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King Cactus

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    Perlis Northern Lions FA

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  1. So, I took a little time off FM after my last post, because honestly I was finding it frustrating, but I've grinded it today so it's time for another update! I've managed in Malaysia on FM once before, I want to say with Terengganu - however it was a short lived stint, as I believe at the end of the first season after I won the league I got a job offer in the second tier in China, so I'm really enjoying the ease with which you can get through the seasons. Definitely recommend it as a starting point for a journeyman save. As you could probably tell by the tone of that opening section, the results have been far, far better during this spell. There was also a few friendies after the Polis game that I've cropped out, but honestly our form has been crazy. In the FA Cup we've reached the semi final, where we are the last Super League team standing, so I really like our chances of adding a first bit of silverware this year, even if it isn't likely to be the league after that slow start. Easily our best performance of the update against Kuala Lumpur, they're a very decent side at this level so to handle them so convincingly away from home was great. I honestly don't even know where thi form has come from because I have changed absolutely nothing about the tactic, I guess I played a run of tough teams to start the season, so it makes sense in that regard, but the turnaround has been tremendous. All of that leaves us where the media predicted we would end up this year in 8th, which is way above where our board expect, so it's making me look pretty great. They also only expected a third round in the cup, so my job is untouchable at this point, which is always a great place to be. I'm a little bit embarrased about well Pahang are doing after I essentialy knocked back the chance to go there in the summer, but I'm still pleased to be at Perlis and would make the same choice again if I had to do it all again. We also get our first manager award of the save, so we're heading in the right direction. Hopefully a cup win and some bigger, perhaps more financially stable teams will begin to circle, as I'm once again waiting for us to have the money for me to start my National A licence.
  2. So, a long off season full of uncertainty, I did apply for a few jobs, mainly in Malaysia and India but nothing really came to fruition, so we continue on with Perlis. I was unable to keep any of our non-Malaysian players, I have got a decent amount of strong Malaysian talent relative to the rest of the league, so I'm still hoping to have a reasonably strong season - having said the board still expect us to fight bravely against relegation, which is nice for my rep at least. Well... It's fair to say we've struggled to start the season - I have been telling anyone who will listen that I'm blaming the patch as to why my tactic isn't working - it wasn't an exploit in terms of looking for long shots or anything, but that's the only reason I can find. In fairness, we've just not been good enough at the back. Not really a lot more to say, we just haven't been good, especially at the back - although we have played a lot of the better sides from last season. No highlight game this update, it would probably be the Johor draw if you put gun to my head and made me pick one - it has been really poor though, next game is a massive bottom of the league clash against Sabah, and then the day after should be the day I complete my National B license, so at least there's that. As I mentioned, the board still don't really expect anything at all in the league, so I'm hopeful that we can just survive this year and then have another look at what direction I actually want to take the save in.
  3. This is progressing really nicely, and a couple of interesting clubs so far - are you still sticking with the idea of staying at Rijeka until your badges hit a certain level? I think you're selling yourself short, Bologna are definitely beatable with your side, not an easy draw but I think you'll pull it off. Good luck.
  4. It's great not leaving, never wanted to leave at all. What? The end of the last update? Nah, never even dreamed of it - I'm a Northern Lion, me. I interviewed at Pahang, and talked my way out of the job because I demanded a 2-year-deal? Nope... I nearly turned my laptop off when Johor appointed their interim manager full time after he didn't perform anywhere near the expected standard? Not at all! On a serious note, as disappointing as Johor was, I can take it. The Pahang one I'm genuinely not that bothered, their wage budget is around double mine, so I assume the finances are better but they need a massive overhaul, they finished bottom of their Cup group, and I've already made a bunch of pre-contract signings at Perlis so I just didn't see the appeal unless I got a really good contract. MOVING ON! It's mad how far we've come in just over 12 months, because I just didn't care about this competition this year - and yet we somehow ran our way all the way to the semi. After that first leg performance I genuinely thought we had a chance at the final - but we just utterly capitulated at home to Johor's 2nd team (who put out their first team in the quarters - bold move). They met Kedah in the final and unbelievably stopped the domestic treble, so that was an utterly bewildering moment. So there were obviously some really good results in there, but I'm just not that bothered so I guess this entry's highlight will have to come from elsewhere. This is absolutely fantastic news - one of the big reasons I was debating moving on was that our finaces were in a position where we couldn't get a coaching course... Well, I checked and out of the blue we went from about £80k in the red to £30k in the black out of literally nowhere, no investment message, and so I dived straight on the opportunity. We're losing our foreigners, and the wage budget has been cut so next year could be a struggle, but the core of our Malaysian players is improving massively so I'm hoping for a similar league performance. As you can maybe make out in that image we did get another one year extension as well, so we're here for a reasonable duration to come unless something big comes up.
  5. So, Johor elected to appoint their caretaker manager as an interim manager for the rest of the season, and with that in mind I decided to just plough through to the end of the season, to be honest the season has gone kind of how I expected. We're a small team and I worried about if we would survive early, but we added astutely last summer and to be honest there isn't that big a gap between the Super League and the Premier League, so I don't really know what I was worried about. So, we did manage to make it to the final of the Cup with a very strong home showing against Perak in the second leg semi final, but I think Johor have officially been displaced as the team to look out for in Malaysia, as Kedah have absolutely swept all before them. A 3-0 defeat in the final which was a result that flattered us if I'm being totally honest. In the league, we continued what was a pretty good run in, we've obviously been save from the drop so it was nice to go and put some results in. There was some disappointment in dropping points at home to PJ City and especially Sabah in what was a really favourable run in for us. As much as there were lows, there were of course highs. After Perak thumped us earlier in the season, it was tempting to include one of the wins against them, but in the end I've picked the 3-0 win against our self appointed bogey team Selangor. They've frustrated us at nearly every turn on this save, so it was nice to absolutely humble them in this manner. Hopefully their reign of terror is over. So, the end of a pretty decent first season in the top flight, we finish just 2 points off Continental qualification, which when you look at our last 3 games really adds to the frustration - the 2 wins we should have gotten instead of a loss and a draw would have had us third behind all conquering Kedah and a very impressive Kuala Lumpur side. We're in a position now where we do have the Malaysian Cup to come, unlike last year I'm not as excited to be involved as we face Kedah, Perak and PJ City in our group. I've got a bunch of new signings coming in who will really improve the squad, so next year could be a good one. There is, however, potential to move on. As the debts rack up at Perlis I'm yet to even begin my National B License, and my profile shows interest from Johor DT and Pahang - the latter have recently sacked their manager and have a wage budget double that of Perlis - I'm the bookies favourite for the job. The former are still under interim charge, I'm tempted to wait and see if I can get it, but if I wait too long I could miss out on both opportunities. Really quite undecided on what to o over the break, so I guess you'll know by the end of the next update.
  6. Right then, we've gone from a month with one league game to a month with... Does that say 7? It's a 22 league game season, what do you mean they still manage to fit 7 games in for a month in May? For goodness... Right, fine then. It's been a strong start that I'm really pleased with, but this month is about as make or break as it gets, nearly a third of the games for a season in a month is absolutely mad the more I think about it, but at least it pushes the save on I guess? Well this is a lot more how I expected this season to look - we once again should have beaten Selangor and I'm slowly but surely beginning to hate them. I'm sure it isn't just me that builds up a rivalry with another team in my head because they always seem to give me a tough time, it's their turn for that role. The losses to Kedah and Felda were not as close as they look, particularly the latter where we were 3-0 down with 70 minutes gone, but it's nice from a goal difference standpoint to lose some close ones I suppose. The more I look at this month, the more I think I need a tactic for away from home... That is next season's problem I guess. I almost picked the PKNP game as game of the month with how emphatic it was, I almost expected to roll over Melaka with how their season is going, but when you see the table you'll see why I could not look beyond the game against Kuala Lumpur, they're having a very decent season in their own right the side from the capital, and I also picked it as our young right winger Ruenin picked this game to finally score some goals - a minor miracle I couldn't look beyond. And all that leaves us... Well Kedah are too bloody good, that's not fair for a start. Can see why they have turned us over twice this year, and the more I look at it the better I feel about the 1-0 loss to them this month, although it's a derby game so FM will take every opportunity to boot me in the balls about it. June is a much less busy month, just 3 games and 2 of them are against Perak in the FA Cup semi final, so it's probably going to be until the end of July before I really give another update unless anything interesting happens... Oh.
  7. Well, February was good, March only had one league game so I decided to push hard through to the end of April for this update. There still hasn't been a lot of league football, but we do have some FA Cup action included as part of the update. The more I look around the league as I come across the teams I'm yet to face, the more I realise just how small we are compared to the rest of the league - I'm starting to understand why we were rated so lowly at the start of the season, although I think people will sit up and take notice now. Well, when you look at the last game of the run, one thing stands out... When we lose, we lose properly. Kedah and Perak have absolutely battered us, which has been tough but as long as we keep picking up points elsewhere I can take a pasting now and then. Was nice to get another win against Johor, especially in the Cup - we were expected to sort of try our best in the competition, and we've kind of winged our way to a two legged semi final. It's against Perak, so the less we talk about it the better. I don't normally do this in anything I do, or write about, but I've kind of taken to adding in a little 'game of the update' type thing. Well, for this update I just couldn't look past this game. I said in the last update that we were kind of scraping results, not this game against our fellow promoted side Sabah. We never looked even remotely troubled and absolutely romped to an away win, and one of our very few cleansheets in my tenure - a bit of a hallmark of my football manager saves. So, we're almost half way there, and it's all going rather well. The aim remains to get to 25 points, we're only actually 6 points way from 11th with the 13 fixtures remaining, so as much as I love where we're sitting, it's all a bit nervy - Johor, for example, will not remain this poor forever. There's not really a lot more I can say that that, delighted and long may it continue.
  8. Cheers mate, I always seem to enjoy it - South America less so, but I always have fun in Asia.
  9. When I moaned about the Cup, I didn't think I had to wait until February for the league to start... After my transfer activity I thought we'd be ranked as better than Sabah and Felda at least, who don't seem to have done much in the summer. Part of me is now very nervous about this season, the first job on any journeyman can really set the tone I find, I don't want to end up sacked and then really toil to get another job as it could set this save back years which is time I just don't have. I basically moved on a lot of the older players, added depth to the full back positions, the centre of midfield and added some youngsters - my 4 marquee foreigners are all complaining about the lack of competition for places which makes me think they don't quite grasp the concept of marquee foreign players... We'll blame the language barrier. Oh... Well... Right then - that was a lot easier than we thought, the result away at Melaka was obviously a lovely start, especially after a battling performance in which we trailed twice, only for Kevin Osei to bag his second of the game in the 89th minute, one of the big marquee men helping us on our way. We then had another away game in the derby against Kedah in front of a staggering 22,000 fans - I'm slowly beginning to realise how small of a fish we are in this league, that's all I really want to say about that game. Against Pahang our other foreign striker Valci (who you will see a lot of in the rest of this update) twice giving us the lead, but this time it was our turn to be pegged back against the team who finished 2nd last season. The Kuala Lumpur game I had actually marked as a potential win for us at the start of the month, and the game did not go how I expected, to be honest we FM'd them a bit as they had 22 shots to our 8, however a lot of them were longshots - a first half brace from Valci helping us on our way. I honestly don't know what to say about Johor at home, this was not like the Kuala Lumpur game, we were straight up the better team in this one against the reigning champions and favourites for the title. I panicked for about 5 seconds when they pegged one back as I awaited the inevitable, but Nam Se-In, the centre mid I added last season scored a typical FM20 thunderbolt to settle the nerves. Oh did I mention Johor are 11th? Maybe don't bum that result up too much. The 'magic' points mark in Malaysia according to the media is 25, which we are well on our way to with 17 games to go, and I'm beginning to get why newly promoted managers in real life are coming from when they say "We're not getting carried away" - because we've not exactly thumped or outplayed anyone, a few games where the breaks don't go our way and I may begin to panic, but we're enjoying it for now. Melaka have sacked their manager, and they are a much bigger side than Perlis so it's one I've half looked at but won't be applying for, somehow Johor's manager is still stable, I suppose that is born out of winning the title last season, but I'm not gonna lie if that one comes up I'll be applying. I want as many trophies as possible to drive my rep up and build up the points for the Hall of Fame and they are much, much bigger than anyone else so should allow me to do just that - add in that they'll have the money to do my badges (haven't been able to start my National B yet as the money ebbs away) and I kind of would have to apply. Some start, mind.
  10. What do you mean the season isn't over? Well, ordinarily I'd be a bit annoyed about a league cup equivalent with a group format just after I've finished my league campaign, but it actually presents us with a pretty interesting opportunity as every team in my group was in the top flight last season, and all of them finished in varied positions so it may give us a decent idea of how we shape up before we make any additions - Kedah were 3rd, Selangor were 7th and Terengganu were relegated in 11th. So, in somewhat expected fashion, we gave a good account of ourselves against the team that went down, somewhat surprisingly against Kedah we really competed well and should have gotten at least a point out of that home game, and against Selangor we were much the better team in both games, even chucking away a 2 goal lead against them. Handling a team that went down this comfortably was a nice way to sign off my maiden campaign as a manager, the 2 goals they scored were probably a result of me being too lazy to make tactical changes, but to be honest they never looked like getting anything out the game, so I was glad to get away with a comfortable win. The other thing that really stood out to me that in our game away at Kedah, which is a derby, they had an attendace of about 15,000 which is absolutely mental, I thought we were doing well with out average of about 1000 in the time I've been in charge. And as you can probably tell by my wording before now - we were knocked out and finished bottom of our group, making the surrendering of that 2 goal lead against Selangor harder to take - surrendering leads was a bit of a theme of this group, having held the lead in all 3 games that we drew, and definitely something I need to consider from a tactical standpoint for next season when we are regularly playing teams better than us. For now, though, I'm pleased with where we are, and hopeful that we can comfortably survive next season in the top flight.
  11. So, second club update and it can already be a big one. Title run in, I could fanny about and spread this over 5 updates, but that isn't my style. One update, one run at it, let's get it. As I mentioned in my last update the transfer window is actually open, and I've added a left back and a centre mid which I think could actually be pivotal in getting us over the line. The tactic is... Uncomfortable for me - I have played 4-2-3-1 for a long, long time on FM so it's really nice to push out of my comfort zone, could be the year of 2 up top for me. This was a lot more stressful than it looks - the first 3 games as you will see from the end of season table should have been comfortable wins to wrap up the title, but losing to Kelantan who were bottom at the time really hurt, it meant that going into the last game with UKM only a win would guarantee us the title, however to save a bit of the drama, we were thankfully already promoted. Young striker Abdullah really settled the nerves with the early goal in what actually played out as a really good game, very end to end. One thing I've noticed having looked back over the fixtures is that we seem to be one of the better supported teams in the league which is good, 40 away in this game compared to Selangor Utd bringing 1, so it kind of makes me want to stick around with this club and see how far I can take them in the domestic game. So yes, that exciting run in means we are indeed champions, the only team who could catch us on the final day was Johor's second team, now they are Malaysia's biggest team by an absolute mile but it would have stuck in my throat a bit if their second team had managed to beat us to the title, so I was really glad to put that fear to bed. All of that of course means that thanks to my tremendous contract negotiation skills... That we can bloody go again! 5 games played, Champions, 8 points in the Hall of Fame. Piece of **** this FM20 stuff.
  12. Thanks mate, I've got a habit of club hopping way too quickly which I'm trying to cut down on so this is a good reason to stick around a wee bit. Going to fire in an update soon.
  13. Look at the strong, noble, lion on that badge - what could go wrong? So, I'm delighted to have gotten Perlis, when I saw the financial problems in the interview with Sarawak it really was a deciding factor. What's that? In real life Perlis were kicked out of the premier league because of their financial position? Don't worry about it. In all seriousness, thankfully the problems don't seem to have translated on to the game, despite the fact that article is from February... I'm not questioning it. VINDICATIIIIOOOONNNN! Thankfully my gut feeling from the interviews was right, we had £90k in the bank, and there was enough staff that I could ask the board to study for the qualification without having to think about it too much. This is absolutely massive in the grand scheme of this save, anyone who has ever played this kind of save will tell you how vital the coaching badges are for your reputation and progression, second only to competition wins, so to start this so early is definitely good news. And with that, we go on to what the hell we're going to do this season, or I suppose what is left of it - I'm really glad that I'm not a twitch streamer, because if anyone was watching my thought process in developing a tactic, I'd never be able to show my face in public again. So... We don't have any full backs, or a natural left winger, or any central midfielders over 1 star CA. I started out looking at 3 centre back formations, but the lack of talent in midfield made me question where the protection would come from - the more I looked at the squad we could get away with one of the "DCR" type players at right back, but we straight up did not have a left back. In terms of the squad, we also had space for one more foreign player - and I cannot believe how lucky we got with it, in my scouting reports I got upon joining the club there were a Malaysian left back (2* current, which when you consider my 5* foreigners is definitely good enough) and a Korean CM (4* current isn't ideal for a foreign slot, but he was only 26 and a lot better than anything we had). Safe to say I got lucky with them both signing on the day of our first game and one day after the window opened. So, how did that go? Take that, one travelling fan. A deserved win, and I am absolutely delighted to get it under my belt. I'm not exaggerating when I say this is the most nervous I have been for a first game at a new club - there is so much pressure on to get off to a good start and seal promotion, because if we don't we could have some bother getting our contract extended here, which was the big risk of taking this job. The team we were playing, Selangor Utd, were a good team to get, sitting 10th at the time, they have a lot to play for in terms of battling for survival, but we were just too strong. The two goalscorers were my two foreign strikers, and I hope you see a lot of their name in the run in. Good start, though - real chance at promotion.
  14. Love the concept of this, something I'd never considered, but something I'd definitely try in the future. Following.
  15. Who and where? So, I was turned down for roles in the Ukranian 1 League, and somewhat more surprisingly the Turkish 2. League without so much as an interview, which was disappointing in all honestly, but it has dragged us to the somewhat inevitable starting ground of the Malaysian Premier League. Confusingly, that is not the top league in Malaysia, but never mind, I'm sure I'll get used to it. So when the two teams approached me, they were actually 16 games into the 22 game regular season by virtue of me starting my save along with a normal European start date. Perlis somehow find themselves top of the league with, Sarawak sitting a lowly 8th, but they do look safe from the drop. Financially, as you can imagine there isn't much between them - however before either team approaches me, somewhat weirdly they have a game against each other. Naturally, I attend... Back off Yunus. So this gave me a lot to think about - Sarawak went with a narrow diamond and really outplayed Perlis, I looked into media predictions and Perlis were predicted to finish rock bottom, with Sarawak being ranked at 7th. So it was a big thing to consider in terms of, are Perlis just up there based on a random lucky sim? Will they lose all their remaining games with me in charge? None of that matters I suppose, as neither have yet approached me. Well who saw that coming? Both teams offered very similar terms, just a 5 month contract on the table for each, around £650 p/w, and the very real threat that I could start slow and lose my job. After some haggling with both I had gotten Sarawak to agree £750 p/w but couldn't extend the deal, or I could go with £675 p/w at Perlis with the option to extend by a year if we got promoted, which is a definite possibility with 5 games to go. Obviously I know very little about the teams, and I try to play this kind of thing as realistically as possible, so I'm considering three things - geography, stability, chance of success. Sarawak Geographically it's near Indonesia, on East Malaysia (Malaysian Borneo) - so without having been that part of the world has a reputation for being very pretty It's a 5 month deal, they could sack me after 2 games if we somehow get dragged in to relegation In the interview they stressed the club is in a dire financial position, so mid table may be our biggest hope - and can I do coaching badges? Perlis Geographically it is right on the border with Thailand, on Peninsular Malaysia (Not West Malaysia, born and raised, disappointingly) so not as reputable, but Thailand is meant to be cool. Also a 5 month deal, however if we scrape a promotion it will be extended, which is ultimately on me. Prime position to jump straight to the top flight after only 6 games, no mention of finances so I'd imagine more likely I can do some coaching qualifications. When you consider them like that, if you're scoring it like a boxing card based on my insaneo factors that I consider on FM, it's a 1-2 win for Perlis, and if you live in the real world and don't factor in things like geography into your choice then a clear win for Perlis. SO OBVIOUSLY I WENT SARAWAK. I'm totally kidding, I went Perlis. (Did I get you?) Pray for me.
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