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About johnstonpickle

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    Sheffield United

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  1. Bonnin looks like a player to build a team around for years to come! I think he would be incredible as the covering CB in the middle of a back 3... Never have I ever seen Sheffield United do anything but yo-yo!
  2. Brilliant! This thread just typifies everything that is wrong with the modern game In reality i'm sure the penalties for such ridiculous spending would be far greater!
  3. 2021/22 SEASON Another big round up of events that occurred during the season that's just gone by. I mentioned that business was concluded in the last post, but this was a lie. I managed to bring in a couple more players just to bolster the squad. Hernan Lopez Munoz was a last minute signing for £5.5m. I thought he looked class, and could potentially play up front as an out and out finisher. At that price, I had to sign him up. Lacking in a few key areas, but hopefully we can improve things. Not seen many players aged 16 that are as good as Hannant, certainly believe that for £1m he could prove to be a good investment in the long term for us. After a long season, this is how the Premier League table looks; The media thought we'd finish rock bottom again... we gazumped everyone and landed in a comfortable mid table position. Defensively we were much improved - Zoet keeping 16 clean sheets, the joint third most in the division. The investment in him was really worthwhile. Player performance has been good. Olaza with the most assists with 8. Goals were spread out once again throughout the team. Almada with 8, Millot, who has dramatically improved this season with 7 from CM and Munoz with 5 were our top scorers. In Almada we have a player to build the team around. I'm happy with the majority of the squad and the fact that the young players are still developing nicely and getting plenty of game time. One lad that shone out a little this year is Zouaoui. Scoring for fun in the youth teams so I decided to give him a crack in the first team in some of the cup games and also in the league. He didn't disappoint and whilst he's still got a long way to go, he should hopefully be close to first team football. One downside is that West Ham came in for him (lowballed me) and he kicked up a fuss. He was happy that we will only accept bids of £21.5m or more though, so if anyone wants to offer that, i'm all ears. There are 21 (twenty one) teams that currently want him! Let's see what the summer brings. Finances are looking good, therefore i've asked the question of the board RE upgrading the facilities. They accepted pretty much all of my suggestions, so we're also making good progress off the pitch too. They've recently offered me £55m transfer budget, and I know it's famous last words and all that, but I don't want to spend anywhere near that much this season. I'm planning on sticking with this group. If someone wants to leave then so be it, but I don't plan on going mad spending to replace them. Oh and another little positive - The Blades and Leeds are back in the big time next season too. YORKSHIRE!!
  4. Yeah you could swap them round I guess. Lot of flexibility in there depending on what you want them to do. I tried Norwood as a DLP(d) but I found he didn't drop deep enough to support the lone CB and it left me exposed. Even as a HB I've found that if the player has the attributes he will still try to control the game as a DLP would but will be a bit more disciplined defensively. I abandoned the tactic for a while to be honest, but the more stuff i've been reading about how to prevent being exploited by the long balls and applied this to my other tactics, the more I think that it could work with this one. I always felt that playing with a lower line and lower pressing made my teams a bit more passive but i think there's definitley a way to balance things out. I will certainly give it a go anyways!
  5. I've tried to replicated it by having one CB(c) and then players in the RB/LB as IWB(s) and RWB/LWB positions as CWB(a). Found that you have more versatility with IWBs than CBs and can ask them to do more things. To complete the midfield, there's a HB(d) in the deep midfield role (Norwood comes as deep as Egan at times), with a BBM(s) (Fleck's role) and a MEZ(s) Lundstram. F9 (McGoldrick) and PF(a) (Mousset) up front. The positives are that you can produce overloads down the flanks, with the WBs, IWBs, and left/right sided midfielder down each side. The F9 provides an extra man in midfield. The downside is that i've struggled to defend effectively - but i'm putting this down to playing far too aggressively and leaving loads of space in behind. Might work well if you play with a cautious mentality but with a high line and not too aggressive pressing? Certainly doesn't work with counter pressing. I think it could be balanced out quite nicely though with the correct TIs, I just haven't found them yet.
  6. Cheers. Yeah it felt like a drag at times, hopefully though it will be more entertaining next season! Once we've got a side that I feel confident is good enough to hold it's own in the PL, I might consider moving on to another club.
  7. POST SEASON - TRANSFERS I knew that the squad needed a little improvement over the summer, so here's the overall transfer business; Borner was the only player to leave for a fee, whilst Odubajo and Van Aken were the biggest names to leave on a free following the expiry of their contracts. A total net spend of approximately £39.5m has seen us sign this little lot; You've seen Eze.. Stankovic is very much one for the future. I think he has a lot of promise and will hopefully in the future show himself to be a good defensively minded midfielder. Potentially one to be loaned out this season, or at least given time during the cup games. You'll notice the 'Ywp' icon - this means he is on a wage of less than £8k per week and therefore is unable to play in league games. Cash is probably going to be our first choice RB going into this season. I'm having a bit of a tinker with a 4-1-4-1 formation, with very attacking wing backs, with the DM playing as a Half Back, which means that my wing backs need to be more attacking minded and not worry too much about their defensive abilities. I think Cash fills this role pretty well. Decent age and will also hopefully develop. Ojrzyinski is a young keeper I picked up from Liverpool. Some potential there for sure. Maybe a season playing regularly whilst out on loan will do him good. I definitely needed a reliable, quality goalkeeper - and I think Zoet is just that. Played tons of games, a full international and has a wealth of good attributes. This is the first time I've broken the transfer record (the most expensive signing since Jordan Rhodes, who cost £10m). I think he will make a massive difference. Fjortoft-Lovik is another one with potential that can't yet play in the first team. A loan/cup games will get him the game time he needs to develop. For 18 years old, I think he's good. Loads of room to improve though. Mosor is young, but I plan on giving him plenty of first team football this season. Physical attributes are fantastic for one so young, and he looks to be defensively sound as well. I definitely think in 2-3 years he will be a top class talent. I was blown away by Olaza - technically he is outstanding. I can't wait to see him flying up and down the left hand side. Expecting him to be a real creative force for us with his crossing and free kick taking ability. I have never seen him before on FM or IRL, I was just randomly seeing who could be plundered from South America and he stood out like a sore thumb! Whilst I was in South America, I couldn't help but notice this guy as well. An absolute steal at £5.5m. Almada is a little magician, and whilst he doesn't exactly fit straight in to the style of play I have been working on, I couldn't let another club sign him. He has unbelievable technical ability, a great personality and genuine potential to become world class in my opinion. Already thinking of how I can horn him into my tactic. Early thoughts; could he play as a false 9? With his movement and creativity he would drop into the hole/midfield and create the space for my 2nd/3rd man runners. We'll see... Well I think that just about wraps up the transfer business this year - I didn't want to massively overhaul things as there are still loads of good young players that I signed at the start of last season that have really improved and I want to continue to improve. My prediction for this season: We'll finish 12th - which would be a major sign of progression. Aiming higher obviously
  8. SEASON SUMMARY So this weekend has allowed for some really good game time, and as such I've managed to polish off the season. Let's see how things went... As you can see, results have been pretty hard to come by... goals too. 4 wins in the 2nd half of the season, with a lot of poor runs without winning (or scoring) in between. I was hoping that the teams in and around us were just as bad as this, if not worse... And I guess they were!! Painful to see the Blades go down, but ultimately they just weren't good enough. I lost count of the times that their latest score flashed up and they were leading in games only to end up drawing or losing. Potentially this save could take me to Bramall Lane at some point in the future to restore them back into the Prem...we'll see. They've hung on the Chris Wilder though, which is reassuring. Leeds tried their best to go for the all time low points total. Brentford's relegation may present a good opportunity to poach some of their better players... Only scoring 28 goals is cause for concern on our part. Onni Valakari was our top scorer with 5 goals. He didn't even play up front until near the end of the season! This is an area that we need to address next term, but thankfully, we're still a Premier League team and have an opportunity to further improve the side! In the January transfer window, the only business we did was signing Diogo Dalot on loan to fill in at RB. He did OK. No chance of me signing him on a perm though... The players performance over the season; These are the tactics that I've been using recently. At the end of the day, we did what we had to in order to stay up. It was a struggle to watch some of our games at times if i'm being honest, as we toiled against much better sides. Conceding early goals was a major issue that i'm not sure how to resolve, other than simply strengthening the defence. Says a lot that Cameron Dawson was nominated as our player of the season. He's rated by our coaching team as League One standard goalkeeper. This has really hit home the point that we need to invest. The major positives are that i've been able to give a lot of game time to many young players. A few of them have the dreaded 'WNT' notification, but if I'm going to sell anyone, it will be for a very tidy profit. None of the big 6 are after them though, so I doubt they'd kick up a fuss if I decide to reject any offers. This is a very pleasing image. We've been given a nice boost in terms of transfer budget and wage allowance for the coming season, hopefully I won't have to spend too much of that to improve the side. Looking around the leagues at transfer targets, and it's this time of year that players are transfer listed and have started handing in their transfer requests. I have taken full advantage of QPR's financial decline and poached this lad for £2.5m up front, rising to £6.5m. Have to say I'm impressed with him IRL so scouted him, and they were impressed. He'll be a decent addition i'm sure. I'm sure there will be many more incomings and outgoings to come!!
  9. DECEMBER After a goalless month in November, we really needed a strong month in December to give ourselves a fighting chance of staying up. As mentioned before, I have no intention of dramatically overhauling my tactical approach. I have faith that what worked for us before can work for us again, and that once the players are settled into our system that we can once again find a way to win. Here's how December went; .. We got our first goal of the month through a freak David De Gea o.g after 22 seconds, but Man Utd showed their class and fought their way back to win the game. I didn't hold out much hope of getting a result against Watford, who were up in 10th place, but we came from 1-0 down and battled to our first victory in what seemed like forever. Valakari getting his first goal for us as a makeshift target man. I kept the same side for the City game, where we totally nullified their attacking threat and came up with what turned out to be the winning goal on 37 mins - Dom Iorfa finding himself in the penalty area after a marauding run from RB. A clean sheet to boot, made this a really satisfying victory. Maybe we've turned a corner? We were once again brilliant in the Wolves game, who were managerless for this one. It showed too - they were pretty terrible, and we created lots of good chances and went 2-0 up. A late goal from them made it a nervy finish, but we held on for a deserved victory. Over the festive period I had a decision to make. Do I put out a strong side against Spurs and try to get an unlikely result, or save the first team/in form players for the Southampton game, where a victory was more likely, and more important given where they were in the league in relation to us. I decided for the latter. Although we weren't disappointing against Spurs, we couldn't hold on to get a result. At least we beat the Saints, deservedly too. A clean sheet made it feel even sweeter. After the game Hassenhutl was sacked and I was immediately linked with the vacant post... That wraps up a pretty successful month for us, and my word wasn't it needed! Looking ahead, the cup game will be a chance to rest the first team players, but the Burnley game is one I need to be getting 3 points out of. There's a really tough run of games that follows, so it's important that we don't lose too heavily in some of those. The league table is looking loads better. Leeds look gone, which is a surprise as they were much better than us last season. The Blades are still in with a shout. West Ham are the surprise package at the top of the table. .. Just had a quick check on the Finances out of interest - can't believe how much they've improved since promotion! . As January is approaching, I have around £8.5m to spend if I need it, however, Brexit has just happened and the new rules are pretty interesting; Under 21 players from the UK and Ireland are allowed to be unregistered, but foreign youngsters that haven't been trained in the UK have to be included in the 25 man squad. There's also a minimum salary of £8k per week that a player needs to earn in order to play in the first team (new signings only). I had 5 registration spots before this. Coincidentally, I also had 5 foreign youngsters that have been playing in the first team that need to be registered. This means i'm going to have to trim the squad down if I plan on bringing anyone in. Interested to see how it will affect other teams in the game though, hopefully some of my relegation rivals will be hit particularly hard by this (I'm thinking Brentford?!). Here are the stats from all of the players so far (the starting 11 has already been rotated ahead of the cup game!);
  10. Some of those newgens are unbelieveable. Love the HOYD! Wow, i've never seen an employee with such attributes! Definitely looks like you'll be consolidating at least the top 4, with a relatively tiny budget. Wonder if there's any more room for expansion with the NYS? Realistically there is plenty of free land around the stadium so it should be pretty expandable if needs be?
  11. That’s the plan, hopefully there are 3 worse teams than us. Just changing my laptop at the moment so will get back playing again soon, hoping it will bring me a bit more luck 😄 Anyone else spend a disproportionate amount of their free time thinking about transfer targets/ tactics and how they can do better with their team? What an all consuming hobby this game is! Love it.
  12. NOVEMBER The solitary point against Leeds is pretty much the only positive here! A goalless, winless month. Again, we are creating the chances, but to go 5 games without scoring is obscene! We were battered by the Blades, who were at the foot of the table. Morale is on the floor, we are desperate for some kind of luck... But still not in the relegation zone! The league this year has some really poor sides in it... i'm really hoping we can be the best of them! My tactics from the Championship seem to still create plenty of chances, so i'm sticking with it and just hoping that the new players can eventually gel and get the results we need. Here's to some goals in December...
  13. OCTOBER Only the 3 games this month - but at least we got a win! And stopped conceding so many! Just look at what we did to Arsenal Although i'm still pretty worried about our league position...
  14. I mean, this kinda backs up what i'm seeing. We played the counter attacking game to perfection, created ourselves 4 1v1 chances, and still lost. Surely it's got to be down to the personnel? Unfortunately I will just have to persist with what i've got until Jan.
  15. SEPTEMBER It's tough at the top; A winless and morale shattering month. I wasn't too fussed about the cup defeat, as this was actually a fairly decent performance from the kids, but only a point in the league alongside a thrashing from Liverpool leaves us in a precarious position Equally concerning is the amount of goals scored and conceded. Not as though we're not creating chances, it's putting them away thats the problem. This says it all really. We're probably fielding a side that is far too experienced. October calls for a rethink and a bit of a squad shuffle. Let's see if we can improve. Maybe it's time to draft in some of the more experienced squad players to settle things down for a bit.
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