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mylescattle

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  1. mylescattle

    Fortuna Favours The Brave - Ruud's Time Has Come

    Great idea and a nice read. Ruudi can't fail!!
  2. mylescattle

    The Frank Lampard Career Journey

    November Fixtures Frank Lampard’s first game in charge at Villa Park was over as a contest by half-time, after a pathetic display. Preston took the lead on the 11th minute when Daryl Horgan slid the ball behind the Villa defence as Sean Maguire timed his run perfectly to finish. Two minutes later, it went from bad to worse for the Villans, when Conor Goldson, while attempting to clear a cross, instead miskicked and put it past his own goalkeeper to make it 2-0 to the visitors. Horgan and Maguire both added goals in the first half to leave Preston 4 up and cruising at the break. Villa improved slightly after the restart, and didn’t concede again in the second half, but never threatened to make a comeback. Preston had a man sent off near the end, which made no difference. This result makes it 3 losses from 3 matches for Lampard at Villa now, and he now knows he has his work cut out for him. A five-minute flurry of goals, just before half-time, meant Frank Lampard picked up the first 3 points of his managerial career. Villa fans feared for the worst early on, especially when Takumo Asano got in behind the Aston Villa centre-halves to give Cardiff a 1-0 lead on the 4th minute. Aston Villa grew into the game and dominated the possession, and it paid off when Kodjia grabbed the equaliser after good build up play on the edge of the oppositions box, involving Bjarnason. Only 3 minutes later, Villa went in front, when George Saunders scored a goal that Frank Lampard would of being proud of in his playing days. A throw-in on the right, went short to Koddjia, who played it across for Saunders to run onto it from deep, and riffle it into the top left-hand corner. Not long after that, man of the match Bjarnason, completed the scoring with a low shot from outside the box to give Villa a 2-goal lead at the break. So, a much-needed victory for Lampard and the players gives them a confidence boost for the next match at home to top of the table Everton. Aston Villa edged out table toppers Everton to record their second win in 5 days, when substitute Henri Lansbury hit a ferocious long-distance strike in the 84th minute, to give Lampard his first victory at Villa Park. In only his 5th game in charge of the Villans, Lampard opted to go for the same 4-1-2-3 formation, whilst only making one change from the side that won in Cardiff earlier in the week. After a terrible start, Villa’s two victories in the week have given the players and staff a renewed hope heading into the international break, that Lampard could be the man to revive their season. Bjarnson’s injury after about an hour against Everton was the only downer for Villa, and it looks like he’ll be out for 4-5 weeks. This match was a real game of two half’s, in front of a crowd of 9,875, as the newly promoted Shrewsbury Town ran riot against Lampard’s new untested Christmas tree formation. The home fans were delirious at half-time, with their side 4-0 up. Aston Villa were rocked back on the 12th minute when Shrewsbury scored two goals in a minute, and they were at sixes and sevens after that, conceding another two before the half time whistle. After the restart, Aston Villa looked much better and pulled one back. Liverpool loanee, Pedro Chirivella getting the goal three minutes into the second half. Aston Villa dominated possession in this match but were often caught out by Shrewsbury’s counter attack. Lansbury gave Villa some hope on the 80th minute, when he headed in substitutes Bree’s cross from the right. A goal from Hourihane with two minutes of normal time remaining, made for a nervous final few minutes for the home fans as Villa pushed for an equaliser, but Shrewsbury held on to victory. This was a real sickening result for Lampard, who had hoped his team’s recent results had showed signs of turning the corner, but he must learn quickly from these early mistakes. Although, he will be happy with the way his team responded in the second half, he needs start amassing points soon if they will push for the play-offs later in the season. Starting with the home match at Derby in three days’ time. The Aston Villa fans who left Villa Park early in this match against Derby County, must have regretted it later, as the home side produced a dramatic late comeback from two goals down to grab a point. Earlier in the first half, Joe Ledley struck from just outside the box to put Derby one up on 26 minutes. A quarter of an hour later, Villa equalised when Andre Green got onto a glorious through ball from Gary Gardner to score at the near post with his right foot. In the second half, two goals in three minutes looked to have sealed victory for the visitors. After a series of Derby corners, the pressure finally told on the 71st minute, when Josh Cullen put Derby ahead after Villa unsuccessfully cleared the ball away. Two minutes later, and Derby went further ahead as Weimann exposed John Terry’s lack of pace to score against his former club. As the Villa fans emptied the ground, Henri Lansbury taped in Chapmans cross from the byline on the 84th minute, to score his third late goal in a row and give Villa a faint hope of salvaging an unlikely point from the match. On the 87th minute, Chapman was again the provider from the right, when Hourihane timed his jump well and headed the cross into the far corner past Derby keeper Scot Carson. So, both some terrific and horrific performances by Villa recently, make November a mixed bag, and Lampard will almost certainly be looking to do some wheeling and dealing in January to rectify this. Andre Greens injury during the Derby match is bad news for Lampard, as he’ll be certain to miss the local derby next Saturday, against in-form Birmingham in St. Andrews Park. Although there’s no need to panic just yet, a vast improvement in consistency and form in December will be crucial, if Villa want to reach their expectations of a play-off place by the end of the season.
  3. mylescattle

    The Frank Lampard Career Journey

    Frank Lampard took the managers seat in the dugout for the first time, and watched his new club get thumped 4-0 at the Stadium of Light. Three second half goals in quick succession for Sunderland killed this game off just before the hour mark. The home side blitzed the visitors in a seven-minute spell, Duncan Watmore grabbing two of those, before Ndong capped off a wonderfully worked team move to complete the demolition. Later, Aston Villa confirmed the rumours that Kevin Bond would join Frank Lampard at the club, as his Assistant. Lampard decided to introduce only two fresh faces, from the side beaten 4-0 in Sunderland, both in the full-back positions. Robinson comes in on the left of the defence, in a move that sees McQueen start on the left side of midfield. On the opposite side, De Laet comes in at right full-back, instead of Bree. Despite a much-improved performance from their last fixture, Frank Lampard is still searching for his first win as manager, after two goals for the Forest inside the final ten minutes left the Villans empty handed once again. Villa scored three minutes after kick-off, when Robinson crossed from the left for Sam McQueen to finish. They looked comfortable in this match, and Nottingham Forest only threatened to score when Ben Brereton was introduced from the bench, and they switched to a 4-2-3-1. Forests winner came on the 87th minute, when Barrie McKay’s right footed shot went past Ward in the Villa goals. To make matters worse for Lampard, Albert Adomah, who went off injured in the 59th minute, will mean he should be out for 3-4 weeks. So, a bad start to Lampard’s managerial career means Aston Villa sit 18th in the table, only 4 points above the relegation zone with 14 games played. Looking ahead to the next 5 games in November… Lampard’s first game at Villa Park will be a real test, as he faces the 4th placed Preston North End. A loss for Lampard in that one, could see Aston Villa dragged into the relegation battle, so it’s crucial to start picking up points soon. The following Tuesday, Villa travel to the Welsh capital, Cardiff. On the 10th, Mauro Silva will bring his top of the table side, Everton, to Villa Park, in what will be another stern test for Lampard and his men. Immediately after the international break, the newly promoted Shrewsbury Town will welcome Villa fans, before Derby County’s visit to Villa Park, the following Tuesday night. The tough home fixtures, mixed with some potential upsets mean for an interesting month ahead.
  4. mylescattle

    The Frank Lampard Career Journey

    As part of the backroom staff changes, Colin Calderwood the former Caretaker and Assistant Manager, has departed the club. Leaving no assistant going into the first few games. I contacted Jody Morris about taking the job, but he is unwilling to leave Chelsea U-18s. So instead, I got on the phone to Harry and he recommended, a good pal of his that worked with him at West Ham and Portsmouth, Kevin Bond. The hierarchy in the dressing room shows that my friend and former Chelsea teammate is among the leaders at the club. For this reason, I have kept him as Captain and the first name down on the team sheet. A quick look at last summer’s transfer dealings, tells me Jack Grealish was sold to Premier League club Huddersfield. Looking at the next 5 games, a few tough away fixtures in there but hopefully we can get off to a good start. From now on, I’ll be posting on each month, meaning my first two matches including team selections, will be included next.
  5. mylescattle

    The Frank Lampard Career Journey

    After successfully completing the interview process, Aston Villa announced Frank Lampard as their new manager. The former England and Chelsea player, who has agreed a three-year deal at the famous Villa Park, will have little time to prepare for his first game in management as his new club face Sunderland immediately at The Stadium of Light. After promising the owner to bring in high profile players whilst developing the club’s young players, he will attempt to balance the two opposing philosophies. Since his appointment is only two years after the end of his playing days, Lampard will look to use all his contacts within the world of football to full effect. Villa have given him a transfer budget of 7 million plus 80% of any sales generated from sold players to use in the January transfer window. An excess of 50k per week has been made available in the players wage budget, leaving Lampard with good room to manoeuvre. Owner Tony Xia has agreed, as part of the club’s philosophies, to increase the Junior Coaching budget and improve the data analysis facilities. Although Villa just missed out on the play-offs due to inferior goal difference last season, they so far have failed to impress this time around and are currently in 15th in the table. With the boards targets set for the rest of the season as challenging for a promotion play-off place, and an expectant fanbase used to success in a 42k all seater stadium, there’ll be very little or possibly no honeymoon period at all for the rookie manager.
  6. mylescattle

    The Frank Lampard Career Journey

    World Cup 2018 Twenty years on from their first World Cup victory on home soil in 1998, France demolish surprise packets Senegal 5-1 in the final to become World champions once again. France battled their way through the tougher side of the knock-out stages beating Algeria, England, and Belgium, before trouncing the West Africans in the final in Moscow. One surprise absentee from the knock-out stages were the 2010 champions Spain, after their elimination in the group stages. Because of their poor performance, Julen Lopetegui resigned and the Spanish F.A swift appointment of the highly experienced Rafa Benitez, meant a vacancy was available at Newcastle United. This post World Cup shake up led to a job interview for the Newcastle job, but like Crystal Palace before them, they opted for a more experienced manager from abroad. The Arsenal job was the only other change of the Summer in the top two tiers of English football. Luis Enrique was the man chosen to succeed Arsene Wenger. The season kicked off and October arrived before the Aston Villa board lost patience with their Argentinian manager Gerardo Martino. Villa would be the perfect challenge for me in this save and I really hope we can properly begin the journey together.
  7. mylescattle

    The Frank Lampard Career Journey

    After the final league game of the Championship was played the top half ended up looking like this. Wolves predictably finishing top, albeit one point above Hull, who make an immediate return to the Premier League. Middlesbrough, Millwall, Bristol City, and Leeds United all made the play-off lottery. Looking at the job security section for the Championship at the end of the season. The Norwich, Leeds, and Fulham jobs could become available, but the one that seems most likely would be Nottingham Forest, although they just about barely made it safe, their finances don’t look too bad. Palace who are on the verge of dropping into the Championship offered an interview. Wouldn’t really suit what I’m trying to achieve in this save and it was no surprise when they opted for the more experienced Villas-Boas after the season ended. However, I wonder did he want to manage in the Championship too? Palace who are on the verge of dropping into the Championship offered an interview. Wouldn’t really suit what I’m trying to achieve in this save and it was no surprise when they opted for the more experienced Villas-Boas after the season ended. However, I wonder did he want to manage in the Championship too? At the top half, Manchester United won on goal difference from Manchester City in an extremely close title race. Chelsea and Arsenal made top four and the Champions League, while Spurs and Liverpool had to miss out. My hopes of landing the Leeds job seemed even more unlikely after they were promoted via the play-offs. Burnley beat Spurs to lift the cup, while A.C Milan denied Arsenal in the Europa League Final. Real Madrid beat City in the Final of the Champions League in Kyiv. I really thought there would be more jobs available at this stage but I guess we will have to wait and see what happens over the course of the summer.
  8. The Frank Lampard Career Journey Seeing today that former England International Frank Lampard has been announced as the new manager of Championship side Derby County, I’ve decided today is the day to begin a story and beam myself into the future. As he was only appointed today, I’ve decided to use the “holiday man” to sim FM18 right up until the 1st of May 2018. This will give me enough time to introduce the unemployed manager Mr. Lampard, armed with his recently acquired Uefa A License and his English International footballer career, into the pressure cooker of the English second tier in Football Manager 18. My initial aim will be to take the, (hopefully vacant by then) position of a well-supported Championship club, that finished at least in the top half of the previous simulated season and try get them promoted or challenging for promotion to the Premier League inside the first two or three years. I also will require a club with good youth facilities as Frank said today in his first press conference that he wants to introduce the club’s youth into the first team. In the long term, the aim will be to be offered a return to Stamford Bridge as manager and become the most successful manager in Chelsea’s history. Another target for Frank is the England job, where his target will be to restore the English nation to the dizzy heights of ’66!!!!!
  9. mylescattle

    Create-a-Club Challenge for FM18

    I present to you… Offaly For this challenge I’ve decided to stay local and create a club for my home County Offaly in the Irish midlands. Starting the save on the 8th of January 2018, my Manager will compete in the second tier of Irish football, in the 1st Division. The expectations from the board for the season ahead is the not very ambitious target of finishing bottom of the league, and when you know teams cannot be relegated from this division, it seems I’ve landed myself in a no-lose situation. Keeping in mind that the clubs nickname is the Faithful, I’ll be looking to hire loyal staff as part of the club’s recruitment policy going forward. After assembling a professional squad of 27 players for the value of 110k, one of the first problems I notice is the wage budget is 4,330 per week overbudget. And with only 829 euro to spare in the transfer budget, I know managing the finances and attemptting to trim that wage bill will be my first task. A scouting budget of 1.3k only allows me to look within the Irish 1st division for potential new players. Hopefully I can improve this as time goes on. As I chose to release all backroom staff in the set up of the club, new additions in that area should be made over the course of the pre-season. In terms of facilities, it’s basic in both youth and training and the club will play its home games at Ely O’ Carroll Park in Birr town, a ground with a 5 thousand total capacity and a 2 thousand seater stand. Naturally, Offaly has a rivalry with the only other Midlands team in the top two tiers of Irish football, Longford Town. Two city clubs, Cork and Bohemians of Phibsborough in Dublin are also included as rivals. A look ahead to pre-season and the early fixtures of the season show 3 scheduled friendlies and a Leinster Senior Cup match against Cherry Orchard as warm up for the season opener at home against Drogheda United. A squad overview, key player profiles, tactics, and friendly results will be included in the next post.
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