited budget wouldn't accept a £30mill offer.
What I wish I knew before accepting, was that the new owners limited transfer revenue to 10%........

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That's it for this transfer window. I'll work on adjusting the tactic for the PL and give an update when I'm 10 games into the season.

 

Edited by lied90
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Posted (edited)

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Back in the Prem

A last addition to the team before the season starts. James Beattie, a former striker under Pulis, joins the coaching staff. Pulis will need as many strong characters as possible to rally the troops.

James Beattie signs

Spoiler

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The season is 15 rounds in, and we are making our self felt having made the most fault, receiving the most yellow cards and reds. According to the analyst, we have the tallest team in the league, averaging 185cm.

We are also up there in terms of aggression and strength. We are at the bottom of the possession table, on top when it comes to clearances and goals from corners (6 goals).

In the opening game vs Chelsea, we won 0-2 after two headed goals from Cisse, and that's pretty much all we created. Chelsea got FM'ed, which is how we hope to steal points from top teams.

We have bad habit of creating pens against us, probably a consequence of our high aggression. Cisse is a yellow card magnet and more or less starts the game with a yellow card, same goes for Lewis Travis.

The results have been uplifting, considering that we have not lost by more than one goal so far, meaning that a little luck can go a long way.

In addition to being happy with the opening result against Chelsea, we managed to beat our long ball rival, Burnley 2-1, a new classic in the prem (as long as both stay in the prem). We also managed to draw with Man utd, with Ba man marking Ronaldo out of the game.

We have 5 wins, 5 draws and 5 losses so far, a GD of zero.

Benteke has been our best player with 7 goals and 4 assists, closely followed by Jed Wallace and Diangana. Joe Bursik has impressed in goal, which has been vital.

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League table and results

Spoiler

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The Tactic

New league new tactic (ish). The roles are more or less the same as before, instructions have changed somewhat. In home games we try to be more on the front foot, while we have a mid block in away games (would love a low block, just doesn't work very well in FM).

The away tactic is adjusted slightly when we are in the lead, lowering tempo and turning off counters to reduce risk. The one thing that doesn't change is passing, which is always at maximum directness.

Time wasting is more or less constant unless we are desperate, the logic behind this is that we have very little possession, so we need to give the boys a rest by wasting time.

Our build up is either a) Run down the flank and cross, or b) hoof it to Benteke.

There are loads of PIs, I'm not gonna go into details about it unless asked.

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Edited by lied90
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Well done (I guess?) on being bottom of the pile on the passing statistics :lol:

Would love to see videos of some goals or pieces of play where the tactic is working as intended.

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  • lied90 changed the title to [FM22] Tony Pulis rebuilds Stoke (season 2)
Posted (edited)
43 minutes ago, karanhsingh said:

Well done (I guess?) on being bottom of the pile on the passing statistics :lol:

Would love to see videos of some goals or pieces of play where the tactic is working as intended.

 

Two long balls from a fullback, one hoof ball from the GK to Benteke. We also have some goals from turnovers, and the rest are mostly set pieces at this point. We have yet to get a throw in goal in the prem.

Edited by lied90
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Smashing it mate! Great to see a fellow Stoke save in here and mad respect to you for bringing back the Pulistyle! It's interesting to see how the players adapt to a very different style under your charge too! Keep up the good work mate! Will definitely be following this!

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I'm not sure I'd have the stomach to play this way every game, so respect for the dedication to the cause and how faithful it is to reality.

How does your talent pipeline look?  Have you got many youngsters coming through that fit the Pulis way?

I hope that Tony is out there somewhere following this thread in between watching clips of Peter Crouch and Jon Walters' best goals for Stoke.

Well presented @lied90, I'll be following.

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3 hours ago, SinlessCity said:

I'm not sure I'd have the stomach to play this way every game, so respect for the dedication to the cause and how faithful it is to reality.

How does your talent pipeline look?  Have you got many youngsters coming through that fit the Pulis way?

I hope that Tony is out there somewhere following this thread in between watching clips of Peter Crouch and Jon Walters' best goals for Stoke.

Well presented @lied90, I'll be following.

In terms of talents, nurturing youth players have never been his trademark. He is more known for buying players in their prime who goes straight into the team. 

We did get two very promising players in our previous youth intake, I can post them later.

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Aren't you afraid to lose both your center-backs in the next January when African Nations will be played? Relying too heavily on African internationals can backfire, especially when managing in England.

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1 hour ago, Draakon said:

Aren't you afraid to lose both your center-backs in the next January when African Nations will be played? Relying too heavily on African internationals can backfire, especially when managing in England.

I have 4 fullbacks and 4 CBs. 3 out of 4 fullbacks are natural in the CB position so running out of CBs isn't a big issue.

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Posted (edited)

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Mid Season

Results
 

Spoiler

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Given our ambition to be a hoofball team aiming to battle relegation, we doing very well. Sheff Utd are dead last, followed by Wolves and Burnley. We are having some issues in the dressing room with star players from last season complaining about playing time this season. They've been told they are free to leave.

Jordan Thompson is one of few who are not complaining and is therefor rewarded with a new contract. The day after he got 4 assists when we crushed Sheff Utd, getting a 10 rating. After that he was done and got injured for two months.

Last years hero, Jordan Shipley, decided to leave us for the MLS. Ben Wilmot wasn't happy being a rotation player and was sold for £12mill to Brighton in the championship. I wanted to keep Etebo but didn't like his wage demands, so he is also off.

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In comes Craig Dawson, he previously played for Pulis when he managed West Brom. Tried and tested both in a Pulis system and the Prem, bringing much needed experience to the team. After one training session he got injured for one month, great start.

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Since we let two midfielders leave, we got Norwood in on loan for the rest of the season. He can expect to play a good amount of games with the small team we have currently.

I'll be waiting with making too many deals for next season. Hopefully staying in the prem will boost our reputation, allowing us to sign better players towards the end of the season. Any suggestion for Tony Pulis type players are welcome.

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Our two promising players from last seasons youth intake. I think both of them can become first team players with time. We will let them develop without interfering too much for the time being.

Mark Black and Joe Tomlinson

Spoiler

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Edited by lied90
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12 hours ago, karanhsingh said:

The keeper looks very good!

Solanke should be a Pulis type striker?

Solanke would be a great striker for a Pulis team. He's currently too expensive as his marked value is £39mill+ in my save.

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Those young players are lacking Tony's signature aggression, but I'm sure with some heading and tackling drills, he'll whip them into a pair of battlers!

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Posted (edited)

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22/23 second half

Our form in the second half of the season would prove to be worse than it was in the first half.

We conceded a concerning amount of goals in several matches, some of it can be contributed to our lack of discipline (mostly Lewis Travis ). Playing 10vs11 is pretty hard.

Joe Bursik has started to transform into Ederson, getting 3 assists by kicking the ball long.

Benteke ended the season with 22 goals, about one goal every two matches.

Josh Tymon is on his way to become a winger instead of fullback, so we can use his attacking attributes more effectively.

Artem Dovbyk really hit his stride this half of the season, and benefited from having learned to shoot with power.

Our team was fatigued at the end of the season, and we really lacked quality depth.

We finished in 11th place, a good 12 points above relegation.

Spoiler

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New Signings

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Records breakers....

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Going into our second season in the prem, our budget is increased considerably.

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Summer signing:

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*Aggressive and strong CB
*Can be used as a defensive RB
*Still fairly young with room to grow
*Northern Ireland International
*Fee: £124K
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*Can be used as LB, CB, and RB. Will be our main LB
*Long throw specialist and early crosser
*Fairly athletic and decent passer.
*Austrian international
*Fee: £5mill
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*Our big summer signing from relegated Southampton
*Athletic, hardworking and decent passer
*Fee: £18mill
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*Tireless midfielder
*Well balanced player with hardworking mentality
*Scottish international
*Fee: £5mill
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*Fast and unpredictable winger
* Still young with potential
*Can play on both flanks
*Fee: £7.5mill
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*Hopefully he can be molded into our new Ricardo Fuiller
*Tall, fast, and agile
* Young player with lots of potential
*Youth international
*Fee: £13mill (can grow to £19mill)
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*Young target foward, backup for Benteke
*Signed because our board refused me to bring in a experienced player
*Young with lots of potential
*Fee: £3mill
*Youth international
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Tactics

I changed very little during the season in terms of tactics.

I've experimented with OIs, mainly by marking more tightly in the middle and pressing on the flanks, which will hopefully result in a pass inwards towards a player without much room to turn or run. Still a work in progress.

Struggle to find a balance between simply being aggressive and getting too many yellow/reds.

 

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On 08/07/2022 at 07:49, karanhsingh said:

Oh and Branthwaite as well. He was third top scorer for my Everton side. 

He would be brilliant, he just have no interest in joining and would cost my entire transfer budget.

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Posted (edited)

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2023/24 - SHUTTING UP SHOP

In 08/09, Stokes first PL season under Pulis, they finished in 12th place. In the following years they finished in 11th, 13th, 14th and 13th, before he was sacked (by "mutual" consent) at the end of 12/13.

Sacking him was valuing ambition over consistency, which would ultimately bite them in the ass.

In order to become consistent, we have to concede fewer goals. Stoke only conceded 55 goals in 08/09, we conceded 67 in our first PL season.

GOING LOW BLOCK

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By using OIs, we trigger press on wide players and mark central players.

Passing is not on max directness but we are still extremely direct with 2xNCBs, deep crosses from fullbacks and a GK aiming for Benteke every time he has the ball.

Wingers aim towards the center occupied by our tall strikers.

Our second tactic is a medium block that is more wing play than route one. We only use this tactic vs the very few teams that defend low against us.

Results

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We didn't get a great start and suffered several defeats. By November, after having told the boys to "trust the process", we managed to turn things around, conceding only 2 goals in 6 matches.

Beating Man City 3-0 was a major highlight, and beating relegation candidates like Fulham, Watford and Palace meant a lot for our security.

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Matt Grimes has had an amazing start to the season.

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Highlights of the season

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Plaudits for using homegrown players

 

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The board is showing that they are buying into Pulisball, throwing money at us. The scouts and analysts are filtering players by height as we speak!

 

NOT EVEN CITY ARE SAFE FROM OUR LONG THROWS!

 

 

Edited by lied90
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  • lied90 changed the title to [FM22] Tony Pulis rebuilds Stoke (season 3, low block 24/7)

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The Austrian Peter Crouch
23/24 - Half way

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Sasa Kalajdzic

Having looked how to spend our increased transfer budget, I've decided to spend parts of it on Sasa Kalajdzic. The towering striker is 200cm tall combined with 14-15 in several creative and technical attributes, making him the closest we can get to a Peter Crouch.

Benteke has served us well but will leave on free to CSKA Moscow at the end of the season.

 

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Pierre Kalulu joined us for as little as £3.7mill. He is perfect for Pulis football, being very athletic, a smart defender and has some technical ability.

 

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Jordan Thompson has been an important player for us when promoting from the championship and securing a safe mid table position in the first PL season.
He has now been let go to Rapid Wien to get more playing time.

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We continue to gather a good amount of points, picking up several wins. We collapsed against Leeds and got unlucky against Burnley, before getting 4 out of 6 wins after that.

The trashing of Crystal Palace was a highlight, especially because of the type of goals we scored:

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We have improved massively from last season and it shows on the table.

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We consistently lose against Arsenal and Liverpool, apart from that we seem to be able to fight against any team in the league on our day.

Our Austrian Crouch end up getting an average rating of 7.44, scoring 10 goals and getting 5 assists in 18 matches.

Our left back Friedl got a 5 month injury in march, hopefully it's not a sign of things to come.

Kalulu has, as expected, improved us by a lot. No wingers or inside forwards seem to get the better of him.

Artem Dovbyk improved from last season, he averaged one goal every two games.

Josh Tymon has adapted very well to playing as a winger. He also contributes a lot more in defense than the average winger.

Ibrahima Diallo has not set the world on fire according to the ratings. The eye test says that he is creating chances by winning the ball in midfield

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We are so close to getting European football.

Note how we have improved in defense, conceding 17 fewer goals this season than last.

I think with the type of football we play, we can't hope for much more than 6-7th place in a good year. The reason for this is that the lower table teams will probably start to be more cautious against us, which should make it hard to get "easy points".

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The players are all behind Pulisball it seems. No moaning about hoofing the ball atm, as long as the results go our way.

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The real Tony Pulis is now our new DoF. I'll be sure to ask him to recommend some signing.

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I'm impressed by our defensive statistics. Playing a low block on the regular inherently means that we will give away a lot of shots, so having an average of 1.39 xga per game sounds good to me.

I'm somewhat surprised by how low our fouls have gotten after starting to defend lower, considering we always get stuck in and play with several very aggressive players.

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The club has started to change with Tony Pulis. Before the club expected us to play modern football. Now we are expected to play on the counter and MAKE THE MOST OF SET PIECES!

Just need to get rid of that youth focus now and we are all good.

Goal of the season from Gordon

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This clip shows part of how we play around the target forward. Diallo plays as a box2box CM behind Sasa (TF) who Bursik aims for from goal kicks. Grimes will mostly stick further behind since he is told to stay in position by default as a DLP(S). The point of kicking it long to a TF is to start the play high up the pitch, so the TF needs passing (heading?) options from the first touch. Usually I'm happy if we just win the second ball, but sometimes it ends up as a goal.

 

 

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1 hour ago, DavidBeckham said:

Congrats on the 9th place finish! Europe isn't far away now! And it will be fascinating to see the signings which Pulis is going to recommend moving forward!

One of his first suggestions was a cheap wonderkid from Uruguay who looked like a young Baggio. Would have been an incredible signing for any normal team, just not us.

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We all dream of a Pulis on Pulis DOF-Manager relationship.

It's a shame he can't scrape together enough money to buy the club. I bet Tony would set some spectacular expectations.

"Sign players over 6ft 4 for the first team"

"Sign players with no less than 18 aggression"

"Prioritise goal scoring from long throws"

Love watching your long throw goals... I signed a player the other day who happened to have 16 LTH and I'm tempted to try using it for a laugh.  I am the anti Pulis though, my team barely score from corners or set plays.

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2024/25

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DoF Tony Pulis and manager Tony Pulis have been given a huge budget to bring in new players to the club.

So when we have the money to buy good players, and still have to stay true to the Pulis way, how do we do it?

We buy players who can play football, who also happens to be tall, strong, hardworking and aggressive.

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Sangare was suggested by DoF Pulis
With really high work rate, strength, and height it's hard to argue he doesn't fit the plan.
He can also be retrained into a very good CB for us.

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Being Norwegian myself, I remember this guy dominating in the norwegian league as a DM, CM, AM and even ST.
He was retrained as a CB after going to Celtic.
As a former midfielder, he has good passing and technical attributes, combined with being 196cm.

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Our most expensive signing by some margin.
The Ukrainian can play on both wings, but will primarily play for us on the left as he is left footed.
He's an overall solid player, and can be used as a set piece taker.

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We needed someone to be a backup TF after Benteke left to Russia, and in comes experienced TF Chris Wood.
Having experience from Burnley under Dyche he will have no issue adapting to our system.
Wood came for free from Sassuolo

After this we still have some money left in the bank and a very healthy wage budget.

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Not much have changed in terms of tactics, we more or less always start with a low block and adjust from there depending on how it goes.

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We started the season in good fashion, conceding few goals despite playing top teams several times.

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A lot of narrow results in October and November. this is as expected, since teams tend to play more cautious after you have proven yourself in the PL, we are no longer the underdogs they want to attack.

This leads to a lot of games vs similar or weaker teams with very few highlights, making us even more dependent on set piece goals.

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The results indicate that we are capable of playing in Europe, time will show if we manage to carve us a top 7 finish come the end of the season.

What happened to the goals?

By the end of january our top goalscorer is Tsygankov with only 6 goals in 19 matches, followed by Sasa and Dovbyk who have only scored 5 and 4 goals each.

While this may not be a problem given that our league position has improved, it indicates that we can strengthen or changes things up for the better up top.

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Man City has agreed to loan us Liam Delap for the rest of the season, with a laughably high optional future transfer fee.

He will be reunited with his father on the training ground this season, and maybe in the future, we will see.

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Conceding only 0.88 goals per game is very uplifting, we just have to increase our goalscoring. (easier said than done with our play style)

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  • lied90 changed the title to [FM22] Tony Pulis rebuilds Stoke (season 4, ambitions of Europe)

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The Potters are going to Europe!

Despite not being in our best form it was enough to get into Europe in the end.
The season was, in terms of points, a disappointment. We ended the season with 1 point less than last, so the league was a lot more even this season than the last.
On the bright side, we conceded only 32 goals, giving us a solid foundation.

Liam Delap was brought in on loan during the January transfer window, hoping that he could score some crucial goals.
He spent more time in the stands because of a few horrific tackles from behind. I was very impressed.

While we did lose more matches than I wanted, it was mostly against better teams.

Josh Tymon proved to be our most important player in the run up.
With Tsygankov out with injury for large parts, Tymon stepped up and scored several important goals, mostly by making runs towards the back post during counters.

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Where are they now?

Since the save is now going into season 5, I'll take a quick look at how i went with some of the players that helped us up from the championship.

Yaya Sanogo:
The former Arsenal striker was brought on a free as a first choice TF. He only had a one year contract and was forced to find a new club at the end of the season.
After a mixed spell with AFC Wimbledon, he has decided to retire at the age of 32y and is now an unemployed coach.

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Tyrese Campbell:
Our young star was sold for a record fee to Crystal Palace after being promoted from the Championship.
He didn't take his chances in his first season and has failed to become a regular since. He was part of an exchange deal with Everton and plays for team now.
He didn't impres for Everton either and is not transfer listed for £8.5mill.

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Jordan Shipley:
Shipley wrote himself into the hearts of all Stoke fans when he scored the deciding goal in the play off final. He struggled for playing time in the first PL season and left in the January transfer window.
He has since been a solid player for San Jose in the MLS.

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Summer Transfers

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After reading that our rivaling save signed Lorenzo Lucca, we had to get the second best option, Benjamin Sesko.
With him and Sasa in the box, our wingers should have enough to aim for.

Robert Skov was brought in to have a wide midfielder option on the flanks, he is also very good at taking set pieces.

Lewis Cook is a very capable in terms of defending and stabilizing the midfield. He will compete with Grimes for minutes.

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Our young talented GK, Tomlin, has gone out on loan. Nick Pope has joined us from Man City and has agreed to be a backup option behind Joe Bursik.

Transfers out

Not much to mention, Lewis Ferguson has been on loan to Bologna and make the move permanent.
Joe Hughil and Jebbison are out on loan in the championship.
Jed Wallace is loaned out to Sunderland after being a very important player for us in several seasons.
Joe Tomlinson will be between the sticks for Luton on loan.
Diangana is once again out on loan, this time to Swansea

In other news, we have had to fend off several clubs that wanted Kalulu, Real Madrid made an offer just short of his release clause at £44mill.
Fulham offered £46mill for Dovbyk, but he refused their contract offer.
 

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5 hours ago, lied90 said:

 

After reading that our rivaling save signed Lorenzo Lucca, we had to get the second best option, Benjamin Sesko.
With him and Sasa in the box, our wingers should have enough to aim for.

 

Sesko is better than Lucca in my opinion! I wanted him but he refused to join me in my save :(

And I'm not your rival haha!

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7 hours ago, DavidBeckham said:

Sesko is better than Lucca in my opinion! I wanted him but he refused to join me in my save :(

And I'm not your rival haha!

Any manager who brings tiki taka to Stoke is a rival of mine :mad:

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I asked Tony Pulis for a defensive fullback, and he recommended this young unit of a mexican. Pulis usually stick to buying senior players, but I made an exception for this guy.

 

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Will be 2 weeks before I update on the last season, I prob won't continue the save after that. The reason is that I'm not capable of getting better results with pulisball than I already have, and I've had to play more and more "proper" football in order to win, which is the opposite of what I want.

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