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About Dong21

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  1. @warlock Absolutely terrific season bringing European football to Carrow Road after just two seasons! Looking forward to seeing how you get on, if you do continue that is. Longer term saves aren't all that bad in my opinion! @john1 That's a great turn around in results. With you now being only two points off the play-offs after such a strong December, I can see you maybe sneaking a promotion!
  2. @john1 The Valley is being expanded by 13k seats so we’ve moved into Stamford Bridge for the season. Good luck at Cheltenham!
  3. He cost me £9.75m in January 2022 - so relatively cheap really. He's always been solid for me. I've got a 21 year old Spanish left back who is currently pushing him for his place at the moment.
  4. Now you're testing my memory Jogo! Good job we write these updates, so I can remind myself. Looking back, I won League One in my first season, followed by a season of consolidation in which we came 13th in the Championship and then my third year we went on to win the Championship. Unusually I had two takeovers in the first season, both local businessmen. The first had no money, the second had a small amount of money. I see your potential new owner is described as a tycoon so it looks like exciting times could be ahead for you. Great result that, @Carlf788 - Bongiovanni already making an impact for you. Talking of starts to the season, we have just started our eight season in style too: Only problem is results can only really go downhill from here!
  5. Welcome to The Valley @Jogo Bonito! It's a great club and I hope you have as much fun managing them as I have had. I look forward to seeing how you get on. Also I didn't realise I've been managing the haddocks all this time, so cheers for that!
  6. Cheers @DefinitelyTaylor! I'm juggling managing Charlton with managing England and I have both the Nations League Finals and the Confederation Cup this summer so it might take me even longer than usual to post an update about how we get on at Stamford Bridge! Thanks @Jogo Bonito, very kind of you. I sometimes wonder if I am mad persevering with the same club I started with when the game was released, but I get such a lot of satisfaction building a club up over time that it's hard to move on! Great work with Swansea - although, knowing how you feel about managing in the Premier League, as soon as I saw how well you had done I knew you would be moving on to pastures new! @warlock What a terrific start to life in the Premier League! Looking forward to hearing how the rest of the season goes, when you return from your long weekend away. @Carlf788 Looks like you have done a good rebuild of the squad there. Particularly intrigued to see how James gets on for you. @torquayfmer Congrats on your promotion. Great to see Chong doing the business for you too.
  7. Some exciting news on my save - Several years after planning permission was approved, we're finally expanding The Valley! I'm interested to see if playing our home games at Stamford Bridge for the season will have any impact on our performances. This investment in infrastructure has been possible due to my tight control of the purse strings at Charlton: In other good news, the board have also allowed me to aim for Youth Level 1 which should hopefully see a higher quality of young player come through our academy. The youth set up is already showing some promise as my U23 team lifted the Division 3 title last season.
  8. Cheers @Carlf788! We did surprisingly well in our first season back in the Premier League, finishing 9th. I think the key to our success was that upon promotion I quickly identified many of the squad were not cut out for the top division and therefore made wholesale changes. I retained key men who took us up such as Cullen, Aribo and Bielik, but added an array of new faces (trying to forget any emotional attachment I had for some of the players!). If I recall correctly I believe we brought over 20 players in and moved over 20 on. I made quite a few free transfer signings in an attempt to make my budget stretch as far as possible. I also looked for bargains in remote leagues such as Romania, making the most of some bargain minimum release fees in some instances. Another thing I did which I would recommend, was completely overhauling the backroom team as we were now able to attract a better calibre of staff. Good luck for the rest of your season with Brentford! I'm sure you will steer them safely away from the drop zone.
  9. Thanks @warlock, appreciate your comments. Congrats on your promotion with the Canaries! Looking forward to seeing how your young players get on in the Prem.
  10. Charlton Athletic - Season 7 - Part 3 At the end of January, and the end of my last update (it's been a while!) we sat in 8th position in the Premier League and were about to commence the Knockout stages of the Europa League. What happened next... February was a very productive month with four out of four wins in the league. One may look at the results and suggest we rode our luck with away wins at Southampton and Villa decided by an 89th minute winner and an opposition own goal, however we were much the better team in both fixtures and deserved to take home all the points. As pleasing as our league form was, it was in Europe where this month delivered my greatest satisfaction as we thrashed Feyenoored 8-2 on aggregate, an outcome more dominant than I had expected! After the first leg I had feared luck may not be on our side as we had been 2-0 up and playing well when they scored in the 90th and 95th minutes to level the game. I told the team in no uncertain terms that they were not to let their performances drop like that again and they certainly responded well with a 6-0 win at The Valley. The Second Knockout Round was once again against Dutch opposition, however AZ proved to be tougher competition and we needed to rely on away goals to overcome them. In the FA Cup I used the Huddersfield fixture as an opportunity to play young players and squad players, however I did include Mulatierri whose brilliance led to a comfortable win. Unfortunately we exited the FA Cup at the Quarter Final stage to Liverpool. It was a close game but they are extremely clinical; they went on to win the FA Cup and also the Premier League by a margin of nine points ahead of second. This Liverpool team is definitely the strongest side I have faced in my seven years at The Valley. In the league we narrowly lost to Liverpool, once again, and Man City, results I couldn't be too mad about. Premier League Our league form to end the season was good with our only defeat coming against Tottenham. I was particularly pleased to finally beat our local rivals Crystal Palace, who up until this point I have had an appalling record against. We rounded off the domestic campaign with a resilient draw against Man Utd and then sent the traveling fans home happy with a 4-0 thrashing of Bournemouth on the final day of the domestic season. Despite our end of season form we only climbed from 8th to 7th in the second half of the season. The damage was done in the first half of the season and our rivals did not slip up. I am, however, not disheartened as this was both our highest points total and goal difference in the Premier League under my management. One thing I was particularly pleased with was that we had the third highest average possession in the league, with 55% - this is indicative of the possession based football that I have tried to play. Europa League Now for the exciting part (and you may have already spotted the spoiler in the league table above! ). The Europa League Quarter Finals saw us drawn against Turkish heavyweights Galatasaray. I thought we had pulled off a first leg win when we scored late, until Bernard scored later to even the score. I was, though, pleased to leave Turkey with two goals. The away goals did not turn out to be important however as we won the home leg after Mulatierri converted two penalties. It was an interesting night for attacking midfielder Mulatierri as he was also sent off later in the game - this meant he was suspended for the first leg of the Semi Final. I had little hope of progressing to the Final when we were drawn against Liverpool in the Semi Finals. As I have already mentioned they are a dominant force and a team we have a poor record against. In the first leg I elected to play defensive and was pleased just not to lose heavily. We had 66% possession which helped keep them at bay, but no real chances of note up front. Going into the second leg I was apprehensive about a European night at Anfield, and when we went 1-0 down, and 2-0 on aggregate, after 25 minutes the prospect of defeat looked likely, however passionate my half-time team talk may be. I subbed on forward Cannavo on the 60th minute to provide additional firepower and he made an immediate impact grabbing a vital goal. This was quickly followed by a goal from fellow marksmen Diogo, assisted by the sublime Will Hughes. We held on for over 25 minutes to win the tie on away goals, a result I am immensely proud of. After the league campaign ended I noticed that strangely there were 17 days until the Europa League Final. Keen to keep fitness levels up and morale high, I arranged two friendlies to keep us occupied until the big day. In the end the Final proved to be a much more simple affair than the Semi Final as we beat fellow Merseysiders Everton comfortably. I was delighted to deliver both the first European trophy and Champions League football to Charlton Athletic - made all the more sweeter by the fact that we started this journey in League One. Five of my players received the accolade of being named in the Europa League Team of the Season, including Mulatierri who was named Player of the Season after his seven goals and numerous match winning performances in the competition. Not bad for a free transfer signing! I have really benefited from having two top class central attacking midfielders this season - something I have never had before. Frydek, who started 35 games, provided 11 goals and five assists and Mulatierri, who started 26 but came off the bench just as many times, scored 12 and provided four assists. Their goals helped share the load for young forwards Diogo (16 goals) and Cannavo (13 goals) who once again had good campaigns. I do believe however if I had a 20+ goal a season striker then we would finally crack the top four. Top assistor for the season was Stengs who provided 8 assists to match his 8 goals. Somewhat surprisingly fellow winger Tasdelen only provided two assists, he did however have a great campaign, making up for this with 14 goals. The last time I posted an update, @warlock asked me the question whether my January deadline day signing Chong had the end product to go with his pace and dribbling. With six assists and two goals (one of which was in the Europa Final) in just 13 games, I'm pleased to report it's looking like he does! Henderson had another good season in the sticks, providing 20 clean sheets in all competitions which is a new club record. No player played more games than Lindelof and I will be looking to bring him back to the club next season either on another loan or permanently. He started the season by being partnered by Jemerson but he was quickly replaced by young Kamara who is developing nicely. On the subject of development, it has been promising to see the rise of full backs Valencia and Guacai whose game time increased exponentially as the season came towards it's conclusion. A final mention should go to my central midfield metronomes Fran (6 assists) and Hughes (7 goals, 7 assists) who allow me to play the possession based style and do the hard work that allows the attackers to take the glory. Barcelona and Real Madrid have reported interest in the Spaniard Fran, but that's a challenge for another day. Now to start planning for Champions League football at The Valley!
  11. Haven't had much of a chance to play any FM recently as I've been in the process of moving house, but have been keeping an eye on this thread. Some really great detailed posts and it's been good to see quite a few new faces among the regulars - welcome all! Hoping to find some time to finish my seventh season at The Valley soon. @Jamesbfc1887 I have a feeling Aribo will be a cracking signing for you - he's certainly served me well over the years!
  12. Thanks @warlock! Here's how he looks in 2025 if you're interested:
  13. So it seems four day Bank Holiday weekends are the perfect time to finally make progress on an FM career... Charlton Athletic - Season 7 - Part 2 November was a frustrating month at Charlton Athletic. Defeats against Man City and league leaders Liverpool were expected and therefore not the source of frustration, instead it was draws against Real Sociedad, Brighton and Basel that drew my irritation as in all three games we had superior possession and shots on target. The blame for our inability to convert chances can be shared across our team, but I have been particularly disappointed in Diogo who has not replicated his goal-scoring form of last season. We seemed to be returning to our early season form at the start of December, with a hard fought victory at the New White Hart Lane being a particular highlight. Our away victory against APOEL was one of my favourite games of the season - this was not because we won 4-0, but because I gave full debuts to academy graduates Jones and Miller and they both made it onto the scoresheet. That result completed our Europa League group stage phase and meant that we topped the group. We take on Feyenoored in the First Knockout Round, who will be without forward Iuhas as he is on loan from my club. A narrow 3-2 loss at Old Trafford commenced our worst run of form of the season, as we lost four games in a row (see I was right not to get carried away @warlock! ). Man Utd and Arsenal are tough opponents and we never ever beat our rivals Palace, but I was still upset with this run that saw us tumble out of European qualifying places. We headed to West Ham hoping to turn things around, but found ourselves in a tough match where we were seemingly the worse team. I switched things up in the second half, changing to a 4-4-2 and pumping the ball in the box and we were able to snatch a late equaliser. I hoped this could be the catalyst for a change in fortunes. A resurgence in form has been seen in January, I am relieved to say. Admittedly some of the results were morale boosting trips to lower league opposition, but you can only beat what is put in front of you. These games were good opportunities to play fringe players, so this helped appease many players who were looking for more playing opportunities. Our performances in the league have improved recently and I hope I can carry that into the final months of the season. Our current position is no disaster, but I was aiming for better. Out Besides a number of loans, the notable outgoings in January were the sale of unused squad players such as Abraham and Schurrle. Both had played useful roles in the past but were now deemed surplus to requirements. In The January player sales, combined with my frugality in the summer, meant we were now in a position to enter the market in January if the right opportunity arose. In my last post I mentioned how I had decided on not making signings on the wings in order to give youth prospects the opportunity to play. This had been working fine but I decided that if we wanted to push on this season, we needed to add some quality. I have found over my seven seasons at Charlton that the success of my 4-2-3-1 formation is dependent on the quality of the inside forwards / wingers. First I brought in Shoya Nakajima who I found transfer listed for £37m. When I realised I could sign him on loan for no fee and only 30% of his wages, it was a no brainer. Secondly, on deadline day United's Tahith Chong came available and I moved to make him the club's record signing. Chong has great all round attributes and at only 25 still has room to improve. Chong came on loan to us in January 2022 and scored three goals in seven games. I wanted to keep him then but United had flat out refused - now I have finally got my man.
  14. @warlock Good work with the clear out! I’m sure your finances look much healthier now. All the best with your quest to reach the playoffs
  15. Thinking of finally getting round to starting my annual United save. When I do, I want to focus on developing players from within after clearing out the deadwood (today’s result IRL has reignited my desire to do things better!). I was wondering if any of you had any advice on how you have had your best results developing players. Have you found it as simple as just giving them first team playing time, or have you had results sending young players on loan or keeping them in the reserves? Interested to hear different perspectives.
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