Jump to content
Sports Interactive Community

abulezz

Members
  • Content Count

    2,578
  • Joined

  • Last visited

About abulezz

  • Rank
    Semi Pro

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. Hey! Thanks for the comment! They are relentless in selling away our prospects - they sold Oliseh, our CM, in the middle of the season and Im 100% sure they will sell one or two in the summer because we getting offers from players like Beverley and Bowen. Luckily, they are have been generous with their investment in Youth, so it has compensated somewhat. My Intakes have been fantastic! Out of curiosity, I checked out some of the bigger Premier League clubs' Intakes to see how ours compared - we actually still have ways to go, lol. Their average prospects are still better than our finest.
  2. The board did it again, selling Marcus Clarke for £2.4M. They seem hell-bent on making my job as difficult as possible, always selling away our top prospects. On the plus side, they are not shy about re-investment - I put in the requests again after we got the money in, and again they accepted.
  3. I don't think I've ever seen anyone play in the Bahamas before, lol. Amazing save thus far.
  4. SEASON REVIEW 2025/2026 TEAM REVIEW We had a slight improvement in all respects in our second season in the League One – we moved up from 17th to 16th Place, and our defense improved to 21st best (worst) in the league. Even though we scored less goals than last year, our offense was still pretty potent (5th) thanks to our star, Lewis Hodges. Our young players had an inconsistent season, though, and a lot of them had trouble with their form, something I expect will remedy itself next season. We did face another huge disappointment with the sale of Jonathan Sheckleford, however – of course, the board deemed a £725K offer too good to turn down, and the player who was leading the league with 20 Goals was sold mid-season! Terrible choices, terrible decisions. We could not figure out how to replace his presence or his goals, and the team suffered because of it. I hope the board is happy with what they caused! What they mess up in forced sales they definitely make up in Youth investment, however. Our Youth facilities are almost top-notch – we invested in Junior Coaching the Youth Recruitment again this year, and our Intakes are really showing the results of this. Financially, we are not as strong as we have been the past few years, although we continue to maintain a positive balance. I am using just over half the wage budget allocated to me, but I guess we simply don’t have enough fans in the seats currently to turn consistent monthly profits. KEY PLAYERS PLAYER OF THE YEAR Lewis Hodges (2018), 24 Years Old, Striker: Four straight Kafra Player of the Year, Hodges has now won the award seven times out of the eight years that have passed in this save. Second in the league with 23 Goals and third with 16 Assists, the striker and our captain continues to be our most influential and consistent player. It is hard to believe he is only 24 years old, but he has already played in over 350 League Games over the course of his career, with 45 Appearances this season alone. His 7.09 AR was down from 7.28 and 7.29 the previous two seasons, but he did have more pressure on him this year. I would consider him our only club legend thus far in this save, and what a wonderful one he has been. Rating: 8/10 DEFENSE Rhys Lalite (2022), 20 Years Old, Goalkeeper: My coaching staff rate his CA (4.5/5) just as highly as they do Hodges, so he is considered to be one of our two most important players. His 6.93 AR was the second highest on the team after Hodges, so there is obviously truth in it. Even with our bad defense, he remains stellar between the sticks for us, and his 1.67 Con/90 was much improved over last year’s mark of 2.22. For the second straight year, he played in all 46 Appearances, and even though he is still making noise about wanting to leave for a bigger club, I still have hope we can sign him to a new contract in the two years left on his contract. Rating: 7/10 Anthony Garrard (2022), 20 Years Old, Right Defender/Central Midfielder: The reality is Garrard had a miserable year playing right-back (his natural position), but even with his 6.58 AR, he remains one of our most important and best players. His 2.95 TpG was the second-highest of any of our starters (left-back Jackson was the highest at 3.48 TpG), and he was third on the team with 129 Interceptions. Two seasons ago, he registered 7.04 AR playing as a CM, but we have had talent come through that position and dearth of it at RB, so necessity has put him at a tough position in my system. His Physical abilities are probably the best on the team, and I really hope he starts playing better for us because right now, there is no one who is remotely as talented as he is at right-back. Rating: 5/10 MIDFIELD Sam Rodon (2020), 22 Years Old, Central Midfield: The third highest rated player on the squad with 4/5 CA, Rodon had an off-season this year, with his 6.89 AR from last season dropping to 6.73 AR this season. Even though he played in all 46 Games, his contributions were harder to spot – the 5 Goals equaled last year’s tally, but his 1 Assist was very underwhelming. Although his 1.79 TpG and 131 Interceptions were up, his Key Passes dropped to 33 from 41 – his form, which is the most important thing, was heavily effected and consistency was not a strength this year, either. This was, in fact, his worst season to date, which can be taken as good news – history points to him being a better player than this, so I am optimistic he will perform better next year. Rating: 6/10 ATTACK Check out HOT PROSPECTS. HOT PROSPECTS Mike Rigby (2023), 19 Years Old, Central Defender: Outside of Lalite, Rigby was easily our best player in the defensive line this season. The converted CD played in 43 Games, registering 1 Goal, 3 Assists, 2 PoMs, 2.03 TpG, and also led the league in 3 categories: Interceptions (187), Key Headers (100), and Shots Blocked (68). His 6.77 AR, while an improvement over last year’s 6.69 AR, does suggest he still has a little work to do with his consistency, but considering the general state of our defense, I will take what I can get. Rigby is also our only International player, having earned 7 Caps thus far for Cyprus. I wonder consider the versatile defender – he can play all across the backline – our best CD at this point. Bevon Daley (2023), 19 Years Old, Striker: I wanted to give Daley more than his 5 Substitute Appearances this year, but at least he scored his first (and only) goal for the club. He is still at 4.5/5 PA, and the sale of Sheckleford should mean he sees more opportunities next season unless we have another striker come up and impress. Overall, while he is showing improvement, he does not look like he will be better than Bowen and Hodges, our current starters, but at least should have a chance to serve as the 3rd choice striker. Sam Beresford (2023), 18 Years Old, Central Defender: His drop from 5/5 PA to 4.5/5 PA was expected – I just did not think he had the look of a talented CD and his abilities were not showing the required improvement. I am glad my coaching staff finally saw the light. He did not play at all this season, and there is simply too much talent at the position that are better than him. Injuries are the only thing that can put him back in the rotation at this point. Gary Bowen (2024), 18 Years Old, Striker: The sale of Sheckleford opened up the doors for Bowen, but I must say I was a bit underwhelmed by his performances after becoming a starter. He played in 32 Games, but scored only 9 Goals to go with his 5 Assists and 6.79 AR. Strikers are generally the best performing players in my system, so he still has a long way to go to make the starting position his. Right now, however, he definitely is our most talented forward outside of Hodges and will start next season as his partner up front. He has shown great strides in terms of his abilities, so that is a plus. Joseph Oliseh (2024), 18 Years Old, Central Midfielder: Despite hitting the Sophomore Slump, as I call it, after an impressive rookie year, Oliseh has now become our highest-valued player at £165K. In 39 Appearances, he registered 4 Goals, 2.16 TpG, 79% Pass Ratio, and 6.71 AR, which was down significantly from 6.86 AR in his rookie season. Still, his improvement in his abilities did not let up, and he actually signed a new contract this year despite always insinuating he belonged at a bigger club. He is currently one of our most talented players, and I do think he will bounce back next season. Mike Beverly (2024), 18 Years Old, Central Defender: He was thrown into the thick of things this season, starting next to Rigby, but he did not have a good year (44 Appearances, 1.54 TpG, 6.57 AR). That being said, he improved significantly over the course of the season, so that was very encouraging. I have no plans to remove him from the starting lineup just yet, but I must see more from him in his third year with the club coming up. Alfie Watkins (2024), 18 Years Old, Goalkeeper: He hasn’t played a game in the last two seasons, but my coaching staff have reported that they believe he has the potential to be just as good as Lalite is currently, which is encouraging. Marcus Clarke (2025), 17 Years Old, Left Winger: I am not quite sure what to make of Marcus Clarke’s dreadful rookie season. I was so excited about his skill-set, and he looked like the ultimate left winger, but in 44 Appearances, he registered 2 Goals, 6 Assists, 2.45 TpG, and 6.57 AR. The problem was when he was having a bad game, he was always having a really bad game, which brought his AR down significantly. In all honesty, despite it being his rookie year, I was disappointed as I really thought he would be a difference maker right off the bat. He showed decent improvement in his abilities (although not great), so he did find ways to get better and showed commitment in training. Hopefully he will deliver a season more in line with my expectations in his sophomore year. Adam Laing (2025), 17 Years Old, Central Defender: Although Laing has yet to make his debut, he has shown real progress in training is definitely in line for some playing time next year. Nelson Peres (2025), 17 Years Old, Left Winger: He spent the year with the U18 team, but has shown enough commitment in training and improvement in ability to consider a call-up to the first team. My coaching staff have reported him now at 5/5 PA, up from 4.5/5 at his Intake, so he is someone to keep an eye on, YOUTH INTAKE Jim Yuill - Louie Weir – John Cooper – Berkley Oyenuga This is the second straight year we have an incredible wing prospect – last year it was Marcus Clarke on the left, and this year it is New Zealand product Jim Yuill on the right. The pace is out of this world for a player so young, and I am really optimistic about him. It doesn’t end there, however – both Weir and Cooper look like they could potentially be gems for us, as well. Overall, I would rank this Intake better than last year’s, and possibly our second best after the ’24 Youth Class. YOUTH CLASS REVIEW 2018/19: No one from this class has maintained a presence in the first team any longer. Our most talented player from this batch, Adu, left Cardiff after three years and zero appearances, and joined League Two team Grimsby on Free Transfer. He had 28 Appearances, 4 Goals, and 6.94 AR. TOP PLAYERS: Emmanuel Adu, Benjamin Olisema 2019/20: Rodon remains one of our most indispensable and highest rated players, and is easily the best player from the ’20 Youth Class. The only other player of note is Niall Jackson, who actually played in 41 Games this season, all as a substitute for both winger positions. TOP PLAYERS: Sam Rodon 2020/21: Widely considered our weakest Intake, even the best player from it (Adam Burgon) is no longer part of the team’s plans. There is no one else of note. TOP PLAYERS: Adam Burgon 2021/22: Kyle Connolly, bought by Brentwood, spent the year on loan playing against in League One for Exeter, scoring 11 Goals in 39 Appearances. The best player from thie ’22 Youth Class has become our GK Rhys Lalite, however – he has proven himself to be atleast a Championship level GK according to scouting reports. The only other player of note is Anthony Garrard, who had a rough season but remains an important member of our first team. TOP PLAYERS: Kyle Connolly, Rhys Lalite, Anthony Garrard 2022/23: Mike Rigby is currently the only player from the ’23 Youth Class to make it into the team’s starting lineup, and in all honesty, is the only player from this Intake that has lived up to potential. Beresford came in at 5/5 PA but has now been downgraded, and Daley will have a tough time breaking into a rotational role thanks to the talent available at the striker position. TOP PLAYERS: Mike Rigby, Sam Beresford, Bevon Daley 2023/24: Our best Intake thus far, the ’24 Youth Class has given us four starters so far! Our most talented prospect, Jonathan Sheckleford, was unfortunately sold by our board for £725K to Premier League team Bristol City despite leading the league in Goals Scored at the time of his sale. Still, another player from this Intake replaced him in Gary Bowen, and he joined Joseph Oliseh and Mike Beverley in the starting lineup. All of the prospects mentioned above are still rated 5/5 PA, and there is still a few other players that look like they could potentially earn a rotational spot on the squad. TOP PLAYERS: Jonathan Sheckleford, Joseph Oliseh, Gary Bowen, Mike Beverly 2024/25: The best prospect from this Intake, Marcus Clarke, was thrown into the starting lineup in his rookie year, but did not respond well. The other 5/5 PA prospect coming out of the Intake, Adam Laing, maintains his PA and showed good improvement. Nelson Peres was given a nudge up to 5/5 PA, but GK Roland Wilson was downgraded to 4/5 PA, dropping 0.5 points. TOP PLAYERS: Marcus Clarke, Adam Laing
  5. The sabotage continues - Sheckleford was on his way to becoming a star for us, already having scored 20 Goals this season.
  6. This is the first season since the beginning of the save where we had more than one £100M+ transfers. Matias Vega made the move from Juventus to Chelsea for £103M.
  7. Man United, fresh off of their first Champions League title in 18 years, just bought this beast of a striker for £126M. He had his breakout season for Fulham last season, scoring 21 Goals - he also is a product of the Fulham Youth Academy.
  8. SEASON REVIEW 2024/2025 TEAM REVIEW This was a good first season in the League One – as expected, our defense was porous, conceding 102 Goals and ranking 23rd out of 24teams, but our offense was spectacular and was the 3rd best in the league. We finished only in 17th Place, but we were comfortably out of the relegation zone all season long, thanks to our legend and captain Lewis Hodges, who finished the season the League One’s Top Goalscorer with 30 Goals. He was partnered up front by rookie Jonathan Sheckleford, who was amazing in his own right and contributed almost as much to our relatively comfortable season. Defensively, the season marked an end of an era, as our initial starters that began this save have all been replaced due to their lackluster form and general lack of improvement in abilities. Only left-back Vince Jackson remains out the initial four, and that is because we have not yet developed any talented full-backs that can challenge him for his place. Last save, I had boards that would not throw a single dime at Youth investments, and it frustrated me to no end. This save, I have now had three club elections, and each new incoming board has been extremely generous in their investments in Youth. Our Youth Recruitment and Junior Coaching were again approved from upgrading this season, and it really is beginning to show in our Intakes – we are producing some really talented young players that are making our climb up the league ladder much simpler than last year. Our finances, though slowly dwindling, continue to remain in the black, and with our promotion to League One, we saw a larger influx of cash that should see us remain comfortable in the short-term. KEY PLAYERS PLAYER OF THE YEAR Lewis Hodges (2018), 23 Years Old, Striker: After a couple of years of stalling, Hodges finally signed a new contract with us worth £4K per week – the richest in club history. It is fully deserved, too, because he again won the Kafra Player of the Year for the sixth time. In 41 Appearances, he registered a league-high 30 Goals, 10 Assists, 6 PoMs, 76% Pass Ratio, 63% Shot Target, and 7.28 AR – looking at those numbers, I would certainly classify his first season in the League One as highly successful. He has already scored 207 League Goals in his young career, coming from 306 Appearances, and the only team he has registered less than 10 Assists in a season was his rookie year. We have had an influx of offensive talent in the past few years, but no one has come close to replacing Hodges as the heartbeat of this team. The club captain is without a doubt a club legend at this point. Rating: 9/10 DEFENSE Only Defenders worth mentioning can be found under HOT PROSPECTS. MIDFIELD Sam Rodon (2020), 21 Years Old, Central Midfield: The highest valued player on the club at £125K, Rodon continues to show just how important he is to the team. In 44 Appearances, he registered 5 Goals, 4 Assists, 1.57 TpG, 124 Interceptions, 2,511 Passes Completed, 41 Key Passes, and 6.89 AR. Those were really good all-around numbers, and a good indicator of his game – he rarely shows a weakness or makes a mistake and is seemingly everywhere on the pitch. The Welshman still refuses to sign a new contract, however – he continues to state that he needs a club to match his ambition. I think he overestimates himself and is actually at the perfect level with the perfect club for him! Rating: 7/10 Dan Spalding (2018), 24 Years Old, Right Winger: This was a good year in what has been an up and down career for the right winger – in 42 Appearances, he registered 6 Goals, 12 Assists, 2.79 TpG, and 6.80 AR, which was tied for his best since his rookie year. The Assists were best on the team, as were his 19 Chances Created and 0.94 DpG. The Kafra Youth Academy has still not given us any right wingers up to his level, so he remains the defacto starter at the position. His biggest problem is his consistency, and poor spells for him usually last a while before he snaps out of them. Still, this was a decent year this season, and I just hope he keeps up for next year. Rating: 6.5/10 ATTACK Check out HOT PROSPECTS. HOT PROSPECTS Rhys Lalite (2022), 19 Years Old, Goalkeeper: He had a tougher go at it this year than the two previous ones because of the higher level of football, but he did not let that affect his training in anyway. The GK was all that bad, either – his 6.82 AR was still one of the highest on the team. He remains in a constant state of unhappiness and continuously desires to leave the club, but I still have him locked for a few more years if the club don’t stupidly sell him. My coaching staff rate him the highest on the team along with Hodges in terms of CA, and he has the potential to be serviceable Premier League GK at one point. He has done a great job in training over the past couple of years, and has shown steady and impressive progress in his attributes. Anthony Garrard (2022), 19 Years Old, Central Midfielder: After such an impressive season last year, Garrard took a very big step back and really struggled this season. In 46 Appearances (33 as Starter), he registered 1 Goal, 2 Assists, 3.41 TpG, and 6.60 AR, down from 7.04 AR. To be fair, he did spend a fair amount of time at right-back, his natural position, but that was because he was not getting it done at the CM position and ended up being replaced in the starting lineup by upstart Joseph Oliseh. Despite his rough season, Garrard is still a very intriguing player – he has the versatility to play anywhere down the right flank, and now is adept at playing at the CM position, too. His Physical attributes are second to none, and he has continued to show good improvements in the rest of his abilities. Hopefully, he will find a way to bounce back next season and give us a better year. Adam Burgon (2021), 19 Years Old, Striker: Denied a more prominent place in the team by rookie Sheckleford, Burgon was as reliable as they come when called up this season. In 11 Appearances, he registered 6 Goals, 2 Assists, 82% Pass Ratio, a ridiculous 84% Shot Target, and 7.03 AR – had it not been for the rookie, Burgon would probably have been our starter along Hodges most of the time. Still, with those kind of numbers, it hard to deny Burgon a spot on the rotation, and he is currently our first choice off the bench at the striker position. Mike Rigby (2023), 18 Years Old, Central Defender: After a year of being taught how to play at CD, I placed Rigby in the starting lineup, and he was actually our most impressive defender this season. The problem is, our most impressive defender could only register 6.69 AR in his 33 Appearances, which shows just how deep our defensive problems were this season. He also registered a team-high 14 Key Tackles along with 2.45 TpG and 116 Interceptions. Like a lot of the young prospects coming through, he showed great improvements in his abilities, dedicating himself to learning how to play CD and doing so fairly quickly. Bevon Daley (2023), 18 Years Old, Striker: Yet to make his debut, the Jamaican striker nevertheless continues to show good improvement in his abilities, especially his physical and quickness stats. His Finishing is relatively good, and he has the right skill-set I look for in a striker – my goal for next season is to not only give him his debut, but also find a way to give him a few starts to see what he is capable of. Sam Beresford (2023), 17 Years Old, Central Defender: My coaching staff love him, but he has yet to show any semblance of good form. He played in 9 Games in his sophomore year, registering 6.40 AR, but more concerning is his relatively slow development so far. He will have to show more of everything next season if he wants to continue to maintain a presence in the first team for the foreseeable future. Gary Bowen (2024), 17 Years Old, Striker: His rookie season was a miss in terms of form, but this young striker is looking like the real deal with every week that passes by. His Physical stats are already very well developed despite his young age, and he has impressive attacking instincts. Already given an U19 cap for Wales, I will look to give him more opportunities in his sophomore year despite the deepness of the striker position currently. Joseph Oliseh (2024), 17 Years Old, Central Midfielder: It did not take long for Oliseh to solidify himself as our starter next to Rodon despite this being only his rookie year, but I could not ignore his impressive performances. He ended up tailing off in a hard way towards in the end of the season, but he was above 7.00 AR for most of it. In 36 Appearances, he ended up registering 1 Goal, 7 Assists, 2 PoMs, 1.70 TpG, and 6.86 AR – he also had 58 Key Passes were the highest on the team. Naturally an AM, he took quickly to playing at CM, and improved quickly in the required abilities. Overall, I am very happy with his rookie year and look forward to seeing him develop further in his sophomore season. Jonathan Sheckleford (2024), 17 Years Old, Striker: Wow, what a rookie season! I would already rank him ahead of Kyle Connolly as the greatest product the Kafra Youth Academy has produced thus far – that is how impressed I am by this young striker. I threw him right into the mix of things, and in 41 Appearances, he registered 23 Goals, 11 Assists, 5 PoMs, 64% Shot Target, and 7.09 AR. Although it is not a position I usually play in my formations, I put him in as a Target Man based on his Aerial abilities. My coaching staff believe he could be a fine Championship striker in the future, but for now, he is serving us very well in the League One. Mike Beverly (2024), 17 Years Old, Central Defender: Had limited playing time in his rookie year, and did not really show much in it. What I liked what his attribute improvements – for example, he was at 6 Jumping Reach to start the season, but finished at 10. He has the look of a good CD – hopefully he can start showing some good form. Alfie Watkins (2024), 17 Years Old, Goalkeeper: Lalite played in all 46 Games this season, which meant Watkins didn’t feature. My coaching staff have now put him at 5/5 PA, and he showed some decent improvement in his abilities over the course of the season. He is a long term project, and with the way Lalite is developing, the only way Watkins looks like he could get consistent playing time is if Lalite leaves the club or gets injured. Either way, Watkins will continue to serve as our No.2 for the foreseeable future. YOUTH INTAKE Marcus Clarke - Adam Laing – Nelson Peres – Roland Wilson Hello, Marcus Clarke! I haven’t had a prospect with such potential in a long time – possibly since FM17! His natural position might be striker, but he is being retrained as a left winger, and he is going to be a fantastic one at that! The board’s generous investment in everything Youth is certainly paying off, and we continue to get great offensive prospects. I am cautiously excited about Laing – he could prove to be a good addition to our underperforming defensive unit. Overall, really impressed with this Intake, mostly because of Clarke, but also because there are a couple of other players who could potentially be rotational players for the club. YOUTH CLASS REVIEW 2018/19: The most talented player from the ’19 Youth Class, Emmanuel Adu, has yet to make his debut for Cardiff three years after being sold by the board to them. The only other player of note from this Intake is Benjamin Olisema, who continues to serve as a rotational player in our defense. TOP PLAYERS: Emmanuel Adu, Benjamin Olisema 2019/20: Five players are still contracted by the club from the ’20 Youth Class, but only two are a part of the first team – Sam Rodon and Niall Jackson. The former has become one of the most indispensable players on the team, while Jackson serves as backup for both wing positions. TOP PLAYERS: Sam Rodon 2020/21: Only three players remain in football from the ’21 Youth Class – Danny Smith had a horrible season for semi-professional outfit Lowestoft, Gavin Collins is still with Kafra but has not played in three years, and Adam Burgon serves as the primary backup for the striker position. Overall, this Intake takes the prize of weakest Intake the Academy has given us to date. TOP PLAYERS: Adam Burgon 2021/22: Up until this season, Kyle Connolly was easily the best prospect the Kafra Youth Academy had produced. Ironically, despite being sold to Premier League team Brentford, he spent this season on loan with League Two team Bradford, scoring 5 Goals in 10 Appearances. Back in Kafra, Rhys Lalite has become one of our best players and a quality GK at that, while Garrard – despite his struggles this season – is also one of our finest prospects. Both Ricky Henry and Charlie Huthings made their debuts this season, but outside of Lalite and Garrard, it does not look like anyone else will be able to crack the first team. TOP PLAYERS: Kyle Connolly, Rhys Lalite, Anthony Garrard 2022/23: Out of the four highly rated prospects, one has become a starter (Mike Rigby), one looks like he will be part of the rotation next season (Sam Beresford), one looks like he could become a quality striker (Bevon Daley), and one has underwhelmed and looks like he will not amount to much (Mehmet Donmez). The ’23 Youth Class can be personified by his defensive prospects thus far, and if Beresford lives up to the coaching staff’s opinion, we could very well have two potential starters at CD from this Intake. TOP PLAYERS: Mike Rigby, Sam Beresford, Bevon Daley 2023/24: The ’24 Youth Class might only be a year old, but it already looks like our best and deepest Intake ever. Jonathan Sheckleford looks like the finest prospect the Academy has given us thus far, and had a magical rookie season, as well. Joseph Oliseh has already solidified himself as a starter for us at CM, so despite it being only last year’s Intake, it has already produced two starters for us. Both Gary Bowen and Mike Beverly look like quality prospects that could be potential starters if their development keeps up, and Alfie Watkins serves as our No.2 GK. Both Beverly and Watkins came in at 4.5/5 PA, but are now rated at 5/5 PA – on the opposite side of that, Roberto Santos was rated at 5/5 PA coming in, but now is 4.5/5 PA. TOP PLAYERS: Jonathan Sheckleford, Joseph Oliseh, Gary Bowen, Mike Beverly
  9. It was a great season, despite the board giving away our best player and prospect. I don't usually find that much of a difference between the talent in League 2 and League 1, so I hope we can also have a decent season despite being just promoted.
  10. SEASON REVIEW 2023/2024 TEAM REVIEW I am loving this save so far – it only took us three years in the dreadful League 2 to get promoted, and it was a pretty comfortable promotion at that. We earned the automatic promotion spot on the strength of our offense and the relative reliability of our improving defense, and despite the board best efforts to sabotage our season by selling our most talented striker and best prospect in the middle of the season, the team kept it together and did not miss a beat. Our defense kept it together to become the 12th best in the league, which in turn allowed our offense (3rd best in the league) to win games for us. Hodges was once again fantastic for us, and we had a couple of youngsters really step and deliver good seasons for us unexpectedly. Unfortunately, the board made zero investments this season despite our finances maintaining a healthy amount above the red, so no improvements in any of our facilities for next season. KEY PLAYERS PLAYER OF THE YEAR Lewis Hodges (2018), 22 Years Old, Striker: When the board sold Kyle Connolly, I was gutted, but just like a true friend, Hodges told me not to worry about it and stuck it out with us. He made sure we did not feel Connolly’s absence whatsoever, and in turn, helped catapult us to the into an automatic promotion spot. In 45 Appearances, he led the league with 28 Goals, 9 PoMs, 64% Shot Target, and 7.29 AR – he was also tied for second with 14 Assists. Obviously, he was named our Kafra Player of the Year 5th time, and was also named the League 2 Player of the Year – in every league we have played in thus far, he has been named its player of the year at one point. It is safe to say that the captain is now a bonafide legend of the club, and even though he keeps making noise about wanting to leave, with our new promotion, my hope is that we will be able to convince him to spend the rest of his career at Kafra. Rating: 9/10 DEFENSE Benjamin Olisema (2019), 20 Years Old, Central Defender: The Nigerian was easily our best defender this year, and along with GK Rhys Lalite, the main reason why our defense as a whole was 12th best in the league. Let us look at the evidence – Olisema led the League 2 in an astounding 4 different categories: Headers Won (408), Key Headers (49), Interceptions (194), and Shots Blocked (49). There was no more influential defender in the league this season than Olisema, who also registered 86% Headers Won and 6.80 AR in his 42 Appearances. While the rest of the defense faltered, Olisema held the line together – I truly believe that if the rest of the line had played better, Olisema would have given us a 7.00+ AR season. Rating: 7/10 MIDFIELD Sam Rodon (2020), 20 Years Old, Central Midfield: The only two players that my coaching staff have rated 4.5/5 CA are Hodges and Rodon – that is how highly they think of our leading CM, and I don’t disagree. He played in all 46 Games, registering 6 Goals, 3 Assists, 3 PoMs, 1.60 TpG, 146 Interceptions (2nd on team), a team-high 81% Pass Ratio and 2,268 Passes Completed (nearly double anyone else on the squad), and 6.92 AR, down slightly from 6.94 AR last season. His numbers clearly point to just how integral he was in the middle of the pitch to us – nearly every play ran through him. He keeps making noise about wanting to leave for a bigger club, but like Hodges I feel with the new promotion we should be able to satisfy his ambition. Rating: 7/10 Dominic Sherratt (2018), 23 Years Old, Left Winger: While consistency is definitely not his forte – he gave us some terrible performances a few games this season – when he is on, he is on. He led the league with 15 Assists, also registering 5 Goals, 2.87 TpG, and 6.82 AR (up from 6.79 AR) in 44 Appearances. My wingers work hard on both ends of the pitch, and he was not shy about fighting the ball back from the opposition, but what I really loved about him this season was how efficient he was getting the ball to the strikers. His 19 Chances Created were second only to Hodges on the team, and his Assists spoke volumes on how reliant we were on his passes and crosses to get the ball into scoring opportunities. The only thing left for him to improve at this point would be to be more consistent with his form. Rating: 6.5/10 ATTACK Kevin Davis (2018), 23 Years Old, Striker: When Connolly was sold, the assumption was that Davis would jump right back into the starting lineup, but I decided to go in another direction because he has just been so efficient coming off the bench. He played in 35 Games, starting only 3 of them, but still managed to score 11 Goals – his 105.82 Average Minutes Per Goal was easily the best in the league. To put that into context, Hodges’ number was 142.04 and he was 3rd in the league! He was a dynamo for us off the bench, and our vice-captain is ecstatic to continue to be a member of the team. Rating: 6.5/10 HOT PROSPECTS Rhys Lalite (2022), 18 Years Old, Goalkeeper: Honestly, I could not have asked for more from our 18 year old GK in only his second year – he played in 43 Appearances, registering 1.49 Con/90 and 6.94 AR, which was the 4th highest on the team. Despite a very inconsistent and underperforming (generally) defensive line, he did a great job in between the posts for us and was directly responsible for keeping the score under control several games this season. He is already at 4/5 CA with a 5/5 PA, and although he has started making noise about needing to be at a bigger club, he remains a professional. This season also saw him improve drastically, so his commitment in training has not been effected by his ambition to move. Anthony Garrard (2022), 18 Years Old, Central Midfielder: Garrard came along better than I could have ever imagined this season – I started experimenting with starting him at what was a completely unnatural CM position for him in the middle of the season, and the way he responded was phenomenal. Not only did he thrive in his new role, but he showed ridiculous progress in his attributes, especially in his Mental abilities. He was already advanced for his age physically, but he also showed tremendous improvement in those abilities, too. Overall, in 28 Appearances, he registered 3 Goals, 6 Assists, a team-high 5.03 TpG, 11 Chances Created, and 7.04 AR, which was second on the team out of players who appeared in more than 20 Games. He has definitely earned the right to keep hold of his starting position, and I hope we see even more improvement next year. Players like Garrard are why we all get romantic about this game in the first place! Adam Burgon (2021), 18 Years Old, Striker: I had a decision to make when Connolly was sold – return to the status quo and start Davis, or give Burgon a run and see what he could do. I decided to go with the latter, and I was not disappointed – in 16 Appearances, he gave us 11 Goals, 2 Assists, 2 PoMs, 80% Pass Ratio, 62% Shot Target, and 7.24 AR, which was second only to Hodges. My hope with him is he can show us substantial improvement in his abilities, although at such a deep position in our squad, I can always experiment with other players. As long as he keeps scoring, however, he will keep his place. Mike Rigby (2023), 17 Years Old, Central Defender: He spent the year being re-trained to be CD, and it has gone relatively well. He made his debut and appeared in 6 Games (all as a Starter), registering 2.88 TpG and 6.60 AR. He still carries a 5/5 PA, and he did show some good improvement in his abilities, especially his Mental, so I am optimistic about him. Sam Beresford (2023), 17 Years Old, Central Defender: He was not impressive when he did play, but of course he is too young to judge. If he can get his Physical attributes up to a decent level, he could have the look of a good CD. Bevon Daley (2023), 17 Years Old, Striker: He did not make his debut this season, but he did show some reasonable improvements in his attributes that were noticeable. His skill-set is good, and he definitely has good Finishing – in fact, my coaching staff have upgraded him from a 4.5/5 PA at Intake to 5/5 PA, so they seem to think he is capable. Mehmet Donmez (2023), 17 Years Old, Striker: His PA has stayed the same from his Intake at 4.5/5 PA, but injuries are looking like they might hamper his career – he already has had to deal with 5 injuries in his rookie year, 3 of them Moderate. He also has Low Determination as a personality trait, so while he was heavily touted coming out of the Intake, he does not look like – so far – he will amount to anything substantial. YOUTH INTAKE Joseph Oliseh - Gary Bowen – Roberto Santos – Jonathan Sheckleford – Mike Beverly – Alfie Watkins YOUTH CLASS REVIEW 2018/19: Joe Moss is a bit-part player for the first team at the CM position and Emmanuel Adu has yet to make his debute for Cardiff, which leaves only Bejamin Olisema as a starter from the ’19 Youth Class. Predictably, this will go down as one of our weakest Youth Classes in terms of influence on the team. TOP PLAYERS: Emmanuel Adu, Benjamin Olisema 2019/20: There are six players still contracted to the team from the ’20 Youth Class, but only two that played this season – Niall Jackson, who appeared in 16 Games as a back-up for the wing positions, and Sam Rodon. The latter has become one of our most important and best players and is easily the crown jewel of this Youth Intake, with no one else really making an impact. TOP PLAYERS: Sam Rodon 2020/21: The emergence of Burgon salvaged what has been our weakest Intake to date – Burgon ended up playing very well this season. Only Gavin Collins remains with the team outside of Burgon, but he failed to appear in a game for the second straight year and does not look to have a future at the club. Danny Smith (DR, 3/5 PA at Intake) found a home with non-league outfit Lowestoft, playing in 34 Games and registering 6.98 AR – he is the only player outside of Burgon and Collins to still be around. TOP PLAYERS: Adam Burgon 2021/22: The sale of Kyle Connolly was really tough to take – he was sold for £275K to Premier League club Brentford, and he actually made his debut for them this season. He is, hands down, the best prospect we have developed thus far. The ’22 Youth Class has been very good outside of Connolly as well, however – we currently have two very important starters in GK Rhys Lalite and CM Anthony Garrard that are part of this Intake. Left-Back Riviere Jules remains at 5/5 PA, although he only appeared in 1 Game this season and has not shown much improvement in his attributes. TOP PLAYERS: Kyle Connolly, Rhys Lalite, Anthony Garrard 2022/23: The ’23 Youth Class showed a lot of promise, but it is looking to be a little underwhelming now. Both Sam Beresford and Mike Rigby made their debuts at CD this season, while Bevon Daley has shown some promise although he has yet to make his debut. The other high rated prospect outside of those three was Mehmet Donmez, but injuries have hampered him and he did not show much improvement. Billy Burnett has also caught my eye, as his PA went from 4/5 to 4.5/5 – it was actually at 5/5 at one point this season.
  11. This has been a genuinely enjoyable season - we are moving up the leagues faster than any save I have had before. League 2 has always been an annoying one, so I am glad to be moving up!
  12. Who cares about getting better and becoming a stronger team, right? Lets sell our players for peanuts!
  13. Thanks! The talent coming in from the Kafra Youth Academy has definitely improved, but yes, I really don't need any more strikers! I could really go for a great CM at this point.
  14. Third time a charm? Great start in our third season in the League 2!
×