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    Cesena FC / Lausanne

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  1. Nice one @Crispypaul, good luck with Lyn. I had a great save with them back around 2005 or so.
  2. Unlucky @Tecmo, Scotland's brutal at that level. That's an interesting cash bonus in Austria, I didn't know about it. Do you get successive bonuses or is it a one-off thing? @Lower Leagues Rule nice update, good luck for the season!
  3. Cesena FC - Serie A (6th) - Season 2021-2022 Summary Monty Banks Profile - League Table - Squad - Transfers  Despite a woeful start to the season - a streak of successive losses that left the club languishing in the lower reaches of the league - the lads produced some excellent mid-season form to fight their way up the table. With five games to go we were sitting only 7 points off 1st, with a whole host of clubs within reach of European qualification. Despite beating AC Milan 1-0 the team couldn't handle the pressure of the league closeout, losing the remaining four fixtures to finish a nevertheless respectable sixth. The team duly won the Serie A team of the year, and will enter next season's UEFA Cup at the Group Stage. Results great improved after several underperforming first choice players were dropped - young starlet Dennis Siciliano, new backup signing Jean Ruiz and goalkeeping stalwart Alessandro Guarnone stepped in as replacements for the much hyped but completely uninspiring Alessandro Rossi, Matias Fischer, and Maxence Prévot. All of my bigger signings seem to have struggled to fit the team so far, which is a bit weird. Luca Valzania became team captain and had a wonderful season, finishing as top scorer with 18 goals from central midfield. Unsurprisingly, Rovini had another great season on the right wing, Bussaglia performed extremely well on the left, and Rondanini was reliable as ever at right back. Belgian playmaker Siebe Schrijvers also put in a good shift over the season despite a slow start. Everything is looking very promising for next season - a top-six league finish to build on, a strong core of players who have been together for a few seasons now, money coming in from the UEFA Cup group stage, and a growing reputation with which to attract some higher calibre players to the team (though things didn't work out too well there with this season's flops). Serie A seems like a very open competition in this save iteration, with no single team really dominating things and about 10+ clubs all with a viable shot at the title. The striker situation is still irking me - young Siciliano was the only forward to finish with an average rating of over 7.0 and the midfield are still providing the most goals. Will have to persevere with that, although I think it's more a match engine thing than a major tactical issue. Interesting times ahead!
  4. @rlipscombe - great work on the promotion! Quite a few similarities with my Serie B season there, such as struggling with strikers, the long unbeaten streak and ending up top of the pile. Well done! There's a damn good chance you'll do better than expected in Serie A - just finished up 6th in the first season among the big dogs (will post update later). @Lower Leagues Rule - good luck with the new save
  5. Good luck @Tecmo, I do love a lower league rise to glory in Scotland. Look forward to seeing how you get on.
  6. Cesena FC - Serie B - Season 2020-2021 Summary Monty Banks Profile - League Table - Squad - Transfers  The pre-season transfer wheelings and dealings went well - we signed 6 good quality players on free transfers and bolstered the squad with 6 loans. Striker Alessandro Rossi was perhaps the biggest name to join the club, but I was most excited about the re-signing of former Cesena youth product Luca Valzania who has the makings of a future club captain. Last season's loanee goalkeeper Guarnone joined us permanently from Milan. I had expected to struggle this season as the media predicted us to finish 15th and we were up against some strong opposition in Brescia, Verona, Chievo, Lecce, Perugia and Foggia, who beat us in the Serie C Super Cup last season. However, we punched well above our expected weight for the second season running and won the league at a canter. The season started with an extension of last season's unbeaten run as we went undefeated for 18 games before losing to Verona. There were a few shaky moments, such as a 5-2 thrashing from Perugia and another defeat by Foggia - once again on the last day of the season - but we only lost those 3 league matches all season and finished a comfortable 17 points clear of Chievo in second. Game of the season was an epic 5-5 draw away to Chievo. Luca Valzania excelled in centre midfield and finished top scorer in the league with 19 goals, picking up Player of the Year in the process. Emanuele Rovini cemented himself as a fan favourite with another excellent season, and full backs Rondanini and Eguelfi both continued last season's good form. Rossi performed slightly better than last years' flop Erik Gerbi (who was sold to Crotone for a miraculous £600K!) but despite some experimentation I'm still not getting amazing performances from the lone striker. Rossi only scored 13 league goals, certainly less than hoped. Young centre backs Gabriele Bellodi, on loan from Milan, and free transfer Yves Dabila played well, forming a solid partnership at the heart of defence. Bellodi won Young Player of the Year, and I extended his loan for another year at the end of the season. Last season's standout left winger Bussaglia didn't feature as often this season, with his cover Marco Frediani's good form keeping him out of the side. Monty Banks won Serie B Manager of the Year, as well as Managers' Manager of the Year. So, next season sees the club return to Serie A with little expectation beyond a relegation struggle. Monty moved swiftly to shore up the defence - in preparation for a tough battle against much sterner opposition - with the signing of French defender Matias Fischer from Nancy. Pescara right back Christian Ventola signed a pre-contract agreement and will provide cover and a rotation option for Rondanini. I'm looking forward to seeing how we get on against the big Italian clubs, and am cautiously optimistic based on the last two seasons of overachieving. Serie A will also attract larger crowds and a considerable wedge of TV money. The club has been financially stable for the last two seasons, so I'm hoping we'll be able to rack up a fair bit of money in the top division!
  7. Thanks mate! Good luck for the promotion race - you'll be filling up that massive stadium rapidly when you hit Serie A!
  8. @Rolphynho sounds like a brutal season, I had a similar one in my recent short-lived Dafuge challenge. Can be demoralising, but it feels great when you actually win a game! How are you getting on with Bari @rlipscombe? I'll hopefully post my Cesena season 2 review later (we won Serie B!).
  9. @Biscotti - great European campaign there, taking names and scalps! A comfortable league win as well, nice one. Champions League upsets for you next season hopefully... look forward to seeing how you get on.
  10. @Rolphynho greetings fellow veteran! Good luck with your triple challenge - I admire your ambition... The San Marino and Youth Only challenges are tough in themselves, but they will most definitely combine nicely with this one Italy is a good place to be for this challenge, there's a few of us slogging it out there now!
  11. @vikeologist doing very well there! As a fellow Scot it's nice to hear of some international success Considering to give this challenge a go to give me a break from my All European Small Club to Big Club challenge with Cesena. Looks pretty hard but I like the idea that you have to keep bouncing from club to club in order to chip away at the list of trophies. I always get stuck at one club and never want to leave, so this could be a fun alternative to that. Hmmmmmm.
  12. Cesena FC - Serie C/B - Season 2019-2020 Summary Monty Banks Profile - League Table - Squad - Transfers I had high hopes for the team going into this season but I certainly did not expect things to go anywhere near as well as they did. For the first time ever in a save (and I've been playing since Championship Manager 93-94 ), I finished the league season unbeaten, absolutely walking the division. The careful player recruitment process in pre-season paid dividends, and the assembled squad proved to be somewhat overpowered for Serie C level. There were a few brown trouser moments along the way, with a couple of last minute equalisers keeping the team's amazing record intact, but overall I could not be happier with this season's performance. It is without doubt the most successful lower league season I've had in FM. The squad gelled quickly and fit nicely into the tactical setup, and most players ended up with solid 7.00+ average ratings. We also won the Serie C Cup, but Foggia beat us 1-0 in the final of the Serie C Super Cup ending our season in defeat. Monty Banks received his first accolade in Italian football, picking up the Manager of the Year award. There was a moment of great sadness in early January when my Head of Youth Development Gianluca Pegolo jumped ship to become manager of Alto Adige. I was pretty gutted as I expected him to bring through some great youth prospects at the end of the season. After delivering a bit of a parting shot at him in the press he was swiftly replaced with Frenchman Jean-Marc Nobilo, who is not quite as good but should still be solid at this level. Signing of the season did indeed turn out to be Emanuele Rovini, who won Player of the Year and was the divison's top scorer with an impressive 22 goals from the right wing. He also notched up 10 league assists and was consistently influential in the team's good form. Left winger Andrea Bussaglia - a transfer agreed prior to Monty taking over - also had a great season, although he missed three months with a torn thigh muscle. This led to the signing of Francesco Corsinelli on-loan from Genoa, who proved to be a reliable replacement with 5 goals and 9 assists from 17 appearances. Other standouts were attacking right back Ivan Rondanini, experienced playmaker Danilo Alessandro, young loanee centre back Antony Angileri, and left back Fabio Eguelfi. Monty Banks' record transfer Erik Gerbi proved to be a massive disappointment though - despite scoring a decent tally of 12 goals (from 42 appearances though, not that great for a striker) his performances were consistently poor and I think he's got a bit of an attitude problem. The striker position is not really working that well in my chosen 4-4-1-1 formation, so I'm going to have to tweak that a bit to try and get better performance from the lone forward. Despite the success this season I am concerned that the current squad will struggle a bit in Serie B, as the standard of players and squads is considerably higher. With a smaller transfer budget of around £500K and a rather modest wage budget, Monty's probably going to have to rely on pre-contracts, free transfers and loans. A number of players with expiring contacts have been targeted - including Lazio striker Alessandro Rossi (who would be a big upgrade on the misfiring Gerbi) and Nabil Fekir's younger brother Yessin Fekir, who could prove to be a great long-term replacement for Alessandro. Three decent prospects came through the youth system but are unlikely to get a first team look-in. However, last season's hottest prospect Dennis Siciliano could be knocking on the door, as he is quickly developing into a rapid and hard-working frontman. Can Cesena's unbeaten run continue in their return to Serie B? Probably not, but hey The only objective for the 2020-2021 season is to avoid relegation, as per the expectation of the board.
  13. Cesena FC - Serie C/B - Season 2019-2020 Introduction Domestic Leagues History - Club Overview - Starting Squad Club Background Though perhaps not successful enough to be classed as a fallen giant, Cesena FC is certainly a club fallen from grace. After declaring bankruptcy in 2018, their previous iteration AC Cesena was dissolved and reformed as a phoenix club in the Serie D amateur leagues. The new Cesena FC retained their near 24,000 capacity stadium, as well as regaining the rights to their previous club badge. This challenge begins following their promotion to Serie C/B at the start of the 2019-2020 season. Leading the club forwards - hopefully to its former heights - is American-Italian manager Monty Banks. Great-grandson of the famous Cesena-born actor/director of the same name, Monty began his football management career in the American college soccer system where he quickly became well regarded for his focus on youth development and aggressive, attacking football. As a completely unknown quantity in Italian football, Banks will have to quickly obtain results on the field to win favour with the Cesena fans - but his family history is sure to intrigue even the most skeptical Bianconeri supporter. His first task will be to rebuild the squad to ensure competitiveness in the division, with the club's board expecting a mid-table finish in the league. Pre-season Recruitment I'm doing this challenge in FM Touch, so some features such as youth intakes will be a bit limited. I've unlocked Attribute Masking and loaded a few other leagues so the game is more challenging long term. As you can see the starting squad was rather thin with only 11 players on the books as well as some additional (newgen) youth players. Thankfully though there was a good amount of money available to strengthen the squad - just over £900K - a lot considering the club is in Serie C! The club also had no staff, so my first task was to recruit a competent backroom team. As the personal focus of the challenge will be youth development it was important to get in a good HoYD, and I managed to find a bit of a gem - Gianluca Pegolo has amazing stats for this level and is probably my favourite pre-season signing. My new scouting team then got to work, using their rather limited network to try and find some players that will hopefully be of a good enough standard to mount a title challenge as well as potentially having enough ability to hold their own in Serie B should we get promoted. I spent ages on pre-season squad building and signed 14 players in total, some of whom are promising youngsters on loan from higher division clubs. Of all the signings I have high hopes for Emanuele Rovini, signed from Udinese for £170K , a skilful inside forward who I'm retraining into a deeper inverted winger. The most spent on a player was £230K for 19-year-old Pro Vercelli striker Erik Gerbi who I'm hoping will score a lot of goals at this level. The squad I've assembled looks good on paper, certainly of a higher overall standard than most other clubs in the division. I'm fairly confident we'll be vying for promotion once the team has gelled. The season is now underway so I'll update you on my progress soon. Good luck with all your challenges!
  14. I hear you there! Going to give this a go with Cesena's "phoenix" club - I was dead keen on the Dafuge challenge but getting up those divisions is a bit of a chore! This challenge is better suited to my needs
  15. Same problem here, based in Australia too. Happening with FMT2019, meaning I can't apply any unlockables meaning I can't do a bunch of challenges that require attribute masking etc. Rubbish!
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