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git2thachoppa

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About git2thachoppa

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    MU, B&HA, Iran, England

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    Man Utd - FM 2007 (see my story thread)

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  1. November 2025 - Man City, Southampton (Guarín??) and Norwich Premier League v Manchester City (H) - RIVALS - 2/11/25 The 2 clubs are in a tight battle to be declared the #1 team in Manchester. Both have won a few cups (City being the current FA Cup holders but United winning the Europa League 2 seasons ago), though City have finished a few places above United the past 2 seasons and haven't lost a derby in 4 years (P8, W5, D3). Since 2016, during Thomas Doll's reign, City established themselves as a top 4 side. They dropped to 6th and 7th in Doll's final years, but then finished 3rd twice in a row under Erwin Koeman. Koeman retired at the end of last season and was replaced with Slobodan Drapic. He has just won Manager of the Month, so hopefully the curse will hit instantly. They are also top of the table currently, their only loss coming away to Newcastle. They've kept 5 clean sheets in a row. It'll be a tough derby. Team News It's about utilising experience today. Young goalkeeper Butler is injured. Dupraz has been playing for the reserves, and his last match was conceding 3 goals against City reserves. So the experienced Majava will start. As well as an experienced European Championship runner-up in goal, it's an over-30s central defence of Preston (World Cup and Golden Ball winner) and Hamann (World Cup runner-up). Central midfielder Ryan scored a Goal of the Month winner against Liverpool, but he's injured, so it's fellow Briton King's chance. Team: Majava; Rafiei, Preston, Hamann, Farley; Pressley, King (c), McIntosh; Peres; Boussoufa, Sibiya ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (8th) Man Utd 1 - 0 Man City (1st) MU Disallowed Goal: Sibiya (17) 1-0: McIntosh (34) - Our goal was just offside, as McIntosh was behind the goalkeeper. - It should've been a lot more, City went inside their shell, but it just wouldn't go in again. - Sibiya nicked the ball off their keeper outside his area, but his shot to goal hit the post. - Farley's (DL) bad marking gave their right winger a couple of one-on-ones. But it's another win, another clean sheet, and another hated rival beaten. =============================================================== League Cup - 4th Round v Southampton (H) - 5/11/25 Southampton are a yo-yo Championship side that have been relegated from the Premier League 5 times in 20 years. They were enjoying their longest run in the top tier since 2005 (6 seasons, mostly under current manager Willie Furphy) before being relegated last season. Southampton's team include a 39-year-old Freddy Guarín. Team News Even though it's the League Cup, the only youngster this time is the substitute goalkeeper (unless you consider 24-year-old starting keeper Dupraz to also be a youngster). It's more about getting other squad players game time. Team: Dupraz; Rafiei, Simak, Andjic, Hamann; Topic, Darlington, Anderson; Guilbert; Santos, Adams (c) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (6th, PL) Man Utd 2 - 0 Southampton (16th, Championship) 2-0: Santos (58), Guilbert (79) - I told the players they were disappointing after an uneventful first half when we should've been having chances. This fired up some players for the second half. Thanks to a Championship v Championship tie, 1 Championship team still remains in the competition. =============================================================== In the first round of the FA Cup, Eastleigh beat League One Yeovil, who are at least 4 divisions above them, 2-1 at home with a late winner. They've now won every FA Cup match so far 2-1 (they won a replay 2-1...) Conference South side Hitchin took the lead twice before drawing 2-2 at League One side Tranmere Rovers. =============================================================== Premier League v Norwich City (H) - 15/11/25 Norwich finally ended their curse last season. Their last 4 promotions to the Premier League (2004, 2007, 2015 and 2022) ended in relegation after just 1 season. They bounced straight back in 2024 under French legend Jean Pierre-Papin, and a win on the final day saw them finish 1 point and 1 place above the relegation zone. Papin left for Malaga and was replaced with Michael Skibbe. Now can they make it to a 3rd season? They just got their first away win of the season, 2-1 in Middlesbrough. Team News: Butler; Souza, Preston, Castillo, McIntosh; Pressley, King (c), Anderson; Tsotetsi; Santos, Sibiya ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (6th) Man Utd 1 - 0 Norwich (17th) 1-0: Pressley (66) N Red Card: (78) - Norwich had 2 shots, 0 on target, but were still a bit of a threat. Once more at home, we managed to finally break through the defence. - Castillo's headed and long ball clearances straight into attack were a real problem for the opposition. =============================================================== This ends a run of 8 home games in 11 matches (or 2 months). No doubt playing a part in getting 9 clean sheets in the last 10 matches. There are still 3 home games in a row to come after the next 2 away games.
  2. November 2025 - Man City, Southampton (Guarín??) and Norwich Premier League v Manchester City (H) - RIVALS - 2/11/25 The 2 clubs are in a tight battle to be declared the #1 team in Manchester. Both have won a few cups (City being the current FA Cup holders but United winning the Europa League 2 seasons ago), though City have finished a few places above United the past 2 seasons and haven't lost a derby in 4 years (P8, W5, D3). Since 2016, during Thomas Doll's reign, City established themselves as a top 4 side. They dropped to 6th and 7th in Doll's final years, but then finished 3rd twice in a row under Erwin Koeman. Koeman retired at the end of last season and was replaced with Slobodan Drapic. He has just won Manager of the Month, so hopefully the curse will hit instantly. They are also top of the table currently, their only loss coming away to Newcastle. They've kept 5 clean sheets in a row. It'll be a tough derby. Team News It's about utilising experience today. Young goalkeeper Butler is injured. Dupraz has been playing for the reserves, and his last match was conceding 3 goals against City reserves. So the experienced Majava will start. As well as an experienced European Championship runner-up in goal, it's an over-30s central defence of Preston (World Cup and Golden Ball winner) and Hamann (World Cup runner-up). Central midfielder Ryan scored a Goal of the Month winner against Liverpool, but he's injured, so it's fellow Briton King's chance. Team: Majava; Rafiei, Preston, Hamann, Farley; Pressley, King (c), McIntosh; Peres; Boussoufa, Sibiya ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (8th) Man Utd 1 - 0 Man City (1st) MU Disallowed Goal: Sibiya (17) 1-0: McIntosh (34) - Our goal was just offside, as McIntosh was behind the goalkeeper. - It should've been a lot more, City went inside their shell, but it just wouldn't go in again. - Sibiya nicked the ball off their keeper outside his area, but his shot to goal hit the post. - Farley's (DL) bad marking gave their right winger a couple of one-on-ones. But it's another win, another clean sheet, and another hated rival beaten. =============================================================== League Cup - 4th Round v Southampton (H) - 5/11/25 Southampton are a yo-yo Championship side that have been relegated from the Premier League 5 times in 20 years. They were enjoying their longest run in the top tier since 2005 (6 seasons, mostly under current manager Willie Furphy) before being relegated last season. Southampton's team include a 39-year-old Freddy Guarín. Team News Even though it's the League Cup, the only youngster this time is the substitute goalkeeper (unless you consider 24-year-old starting keeper Dupraz to also be a youngster). It's more about getting other squad players game time. Team: Dupraz; Rafiei, Simak, Andjic, Hamann; Topic, Darlington, Anderson; Guilbert; Santos, Adams (c) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (6th, PL) Man Utd 2 - 0 Southampton (16th, Championship) 2-0: Santos (58), Guilbert (79) - I told the players they were disappointing after an uneventful first half when we should've been having chances. This fired up some players for the second half. Thanks to a Championship v Championship tie, 1 Championship team still remains in the competition. =============================================================== In the first round of the FA Cup, Eastleigh beat League One Yeovil, who are at least 4 divisions above them, 2-1 at home with a late winner. They've now won every FA Cup match so far 2-1 (they won a replay 2-1...) Conference South side Hitchin took the lead twice before drawing 2-2 at League One side Tranmere Rovers. =============================================================== Premier League v Norwich City (H) - 15/11/25 Norwich finally ended their curse last season. Their last 4 promotions to the Premier League (2004, 2007, 2015 and 2022) ended in relegation after just 1 season. They bounced straight back in 2024 under French legend Jean Pierre-Papin, and a win on the final day saw them finish 1 point and 1 place above the relegation zone. Papin left for Malaga and was replaced with Michael Skibbe. Now can they make it to a 3rd season? They just got their first away win of the season, 2-1 in Middlesbrough. Team News: Butler; Souza, Preston, Castillo, McIntosh; Pressley, King (c), Anderson; Tsotetsi; Santos, Sibiya ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (6th) Man Utd 1 - 0 Norwich (17th) 1-0: Pressley (66) N Red Card: (78) - Norwich had 2 shots, 0 on target, but were still a bit of a threat. Once more at home, we managed to finally break through the defence. - Castillo's headed and long ball clearances straight into attack were a real problem for the opposition. =============================================================== This ends a run of 8 home games in 11 matches (or 2 months). No doubt playing a part in getting 9 clean sheets in the last 10 matches. There are still 3 home games in a row to come after the next 2 away games.
  3. git2thachoppa

    The New FMCU General Discussion Thread

    This is why I'm entirely contextual or do the best of both. Like my first job was match by match, because it was my first. Same for international football because there are so few matches, in convenient spurts, and if you lose or draw just 2 that can knock you out. There is a lot of drama. But in charge of a Serie B team that went under and revived at the bottom tier, or a club that got relegated that shouldn't have so will destroy the lower division getting promotion again, or just being a midtable side, there isn't any drama. So a recap doesn't take anything away. But you can do both. My recaps sometimes went month by month, or period by period. You can still have suspense and not reveal the outcome until the final sentence. Or you can recap most of the season, but the big final few matches can be match by match. And now that I'm in England, 2 decades into the future, I'm going match by match, at least at first. Because each time I face a team, I can give an update on how that club's game future went and where they are now and what crazy name is managing them. It also means you know whether beating Newcastle United is an expected win or a huge result, or whether Ashley Cole managing Preston North End is the epitome of **** or the biggest news in world football.
  4. October 2025 - Blackburn and Arsenal Premier League v Blackburn Rovers (H) - 19/10/25 Yet another yo-yo club, Rovers won the Championship last year to get promoted. This season, in 10 games, Rovers have failed to score in 6 and only kept 1 clean sheet. It may seem an easy game, but these two clubs met last season in the FA Cup and Blackburn won 4-1 at home. Team: Butler; Pressley, Preston, Castillo, Farley; Topic, Ryan (c), Anderson; Tsotetsi; Sibiya, Boussoufa ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (8th) Man Utd 2 - 0 Blackburn (17th) MU Red Card: Preston (41) BR Second Yellow: (55) 2-0: Pressley (56), Boussoufa (74) BR Red Card: (81) - It was just like our last game, against Visé, with our opponents sitting back for a 0-0. We were dominating even when down to 10 men, in a match that saw 3 sending offs, and once again we scored from an indirect free kick. - Anderson drew 12 fouls on the left wing, including 8 from the Rovers right-back Taylor, who was sent off after 2 yellows in 2 minutes. The resulting free kick from Anderson is what opened the scoring. - Boussoufa earned a start and scored his 6th goal in 3(2) games. - In 15 minutes as a sub, Santos had 5 shots, 3 on target. He makes chances, even if he doesn't score them yet. - The chairman was pleased with the win. =============================================================== League Cup - 3rd Round v Blackburn Rovers (A) @ Ewood Park As if the world was secretly run by a Football Manager game, 'coincidentally' play the same team in our next cup tie. As before, we're favourites, but Blackburn won the same cup tie last season 4-1. Team News I believe it was former United manager Sir Alex Ferguson himself who began the idea of the League Cup being a competition for youngsters and reserves, as he began mastering the art of rotation which eventually led to the Treble of 1999. With that in mind, I'll start 35-year-old backup Majava in goal. He's yet to make his debut, while youngster backup Dupraz played half of last season and has played a couple this season already. 2 youngsters are picked at left-back and centre-back, with defensive midfielder Darlington out of position at right-back too due to youngster Hampson being on loan now. Pryce, who I tried to sell, make his first appearance under me. Team: Majava; Darlington, Andjic, Pepper, Griffin; Pryce, King (c), Guilbert; Peres; Adams, Lara ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (17th, EPL) Blackburn 0 - 2 Man Utd (5th) BR Disallowed Goal: (28) 0-2: Lara (90+2), Adams (90+4) - This really is like the old Man Utd. Again, goals in the final minutes earn a win, though after a poor display. - Under-18 defender Peter Pepper (yes I know), who I snatched out-of-contract from Celtic, made his senior debut and was one of the better performers. - Majava made several good saves and always looked like keeping a clean sheet. - It's the 6th clean sheet in a row (though 4 of those were against teams sitting back). All League Two and One teams have been eliminated from the cup. =============================================================== Premier League v Arsenal (A) @ Emirates Stadium - RIVALS - 25/10/25 Once Alex Ferguson retired, Arsene Wenger's Arsenal dominated and killed English football even worse than Fergie ever did. They won an unprecedented 6 Premier Leagues in a row, winning 2 Champions Leagues along with those last 3 titles, a run that immediately ended once Wenger retired in 2013. His replacement, Javier Aguirre, lasted only 1 year after dropping to 5th and was replaced by Michael Laudrup, who is now in his 11th season. Laudrup steered Arsenal back to the top with a few more titles and trophies, but Sir Steve McClaren's Newcastle overtook them. Laudrup did win a 4th title a couple of seasons ago, but he has also lost 4 Champions League finals. Arsenal are unbeaten so far in the league this season. In the last 5 meetings, the away team hasn't scored. Team News Arsenal have such physically strong players, but they play 4-2-3-1 so us playing 3 centre-backs would be a waste of 1 player. Instead, I'll play a quick and strong centre-back (Rafiei) and the other will add experience (Simak). Boussoufa's goalscoring exploits means he starts alongside the other new guy making a great start, Sibiya. Team: Butler; Preston, Rafiei, Simak, McIntosh; Pressley, Ryan (c), Anderson; Tsotetsi; Boussoufa, Sibiya =============================================================== (4th) Arsenal 4 - 3 Man Utd (5th) 0-1: Pressley (4) 1-1: (13) 1-2: Sibiya (26) MU Goal Disallowed Boussoufa (45+1) 2-2: (60) A injury, down to 10 men: (64) 2-3: Sibiya (70) 4-3: Preston Own Goal (75), (90) MU injury, down to 10 men: Ryan (90+5) - An action-packed and bizarre game that will hopefully become a rarity as I build a squad through the years. - We took the lead 3 times through set pieces, only to lose to 10 men. - Arsenal dominated the start, getting 9 shots in the first 13 minutes. But eventually we took control. - Our 1st goal came from a throw-in routine, the 2nd from a long throw that got knocked over their keeper and Sibiya squeezed it in, the 3rd was a direct free kick. - Boussoufa's goal was correctly ruled offside. - We had several chances in the last 10 minutes so could've won still. - Despite 4 goals conceded, Butler (GK) had a good game and was the reason why it wasn't worse. The result wasn't down to any really bad performances, the squad just isn't there yet. Arsenal are a strong team and were once a behemoth, but mine is currently an unspectacular team with an experienced defence and a rookie goalkeeper. =============================================================== Bob Ryan's long-range winner against Liverpool unsurprisingly wins Goal of the Month. =============================================================== My former club Busan IPark successfully defended their (and my) Champions League. The final was effectively over after they got an impressive 3-0 away win against Iranian giants Persepolis, winning 4-0 on aggregate.
  5. October 2025 - Blackburn and Arsenal Premier League v Blackburn Rovers (H) - 19/10/25 Yet another yo-yo club, Rovers won the Championship last year to get promoted. This season, in 10 games, Rovers have failed to score in 6 and only kept 1 clean sheet. It may seem an easy game, but these two clubs met last season in the FA Cup and Blackburn won 4-1 at home. Team: Butler; Pressley, Preston, Castillo, Farley; Topic, Ryan (c), Anderson; Tsotetsi; Sibiya, Boussoufa ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (8th) Man Utd 2 - 0 Blackburn (17th) MU Red Card: Preston (41) BR Second Yellow: (55) 2-0: Pressley (56), Boussoufa (74) BR Red Card: (81) - It was just like our last game, against Visé, with our opponents sitting back for a 0-0. We were dominating even when down to 10 men, in a match that saw 3 sending offs, and once again we scored from an indirect free kick. - Anderson drew 12 fouls on the left wing, including 8 from the Rovers right-back Taylor, who was sent off after 2 yellows in 2 minutes. The resulting free kick from Anderson is what opened the scoring. - Boussoufa earned a start and scored his 6th goal in 3(2) games. - In 15 minutes as a sub, Santos had 5 shots, 3 on target. He makes chances, even if he doesn't score them yet. - The chairman was pleased with the win. =============================================================== League Cup - 3rd Round v Blackburn Rovers (A) @ Ewood Park As if the world was secretly run by a Football Manager game, 'coincidentally' play the same team in our next cup tie. As before, we're favourites, but Blackburn won the same cup tie last season 4-1. Team News I believe it was former United manager Sir Alex Ferguson himself who began the idea of the League Cup being a competition for youngsters and reserves, as he began mastering the art of rotation which eventually led to the Treble of 1999. With that in mind, I'll start 35-year-old backup Majava in goal. He's yet to make his debut, while youngster backup Dupraz played half of last season and has played a couple this season already. 2 youngsters are picked at left-back and centre-back, with defensive midfielder Darlington out of position at right-back too due to youngster Hampson being on loan now. Pryce, who I tried to sell, make his first appearance under me. Team: Majava; Darlington, Andjic, Pepper, Griffin; Pryce, King (c), Guilbert; Peres; Adams, Lara ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (17th, EPL) Blackburn 0 - 2 Man Utd (5th) BR Disallowed Goal: (28) 0-2: Lara (90+2), Adams (90+4) - This really is like the old Man Utd. Again, goals in the final minutes earn a win, though after a poor display. - Under-18 defender Peter Pepper (yes I know), who I snatched out-of-contract from Celtic, made his senior debut and was one of the better performers. - Majava made several good saves and always looked like keeping a clean sheet. - It's the 6th clean sheet in a row (though 4 of those were against teams sitting back). All League Two and One teams have been eliminated from the cup. =============================================================== Premier League v Arsenal (A) @ Emirates Stadium - RIVALS - 25/10/25 Once Alex Ferguson retired, Arsene Wenger's Arsenal dominated and killed English football even worse than Fergie ever did. They won an unprecedented 6 Premier Leagues in a row, winning 2 Champions Leagues along with those last 3 titles, a run that immediately ended once Wenger retired in 2013. His replacement, Javier Aguirre, lasted only 1 year after dropping to 5th and was replaced by Michael Laudrup, who is now in his 11th season. Laudrup steered Arsenal back to the top with a few more titles and trophies, but Sir Steve McClaren's Newcastle overtook them. Laudrup did win a 4th title a couple of seasons ago, but he has also lost 4 Champions League finals. Arsenal are unbeaten so far in the league this season. In the last 5 meetings, the away team hasn't scored. Team News Arsenal have such physically strong players, but they play 4-2-3-1 so us playing 3 centre-backs would be a waste of 1 player. Instead, I'll play a quick and strong centre-back (Rafiei) and the other will add experience (Simak). Boussoufa's goalscoring exploits means he starts alongside the other new guy making a great start, Sibiya. Team: Butler; Preston, Rafiei, Simak, McIntosh; Pressley, Ryan (c), Anderson; Tsotetsi; Boussoufa, Sibiya =============================================================== (4th) Arsenal 4 - 3 Man Utd (5th) 0-1: Pressley (4) 1-1: (13) 1-2: Sibiya (26) MU Goal Disallowed Boussoufa (45+1) 2-2: (60) A injury, down to 10 men: (64) 2-3: Sibiya (70) 4-3: Preston Own Goal (75), (90) MU injury, down to 10 men: Ryan (90+5) - An action-packed and bizarre game that will hopefully become a rarity as I build a squad through the years. - We took the lead 3 times through set pieces, only to lose to 10 men. - Arsenal dominated the start, getting 9 shots in the first 13 minutes. But eventually we took control. - Our 1st goal came from a throw-in routine, the 2nd from a long throw that got knocked over their keeper and Sibiya squeezed it in, the 3rd was a direct free kick. - Boussoufa's goal was correctly ruled offside. - We had several chances in the last 10 minutes so could've won still. - Despite 4 goals conceded, Butler (GK) had a good game and was the reason why it wasn't worse. The result wasn't down to any really bad performances, the squad just isn't there yet. Arsenal are a strong team and were once a behemoth, but mine is currently an unspectacular team with an experienced defence and a rookie goalkeeper. =============================================================== Bob Ryan's long-range winner against Liverpool unsurprisingly wins Goal of the Month. =============================================================== My former club Busan IPark successfully defended their (and my) Champions League. The final was effectively over after they got an impressive 3-0 away win against Iranian giants Persepolis, winning 4-0 on aggregate.
  6. git2thachoppa

    The New FMCU General Discussion Thread

    Ah, the forum's back to the days when your thread goes off the front page after 1 day. Back to posting on non-weekends for me!
  7. git2thachoppa

    The New FMCU General Discussion Thread

    I'm judging by all this activity that the FM 19 beta has been released (final version comes out in February as always). Ah **** that means the forum's gonna be swamped. Edit: I was being sarcastic. Didn't realise it really was the beta, I thought it had been proper released.
  8. September/October 2025 - Charlton, Liverpool, Europa League In an early title deciding clash between the Big 2, Arsenal thrashed defending champions Newcastle 3-0 at the Emirates. =============================================================== Premier League v Charlton (A) @ The Valley - 28/9/25 Charlton are yet another yo-yo club who have gone straight to the bottom of the football league and straight back up. Relegated from the Premier League in 2007, within 10 years they were in League Two. Only 5 years later, after a change in chairman, they were back in the Premier League. They were immediately relegated again, but were back under Damian Roden after 2 seasons away. They're off to a bad start: they haven't won yet this season (6 games), though got a 0-0 draw at home to runaway champions Newcastle. However they just lost 6-0 to Tottenham, who we beat 5-0. 11-0 then? Team News I'm not risking hot-headed Rafiei for the Liverpool game, so he starts today. Team: Butler; Rafiei, Andjic, Castillo, McIntosh; Topic, Darlington (c), Anderson; Guilbert; Santos, Lara ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (20th) Charlton 0 - 2 Man Utd (11th) 0-2: Lara (7), Santos (45 + 1) - Charlton controlled most of the game, but we were always threatening and they were wasteful. - Santos made a dribble into the area and scored from the tightest possible angle for his first ever goal for United, which wins Goal of the Month. =============================================================== v Liverpool (H) - RIVALS - 1/10/25 Man Utd and Liverpool are now in the same boat. After a decade or 2 of success, both teams are former greats who have won only 1 title since their glory eras at about the same time: Liverpool won in 2014, Utd won in 2015. With two 11th-place finishes in a row, they hired Yuri Vergeichik 4 years ago. They haven't finished below 5th since and reached the Champions League semis last season. The home side has failed to scored in 4 of the last 8 meetings between the two sides. Liverpool have kept a clean sheet in 5 of their 7 league games this season. Team News Liverpool play a 5-3-2. Even though they score goals and keep clean sheets, they seem to leave the flanks and the central midfield mostly free. So I'm going to experiment with a 3-3-1-3. An unheard-of formation in the world today, but it looks like I only need one player on each flank, so I can put an extra man in both defence and attack. 3 defenders to deal with their front 2, a midfielder and wing-backs for their 3 midfielders, 1 free attacking midfielder and a talented front 3 of new signings in Sibiya, Santos and Kanu to trouble their back 3. Team: Butler; Preston, Castillo, Andjic; Pressley, McIntosh; Ryan (c); Tsotetsi; Kanu, Sibiya, Santos ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (7th) Man Utd 1 - 0 Liverpool (2nd) 1-0: Ryan (9) - Central midfielder Ryan scored 30 yards out with a memorable goal - The tactics worked perfectly and it should've been at least 2-0, but their goalkeeper was Man of the Match. They only had a couple chances, while Santos alone had 8 shots. £30m signing Kanu is out for 2 months with injury, so the star signing won't be scoring his 1st goal any time soon. ================================================================ Europa League - Group G v C. S. Visé (H) - 16/10/25 Visé finished runner-up in Belgium last season. Under new manager Peter Maes, they were knocked out by Chelsea in the Champions League qualifying rounds, though only lost 2-1 on aggregate. This is their first time in the group stage. Team News Visé are forced to give a debut to their 16-year-old keeper. Team: Butler; Pressley, Preston, Castillo, Farley; Topic, Ryan, McIntosh; Peres; Adams (c), Sibiya ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ (6th, EPL) Man Utd 1 - 0 Visé (7th, Belgian top tier) MU Disallowed Goal: Peres (30) 1-0: Boussoufa (90+1) - Visé sat back and nearly escaped with the 0-0 win they aimed for. - Shots and headers went wildly over the bar. 16 shots, 8 on target. - The goal came from one of my trademark indirect free kicks. In the other group game, Dynamo Dresden succeeded where Visé failed and got a surprise 0-0 draw at home to PSV.
  9. September/October 2025 - Charlton, Liverpool, Europa League In an early title deciding clash between the Big 2, Arsenal thrashed defending champions Newcastle 3-0 at the Emirates. =============================================================== Premier League v Charlton (A) @ The Valley - 28/9/25 Charlton are yet another yo-yo club who have gone straight to the bottom of the football league and straight back up. Relegated from the Premier League in 2007, within 10 years they were in League Two. Only 5 years later, after a change in chairman, they were back in the Premier League. They were immediately relegated again, but were back under Damian Roden after 2 seasons away. They're off to a bad start: they haven't won yet this season (6 games), though got a 0-0 draw at home to runaway champions Newcastle. However they just lost 6-0 to Tottenham, who we beat 5-0. 11-0 then? Team News I'm not risking hot-headed Rafiei for the Liverpool game, so he starts today. Team: Butler; Rafiei, Andjic, Castillo, McIntosh; Topic, Darlington (c), Anderson; Guilbert; Santos, Lara ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (20th) Charlton 0 - 2 Man Utd (11th) 0-2: Lara (7), Santos (45 + 1) - Charlton controlled most of the game, but we were always threatening and they were wasteful. - Santos made a dribble into the area and scored from the tightest possible angle for his first ever goal for United, which wins Goal of the Month. =============================================================== v Liverpool (H) - RIVALS - 1/10/25 Man Utd and Liverpool are now in the same boat. After a decade or 2 of success, both teams are former greats who have won only 1 title since their glory eras at about the same time: Liverpool won in 2014, Utd won in 2015. With two 11th-place finishes in a row, they hired Yuri Vergeichik 4 years ago. They haven't finished below 5th since and reached the Champions League semis last season. The home side has failed to scored in 4 of the last 8 meetings between the two sides. Liverpool have kept a clean sheet in 5 of their 7 league games this season. Team News Liverpool play a 5-3-2. Even though they score goals and keep clean sheets, they seem to leave the flanks and the central midfield mostly free. So I'm going to experiment with a 3-3-1-3. An unheard-of formation in the world today, but it looks like I only need one player on each flank, so I can put an extra man in both defence and attack. 3 defenders to deal with their front 2, a midfielder and wing-backs for their 3 midfielders, 1 free attacking midfielder and a talented front 3 of new signings in Sibiya, Santos and Kanu to trouble their back 3. Team: Butler; Preston, Castillo, Andjic; Pressley, McIntosh; Ryan (c); Tsotetsi; Kanu, Sibiya, Santos ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (7th) Man Utd 1 - 0 Liverpool (2nd) 1-0: Ryan (9) - Central midfielder Ryan scored 30 yards out with a memorable goal - The tactics worked perfectly and it should've been at least 2-0, but their goalkeeper was Man of the Match. They only had a couple chances, while Santos alone had 8 shots. £30m signing Kanu is out for 2 months with injury, so the star signing won't be scoring his 1st goal any time soon. ================================================================ Europa League - Group G v C. S. Visé (H) - 16/10/25 Visé finished runner-up in Belgium last season. Under new manager Peter Maes, they were knocked out by Chelsea in the Champions League qualifying rounds, though only lost 2-1 on aggregate. This is their first time in the group stage. Team News Visé are forced to give a debut to their 16-year-old keeper. Team: Butler; Pressley, Preston, Castillo, Farley; Topic, Ryan, McIntosh; Peres; Adams (c), Sibiya ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ (6th, EPL) Man Utd 1 - 0 Visé (7th, Belgian top tier) MU Disallowed Goal: Peres (30) 1-0: Boussoufa (90+1) - Visé sat back and nearly escaped with the 0-0 win they aimed for. - Shots and headers went wildly over the bar. 16 shots, 8 on target. - The goal came from one of my trademark indirect free kicks. In the other group game, Dynamo Dresden succeeded where Visé failed and got a surprise 0-0 draw at home to PSV.
  10. git2thachoppa

    FMS Community Thread / Episode VII / Goalfinger

    I write as I'm playing. Pre-match before I go into the match, match summary when the match is over, and anything else as it happens while it loads the next day. Then when the time comes to update my thread, I copy/paste the relevant chunk, do the spacing, underlining etc. (add real life pics for the Career Updates forum) then post. Maybe that helps keep my writing going as well. I've detailed the whole of Brazil 2026 World Cup qualifying, but I can't post that mindblowing series of events until I finish a season. But also I don't force playing. I play when I have the urge, not out of habit. I went a few weeks without playing just now. Years ago I went 2 years without playing. But my writing style changes with every job. At first it was detailed match by match because it was new. Then with the next club it was season recaps. Then in international football I could do it match by match with varying detail because there's much fewer matches. Then it was season recaps back in club football. Then in Busan, South Korea it was recaps, but for the big final matches it was match-by-match. Now I'm in the Premier League, I do it match by match because I figure people will want to know what's happened in 20 game years to all the clubs they know. Plus it's no good saying I'm facing Newcastle United without context. Are they recently promoted or European champions? It's not even any good trying to figure what people would read because of the feedback I've received, they've all liked different things. Turns out people love international football after all. As for how the forum should adapt, well I answered that 2 years ago. Only seeing those changes partly implements this year. But in short, people aren't going to be arsed voting twice for the same thing. They moan about it already in UK democracy (I guess people would rather we live in a dictatorship?). We know this by how many people voted. And the very first thing the mod said about this year was that some people didn't vote again because they couldn't win and were excluded. So the solution is to allow everyone to win, you don't have to read to be able to write here, everyone's welcome. I happened to read a story this year, though I knew he'd win anyway, but some years maybe I won't. Either way, this must-vote rule evidently hasn't made the forum more active. If it wasn't for, I figure, 2 mods and a few writers, this forum would be closed. I've already had one PM from someone asking about how to write on the Career Updates forum to get more eyes and feel more involved, something he must not feel he gets writing in this forum.
  11. git2thachoppa

    FMS Community Thread / Episode VII / Goalfinger

    So I think, once you exclude the non-starters, you could totally just include everyone. Even for stuff like best story or writer which would have all of them in it, people will know who they're gonna vote for already.
  12. git2thachoppa

    FMS Community Thread / Episode VII / Goalfinger

    I'm not sure I like the idea of a 'committee', but the same few people are voting already so we kinda already have that. How many stories are made in a year? I wonder if it's few enough to just include every story.
  13. git2thachoppa

    FMS Community Thread / Episode VII / Goalfinger

    More votes in the preliminary and barely any in the final was a problem the year before. The more 'casual' participants aren't gonna like voting and then being told thanks but vote again. I would've taken their preliminary vote as their final vote also, or just had one vote. And I've always thought having to vote to be eligible to be awarded/voted for was iffy and inclusive. Just being really honest here but there was so much talk last year about things we need to do to improve to Make The Awards Great Again, and then every suggestion was brushed off as basically being against tradition, and then we got like 4 people voting in the final round this year (and probably the same names as every year).
  14. September 2025 - Europa League, Sheffield United, Preston North End With the window out of the way, I overhauled the club affiliates and partnerships. Links remain with: Bury (League 1) - Local partnership Royal Antwerp (Belgian top division) - EU passports Red Star Belgrade (Serbia SuperLiga) - Scouting knowledge and to loan out players OB (Danish Superliga) - Scouting knowledge and to loan out players Bnei Yehuda (Israeli Premier League) - Scouting knowledge and to loan out players Querétaro (Mexican top division) - Scouting knowledge Xanthi (Greek second tier) - Scouting knowledge Links are cancelled with Newport County (Conference South), Pohang Steelers (K League 1, South Korea), Ocean Boys (Nigeria), ES Tunis (Tunisia), Parramatta (Australia) and Cianorte (Série C, Brazil). ==================================================== A disastrous summer for defending champions Newcastle United saw the managerless side lose to Sheffield United, draw with Charlton, and need 2 stoppage time goals to beat Preston. Then they only spent £3.3m on 2 senior transfers (one a free) and had a player stolen by Man Utd. But they finally have a new manager: Marcelino García Toral, the former Real Madrid manager who won 9 titles including 6 in a row, La Decima, and a few more trophies in 14 years. ==================================================== For the Europa League squad, I leave young current #2/3 keeper Dupraz out in favour of experienced Majava, since the other 2 keepers in the squad are very young. 10-year veteran defender Andjic has to be left out for now. Iranian defender Rafiei is ineligible. My deadline day signings are too late to be registered until after the group stage. Europa League - First Round, Leg 1 v FC Haka (A) @ Tehtaan kenttä - 11/9/25 The Finnish champions have never reached the group stage, losing both legs to TNS last campaign 2 seasons ago. They lost both legs of their Champions League tie this season to Lens 2-0 each. Should be a simple win over 2 legs. Team News With a tough game at Sheffield United in just 3 days, it's good we're playing a weak team. With injuries and inelligible players, the team mostly picks itself anyway. Team: Butler; Souza, Castillo, Simak, Farley; Topic, Darlington (c), Topic; Guilbert; Boussoufa, Lara On matchday, it's a huge storm. A downpour and a gale. But the match goes ahead in front of a capacity 6,400 crowd for the biggest match in their history. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (7th, Finnish top tier) FC Haka 1 - 3 Man Utd (Pred. 3rd, Premier League) 0-3: Lara (5, 25), Boussoufa (28) 1-3: (60) - The ball couldn't move at all in the pools of water covering the muddy pitch. But it was clear that, on a nicer day in Manchester (don't hear that often!), the team will run rings around them. - The goal conceded by Haka's one shot on target is disappointing and the keeper, Butler, will now be dropped after 3 games without a clean sheet. - 18-year-old reserve Hampson came on at half time and the right-wing-back did well. - Centre-back Simak was injured in the storm and is out for 2 months. ======================================================== Premier League v Sheffield United (A) @ Bramall Lane - 14/9/25 A bottom-half but stable club who reached the Europa League final 2 seasons ago, only to be beaten on penalties by... Manchester United. However, they've beaten Newcastle and Middlesbrough at home 1-0 already, and in the last 4 league meetings the away team hasn't scored. This makes Sheffield United slight favourites after our 2 away losses. Team News Dupraz comes in as keeper, Anderson and Santos make their debuts. Kanu is on the bench - the only thing he lacks is strength, and it's a strong defence. Team: Dupraz; Souza, Rafiei, Castillo, McIntosh; Topic, Ryan (c), Anderson; Tsotetsi; Sibiya, Santos --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Pred. 10th) Sheffield United 1 - 2 Man Utd (Pred. 3rd) 0-1: Sibiya (31) 1-1: (41) 1-2: Sibiya (47) MU Missed Penalty: Sibiya (90+5) - Luck and panic in the defence gave us the lead, but Dupraz going too far out gave them an equaliser. - Rafiei escaped with a yellow for an elbow to the face and will be warned. (Additional note: ****, I forgot to warn him) - Kanu came on in the 74th minute and was about to score in stoppage time, but he was offside. - In the 94th minute, Kanu went on a run through the defence but was fouled in the area before he could finish. - For the 2nd penalty in a row, Sibiya failed to complete his hat-trick from the spot. He won't be taking any important penalties again! =================================================== v Preston North End (H) - 20/9/25 Preston are Premier League mainstays, in their 12th season in a row in the top tier. Frank Lampard even guided them to Europe, before they ruthlessly sacked him. After Sheffield United did the same, he left football disillusioned, and football lost a future great manager. Today I face off against Mike Newell who, after Sir Steve McClaren retired (and excluding myself), is the best English manager in football. After getting Palace and West Brom promoted to the Premier League (the latter reaching a Europa League semi-final) and Sheffield Wednesday to a Europa League semi-final as well after winning the FA Cup, he begins his first full season in charge of Preston. The home side has won the last 5 meetings, with 4 clean sheets. Team News I finally get to see Scottish World Cup champion and Golden Ball winner Preston in action. Team: Dupraz; Preston, Rafiei, Castillo, McIntosh; Topic, Ryan (c), Anderson; Tsotetsi; Sibiya, Santos --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Pred. 3rd) Man Utd 2 - 2 Preston North End (Pred. 13th) 2-0: Topic (44), Sibiya (54) 2-2: (61), (75) PNE Red Card: (90+2) - Anderson had a knock after 2 minutes, so was subbed off. - We were a frightening threaten, with 2 chances in the 6-yard box being saved. - Rafiei got another early yellow card and was subbed off after 55 minutes at 2-0 up. - Dupraz again came out and gave the opposition an open goal. Now he's dropped harder than Butler was. Butler will be back for the next game. - Another mistake, Castillo's, led to the equaliser. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Q: "What is your reaction to your players after throwing away a 2-0 lead?" A: "I shouted at them. Mistakes aren't done on purpose, but complacency is. Old Trafford should be a fortress. We should've been more than 2-0 ahead, so that even idiotic backpasses and goalkeeper positioning shouldn't have been a problem." Q: "One goalkeeper is 21 years old, the other playing today is 24. Is age a problem?" A: "Yes, but that wasn't inexperience or immaturity, it was stupidity. I told him now and only now: if you play like that, you cannot play for Manchester United. Do you want to be a Schmeichel / van der Sar, or do you want to be a Barthez? Barthez was great but, at the level we want to be at, you cannot be a crazy funny keeper who wants to be a midfielder." Q: "Will that come with age?" A: "No it comes with training. We have a good coach, we have a European Championship finalist and trophy-winning goalkeeper who has been in the game for decades. If you cannot learn from them to not go wandering, then you never will." Q: "So do you have a goalkeeping problem?" A: "This is precisely why I signed Majava. If the youngsters aren't ready, he's such an experienced keeper, I'm sure he will be ready. But I don't want to talk about just the goalkeeper. I shouted at the whole team. Sibiya has started so well but he still should've scored more. Maybe it just needs time, but today the entire team were... this is pre-recorded?" Q: "...Yes we'll be replaying it on Match of the Day and Five Live." A: "They were all bellends. Thank you." ====================================================== Europa League - First Round, 2nd Leg v FC Haka (H) - 25/9/25 Haka lost their last 2 league games before today, so everything is going against them. They need to score 3+ goals at Old Trafford to turn it around, which would be one of the most historic nights in football. Team News I'm playing a weak side, so change to a 4-1-2-3 to shoehorn in all the backup and youth players. Butler is back in goal. If he doesn't **** up, he stays. If he does, the experienced Majava becomes #1. He shouldn't even be tested today. The full backs are young reserves, including Hampson who did well in the 1st leg. Team: Butler; Hampson, Darlington, Castillo, Griffin; King (c); Tsotetsi, Guilbert; Boussoufa, Adams, Lara ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (11th, EPL) Man Utd 3 - 0 FC Haka (6th, Finnish top tier) (6-1 agg.) 3-0: Boussoufa (66, 76, 83) - Close saves and a lot of off-target shots meant we didn't score in the first half. - Another injury within a few minutes meant a change to a more normal 4-1-3-2. Topic came on and made an assist for Boussoufa's first. - Boussoufa finished his hat-trick with a rocket outside the area and then a free-kick. - Haka had 0 shots on target. We qualify for the group stage.
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