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22 "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn"

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  • Biography
    Played Goalie in Ice Hockey for 20 years- friends say too many pucks to the head :)

About Me

  • About Me
    Kings Langley in Dafuge FM22

Favourite Team

  • Favourite Team
    Leyton Orient

Currently Managing

  • Currently Managing
    Kings Langley

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  1. Well, the good part in taking King's Langley is that the squad makeover was easier than usual. The best player in the squad, SC Harry Crawford, couldn't be re-signed and went to Finn Harps. I only kept a handful of players from the previous regime- mostly because they already had contracts through 2023- and I couldn't find any takers for them. Overall, I was pretty happy with the offseason signings. The key players I believe will be Aaron Maguire (GK Under-21 Capped Irish), Zach Awe (DC Under-21 Capped Nigerian, but English as well), Franklin Domi (DL Under-21 Capped Albanian, also English as well), Henry Jeffcoat (DR), Ossama Ashley (MC), Jordan James (MR), Tristan Abldeen-Goodridge (SC), Tyler Roberts (SC) and Yoane Zohore (SC). This is a lot better group than I am used to having on a first season of the Challenge, but I will wager we struggle early on due to how many new players we brought on. Still, I expect us to do Ok in the VNS. I fully expect to add at least one or two midfielders as we are weak there (after getting outbid for several choice MCs off the free list).
  2. Decided to go with Kings Langley this time (Thanks G_D_K for the saved files - you were getting clubs that I couldn't generate in my attempts). Off we go with the Semi-Pro club from Northwest of London and Watford. I haven't played them in any previous versions, although I know they were played in the FM 21 Dafuge Challenge.
  3. Thanks for getting the Challenge posted so promptly! Definitely in this again, but not having luck finding a club yet (aiming for a lesser club or at least Needham Market again).
  4. Needham Market- Season 10 (2030-31) 4th Season Premier Our only mid-season add was a loan of 18 year old Borussia Dortmund Midfielder Michael Heinz. Eugene Rooney is a brilliant winger and has been playing so again this season- when he isn't hurt. He is hurt again and missing extended time, so we needed a depth Leftwinger that we didn't have to register for League play and Heinz was the best we could find. He isn't bad, just not up to the level of loanee Emmanuel Arthur, who will get the brunt of the time. We did finally call up our 18 year old Portugese SC prodigy Balarmino, as he had clearly outgrown the Under-23s with his rampant scoring. We had signed him off of SLB youth side for 1.1 Million and he is about ready to take his place in our forward rotation. We will try to spot him starts as needed down the stretch. Our Cup run wasn't great after winning the Euro Super Cup. We were upset by Norwich 1-0 on a penalty in Carabao Cup. Liverpool knocked us out of the FA Cup with a 4-2 loss at Anfield in the Quarter-Finals. Our Champions Cup bid to repeat ended when Manchester United broomed us out in the Quarter-Finals. We got our revenge on ManU when we ravaged them 5-2 at our new stadium with Luca Francavilla going off and scoring all five goals against them to clinch the Premier title. We missed out on our Invincibles season when we lost to Arsenal 2-1 at Emirates in March- the only loss in League play for us. Leading us was our 1-2 punch up front as Wonderkid Luca Francavilla scored 32 goals (29 League) and had two 5-goal matches in the second half of the season. His strike partner Tyrese Omotoye wound up with 28 goals (26 League). Challenge complete.
  5. Needham Market- Season 10 (2030-31) 4th Season Premier Thanks to to the influx of talented youngsters, we are much better depthwise and it is paying off in League play.
  6. @tremor I have had this happen once in my save. I was fortunate that one of the three matches got cancelled due to waterlogged pitch.
  7. Needham Market- Season 10 (2030-31) 4th Season Premier With all the injuries we had last season, I decided heads will roll. Our entire set of Fitness coaches got the sack, as well as our Head Physio. The training program we used all last season didn't differ from the one before, so whether it was luck or not- I needed a new crew of staff. I am losing Xavier Mbuyamba, who was signed on free last summer after I accepted a 22 Million bid from RB Salzburg just after the mid-winter transfer window. Mbuyamba hadn't established himself at that point and was unhappy, but he got a lot happier as he earned a starting spot when Opoku went down with injury and never gave it up on our run to the Champions Cup. The 22 Million for a free signing that my staff now considers a fringe player was a good sum. We also sold Fullback Jordan Harvey for 3 Million to Reading. Harvey earned very little playing time and was excess to needs. The biggest new addition of the summer was the free transfer signing of Elite Centerback Chris Mepham from Tottenham. Mepham is 32 and is the first player I have signed over 30 in the entire time managing Needham Market. Besides being a terrific Centerback, Mepham is a starter on the Wales National side- alongside his new Needham Market partner- Connor Thomas. They should be very good together in our backline. Now that we have a Continental reputation, we were able to make a pair of splashy signings as Brazilian Wonderkids Willian Bubniak and Gilson Lopes Paranhos joined us. Bubniak, a 20 year old Rightback, came on a 25.5 Million release fee. Paranhos, a 19 year old Winger, has played mostly on the left side, but will move to the Rightwing role for us. As expected both are blazing fast and they will be joined by countryman Leftback Silvio Jose as the 19 year old moves into a regular playing role after being on loan last season- replacing Emilio who Manchester City declined to discuss a continuing loan for. Another addition that will likely raise eyebrows was the 4.5 Million purchase of GK Marko Vidanovic from Red Star. Vidanovic is a 20 year old Wonderkid who is already better than our starting keeper Donald Stewart. We will see how it goes, but I do expect Vidanovic to become my number 1 choice- despite the affinity I feel for Stewart, who has been a solid keeper for us. I had been scouting 19 year old Italian Wonderkid Luca Francavilla for three seasons. His 35 Million Release Fee at Sturm Graz was close to expiring, so now was the time to make the move for him. He has fantastic talent and will pair with Tyrese Omotoye up front for us. We have a wealth of good young forwards and it is likely Kurt Brooks will be unhappy with the reduction in playing time, but we will see how it goes. A modest signing fee of 75K brought us 18 year old Czech Wonderkid Jan Zelenka. Zelenka wanted to be loaned for a season, so we found a home for him at Millwall where he will be a regular starter. It is the season of Wonderkids for us with the addition of 18 year old Colombian MC Camilo Rueda, who we beat out Arsenal and Paris SG to sign for a modest 1.5 Million. Rueda is already a Premier talent and will pair with fellow Wonderkid Matias Colombini (I was correct in assuming he would develop into one) as our starting center mids. A free signing that was a nice bonus is the addition of 18 year old Spanish SC Christian Martinez. Martinez joins us from Atletico Madrid and though not able to break into their side, has a nice future here. Leaving us is 19 year old Uruguayan AMC Alvaro Pirez. As I expected, he didn't quite fit into how we play and I was pleased to get 16 Million after signing him on free as he moves to RB Salzburg. Also on the move is Shayne McKeown. For the second time in his career, I have sold him for 6 Million as AA Gent was willing to give us that much. I had hoped McKeown would take the next step and take over our DLP role, but he never showed he had Premier level ability. Lewis Miller will be moving on to CSKA Moscow as they paid us 7 Million for him. Miller never really found a regular starting role and was pleased to move on for a chance at starting.
  8. Needham Market- Season 9 (2029-30) 3rd Season Premier We celebrated a strong run-up to the final three matches of the season and then fell flat with two draws and a final match loss to Leicester that dropped us from 2nd in EPL to a final position of 3rd behind champion Chelsea and Arsenal. Our trip to the Champions Cup Final against Barcelona was memorable. We finished a strong 2nd to Paris SG in a group that also featured Valencia and weak sister Feyenoord. Our first knockout was Inter and we defeated them 3-2 at Needham Market Stadium. It looked like they were going to broom us out on away goals after an 89th minute strike put them ahead 2-1. Declan Thomson became a legend in Needham Market when he scored the tying goal in the dying moments on a mistake by Inter's veteran keeper and we moved on the 5-4 aggregate win. We were stuck in the Italian bracket in the Quarter-finals as we faced Juventus (Zebre). We battled them to hard fought 2-2 draw in Italy, but few gave us a chance as we traveled home for the 2nd leg. It was a brilliant backline effort as Matt Hanley scored two and Tyrese Omotoye added another in our 3-0 win that gave us a 5-2 aggregate win. The Semi-finals found us with a familiar foe as Chelsea had knocked out Paris SG. The first leg saw us with a late 2-1 lead until done in by a familiar nemesis as Ilaix Moriba equalized in injury time. We had finally defeated Chelsea on the road earlier in the season (the first time we had beaten them) and we repeated our offensive explosion this time as a hat-trick by Tyrese Omotoye and another by Kurt Brooks carried us into the final with a 4-1 win and 6-3 aggregate.
  9. Needham Market- Season 9 (2029-30) 3rd Season Premier Summer signings I was most pleased to land the player I have wanted for several seasons as we leapt at the opportunity to add 26 year old SC Tyrese Omotoye when Crystal Palace transfer listed him. He cost 10.75 Million, but I count him a bargain as I know that he will work well in our attacking system (one of my favorite players from FM 20). He has been bounced around to three clubs after Norwich and only at West Brom in Championship did they even give him much of an opportunity. Their loss is our gain. Our big gamble is a pricey one as we paid the 44 Million release fee to land 19 year old Welsh Wonderkid DLC Connor Thomas from relegated Derby. Thomas is the kind of Centerback that a club like ours can't land without going out on a limb like this one. The painful part is the 120 Million release fee that I couldn't avoid. Thomas already has 18 Caps and was a solid starter in the Premier as an 18 year old. Thomas looks like a brilliant player to me, so we will make use of him for as long as we can. He will pair with Kenneth Opoku as our main starters. I signed 27 year old Xavier Mbuyamba from Feyenoord on free transfer long ago- after January 1st and within the six months of expiration. The plan for the Belgian Centerback was to pair with Opoku as the main starters, but that has been altered with the addition of Thomas. Now, Mbuyamba will be the main depth with Luke McMahon for our starters. We also added depth at Rightback as we paid Leicester 2 Million for 20 year old Kevin Rooney. Rooney could become better than our current starter Ross Mackenzie, but for now he will work as a squad player- supplanting loanee Juan Antonio Gutierrez. Marcus ap Dafydd may not be happy, but we loaned 21 year old Spanish phenom Emilio from Manchester City for the season. Emilio is markedly better than ap Dafydd, so will likely be the main starter. Jordan Harvey is likely the most unhappy as he will not get a spot on the Champs League roster. Another depth signing was 28 year old GK Archie Mair who we cost 350K from Norwich. Mair represents an improvement on Will Jaaskelainen as the backup keeper behind Donald Stewart. Another future prospect joining us is 19 year old Dan Riddell from Birmingham for his 1.2 Million release fee. Riddell wants to be loaned out this season, which I am happy to do as we will have more playing time for him after this season. He is a very promising player who my scouts liked a lot. He will join Hull on loan. A very late addition was 28 year old Welsh Rightback/Rightwing Neco Williams. Williams may only be a squad player for us, but he adds perfectly to our depth with his ability down the right side. Despite the fact we landed Riddell, I paid Gremio 4.3 Million for 18 year old Brazilian Leftback Silvio Jose. Jose is a very fast, nimble player who could really blossom into a fine starter. Jose will join our promising Icelandic Centerback Ivar Breki Palsson at Preston North End, where Palsson will remain on loan after helping getting Preston promoted to League 1 last season. Leaving us was James Maxwell, whose poor performance at Leftback had both the Board and the fans commenting and he found the stands his normal role for the 2nd half of last season. He moved on to Ipswich for 200K (mostly happy to get his salary off our books). Also off the books is Rightback Frankie Whelan who was hurt a lot and didn't contribute much last season. He joined Sunderland for 25OK. Two more departures are Will Jaskelainen (for 350K to Cardiff) and Brad Hills (to Millwall for 190K). ***** Needham Market- Season 9 (2029-30) 3rd Season Premier Post-Transfer update It has been a frustrating season to this point. Our January was a series of one-goal losses in consecutive matches to Man City- Arsenal- Liverpool that has dropped us from 4th in the table to 6th. The injury bug has been bad this season as Alberto Hernandez has been out all season with a damaged knee, Gerard Mooney has only played 7 matches due to a series of injuries and at times our midfield and forwards have been decimated by series of injuries. Given that, we probably should be happy we are at least 6th. I was forced to recall loanee Jason Knight just to get more depth in the midfield for our heavy slate of matches. On top of that is the point of player's unhappiness at their respective playing times. The unhappiness is normal, but dealing with it during an string of injuries is difficult. Our additions at the transfer deadline have been 18 year old MC Liam Hercules from Leeds for 1.5 Million and MC Barrie Cartwright from Fulham for 5.5 Million (with another 2 Million in clauses). Hercules is a player my scouts have loved for awhile now and we will see if we can develop the promising youngster into an impact midfielder. Cartwright started at Liverpool and has kicked around a bit, but we have been scouting him since he was at Liverpool and the 5.5 Million is actually a modest price for his addtion.
  10. Needham Market - Season 8 2028-29 2nd Season Premier We won our final match of the season against Bournemouth to earn a top 4 spot and a place in Champions League. End of the season 8 (2028-29) Highlights Goals: Kurt Brooks- 23 Neil Shankland- 17 Declan Thompson- 8 Tony Rostock- 7 Ross Murray- 7 Matt Hanley-5 (after joing club, 12 total) Eugene Mooney- 5 Assists: Emmanuel Arthur- 10 Alberto Hernandez- 10 Eugene Mooney- 8 Kurt Brooks- 8 Neil Shankland- 6 Matias Colombini- 5 MOM: Kurt Brooks- 8 Neil Shankland- 7 Donald Stewart- 2 Rating: Kurt Brooks- 7.31 Neil Shankland- 7.12 Declan Thompson- 7.10 Donald Stewart- 7.04 Luke McMahon- 7.00 Yellow Cards: Kenneth Opoku- 12 Matias Colombini- 11 Alberto Hernandez- 11 Ross Mackenzie- 11 EPL Top Goalscorer Award- Kurt Brooks EPL English Players' Young Player of the Year- Neil Shankland
  11. Needham Market - Season 8 2028-29 2nd Season Premier Midseason Transfer Session The Board increased our transfer fund to 38 Million as we are doing so well on the financial side of the club. We re-upped our loan with Barca for another season-long loan of 20 year old Juan Antonio Guttierez. Gutierrez, who has dual Spanish/English citizenship, has been making appearances for English Under-21 side on the National stage. He will continue as a squad player for us, mostly filling in at rightback for 1st choice Ross Mackenzie. Also, we loaned Emmanuel Arthur from Arsenal for another season, as they still don't have a place for him on their side and we do. On the speculative side, we signed on free transfer 18 year old Uruguayan MC/AMC Alvaro Pirez from Defensor Sporting. Pirez looks like a superb AMC, but I suspect he won't fit in well in our counter-attacking setup. If he doesn't, we will still cash-in because he will be worth a goodly sum if we move him on. He may well show me wrong, but he doesn't have a lot of committment on the defensive side of play. More speculative plays included signing 18 year old Scot Rightwinger Toby Macneil from Aberdeen for 1.7 Million (immediately loaned out to Chesterfield to fulfill loan promise and get him playing time). We also brought in 19 year old Danish Rightwinger Samuel Kwankwo from Aldershot for 1 Million. He has Premier League ability if he develops and our scouts loved him. Also on the speculative side we signed 15 year old Scottish Leftwinger Harvery Jarvis from Aberdeen's youth ranks for 875K initially, with some clauses that might push it up around 2 Million. My Scottish scout loved the kid and I was impressed with his intial attribute bundle. He looks like he will fit in well here with some development. To solidify Leftback we loaned Murray Brannan from Rangers for the rest of the season. I have been trying to land Brannan on the transfer side, but Rangers won't budge- so at least we can give him a good trial as a squad player (and hopefully build up his affection for us). Our priciest addition was 21 year old Irish SC Matt Hanley from Southampton for 4.5 Million. Hanley is a talented forward that fits the build I was looking for and should be an impact player for us. Though we really didn't need another forward, as we will have a difficult time keeping everyone happy, I couldn't pass up the chance to land 23 year old Scot SC Willie Mathieson from Swansea for 800K. They were disposing of him and we had been scouting him for two seasons- trying to decide if he was worth the money. It was bargain hunting at this point. Jordan Harvey, a 24 year old Scot Fullback came to us for 1.2 Million from Blackburn. He helps with depth at both Fullback slots. Michael Tootle is a 20 year old English MR that we brought over from Manchester United for 475K. I wasn't very happy with Carl Newman's continued poor play when filling in for Ross Murray, so Tootle is hopefully a better alternative. Leaving us was Leftwing Alan Clark, who we sold to Motherwell for 1.2 Million. Clark never seemed to play well or develop and was 3rd fiddle at Leftwing. He was on the verge of unhappiness and it made sense to move him on for a decent return. Off on loan for the rest of the season is our 22 year old American Benjamin Rodriguez. Rodriguez needs playing time and Colorado pushed hard to loan him from us (over many other MSL clubs). We also let Zane Monluis go on loan to Sheffield Wednesday. Monluis hasn't played much on our backline and I don't plan on offering him a new contract, so he may move permanently if he can impress them. Aaron Ross was a Model Citizen Scot Rightwing that didn't develop for us and we sold him on to Plymouth for 115K. *** With 10 matches remaining, we were still hanging around for Champions League, but the final 10 matches were the most difficult stretch of our season. With 5 matches remaining, we were in a dogfight for a top 4 spot.
  12. Needham Market - Season 8 2028-29 2nd Season Premier We can play with the big boys now.
  13. Needham Market - Season 8 2028-29 2nd Season Premier New additions for the campaign Midseason Transfer deadline player I forgot to mention before is 21 year old Scot MC Kenny McCrorie that we added for 2.1 million from Dundee and offered us very solid play in covering for injured Jason Knight. Another player I completely forgot to mention was that we had gotten Wayne Dennis back for 84K from Norwich before last season (after selling him for 4 Million). He stayed on our Under-23s most of the season as we were overloaded at forward, but I brought him up for the last three matches and he wound up earning the Premier Player of the Month award for May as he scored 4 goals in 2 matches. Emmanuel Arthur (Season long loan from Arsenal) I am glad to have the 20 year old English Leftwinger back on loan again. He has continued to play well the two previous seasons on loan for us. Kenneth Opoku- (4 Million from Watford) I was surprised, but they actually were willing to sell us Opoku after 2-1/2 seasons on loan. I was happy to add the English 21 year old prodigy on a permanent basis as a key central defender. Juan Antonio Gutierrez (Season long loan from Barcelona) 20 year old Spanish DRC who joined us at the end of last season as cover and played well in limited duty, I was happy to add him again to bolster the backline. Richard Hayford (6 Million from Plymouth) A very promising 18 year old Swedish D/MC who is already at Premier level development. We are building a very solid midfield and he will get some solid playing time this season. Marcus Ap Dafydd (10 Million from Middlesbrough) I have been coveting this 22 year Welsh Leftback for a couple seasons now and was pleased to finally add him. Ivar Breki Palsson (875K from Stevenage) Very promising 19 year old Icelandic DC who I fully expect to be challenging for a regular role in the next couple seasons. Will likely loan him out this season to make sure he gets playing time. Ever Messidoro (Free transfer) My South American scout found this 18 year old Argentine MR who was without a club, but had made their Under 20 team. We signed him immediately and will hope that he lives up to the promise. Matias Colombini (3.4 Million from River) Colombini isn't listed as a Wonderkid, but this 18 year old Argentinean MC sure feels like one to me. He was wanted by Chelsea, so I had to jump a bit early to get him and he will start for us this season. I didn't like giving him a 103 Million release fee, but I couldn't avoid it and will hope to eventually get him on another contract if he is as good as my instinct tells me he will be. Colombini's arrival results in the transfer listing of Jason Knight. The 27 year old Irish MC was a disappointment and wound up hurt three different times last season, so I will try to move him and his large contract on to another club. Neil Shankland (Season Long Loan from Manchester Utd) 20 year old Scot Wonderkid that I was happy they were willing to loan to me and happy that he agreed to the loan. Much as I like our current set of forwards, I couldn't pass up an opportunity like this to get a terrific young forward for our lineup. *** We found a taker for Jason Knight as he is moving to Bristol City on a loan (1/2 wages paid) with a future fee agreed upon if he works out for them. In what is a wierd set of cirumstances, I wound up loaning Shayne McKeown to AFC Wimbledon for the rest of the season. I had wanted to make McKeown a starter, but he was upset that I hadn't loaned him out last season and his morale never improved, despite the playing time I was giving him. The only way out of this catch-22 was to actually let him go on loan and then see if he is happy when he comes back. *** One deadline transfer deal brought 21 year old Mexican Alberto Hernandez from Puebla for 5.5 Million. With the McKeown loan, I didn't really have a midfielder that was perfectly suited for DLP role. Hernandez was another scout's find as I hadn't seen him before their actual report. He was affordable (we still don't have a large transfer budget despite our now 'Rich' club status), so we have to keep bargain hunting. This was another player that Chelsea and Arsenal were interested in, so it was a coup to bring him to Needham Market. After my GM wanted to keep spending ALL of our remaining transfer funds on various strikers (which I vetoed), he finally did find an acceptable deal as we paid Hibs 1.7 Million for 21 year old Scot SC Hugh Chalmers. We had extensively scouted Chalmers last season, but he was too pricey at that time. The 1.7 Million (we still have 14 Million remaining) was well within my comfort zone for Chalmers and he adds good quality for a modest salary (though he is dealing with strained ankle ligaments and will still be out for a couple weeks).
  14. Needham Market- Season 7 2027-28 1st season Premier Well, it was a close race, but we couldn't beat lowly Wolves on the final day of the season and were left on the outside looking in for Europe, as we wound up 8th and one point out at the end. Easy to reflect on a couple of the one goal losses we suffered down the home stretch, but we just didn't play a good defensive match against Wolves and it killed us.
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