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About anagain

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    AFC Bournemouth

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  • Currently Managing
    Northampton Town

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  1. Congrats on the big step up. It's a hard league, the Irish Premier, but a fun one. After two full seasons with Loughgall I'd say the bottom of the league is not a huge step from C1, but the top teams are a huge step ahead. Good luck.
  2. I played them in the FA Cup this season in my Cobblers save. Thrashed them 4-1.
  3. I've always liked to vary my gaming, and even more so these last few years. There was a time when I'd play just the one game; and usually FM/CM and MMOs (spent so much time in EQ and EQ2). A few years ago It dawned on me just how many good games I was missing out on. A friend kept pointing me towards other games; Half Life 2 (gave me a free copy) and then Borderlands, to name a couple. He was either trying to get me to play more shooters, or less FM. I even took a step back from FM for FM15. I can understand people who do play just FM, so don't think I'm judging. I sometimes have to force myself to pick something else up, due to FM being so god damn addictive. Of course, and believe me when I say this, I still have countless unplayed or unfinished games on Steam. Right now I'm trying to get enough time in EU4, FM and Paladins. From next week I'll want to add Civ6 and Stellaris. Yep, I've been the same with Stellaris. I really want to like that game as it sounded so good when I was following it through production. Games start great but just get so dull mid game. Hopefully the patch makes it better, but I have my doubts. The game needs a proper economy. Why Paradox decided to merge money and power I will never know.
  4. That's another one I have on the go. I missed two EU4 expansions but I'm quite enjoying Rights Of Man. Stellaris update launches day before Civ6 too.
  5. Football in general, good sir! January 2020 There are a number of sayings and cliches in the world of football, and one of the most commonly heard is the manager of the month curse. I don't think anyone was surprised when I won that particular award for our unbeaten December, and I don't think I was surprised at how the following month turned out. We had a mini injury crisis on our hands, although I had signed Jack Hartley on loan from Accrington Stanley to cover for Callum Rzonca. We also had to deal with the loss of Akpobire, Farrar and Wright, and I found myself moving youngsters in to the first team. I've not maintained good impressions of my back up players over the first half of the season, but we do have some promising youngsters that deserve a chance. To cut a long story short we had a disastrous start to 2020. The first two games were against teams pushing for the play offs, but I hadn't anticipated how tough it would be. We concede too many, and the defensive displays that we put in against Corby and FC United accentuated that. I actually thought we might have scraped a draw against FC United, even if we didn't deserve it, only to be denied in the 82nd minute. It was our inability to cope with Jake Wright of Corby and Douglas Short of FC United, who both scored hattricks against us, that was our downfall. A better defensive display might have avoided that fact, but we were awful at the back, Andy Allen (loanee from Leeds) in particular. That surprised me as he's been gaining in confidence over the last couple of months. For me, Connor Kellogg was the only player to come out of those games with any credibility. He made his first start for Northampton against FC United, and he's a player I believe has a bright future. I had a word with the team after those games, telling them they have the ability to move on and play much better, because, I told them, the basics are there. I was downright shocked with the negative response that I got from every player. They told me they'd been awful, but I don't think we were on the same wavelength. The vagueness of FM's questions and comments is something I've never been a fan of. That team meeting left me fearing the worst in the next game, home to Southport. I switched keepers and gave David Pickwell a chance between the sticks. My regular starter, Aidan Cobb, hadn't been showing the greatest form so I figured a change couldn't hurt. Pickwell repaid my faith in him with a display of the utmost brilliance in securing us a 1-0 win. Pickwell denies Southport with a reflex save low to his right Next up was Dulwich Hamlet in the FA Trophy. Dulwich are struggling in the Conference National, but with the form we have been showing I still saw them as favourites to prevail. Farrar was fit again and he may well be the lynchpin of our team as we put in a good display to win 1-0 and march on to the 3rd round. To be honest with you Dulwich were poor and I can see why they're struggling. Lucky Usman was fantastic in this game, passing the ball about like Xavi in his prime, and showing strength in possession, a quality that I feel has been missing from his game. We were due to play Gainsborough before the end of January, but the rain intervened and flooded their pitch. It gave us a chance to get some match fitness back to our fringe players with a series of friendlies, and left the end of month table looking a little like this. So not the best January, but we're still in second, with a game in hand on third. The postponement has left us with a busy seven games to squeeze in to February, but the all round performance against Dulwich gives me hope we can get back to form. One last bit of news, and Deon Brothwell popped by towards the end of January to say he was now happy to stay at Northampton...again. Oh, Deon!
  6. Yep, you're probably right. I guess I still have some hope left in this forum. This particular sub-forum is a breath of fresh air and reminds me of when the FM forums were a nice, happy place. Now I think about it, it's a misguided hope that I have.
  7. Only just got around to watching the features video. That is some extensive changes to FM this year. Surely no one can complain about all that. It's changed my thoughts. I'm really enjoying my Northampton save, but the new versions sounds so good. I'll give beta a miss and watch the impressions come in, but I might have to get as far as I can with Northampton before November 4th. Got Civ 6 to squeeze in too. I don't have enough time to game!
  8. I'd argue the opposite, that things are getting better now that they're all in one place. I don't have to go looking around the internet to get patches. There's also more ways to connect to your games and make changes. You're not paying extra. You're paying the actual amount because you missed a deal that had been about for ages. And, if you do buy from a key reseller then don't complain if your key one day gets redacted. Key resellers gets their keys from a lot of non reputable sources and I know people who've had keys redacted. Key resellers are dodgy. My opinion, yes, but there's articles online that show just how bad they are. From the sounds of it you were destined to buy it anyway. You could have bought it at a discount and got a refund from Steam if you didn't like the features at release. I don't personally think that people should preorder unless they are 100% sure, but if your opinion was dependent upon features then you could refund before you've played, or even just cancel your preorder.
  9. If you want beta access you'll have to pay it. I doubt you'll get a huge discount at key resellers. Up to you. Not trying to rub it in, or anything, but that offer had been up on Steam for quite a few months.
  10. If you had any previous editions of FM you could have gotten a discount on FM17. As for beta access, I would assume bigger retailers but not key resellers. From experience of people's posts on here key resellers don't get to give beta access. Try Game or Amazon in the UK. It should say in the product description if they give beta access.
  11. Yeah, like mattycarp said, the star rating is wholly dependent on the ability of your coaches. Use it as a guide, but always have your own impression of players. I've had players rated 2-star or lower and they've been my best players because they have the right stats. For example, a lower league players doesn't always need the best technical stats, and determination, strength and aggression will make him a better player. I recall a defender that had appalling technical stats whom I had in the lowest Norwegian league, but the guy was a rock and ran my central defence for five or six season. A very technical player might well be too bullied at that level. I have a player like that in my current team and he gets barged off the ball a lot. As for your question, well I can't believe a higher rated player would have to do more to get a 7.5. Their rating will probably be calculated from what they do in a match, for example scorers will always get a rating boost, regardless of how easy the goal is to put away, and goalkeepers seem to get a rating penalty if they concede, no matter whether they were culpable. Take more in to account than a player's rating when you buy them. Ask yourself if they fit in to your style of play, look at your scout's thoughts on their pros and cons, and look at a range of stats.
  12. Yep, at the end of the day there are self imposed rules to be adhered to if you want to call a game a proper LLM save. I tend to relax things a little and assume that I have access to to news articles not in the game, for instance local papers and the BBC website, but I will always scout players and attempt to give them trial periods. I also assume that I have a certain level of knowledge of players at my own club, and those in non-league clubs in my local area. I'm a Bournemouth fan and always add that to my manager profile in games. I also have a little knowledge of a few other local clubs, i.e. Poole Town and Wimborne Town. But if my first job is in Northern Ireland, as it was in my current save, them I'm not going to have any prior knowledge, but I will scout local club's youth teams. I think it's a given that you don't sign anyone without scouting them, and certainly not players you know from previous saves. There is a FM LLM website that you might like to visit.
  13. It only seems to be less than £5 discount on that key site. You could have gotten it for as little as a key reseller if you owned any previous editions of FM. And you would have been guaranteed beta access. Plus, key resellers are bad. Just my opinion.
  14. December 2019 I don't know what to say! Wow, perhaps? I know what I will say, though, and it will surprise many. We concede too many goals and make things hard for ourselves in games we should be winning comfortably. We do have a rather young squad though, so perhaps I should expect a little complacency and nerves. The name of the game is usually to boost confidence. Telling the players that they have it in them prompts some beautiful football. We boss games, fair and square. On to the month at hand. We started the month with what should have been two easy wins. Gloucester and Worcester are the bottom two sides in my division but they surprised us and we had to work hard for our wins. We were 3-0 up in the Gloucester game only for them to score twice in the last ten minutes. They could have had a leveller, but we held firm. I'd had a word in the ear of Akpobire before the game, telling him I had every confidence he could start to find the net again. He duly repaid my faith with a stunning hatrick, and took home his first match ball. The FA Trophy 1st round game against Worcester was the epitome of a topsy-turvy affair made memorable by the dying minutes of the game. We looked home and dry before they equalised in the 89th minute. There I was preparing my notes for the replay when up stepped substitute Nathan Curtis to slot home a marvellous pass from Rzonca. I could have kissed him. The same could be said for full back Niall Wright in the Redditch game. It was looking to be a draw until the 89th minute. Joe Anderson stormed forward down the left wing to latch on to the perfect ball from Lucky Usman. Anderson's first time cross could only find the head of Redditch defender Obaye-Daley, but his clearance could only find the left boot of our advancing right back, Wright. It really was a lovely passage of play from my team, and fully deserving of winning any game. Niall Wright slots home a lovely flowing Town move to beat Redditch All that was left of December were three tough fixtures crammed in to the week after Christmas, but I got a little Christmas present from the lads on 24th. The Sunday before Deon Brothwell had stated he was now happy to be at Northampton with our form having improved (we were now second). At the time I'd believed his grumbling was over and done with, because he'd been a source of trouble ever since I arrived at the club. He's a player that my coaches like, and one who could have a good future. That is if he ever got his head down and put his mind to playing football, rather than grumbling about every little thing that upsets him. He plays the same role as Kel Akpobire, but it's no secret that I prefer Kel. His stats may not show it but Kel plays a more physical game, where as Deon is more likely to poach a goal than he is to work for it. So imagine my delight when Deon asks to see me the morning of Christmas Eve saying he wants more game time. "You need to prove to me you're worthy of it." I tell him. "You've had some good games but your form dipped whilst Kel's improved." I added. "I've done enough to show I'm capable." Deon assured me, steadfast in his manner "Then go out to the training field and show me what you're capable of." I was in no mood for his shenanigans. The wife has her mother round for Christmas so I really don't need another of Deon's tantrums. He stormed off telling me I'd handled things badly. I would rather not lose the lad, but I'm not going to be bullied. Ask the wife's mother. With that I thought the situation was done with, or at least for now., but a few hours later my assistant told me some players wanted to see me to voice their displeasure at the treatment of poor Deon. The guilty parties were Richard Gabriels and Caspar Hughes, both fringe players. I told them I couldn't just drop someone playing well and to get on with their own jobs. I'll give Hughes credit as he told me I was right. Gabriels, on the other hand, stands by his pal. To top it all off I got a call from the Non-League Paper to ask if Deon will be leaving the club. "Hell if I know." I told the nosey reporter. The last three games were much easier on my nerves, despite us conceding first against both North Ferriby and Worcester. The final game of December was a much more comfortable win away to Lowestoft, and I can honestly say we played some fantastic football at times in all three matches. When the lads put their mind to it they can pass the ball around like the Brazil of the 60s and 70s. Well almost. By the end of the month we found ourselves top of the Conference North in what has been a complete turn around from last year. At Christmas last year we were in the bottom three and looking destined for the drop. All in all a good month, but it had cost us in men. Kel Akpobire damaged his heel in The North Ferriby game, and we lost Callum Rzonca and Stephen Farrar in the Worcester game before Niall Wright succumbed to another heel problem against Lowestoft. Rzonca damaged his knee and has to see a specialist. He could be out of action for a couple of months. On the plus side for Deon Brothwell he got the game time he had been asking for. He even managed a couple of goals, but I still don't rate him above Kel. I've been experimenting with a diamond formation in training. I'll have to pick and choose which central midfielder to leave out but it could allow us to play two strikers. I would like to see Kel and Deon partner each other because it could be exciting. Also, with the injuries mounting up, I was forced to give some game time to two young players I think could develop nicely for us. Richard Elphick is a youngster I bought on to replace Lucky Usman, but he would probably be better suited to playing an advanced winger role. Luke Hancock did slot in on the right wing, and I thought he did well. He and Elphick teamed up at one point to force a good save from the Lowestoft keeper. Sorry it's been a long accounting of December's events, but it's been an exciting month. I'll leave you with one last little happening, and it's not a lucky one. Lucky Usman has six months left on his contract so I decided to offer him a late Christmas present with a new contract. He repaid the compliment with a slap in the face. He doesn't like me. "Kids! To hell with them!"
  15. I'm on my first save in FM16, though it's only 5 seasons (can read all about it if you'd like) long, and I do take some longish breaks from the game from time to time. I'm enjoying this save so much that I'm going to continue with it, and FM17 will have to wait. It's unusual for me to have more than two saves. I play the game very slowly, and , like I say, I take breaks from the game (I like to expand my gaming repertoire these days, rather than just playing FM). In fact, I don't know if I can think of an FM where I had more than two saves, other than tiny experiments. At most it will probably be a short save at release and a main one later. I can near enough remember all the clubs I've had saves with in the last 5-10 years, and how far I got. My memory is a little sketchy, because there's been so many saves that overlap. Skarp (07, I think). FC Juventus of Romania (11). Skarp again another year that led on to KFUM Oslo (possibly 12). The next year I decided to start with KFUM and ended up with Strindheim, whom I took to the Norwegian Premier, before ending up with Chievo and, I think, Hamburg (would be 13, then). There was one year I had a very enjoyable save with Koper in Slovenia, where I ended up with Dinamo Kiev (that could have been 12, which would put the other Norwegian saves each a year on). I'm watching Inverness v Rangers on telly at the moment, and I know I managed Caley one year. There were also great saves with Colwyn Bay and Kettering. Many enjoyable times. My saves tend to die when I get to big clubs. There's something special about managing at the lowest levels, I feel. Or maybe I just miss my first club.