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oriole01

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About oriole01

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    Wolves and NK Maribor

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    Borussia Dortmund

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  1. Brilliant season so far, you'll have to be favorites to repeat the league and CL.
  2. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    Cheers!
  3. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    Borussia Dortmund January 2020 Back into the green to start the new year, but the true tests will have to wait for later on. We did well in the friendlies, but I was surprised to see Spanish third tier side Real Jaén score twice against us. We then shut down RB Salzburg, and took care of business against serial friendly opponents Bielefeld. We returned to Bundesliga play with a close away win over Freiburg. After trading big chances early (OusCrane hit the post and Yussuf Poulsen dragged one wide), we opened the scoring on 38' following a brilliant counter move, which ended with OusCrane playing a cutback onto Alex Isak to apply the finish from close range. Yet Freiburg gave us a hell of a game, as they won possession heavily and pushed towards our goal late on. Their newgen 18-year-old Sandro Guimaraes did beat our keeper Rajkovic on 86', but his shot kissed the post and was cleared off the line by a defender. A close game and a hard-fought victory, but I would expect no less from Hans' former side at home. We then returned to the Signal Iduna for the first competitive game since Der Klassiker against Ingolstadt, and came away with an important three points. We got started early, as on 15', a cross from Felix Passlack was headed down by Isak onto Nadiem Amiri's feet, who snapped home the volley for 1-0. We took that lead into the half, but Ingolstadt struck back not long after the restart, with Thomas Olivier Amang beating five of our defenders and the keeper with a well-placed effort from outside the box. Yet we regained the lead just a minute later, as Jacob Bruun Larsen somehow found a way to sneak his effort from 21 yards into the bottom right corner with several red-clad defenders in the vicinity. They tried to push for an equalizer up until the end, but it was us who claimed the final goal, as Isak concluded a day in which he already bagged two assists with a close-range volleyed goal in stoppage time. A good attacking performance that gave everyone a boost. Table I don't know how it's possible, but we are right in the thick of the title race as the second half of the season begins. Both Bayern and Leverkusen have been leaking points like a sieve recently, as well as the teams right behind us. We're now four points clear of Hoffenheim and five clear of Bremen and Leipzig. The Smurfs have made a push upwards under Rebrov, and could be poised for another second half charge. Wolfsburg have been on fire and are now in with a shout in the EL race. In the land of relegation, Hamburg have found a way out of the playoff place, which is now occupied by Braunschweig. Nurnberg now have three wins- with their latest coming against none other than Bayern Munich... bonkers. That leaves Koln rock-bottom, with their next game against us, but I can never underestimate those bastards no matter where they are in the table! Transfers We start with outgoings, as is custom. I loaned out Weigl, as he wasn't going to get a game with our current situation at midfield. As I said in the squad review, I've not been impressed with him on this save, but there really isn't a better destination than Barcelona to prove that he has what it takes. There is a $20 million future fee attached to the loan, but I'll only let Barca use it if he hasn't sufficiently impressed me. Summer signing Décio didn't want to continue his loan at affiliate Karlsruher, so he goes back out on loan to Ingolstadt, who we just faced off with. He didn't do too well in the 2. Bundesliga, so I don't think he'll do much better a level up, but he already does have a goal and an assist, so maybe not. Merino is another victim of the overstock of our midfield. I was pretty conflicted on whether to sell him, as he wasn't listed, but when the offers came in, I decided that with the new signing in midfield coming in, who you'll see in a moment, it was probably best to move him on, as he wasn't on the best form when he did get games here. Bilbao is a good place for him to further his career, as they've actually qualified for the CL knockouts and are a club on the rise. Guerreiro was pretty much out of my hands. When Man City started coming in with offers, I kept trying to push them up to his $35 million minimum release clause, thinking Carlo didn't have the cojones to go there, but they finally did it on the fourth offer, snatching Raphael from us without enough time to find a replacement on Deadline Day. There's no doubt he can do well at the next level, but I'm disappointed that it had to be Carlo's City, of all teams. Marcel Schmelzer is now the starter, with Passlack the only right back who can provide backup. Incomings. Cyprien is a solid 25-year-old midfielder from Nice, who we also bought Malang Sarr from in the summer. He has all the attributes required to do a job in the center of the park, where he can play as either a DLP, AP, or Roaming Playmaker. With Castro aging and Weigl not up to standard, Cyprien was the player we needed to have a better chance of winning the midfield on a more consistent basis, and I'm very glad that we've got him. Lerche is someone I've been tracking for a while, ever since he showed up on Denmark's World Cup side at 18 years old and scored twice, I was intrigued by his talent, and it's safe to say he's an absolute beast of a player. The now 20-year-old looks like he could go to the very top of the world game, as evidenced by those ridiculous attributes. Although Nadiem Amiri, another coveted CAM signing from last season, is on the form of his life, Lerche could potentially surpass even him. With Gotze having a poor season, he'll be in rotation with Amiri for the rest of the year, and they could form a lethal duo at that position for years to come. Wylan Cyprien|Andreas Lerche I thought I was happy with my squad two seasons ago, but I've now realized that a squad has to continually be improving if they want success, as evidenced by some of our shortcomings both last season and in the first half of this one. I don't know when we'll reach the top, but with the spending ability I've been blessed with here, I am definitely in a position to keep bringing in the players that will give us a chance to go there. Next month sees a rough league schedule: five games, with three of them against teams in the top half, and one of them being the Ruhr Derby. Los! Los! Los!
  4. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    A Ukrainian, huh? A people ripe with shadiness. Good thing I got that peace treaty ripped up, or else it could have been seriously exploited. Time will tell if he can save the Smurfs' season, but I have to be much more worried about the potential reassembly of Schalke's underground Ultras network. If they get back to full force, they will succeed in killing me this time, absolutely no question about it. I've hired some PIs to track activity around the mines, but their reports have come up empty so far. With the change of hands at the top, however, it could only be a matter of time...
  5. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    Borussia Dortmund December 2019 This was looking like a great month, but it seems that we get cursed after beating big sides, because we tanked the last two matches badly. We started with a draw against RB Leipzig. Things started rather poorly, as on just 2', Max Philipp opened the scoring for the opposition with a deflected effort from outside the area. We got our equalizer on 32', as Alex Isak also stroked one home from long range, his curved shot clinking off the post before heading in. The second half was relatively quiet, although Stefan Ilsanker was sent off on 86'. We didn't have enough time to make a goal advantage out of our man advantage, but we claimed a respectable draw away from home against a good side. The following weekend, we were able to escape Hamburg with a narrow win. After we cleared two Hamburg attempts off the line in the early goings, things were looking nervy, but we got a sudden swing in fortune when we were awarded a penalty on 18' for a trip on OusCrane. Our penalty taker Andre Schurrle stepped up to bury it for the lead. Our position was further strengthened when Hamburg midfielder Walace was sent off on 46' for a horrific tackle on Mario Gotze. We couldn't score again, but Schurrle nearly had a second on 63', his well-struck effort just barely being tipped onto the post by Julian Pollersbeck. They failed to threaten us offensively after going down to ten men, and we held on to take all three points. We finally looked like ourselves in our final CL group game against Olympiakos, but it would have been a lot better had this sort of performance come when we weren't already eliminated. Gotze got us off the mark on 26' from a well-taken snapshot, which was also his first goal of the season. We had plenty more chances to score a second, but we wouldn't take one until the final moments of the match, when Isak snuck home a simple finish after two previous shots had been blocked by their defenders. A good performance, especially defensively, but it doesn't reverse our poor performances elsewhere in this competition. See above for our Klassiker win over Bayern. Just when I thought we had shaken off our ills against weaker opposition in the Pokal, we were routed by Köln yet again away from home. All I can say was we were a shambles defensively. They got their first on 5', when Marvin Plattenhardt's cross found a tightly-marked Anthony Modeste to bang home a header. Modeste got another on 31, albeit with the assist coming from Richarlison, whose attempted backpass was cut out and easily put away by the prolific Frenchman. They only had to wait eight more minutes for a third, as Modeste's fancy backheel found Milos Jojic in space to slot one into the bottom right corner. We did get a late consolation from a poor own goal by their keeper, but it was pretty much a non-factor as we crashed out of the Pokal. At least we made it farther than ever before... Then the lowest point came against the worst team in the league: Nürnberg. So we've now lost to both newly-promoted sides and the side currently bottom of the table. I don't know what happened here, but it was unacceptable. After a tepid first half, they opened the scoring not long after the start of the second, with Patrick Kammerbauer scrapping home a volley after Stefan Aigner had hit the post with his header. Raphael Guerreiro got himself sent off on 87' for a second yellow, leaving the door open for them to finish the game off through Abdelhamid Sabiri's close-range goal in stoppage time. We failed to take any of our chances in opposition, and entered the winter break with a deflating loss. Awful. Table We were four points off the top after beating Bayern, but that's reverted back to seven now. Bayern have been strong, but should face heavy opposition from Leverkusen for the title. Bremen, who are having their best season in ages, have passed us on goal difference, and Leipzig and Hoffenheim are just a point behind. Braunschweig and Union are even on points, but both are free of the relegation places for the moment. Nurnberg claimed their first two wins of the season (one of them against us, of course) this month, which greatly increases their survival prospects. They're now level with Koln and three off Hamburg in the playoff place. Awards Another Golden Boy has come from Dortmund! It was Pulisic last year, and now Alex Isak has been named the best youngster in Europe, with 21 combined goals between us and his loan spell at Freiburg in the 2019 calendar year. Always great to see this sort of honor bestowed on one of our players, and I can see more coming in the future. Pulisic also came second in the North American Player of the Year, which he won in 2018. We'll play two league games in January after the winter break. Hopefully I'll have some good news for you in the transfer market, because boy do we need help right now.
  6. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    With the club in 9th place and reeling from consecutive 1-5 and 0-5 thumpings against RB Leipzig and Werder Bremen, respectively, Schalke decided to sack their manager Markus Weinzierl, who had been with the club since 2016. The peace treaty between Hans Kaiser and Weinzierl didn't last long. It was nullified and shredded shortly after Kaiser placed a call to Schalke's offices demanding that this be done. Hans couldn't risk keeping that sort of treaty around for a new manager, as he had signed it against his will in the first place. He would have to wait and see what the Smurfs' new skipper would bring to the table, but regardless, it wouldn't be a friendly relationship. Vitoria and Bayern, he could give a pass to. They had just beaten them, after all. Schalke? Not a chance. Not after all that had transpired in the past few years. The hatred between the Ruhr's giants had reached its boiling point, and next time, it could be ready to spill over.
  7. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    Honestly, I have no clue. Our tactics have had wobbles against smaller teams in both the league and Europe, but this season was really bad in the CL. I do play a rotated squad in European matches, but they still should have been good enough to beat every team in that group. It's possible that we just got really unlucky on each matchday.
  8. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    Der Klassiker- Chapter Acht Bundesliga Week Sixteen- The Post-Game What a result! This is the first time since September 2016 that I've defeated Bayern on this save, and it's nearly 2020 now. We got a big boost on just 13 minutes when Arturo Vidal was sent off for a two-footed lunge from behind on Nadiem Amiri. It wouldn't take long for us to break through after that, as on 28', Ousmane Dembele took a brilliant cross from Raphael Guerreiro and squeezed home the opener at the back post. The "OusCrane" tifo was flying like crazy after that goal, providing one of the most special Dortmund moments in years. The 22-year-old Frenchman also forced a big save off Manuel Neuer before half time. In the second half, we would put the weakened FC Hollywood side away, as we notched our second on 64'. A Sebastian Rode shot was deflected onto Alex Isak, and the in-form striker buried the finish past an out-of-position Neuer from twelve yards. The shots and possession stats say everything about this match, as they could not contend with our man advantage and barely threatened us in the attacking third. After the Isak goal, we cruised to a big, big win. I have to say, this is a weird season. We've now beaten both of the teams who are ahead of us in the league, yet we've lost to both newly-promoted sides and a mid-table Schalke in the Ruhr Derby. Furthermore, we were dreadful in Europe, leaving us with only domestic competitions to play for after Christmas. Nevertheless, this is a massive, potentially tone-setting result for the rest of the season, but we can't get complacent against anybody, as the oft-mentioned losses to Braunschweig and Union show. Los! Los! Los!
  9. Rising stars in Portugal - Lusitano FC

    Wow, that's an epic final month, especially that rout of a cup final. Unlucky in the CL, but good to see you advancing further there each year.
  10. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    Der Klassiker- Chapter Acht Bundesliga Week Sixteen- The Pre-Game The Kaiser Residence It's the night before the season's first Klassiker derby. Hans Kaiser, although worried about the direction this season has taken so far for his team, believes that a victory here could set the tone for the second half of the season, in which they would only have the league and Pokal to contend with. At the moment, he's trying to relax. With Sophie and the boys asleep, he sits on his recliner, reading Philip K. Dick's "Ubik" for about the tenth time and listening to Tame Impala's "Lonerism" album on low volume. Yet the ringing phone disrupts his moment of zen. He moves over to the receiver and looks at the caller ID. A private number. He probably wasn't going to enjoy this phone call, but he picks up anyway. "Hello?" "Hello, Hans." The voice was all too familiar, and Hans definitely didn't like it. "Carlo!? I've had this number changed five times!" "I know my way around a phonebook." Hans could practically sense the smirk on Ancelotti's face. "What could you possibly want this time? You've left Bayern, for god's sake!" "Come on, Hans. Do you think I've forgotten about you? Just because I've moved on to bigger and better things here in Manchester doesn't mean I've let things go." "Pfft, 'bigger and better things'? Did you forget that you frauds are in 7th right now?" "Did you forget you've lost to Braunschweig and Union?" Carlo had clearly been keeping up with the results. Hans clears his throat. "Are you just here to trash talk me, Carlo? Cause I'm gonna have to hang up the phone." "Well, not exactly, but thank you for asking. You see, ever since you got your goons to shave my head, I've been thinking. What was it all for? The intimidation, the pranks, the fights? You never once dented me. Even that one time you won, we still walked the title that season. All of your pathetic conduct was to cover up a deep sense of inadequacy you felt inside. You knew you'd never top me, and that made you so furious that you made it overly personal time and time again." "Listen Carlo, they would have already told me if they changed my therapist." Hans snarks. "No, I was just trying to get to the bottom of all of it. And now that I have, I'm glad I've moved on, Hans. In three seasons, I won more in Germany than you ever will, and now I've got even more money, even more talent, and even more... resources at my disposal. Safe to say that if you ever think of sending those crazy ****ers on me again, I've got more than enough here to deal with it. We may be underperforming right now, but once we start winning Premier Leagues and Champions Leagues like Pep before me, you won't be able to handle it. You really won't. Combine that with Bayern continuing to do well, and you'll be writing your suicide note before you turn 45." "Sorry Carlo, but I don't buy it. You could have won even more here, but you left. There's not much of a difference between Bayern and Man City. Especially since I hate them both. I think I've affected you far more than you're willing to admit. I think you're the one who couldn't handle it. My associates did their jobs so well that they made you jump ship." Carlo laughs on the other end. "You know what they say about us Italians, Hans? We've got fire in our blood. I'm no different. If you think I've cowered one bit, you can keep dreaming. I wish I could meet your sad excuse for a club in Europe, but of course you've been eliminated. Fitting, really. Goodbye, Hans. I hope you don't miss me." "Hey, I'd rather manage in Rotherham than be stuck in the Europa-" The line goes dead. "League." Hans says quietly. He hangs up the phone, then returns to his chair. Just two pages of "Ubik" later, and the phone rings again. Another private number. "Oh **** off, you fraudulent piece of-" "Um, hello?" The voice on the other end is different this time. "Oh, I'm very sorry. I've been receiving some obnoxious calls recently. May I ask who's calling?" "This is Hans Kaiser, yes?" "It is indeed!" "Well, I wanted to call to introduce myself before we meet face to face tomorrow. I'm Rui Vitoria, the new Bayern manager." The voice was commanding and firm, but kind enough. "Oh... hey Rui... I really wasn't expecting a call from you." "Well yeah, they told me you and Carlo had some um... problems over the past few seasons. But I hope we can be on good terms." "Well, this isn't really supposed to be a friendly affair, Rui, but I really appreciate you calling ahead. I too hope we can be on good terms. It's just that the... differences... between Carlo and myself were irreconcilable." "Yeah, don't worry about it, man. It's none of my business. Whatever happened between you two is in the past. We're in a different era now." "Yeah, we are!" Hans exclaims happily. "And I think you should know I'm cool with the baldness thing. It's not exactly my cup of tea, but it's been pretty interesting to watch, and I hope you keep it going." "Thank you! That means a lot to me, especially from another manager." A few seconds pass before Vitoria speaks again. "Well, I should get going, Hans. Of course, I can't exactly wish you luck tomorrow, but I'm definitely looking forward to the match. Have a good night." "You too! Thanks for calling, and see you tomorrow." "Cheers." Vitoria hangs up. The call leaves Hans conflicted. As much as he hated Bayern, who were already well ahead of Dortmund in the league, he couldn't help but feel great respect for Rui Vitoria. His decency would make Hans' team talk a little less fiery tomorrow, as they were usually filled with slurs directed at the other manager. But he'd put that to rest now. Just like he had with Markus Weinzierl, even if that wasn't exactly by his own choice. Things were definitely changing. A peace treaty with Weinzierl and potential camaraderie with Vitoria? What was Hans becoming? Certainly something Che and Zezé wouldn't be happy to see. But they weren't his masters. He was theirs, at least in theory. In theory, not in practice.
  11. [FM18] You Need to Be Selfoss To Win Trophies

    Just read all of this today. Really entertaining save you've got going here, and despite the cup disappointments you are progressing very well. I've been to Iceland and seen a match there before, so I'll definitely be following in memory of that. Keep up the good work!
  12. Hans Kaiser- Baldness Über Alles!

    Borussia Dortmund November 2019 Awful, awful month. It started encouragingly, but the wheels almost completely fell off after that. So the only good result was a victory over the then-leaders Leverkusen. They managed to take the lead on 12', as Leon Bailey's cross from the byline found Andrea Belotti for the close-range finish. We equalized through Hasan Bay ten minutes later, who smashed one into the bottom left from a tight angle. Christian Pulisic gave us our first lead on 53, heading home a cross from Bay off a quick counter. We surrendered that lead just four minutes later, however, as a trip by Raphael Guerreiro on Bailey gave them a penalty which Charles Aranguiz lashed in. Yet we weren't done, as the winner would come through a brilliant Richarlison strike on 70'. The Brazilian rifled in his finish on his first touch from outside the box, sending the Kahle Armee into raptures and securing what should have been a massive win for us. We played Sporting pretty even in Lisbon, but in the end their attacking prowess was too strong to withstand. After testing our defense all throughout the game, they finally broke through on 66' thanks to a sizzling 20-yarder from Bruno Paulista. They doubled the lead just five minutes later, as a heavy counter resulted in a Iuri Medeiros tap-in at the back post from Gelson Martins' cross. We were in no mood to change the scoreline, as evidenced by OusCrane missing a sitter after we were already 2-0 down. Another lackluster performance in Europe, which we can't seem to figure out at all this season. We've now lost to both newly-promoted sides, as we were embarrassed by Union away from home. Rico Strieder opened the scoring on 23', guiding the ball up above the reach of Roman Burki in net. They would grab a second on 48', as another Strieder shot was saved by Burki, deflected off the post, and then fell straight to the feet of Kenny Prince Redondo for the tap-in rebound. Richarlison would pull one back for us on the hour mark after a defensive mistake gave him free space, but they would hold on to condemn us to another shocking result. Despite having a man sent off against Hoffenheim, we were the better team and deserved to win, but we somehow could not find the net. The red card occurred early, as Sokratis' two-footed dive on 16' left us a man down for the vast majority of the match. Yet the big chances would be ours, and it took a stellar performance from Oliver Baumann in the Hoffenheim net to keep us from scoring. I can't be too disappointed with the draw, as our defense did very well to hold them with its best player gone, but this really should have been our moment to upset the odds. And then there's the results that make you want to tear your hair out... if anyone on Dortmund had hair, of course. This Ajax game was absolutely bonkers. Nearing half time, Alex Isak got us off the mark from close range, and then Danilo was sent off for them just a minute later. We looked secure going into the break, but Ajax somehow exploded for three unanswered goals: a tap-in from Vaclav Cerny, a long-range shot from Leo Baptistao, and an even-longer range free kick from Hakim Ziyech. But Isak would forge the path back, first knocking in a header on 69 and then slotting a cutback on 72. With his hat trick in tow, a draw seemed like a fair result, but Cerny popped up again on 86 to score the winner, a shot that Predrag Rajkovic should have saved. An absolutely gutting, infuriating, and head-scratching result. Now five points behind Bayern after dropping an obscene amount of points so far. Leverkusen are still ahead of us. Bremen, Hoffenheim, Leipzig, and Schalke are on our tail. Koln and Nurnberg still going nowhere. Out of Europe entirely. Absolutely ridiculous, considering this was the weakest group in the competition, and one we should have walked through easily. I don't know what we're doing wrong here, and it's extremely upsetting. The only silver lining is that at least we can focus on the league full time now. Next month sees a busy holiday period, with a Klassiker in the league, a dead rubber CL game against Olympiakos, and our third round Pokal tie against Koln.
  13. [FM18] Addicted to FM

    Should be a manageable tie, that!
  14. Rising stars in Portugal - Lusitano FC

    Fantastic season. Total cake walk in the league and impressive to see you grab the Europa League trophy! Too bad you couldn't grab any of the domestic cups this time, but I can certainly see a domestic sweep on the horizon next season. I can't decide whether the rise of Lusitano or AFC is more remarkable, both are great feats.
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