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Everything posted by psychonaut

  1. 2023-2024 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes League 1 - January-February 2024 My Job Rumours were abound. I'd been wanting the opportunity to take Buckie up to the Ladbrokes Championship, but I was also attracting interest from other clubs. 23rd January 2024 During a match day press interview, I expressed an interest in the vacancy at Hamilton Academical. This upset the board: 31st January 2024 Hamilton wanted to talk to me about the manager role: 4th February 2024 I get a contract offer from Hamilton Accies: I looked over the contract again and again, wondering if I was about to do the right thing. Hamilton were 9th in the Ladbrokes Championship, although there looked like enough games were left to let me save their season. I also didn't want to leave Buckie Thistle, who I'd loved managing over the years, and knew I would really miss everyone - but I had left them with a chance of getting promotion. My decision was finally made:
  2. 2023-2024 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes League 1 - January 2024 Transfers No transfer activity to talk about. I didn't make any signings, and only 3 players went back out on loan. Competitions We were never really expecting to take anything from this match, but we really didn't do ourselves justice. The plus side was the payday. We did not bad in January, I was pleased with the results against Clyde and Partick Thistle, which I saw as crucial results in the campaign, given the league table. But just how much would it matter?
  3. 2023-2024 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes League 1 - Mid-Season Report Competitions An okay performance in this cup this year. Made it to the Quarter Finals, and we were unlucky to lose to Arbroath. Not as good as in previous seasons, as we failed to get out of the group stage. Only one match this half of the season. 25/11/2023 we beat Arbroath 3-1, and set up a home tie with Celtic on 20/1/2024. Well, would you look at that! We had a very pleasing run up until the end of December, only losing 2 matches. We looked really strong, again defying the pundits. Could we maintain this form until the end of the season?
  4. 2023 - 2024 - Buckie Thistle - Ladbrokes League 1 - July-December 2023 Keen to keep up the momentum from the last season, I began by looking at the squad. Transfers In A mix of free transfers and loan signings. Mitch Megginson and Steve Jones were two targets I had on the radar since last season. I was glad when they signed and both have been doing well. The loan signings were brought in to bolster the main core of the team - they've only really had mixed success. Out All loans to other clubs. Preseason News Friendlies We didn't fare too badly, with only St Johnstone and Celtic of the top flight posing any difficulty. The money from the Celtic match was definitely welcome.
  5. Good luck with the job hunt! Think I'll try an air miles challenge for my next save. Having to use claasens db files though, as I've been having issues installing the Riddler's megapack - think I read that it maybe because I missed out on FM18.
  6. That'll teach me for doing updates at 6 in the morning Fixed now. Thanks for spotting.
  7. Elsewhere in Europe - 2022-2023 ScotlandSPL Winners: Celtic (x12).SPL Runner Up: Aberdeen.ECC Qualifiers: Celtic, Aberdeen.Europa Qualifiers: St Mirren (Scottish Cup winners), Hearts (3rd); Rangers (4th)Relegated: Ayr United, Livingston.Scottish Cup Winners: St Mirren.BetFred Cup Winners: Hearts.IrnBru Cup Winners: Dunfermline.EnglandEPL Winners: Manchester City (x6)EPL Runner Up: Arsenal.ECC Qualifiers: Liverpool (Europa Lg Winners), Manchester City, Arsenal, Chelsea (3rd), Manchester Utd (4th).Europa Qualifiers: Tottenham Hotspur (6th), Watford (7th).Relegated: Newcastle Utd, Middlesbrough, Reading.FA Cup Winners: Chelsea.Carabao Cup Winners: Manchester Utd.Check-A-Trade Winners: Cambridge Utd.FranceLigue 1 Winners: PSG (x6)Ligue 1 Runner Up: AS Monaco.ECC Qualifiers: PSG, AS Monaco, O. Marseille (3rd), O. Lyonnais (4th).Europa Qualifiers: Bordeaux (5th), Toulouse FC (6th), LOSC Lille (7th).Relegated: AS Saint-Etienne, Nimes.French Cup Winners: O. Lyonnais.Coupe de la Ligue BKT Winner: PSG.BelgiumPro-League A Winners: Anderlecht (x3).Pro-League A Runner Up: Club Brugge.EEC Qualifiers: Anderlecht.Europa Qualifiers: KRC Genk, AA Gent.Relegated: STVV.Belgian Cup Winners: Anderlecht (x2).GermanyBundesliga Winners: Borussia Dortmund (Ending Bayern Munich's 10 year reign).Bundersliga Runner Up: Bayern Munich.ECC Qualifiers: Borussia Dortmund, Bayern Munich, Schalke 04 (3rd).Europa Qualifiers: RB Leipzig (4th), Bayer Leverkeusen (5th)Relegated: Hannover 96, FC Heidenheim 1846.German Cup Winners: Bayern Munich.HollandEredivisie Winners: PSV.Eredivisie Runner Up: Ajax.ECC Qualifiers: PSV, Ajax.Europa Qualifiers: Feyenoord, AZ Alkmaar (Dutch Cup winners).Relegated: VVV-Venlo, Sparta Rotterdam.Dutch Cup Winners: AZ Alkmaar.ItalySerie A Winners: A.C. Milan.Serie A Runner Up: Juventus.ECC Qualifiers: A.C. Milan, Juventus, Inter Milan (3rd), AS Roma (4th).Europa Qualifiers: Fiorentina (Italian Cup winners), Napoli (5th), Lazio (7th).Relegated: SPAL, Cittadella, Pescara.Italian Cup Winners: Fiorentina.SpainLa Liga Winners: Real Madrid.La Liga Runner Up: Barcelona.EEC Qualifiers: Real Madrid, Barcelona, Athletico Madrid (3rd), Real Betis (4th).Europa Qualifiers: Valencia (5), Celta Vigo (6th), Eibar (7th).Relegated: Athletic Bilbao, Vallecano, Sporting Gijon.Spanish Cup Winners: Barcelona.
  8. Next Season I'll try to build on the performance this season. Quite a lot of contracts were up at the end of this season, and there's going to be a bit of a clear out, both on the squad, and with some of my backroom staff. Hopefully we'll snatch a playoff spot.
  9. 2022-2023 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes Scottish League 1 - End of Season Report And at our awards night: And finally, the Chairman gave his assessment of my performance.
  10. 2022-2023 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes Scottish League 1 - January-May 2023 My Job The second half of the year saw me linked to a number of different clubs. I was still waiting a response from Hamilton Academical, and it appeared in my inbox on 2nd January: No luck there, but I was linked to Brechin City, Partick Thistle, Dundee United, and St. Mirren. When I declared interest in the St. Mirren job, I hadn't been prepared for the reaction! The St. Mirren fans were looking forward to it... But our Chairman didn't take it so well... So in I went, and did my best... You can't sack me...
  11. 2022-2023 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes Scottish League 1 - January-May 2023 The second half of the season gets underway and the first thing I need to do is to see if there are areas of the team which could be strengthened. Transfers In Brought in Matty Allan (DC) and Rabin Omar (M/AM R). The fans were just a bit unhappy about me bringing in Omar as Elgin City are out fierce rivals, but after a few appearances they accepted him. Matty Allan was a young prospect, developed by Montrose and wasted in the Highland League - he's done OK since joining us. Out Two players given transfers, the rest all going out on loan. Competitions They say football is a game of two halves. How very true. OK, we weren't ever tipped to achieve greatness this season, with many saying we were destined for the drop straight back down. January was a mixed bag, as was February. The slow slide had begun. We showed glimpses of hope at times, but threw away points against teams we really should have been beating. Winning only 5 games between January and April was never going to be enough for us to take the top spot. I thought we might have held on for a playoff spot, but 3 draws in our final 3 matches meant we didn't manage that. And so, the final league table looked like this: Mid table, not bad for a first season, and certainly more than anyone expected of us. Yes, I was a tiny bit disappointed to miss out on a playoff spot, but delighted we showed the doubters we're not pushovers. The Squad A bit of an unsettled year, perhaps due to the large number of players in our squad. This is something I'll need to address during the break. The wage bill is bleeding us, and several players complained about not getting enough first team starts. At one point 7 players all submitted transfer requests, and certainly didn't look to renew their contracts. Top 10 Players Grant McCunnie leads the field in all respects. His stats might not say he's a good finisher, but he can certainly find the back of the net. Usually plays as a Poacher, but can also be an Advanced Forward when needed. He has a great partnership up front with Kieran Dall, established himself as team captain this season, and is top dog in the dressing room (after me, of course!). Finances Still dropping like a stone this season. The saving grace was our prize money of £107,000 for finishing 5th, although a lot of that was used to pay the squad bonuses. We made it to the end, still in the black - only just. Going to need to thin out the squad and have some decent cup runs next season.
  12. No problem. So many threads being updated, this one can end up on the second page after half a day. Cheers. It's going well so far. Better than expected. I was surprised Jamaica weren't named as overachievers at the World Cup. Maybe it was based on FIFA rankings.
  13. Well done on the 7th place finish and the European qualification! Looking forward to see how The Rams fare in Europe.
  14. Ha Ha! So it was. I hadn't noticed that. I wonder if there were any new sanctions following the Iran/USA clash?
  15. 2022-2023 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes Scottish League 1 - July-December 2022 My Job Going very well, and very secure. My track record is attracting job offers. In this 6 months, I've been invited to interviews with Cowdenbeath and Dumbarton, in our division, and Hamilton Academical (Ladbrokes Championship). I turned down Cowdenbeath, as I had no intention of joining a relegation threatened club in our own division. Dumbarton were knocked back too. The other offer, however, I decided to make the journey down to Hamilton. The squad looked good and capable of a top half finish at least. But this question may have been my downfall: I chose answer second from bottom, and the rest of the interview went well. Buckie Thistle Chairman had found out about my little trip, and wanted to see me urgently: I declined the talks, and stuck it out until Hamilton came back to me with an answer. If it was a job offer, I was prepared to go. But as the year drew to close, there was still no response... Club Finances Falling fast. We need a decent payday from somewhere. Looks like the increased wages are mainly to blame.
  16. 2022-2023 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes League 1 - July-December 2022 Top 10 Players Stats Pleased we managed to make it halfway through this year without picking up any red cards. Board Feedback
  17. 2022-2023 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes League 1 - July-December 2022 Competitions Predicted Finish: 10th. Board: Fight against relegation. Taking only 1 point from our first 2 matches didn't give me much hope that we would finish higher than 9th or 10th. However, a good run in August and September helped us greatly. If you told me at the start of the season we would be sitting in 2nd by the end of 2022, I'd have been calling an ambulance to take you away. But, mainly thanks to the form in August and September, and again in November, here we are. I'm proud of what the team have achieved so far, and I'm quietly confident we can go for a playoff place - although I haven't mentioned it to the Board. Having said that, we've really struggled against the two teams relegated from the Scottish Championship last year, so we're nowhere near ready for the next step. But, I said that last season... Cups Board asked that we be competitive in this competition. Tried our best, but crashed out in the group stage. We were expected to reach the 4th Round, but... Expected to reach 2nd Round. Made it to the Quarter Final = Happy Board.
  18. 2022-2023 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes League 1 - Preseason The odds for the final positions this season: And it wasn't long until the fixtures list was released. We were also made aware of the following:
  19. 2022-2023 - Buckie Thistle F.C. - Ladbrokes League 1 - Preseason Wow. What a surprise last season, with the unexpected promotion. Of course, it gave me a lot to think about over the summer break. There was the strength of the squad, the cost of wage rises and other associated fees. I also knew we would have to bring in some more backroom staff, and I looked to my Assistant Manager to arrange that. Transfers In Sweeping changes across the squad. I checked in on out top scorer from 2 seasons ago, Grant McCunnie, and found his contract was soon to end. Furthermore, Queen of the South had transfer-listed him. Got in early and snapped him up. Was also excited to find Keiran Dall available. He'd been part of my Maryhill squad in 2018-19, but left to try and improve his career. It didn't work out for him, and I found him transfer-listed by Championship side, Morton. I still had a great respect for Dall, and he was delighted to join me a Buckie Thistle. As I said, it was all about strengthening the squad, and I brought in some loan signings again, and raided the free transfer market. So far, all the new faces have made a good start. Out No departures, just players going out on loan. Friendlies With the season beginning slightly earlier this year, due to the World Cup, and Betfred Cup ties to play, we only managed one friendly. We drew 1-1 with Clachnacuddin.
  20. Thank you. I was surprised we actually got top spot, I thought Albion Rovers or Stirling Albion were the most likely, but Albion Rovers threw it away on the 2nd last game of the season. If they had won that, they would have taken the title - and automatic promotion - from us on the final day. The new season will be interesting. I had a team meeting to discuss my vision for the season ahead, saying we could probably get a bottom half finish and avoid relegation. My players seemed to think otherwise - may be time for some of them to move on.
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