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[FM23] A long time in Latvia, sounds... lovely. A Youth-Only Challenge.


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Here's the ugly screenshots, showing the database and manager stats...



Why Latvia?

Hi, I'm Palkey, and this year I've decided to start my FM journey with a Latvian team. This is my first time making a topic for my save, so there will be some growing pains no doubt, but hopefully nothing too egregious happens. I'm no stranger to Youth Academy Challenges, having done them for 10 years or so... from the Welsh wilds to Danish divisions. This time i wanted to enjoy a league a bit outside of the norm, as such I chose one of the newest additions, Latvia.


Not many teams to choose from here, only 10 playable and I don't want to start at a top team, and regardless with a team called "Super Nova" to choose... well the rest is history.


Super Nova



Unlike a real Supernova we aren't massive here, but there's plenty of potential to grow into a massive super power then collapse under the pressure... There are a few dominant teams in the league so no doubt it'll take a while to reach those cosmic levels of success, though the journey ought to be fantastic.


The media clearly agree with me, though i have no real knowledge of the league or teams. The board though... slightly more ambitious.5.png.1634f851114bec9880b421b383930ee9.png

Mid-table! The nerve!


Squad & Tactics


Team is promising at a glance, but there are a few issues. First we have a huge depth in key positions, plenty of strikers, center-backs, and defensive-mid's. Secondly, we have a few full-time players, though none of them will resign due to us being a semi-pro team and being unable to offer full-time contracts. (yay!)

Here's a few players I like the look of:




And so, this is how I intend to set-up. I dislike tinkering once the season starts, and tactical familiarity will do most of the work. My defense is not too inspiring, but it should be off-set with the two defensive DMs. I've never been a huge tactics guy, so don't expect too much mention of it, maybe just a mention here or there.


My Expectations


This season will be very telling, from the looks of it my best players are pretty good but not exceptional. My worst players however do not look good enough by a fair margin. There's only a single relegation spot in the league, so I'm comfortable thinking that's not where we will end, but I could see us struggling.

The cup will likely be hugely out of our reach, RFS and Riga are two of the best teams in the league and they look really good.

Also last years version of the game made development a rough task, with Super Nova being; semi-pro, in a poor league, being poor financially and being managed by yours truly, I don't see things being easy. Europe early on would be nice, but I fear we might need time considering we are newly promoted.

All in all, I'm excited. And I hope my detailing of this save is as enjoyable for you lot too.

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A New Season


I debated with showing pre-season, but it's harmless... scared me though, both teams were youth teams. Left me feeling like my system was a mistake, or at least not very good.

The first three games of the Virsliga reinforced that to me, things did turn around with wins over Tukums and our senior affiliate, not sure how that works....


A busy start leaves us in 6th, not bad and there's a clear gap from us and the relegation places. I'm glad to see us scoring a lot of goals, second highest in the league, which considering our strikers are our best players leaves me content. We don't speak about how many we've conceded, the second highest in... damn!

At least two of our four losses were against Riga and RFS, both teams I consider to be powerhouses.

In this bunch of games a few players stood out to me, Eduards Višņakovs had a bucket of goals which earned us a good few points. And a young man, Einārs Kļava. A 16 year old AMC who got 3 assists and a goal, his attributes are poor, but his performances were stellar. I wish I had gotten a screenshot of him here, but I didn't think about it.



Edited by Palkey
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This really followed the start of the season, with our form being all over the place. Two more losses again to RFS and Riga... feel like that's going to become a motto of this save.

Though looking at the league table, I'm pretty content.


The board wanted a mid-table finish and it looks very possible, and honestly Liepaja are catch-able. Tukums are having a howler, which I can't pretend I'm not delighted about.

We are still conceding a lot, and our scoring has calmed down a bit; though it's hard to keep up with the big teams. One thing I've noticed is that teams have really odd schedules, at one point i was three games ahead of Valmiera, but they seemed to catch up after a busy week... so I hope they just had a random blip with Europe or something...



Here's a glance at the squad. I use the instant result "feature" so my attachment and knowledge of these players is limited. But, Klava dropped off a bit, and a few others picked up the slack. Still waiting on that one player to grab my attention. Also been having to drag the occasional B team player into the squad with suspensions and all that fun stuff, which is why Regza is listed, among others. All in all I'm content, not over-awed, but certainly not unhappy.


Which my "supporters" seem to agree with. :)


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An Upturn In Fortune

The seasons here in Latvia are busy, very busy, to the point where my players are constantly exhausted. Our minimal training days are cut short from the games we need to play, being a semi-pro team certainly doesn't help. And despite that...


Three wins in the league and a cup victory. Not bad at all for a 6 week stint. But that's not all.


18.png.df378a50af08b1e08b9c181bb32d8d55.png Klava continues to break records, though not a stand out player he is contributing to this team already.19.png.d6e5a2417bc02639f9547385b6f83e54.png

And how this happened is beyond me, we aren't rich, actually we are losing money, but they only went and said yes. Not about to complain though.

Where does all this nonsense leave us, I hear you ask, well...


Just off the pace for a spot in Europe. The goal difference is a thing, but ignore that. The table is still tight, but we are not in a relegation scrap and we could push on and make something amazing out of this season with some good form.


The cherry on top. :)


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Youth Intake Day

What am I looking for, honestly I'm not sure, I'd love some cover at left and right back, I'd love a star player somewhere in the middle...


So from this screenshot you can see 4... 4 strikers, and none of the top talents jump off the page, screen, so am I happy or impressed? Lets take a look.


I decided to organize this screen from PCA rather than PPA mainly because none of these player will reach their potential. As of this intake not a single player in any of my squads has had a single point of growth in any stat. Considering I'm semi-pro, have terrible facilities, and bad coaches, I doubt that's a surprise. But none of those factors will be changing any time soon. So Current Ability is king.

What I see here isn't great. But the actual attributes are more important.


Honestly Jevgenjis Ostrovskis doesn't look too bad. He is well rounded for a 16 year old, but that's not terrible. High team work and work rate is to be commended too. Just a shame he plays on the wing.



Kristians Treimanis is cut of the same cloth, perhaps a little more suited to being a speedy winger, regardless a decent player in a position I'm not using.


Artjoms Gorkšs... Give this guy a bucket of potential and I'd be heading straight down the alter. However, he's not going to grow much, so those yellow's are going to be wasted. Still, I'm more than comfortable throwing him in a rotated 11. Ought to earn some appearances over the years.


Antons Gorkšs, The Unofficial twin, is about as good as it gets, which really is to say, not very good at all. Nothing to scoff at, I could have gotten a lot worse, and hes decent enough in a position I use too... I just wish he did something a bit better. Either creativity or physically, but you get what you get. He will be getting game time, no doubt about it.

Edited by Palkey
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End of the Season

And with that I'm already done with this season, felt very quick I hope it stays as quick for a while, could enjoy reaching 2123.

So fixtures...


The Youth intake was at September 30th, so focusing that post on just that made sense, but really probably should have updated the league too. Well, it was a struggle. Picked up some wins against the teams around us, lost to the big boys, and lost to some of the competition. Needless to say Europe is off the table now.


Tukums are relegated and RFS are champions. Hardly surprising. 6th place was pretty nice, scraped a few good wins and ended close enough to Europe that I'm pretty happy with that. Our system wasn't problematic and I like scoring plenty of goals, I feel like it always give you a chance to win. 

Still though, no players are developing much, a few gained a single point, but on the whole not much. I'll keep it in mind going forward, I, and probably most of you, had saves on FM22 that had no growth for a decade.

Speaking of players...


Klava was really good, for a 16 year old, and our strikers were on form. Not much to complain about. Well there's our defense, but nothing I can really do about that.29.thumb.png.c62e6b36c20de3ec7e9a6ec682ca80b3.png

Seeing the Annual Revenue made me curious about our financial situation.


So, yeah. For a team that's not professional, this is a massive disappointment. Managing to bleed out 200k over a year is hardly good, we need money to become professional, and we need to be professional to make anything of our team.

This could become a real problem.


No Youth players here, which is to be expected but still not pleasant.

A few of our better players want to leave us, their full-time contract ran out and they simply refuse to consider a part-time. So goodbye to our 3rd and 4th best performing players this season.


In better news lets look into European adventures for our compatriots.


Riga nearly made it to groups, with some luck they will make it soon, then our coefficient will fly up. 


Never seen a "Happy to be here." before, clearly it doesn't help our situation, but at least it's not a simple "No money, get lost!"

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Season 2


Early season odds don't look too awful, considering we lost two of our best players I'm not heartbroken.

I am sticking with my 4-2-2-2 formation, it seemed to do what I was wanting and we didn't struggle.

After an uneventful preseason, in which I decided to do a bunch of low reputation games to build morale, we started the season off with a bang.


Took points of Riga, which is worth more than the win vs Liepaja to me, but really a solid start to the season.



Two points off second place and three points off 8th... Really thought that start was good.


The team is playing well, and I'm happy. Also one of our Youth academy players impressed on his debut. An average of 7.00 in 0 (6) games, not bad at all.


Season is off to a great start, players are playing well, and morale is high. If there was a season to make Europe...

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These 8 game months are driving me crazy!

Honestly! The cramming of half a season into two months is horrific. We get basically no time to train, no time to rest or recover, and meanwhile our opponents are all professional so they have vastly more fit squads. Not to mention my team isn't good enough to do a mass rotate.

So, enough complaining...


Brutal month.

A draw with RFS was inspiring, after the last month I had high hopes. But I'll be damned if it wasn't a fluke.

Winning against Jelgava is a given. They are so far off the pace it's not funny.


Seems like 1st and 10th are already locked. But the rest is ridiculously close.


Luckily my players are really here to fight it out and make a push for... damnit!

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A tough stretch of form. It can be incredibly difficult to turn the tide and it certainly doesn’t help when you have players like those highlighted who seem somewhat uncommitted given they don’t see their long-term future to be with the club. 

A separate note, I’m glad to see someone giving Super Nova a go. I was a big fan of the previous logo and its utterly bizarre design! :lol:

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