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Everything posted by lewis1792

  1. I don't normally comment on here but wanted to just say I am enjoying reading this and hope you continue on. Often all you read on here is success story after success story of climbing through the leagues. It's refreshing to see someone struggle to get going, I'm willing you on!
  2. April 2022 FK Riteriai A much stronger April for us where we have really started to pick up some points. A second win over rivals FK Zalgiris is a highlight. Ebuka Onah netted 3 separate hat-tricks over the month, making him the joint top scorer in the division alongside national side hero Radzinevicius. I will likely be keeping him on for now as one of our 5 foreign players whilst we look for better Lithuanian options. We stay in the top half which was the pre-season aim. I believe top 4 get some sort of European football next season so that would be nice. We will need to carry on the current form though. Lithuania Our first Nations League Group has been drawn and at the lowest level of the competition, it probably couldn't have been worse for us. Greece at 45th in the world, 100 ranking places ahead of us. Cyprus and Azerbaijan may be winnable ties but aren't exactly like playing Gibraltar or San Marino. This group will be a test. Aims will be to avoid finishing bottom and use the matches against higher ranked sides to improve our standing if we can.
  3. A lesson learned! Maybe I will try and sign some Estonian and Latvian players to fill my 5 foreign spots. Keep things Baltic.
  4. Lithuania 2022 We start our journey with the national side with a couple of friendlies against sides that we need to start looking to compete with if we want to improve our ranking. A fresh squad is announced with a lot of new faces. My first priority is to start bringing the age of this squad down and we have done that on the whole. We aren't flooded with talent however so we will still be relying on some of the old heads. Attack and central defence are real weak points in this squad so there's been interesting call ups... 40 year old Tomas Radzinevicius comes in the squad having not featured in it since 2008. He is the top goalscorer in Lithuanian club football history, he hasn't had a club in 4 years but he has just signed for Banga and scored 6 goals in 5 games, and has earned himself a recall. He is the best striker in the country still by a mile. Let's hope we can get another couple of years out of him while we wait on new ones coming through. We're sticking with the 442 formation. We have a new captain in Edgaras Utkus who is already our best player at 21 years old. LATVIA (A) - A first match against our fierce Baltic rivals Not a brilliant result against a side similar in quality to ourselves but not a disaster. We made silly mistakes and can't seem to defend crosses. Radzinevicius does become the oldest player ever to get a cap though. CYPRUS (H) - A first home match and against 108th in the world, a tough opposition at this point. Old man Radzinevicius is the hero of the hour. Cyprus lead 2-0 at the break and it all looks gloom. Fantastic 2nd half performance, hitting the crossbar in the last minute cost us a big home win. This match filled me with more confidence that we might be able to compete at least in the Nations League. We can't rely on a 40 year old striker for goals forever though... 2 FK Riteriai players made their internation debuts is Aleksandras Levsinas and Gytis Paulauskas though. It would be great to see more Knights making appearances going forward.
  5. March 2022/23 Definitely a mixed bag of a start. We are so far where we were predicted to be. It's been a bit frustrating as we have largely been the better side in matches but have really been struggling to hit the back of the net in some matches. 3 losses out of 3 away from home. It may be time to start being quite so gung-ho in these matches. I may look to play the 451 away from home and see how we get on. The highlight of April was undoubtedly the 4-2 victory over local Vilnius rivals FK Zalgiris, who having looked at their squad, should be dominating this division. 23 y/o striker Gytis Paulauskas was the start of the show in the second half and looks to be our main goal threat. He has earned himself a call up to the National side as well which we will get to. This also tells a big part of the story. Injuries have hit us hard. Probably because they are being told to get stuck in. I'm not stopping it, these players aren't good enough to be giving the opposition time on the ball. We might need to invest in a better physio... B Team One of the things I am looking to do in this save is use the club's B Team as a breeding ground for young players. They play in the country's 2nd tier so this will be helpful for providing good quality game time. I made a big call early on in sacking existing B Team manager Fabio Mazzone to replace him with Lithuanian Gedminas Zdanevicius. Mazzone is actually still the National team's U21 manager so we remain on good terms. Awkward... The new man however has started well! I am presuming that my B Team cannot be promoted to the top flight. It actually doesn't say that in the league rules, but I am going to assume they can't. The B Team is largely full of local players but have benefited from a couple of my foreign players being stuck there until they move to their new clubs in the summer. I will highlight the B Team a lot more in coming seasons when we start to fill it with youth intake players as well as other young players are find.
  6. Pre-Season 2022/23 FK Riteriai Pre-season began as we tried to use our modest budget to start to bring in more local players to bulk out the squad. As you can see we are a little off of the quality of some of the better sides in the division as yet but by no means should we be worrying about relegation. The first few seasons look like they will be about trying to bridge that gap so that we can start to compete for titles. I won't go into every signing or player individually as we meet the squad as I will look to highlight them as we go. We will meet some of the key players and signings for now though. Transfer business this pre-season as mainly been about offloading some of our foreign players and trying to bring in a few more Lithuanian players to fill the gaps. Only 5 foreign players in the squad is the aim, and for now I'll be working with the ones I have got. This has led to a few unhappy players who have unexpectedly been told to leave 10 minutes after coming in the door. But we'll get over it! Key Signings Tomas Kaliunauskas joins us on loan from Barnsley. He seem to have grown up in England but we are bringing him back home. A current Lithuania U21 player with room to improve. If he impresses, we will look to bring him in on a permanent move. Deivydas Matulevicius joins on a free transfer bringing some much needed experience. He has played all over Europe and has International experience. He is also a big unit which is something I like to have up front. Motiejus Burba becomes the club's record signing for £99k from our rivals FK Zalgiris. He is a young winger with plenty of place, fitness and crossing ability. Perfect for our system and the potential to become a key international player. Key Players Club captain Mindaugas Grigaravicius has had a long career in the Lithuanian top flight and has 5 caps to his name. He is going to be providing a lot of our attacking impetus from the left flank whilst the new lads do it on the right. One of our 5 allowed foreign players, Felipe Brisola will bring a bit of Brazillian flair to the midfield. The two central midfield spots will be important in this 442 formation as they will be asked to cover a lot of ground. Brisola can defend and attack well for this level so should be crucial. Strongest XI This is how I see our strongest XI going into the season. We are a squad that lacks quality in the striker positions but I am content this is more of a less a squad that can finish top half. Pre-Season went well... Only a draw to Juventus's kids stopped us from a perfect record. We look forward to taking this form into the league season and storming to an unexpected league title...
  7. Thanks mate. Enjoyed yours last year so didn't want to just shamelessly rip your idea off without giving credit
  8. Lithuania & FK Riteriai Build a Nation - Nation Players only (sort of) Intro I have been looking to start a Build a Nation save for a while and have decided to head to the Baltic States for this one. Inspired by @danielgear's Estonian save from FM22, I will look to follow a lot of the same principles that he did in his thread below. There will be a couple of twists though to maintain the Dan's spirit of trying not to 'game the game', which is how I normally like to play anyway, but to ensure that it is somewhat feasible to begin to compete in Europe as well as domestically. Save and Rules I will be heading to Lithuania for this save where 7ft3 half-Scottish, half-Lithuanian, manager Rowan Jankauskus has hung up his football boots and donned his brightest suit and scarf, to take over both club side FK Riteriai as well as the Lithuanian National Team. FK Riteriai We're here for two reasons - they had the best badge and they are a potential 'sleeping giant'. Formally, FK Trakai, 'The Knights' had a change of name and a change of city in 2014 when they were moved 20 miles east from Trakai to the capital city of Vilnius. FK Riteriai have been playing in the top flight of Lithuanian football ever since, with a string of top 4 finishes, they have never finished higher than 2nd place. They have also lost in 3 cup finals in their history, all of which to local rivals FK Zalgiris. Therefore, the trophy cabinet remains barren. The club play their football at the LFF Stadionas, the 5067 all-seater stadium which is also used by the National side. Not exactly a fortress on an international level but in Lithuanian top flight terms it is a decent ground which gives up potential to grow our fanbase from our current 90 season ticket holders. Rules This is the part that is inspired by Dan's thread and will form the basis of the my plans for the save. I will look to manage FK Riteriai following these rules. Some will make it more of a challenge but that's all part of the fun! Only 5 Non-Lithuanians in my Squad The Lithuanian league system has a rule stating no more than 5 Non-EU players in a matchday squad. I am going to take this one step further and apply it as no more than 5 Non-Lithuanian players. There are a few reasons for this which are crucial to how I want to play this - 1. I want to keep the domestic football competitive. I have seen and played previous Build a Nation saves where teams begin to be flooded with foreign exports in an attempt to dominate domestically and progress in Europe quicker. I understand this can lead to better finances, better facilities and better players coming through the youth setup, however I want to build a core Lithuanian squad from the very beginning. I know this will potentially make progress slower but I am hoping by having just a few foreign exports to help fill serious gaps in quality, I will be able to bring through and improve Lithuanian players more quickly. 2. Change the culture - Just a quick look at other squads in the division suggests that most of the top clubs rely on foreign talent so I am hoping this will make things more challenging long-term. It would also be nice to see other clubs following suit as the standard of Lithuanian player improves. 3. I am managing the national side too and need to ensure the young national players are getting game time. I can only use Lithuanian staff and will offer all staff 'Waive compensation for a managerial role' This one is borrowed from Dan as I really like how it played out. I want to improve Lithuanian staff and give them opportunities to move into management using my style of football, hopefully improving the nation as a whole All signings from a Lithuanian club must contain a sell on % Another rule I like. As I will be looking to build a core Lithuanian squad, it goes without saying that I will have to try and harvest the best young players from other clubs if I am going to dominate domestically. I want any funds raised from the sale of high potential players to clubs outwith Lithuania to drip down to clubs throughout the league set-up. This should help improve the league as a whole. Accept lower bids from Lithuanian clubs when selling players A way of keeping the standard of the league up if possible, I will look to provide a 'mates rate' to fellow Lithuanian clubs when offloading players that I no longer need. Take an active interest in the B team FK Riteriai have a fantastic benefit in that their B team play in the 2nd tier of Lithuanian football and will therefore be a fantastic breeding ground for young players who we earmark for future roles in the first team squad. I will look to ensure that the B Team squad remains competitive and doesn't get relegated further down the leagues by keeping the squad full of emerging talent. I will also make sure the B Team Manager looks to play a similar style of football. National and Club DNA This will be another very important aspect of the save as I see it as vital the both the club and the national side have the same culture, style and attributes, that they expect in their players. I will look to build squads of players which have strong personalities, improving these through training and mentoring. I also want to see each players have these desirable attributes - Work Rate. Natural Fitness. Determination Determination - (Attribute reflects the players commitment to succeed and do his very best on and off the pitch) When developing players, it’s always easier if they have decent determination, finding players with this attribute will help me develop them quicker. Work Rate - (Attribute reflects the players willingness to work to his full capacity, going above and beyond the call of duty) Lithuanian players might not be the best technically but I want them to always be the hardest working. That is how we intend to compete with other nations. Natural Fitness - (Attribute reflects how well a player stays fit when injured or not training and how well they maintain their physical attributes) International matches come thick and fast in short blocks of games, a higher natural fitness increases the speed in which players recover from games which we will need due to our increased work rate. Similar to Dan, initially I will look for players to score 30 overall across these 3 attributes. This may increase as we improve. I will also show some preference towards players that are - Height- 6ft and above. This is just part of how I like to play the game, plenty of crosses, direct football and a real physical presence. This will hopefully tie into our mantra of being physically better than the opposition. Pace/Acceleration - Particularly in international football, this can be a massive difference maker in games where players are all technically poor. I will prefer quick players both defensively and offensively to aid our high tempo, direct style of play. Lithuania National Team Lithuania are it's safe to say, at their lowest ebb as a national side. Football is not the main sport in this country. Basketball takes that crown and football is a long, long, long way off. Basketball is said to be most Lithuanian's second religion so the football side has always suffered due to lack of national interest. This is where we come in! With a population of 2.8m, Lithuania almost definitely have the potential to be a lot stronger than their current ranking of 141st in the Fifa Rankings. This isn't far off their lowest ever ranking of 147th and makes Lithuania currently one of the worst sides in Europe, only ahead of Gibraltar, San Marino and Liechenstein. Long gone are the heady heights of 38th which they hit back in 2008, with most of that crop of players having retired and not much coming through. A quick glance at the initial squad suggests that an injection of youth will be required soon... The top players appear to play outwith Lithuania in leagues all over Europe. I will be looking to bring some of them back to the Lithuanian leagues over the coming seasons if they need gametime but I won't stand in the way of players that can progress elsewhere. Tactics Lithuania and FK Riteriai will be playing 4-4-F******-2! I am an old school manager, I like a simple formation, I like the ball knocked wide and knocked long. We won't be spending too much time passing it around the back or outside of the box. Players will be encouraged to run at defences and get the ball forward as soon as they can. This will obviously lead to gaps against stronger sides particularly internationally so I do have a 4-5-1 in my back pocket which plays a similar style of getting it wide, but shores up the midfield a bit more. In general, my philosophy will be to have a go and attack all teams we face. This may lead to some big losses but I''m hoping in time it leads to more success. Having more national players in the club side who are used to playing this way, will help in time. Aims for the Save Of course the main aim of any Build a Nation will be to increase the standard and reputation of both the league system and the national side and this is no different. Realistic individual aims for club and country though are - FK Riteriai 1. Build a side which dominates domestic trophies but has a significant core of Lithuanian players. Ideally this will be a squad which is fully Lithuanian but this may take time. 2. Realistically, we aren't going to winning any European trophies. I would like to see us regularly qualifying for group stage European football. No Lithuanian club side has ever qualified for the Champions League groups. The ultimate European aim would be to do this and compete regularly with the world's top sides. 3. Through our transfer activity and hopefully European exploits, help other Lithuanian sides to improve across the board and to keep the league competitive and to see more of them playing in Europe consistently. Lithuania 1. Improve the world ranking so that it's more respectable. Inside the Top 100 is the first goal. We will re-assess from there. 2. Compete well against teams at a similar level in the Nations League. This will give us a potential chance to make a playoff for a major tournament. leading on to the final goal... 3. Qualify for a major tournament. Never been done in their history, I'd love to take Lithuania to a Euros or even better a World Cup. I plan on posting updates on this save on a quarterly basis and not over-doing it with pictures, reading, etc, hopefully making it easier to follow. If more updates are required on a shorter time frame, then I will do so. Next update will focus on pre-season, first matches and a first look at the new squads.
  9. I am also experiencing this on my save game with Albion Rovers in League Two. I have loaned 2 players this season and I am now unable to loan any more due to the game thinking I have made 4 domestic loan signings in one season. I have uploaded this as Albion Rovers.fm
  10. SPARTANS FC SEASON 2022/23 REVIEW A successful first season in the league system for Spartans FC. We took our brand of attacking high risk high reward football to everyone in the league, and had a ferocious start, a decent middle then a horror end to the season, meaning our 6th place finish was just deserved. The players did seem to get very tired towards the end of the season and struggled to hold on to leads and see out games. Hopefully we can work to retain the most physically capable players coming through the youth system to improve this over time. Another highlight of the season was our fantastic run in the Scottish Cup due to a very favourable run of matches against sides in our division. We ended up losing to top flight Livingston in the quarter finals on penalties which was heartbreaking as a semi final at Hampden against Celtic lay in waiting which would've been a huge boost to the finances. However, it wasn't to be! Exciting stuff on the youth prospect front, our Edinburgh based academy has already started to bring through a few players who will surely go on to play at a higher level than this. integrating a few of them into the first team started straight away. Highlights include Todd Gilchrist , striker who looks to be a long term replacement for star man Blair Henderson, as well as Mikey Wringe already a great AMC option, Keigan Mason, a flexible option right across the back line and David Donnelly who we are retraining as an MC due to his poor pace but decent passing and vision. Other notables who will be making the jump to the first team squad are - Michael Mack, Dean McConnell, Brad Duthie Best XI - This shows the absolute importance of to our season with his 34 goals. Luckily we have tied him up for another 3 years by which point he will be getting into his 30's, so we can get a few more good years out of him. Transfers Finances - We finish the season up on last season in terms of finances, this was due to the prize money on our cup run. The board have been kind and invested this into our junior coaching budget, showing their commitment to the project.
  11. SPARTANS FC Starting this challenge with Edinburgh-based Spartans FC. Just promoted from the Lowland League, they have an illustrious history of winning trophies in the non-league setup. Now it's time to move up the leagues and create the finest youth academy system in Scotland. Expectations are low for this season, with the board expecting us to just be competitive in the league. Avoiding 10th place and the dreaded relegation playoff which would result in sacking and the end of the challenge is the obvious aim for the foreseeable. I intend to have Spartans FC playing on the front foot in a 4231 formation, high tempo, possession based, very high line with lots of running, crossing, tacking hard and shooting. Generally, it's 'we score more goals than you'. Focus for the types of players we will be looking to develop will be those with good physical attributes first and foremost to be able to maintain our attacking, high tempo style of play for a full 90 minutes and for a full season. Secondly, we will look to develop good passers of the ball throughout the team, with the focus on passing out from the back and working the ball up the pitch through the midfield. The club already had reasonable youth and training facilities for this level. I'm hoping we will also benefit from being well located in the northern part of Edinburgh, the nation's capital. 2022/23 Season Review to come!
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