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Update 155

Years: 12, Months: 155, Days: 4711

It’s the end of the season, so what have our canny managers got up to in May? As promised, there was plenty of exciting football action, but what became of it?

Tyler Burrows’s Udinese continued their half-and-half football into the final month of the season, thrashing Juventus 4-0 this month, drawing with Genoa but losing to both Inter and Frosinone. They did climb one place and ended the season 8th. Meanwhile, Lord Weeman’s Napoli never closed that gap on Cool Manager’s Inter, and they in fact slipped behind A.C. Milan to third on results between teams. They actually ended the season well, beating Mantova, Brescia and A.C. Milan and drawing with Roma and Genoa. But Napoli won’t complain too much, as they still had a chance to do a double, since they competed in two finals this month.

Road to the Final – Coppa Italia

Lord Weeman’s Napoli hit the ground running in their Coppa Italia campaign, knocking out Bologna in the 1st Round with a 3-0 home victory. Their Quarter Final tie, away to Sampdoria, wasn’t as comfortable, but a 1-0 win put them in the Last Four. Roma, less than a month after hiring former Manchester United manager Leo Dodge, won their 1st Round tie with a 4-0 victory at home to Atalanta. They cleared the Quarter Final with a 2-1 win over Serie A runners-up A.C. Milan, and set up a two-legged Semi Final with Inter. The first leg, at home, was won by Roma 1-0, and the second leg was also won by Roma, a strong 2-1 victory at the San Siro. Napoli, meanwhile, thrashed opponents Udinese with a 3-0 win away and a 2-0 one at home.

Roma’s Olimpico traditionally hosted the Final, which does seem a bit unfair. Still, Napoli were there and up for the challenge, in front of the 81,161 fans from both camps and from the neutral camp. The game was pretty level over both halves, but Spanish forward Bojan put Roma into the lead in the 23rd minute with a free kick. He doubled that lead a minute from half time, when he slotted home at the end of a move from the back by Roma. Napoli, who understandably had the better of the second half, couldn’t score at all, but then neither could Roma. A 2-0 win gave Leo Dodge only his third career title.
Road to the Final – Champions League

Lord Weeman’s Napoli were drawn into Champions League Group D, alongside Arsenal, Shakhtar Donetsk and Wisla Krakow. It looked like any progress through the group stage would only just be secured, but in the end, Napoli won all games without conceding, with the exception of the two fixtures against Arsenal, which they lost without scoring. Pavel Nedved’s Bayern Munich, meanwhile, started in Group A, alongside Celtic, Chelsea and APOEL Nicosia. Bayern won both matches against APOEL, of course, and both matches against Celtic, and both matches against Chelsea. That is, they forced their way through the group stage with eighteen goals scored and five conceded.

Bayern’s Last 16 tie came against Valencia, a force to be reckoned with for sure. However, the Germans weathered the storm and won 1-0 in Spain, a result followed up by the same scoreline at home. Napoli, meanwhile, faced more English opponents in their Last 16 tie, being pitted against holders Man City. A 1-0 home win didn’t look like it would be enough, but when City won 3-2 at home, Lord Weeman’s side found themselves not only in the next round, but as giant killers. They would have to continue giant-killing if they wanted further progress: Real Madrid waited in the Quarter Finals. A 2-0 win at home meant Napoli were in with a decent chance, and when they held Real to a 1-0 win in Spain, they had done it again and were in the Last Four.

Bayern’s Quarter Final match was against La Liga leaders Atlético Madrid. They looked down and out when they travelled to Spain and were met with a 1-4 drubbing, but a fantastic comeback in Germany, a 3-0 win, put them through thanks to the majesty of away goals. A third consecutive Spanish side would welcome them in the Semi Finals, and it was 2018 winners Zaragoza this time. Bayern won 1-0 in Spain, but celebrations couldn’t begin too early. They found themselves 0-2 down in the home leg, but a brace from German midfielder Christian Weigl helped them to a 3-2 victory that put them into the Final. Napoli, meanwhile, continued their fantastic run with a 4-1 home victory over Arsenal. The Gunners won 1-0 at the Emirates with the lion’s share of dominance, but, like Real Madrid and Man City, and despite doing the double over Weeman’s side in the group stage, they couldn’t win the tie, and Napoli found themselves in the Final.

The Veltins-Arena, home to Schalke 04, hosted the Final, which meant that Bayern’s journey was two-and-a-half times shorter than Napoli’s. 61,482 fans were packed into the stands, while English referee Ross Hughes took on another high-profile game. Just like the Coppa Italia game, the teams were pretty level, but Napoli went ahead just before the end of the first half, with 30-year-old Bayern defender Gustavo Baretta trying to steal the ball from fellow Argentine Federico Laurito very close to the goal, but running it into his own net. Bayern Munich started the second half the stronger, for good reason, but 15 minute into it Napoli found themselves an opportune moment to strike back, with Finland’s Lauri Dalla Valle striking the ball beautifully past yet another Argentine, 23-year-old Munich ‘keeper Nicolás Farías, and with man of the match Laurito once again the provider. The match ended 2-0, and Lord Weeman was paraded out onto the turf of the stadium, showered in champagne and covered in confetti.

In the other European competition, the Europa League, despite their 1-1 draw in Italy, Barcelona crashed out in the Semi Finals when Mikael Schøler’s Juventus won 5-1 at the Nou Camp. Manchester United also lost their second leg, 1-3 at James Ridley’s Sampdoria, but the away goals rule put the Old Trafford team into the Final at Wembley. Schøler’s side romped to victory, going 1-0 up in the sixth minute, 2-0 up thanks to an own goal at the half hour mark, and closing the victory with Northern Ireland’s Peter Heron ten minutes from time. This is Schøler’s greatest honour, although not his only one: he won the Coppa Italia with Juvé and the LIGA adelante with Deportivo. I’m fairly sure it doesn’t work like this in real life, but Juventus’ victory here means that Udinese get into next season’s Europa League despite only finishing eighth.

So, Barcelona’s European dreams were shattered, but could they avoid a third consecutive fifth-placed finish? Unfortunately, it didn’t look likely as Haowan Madridstas’s month started with two away draws, 1-1 against both Athletic and Tenerife. They then lost 2-3 at home to Atlético Madrid, who won La Liga a week earlier, sealing their second title in three years when Real Madrid lost at Glenn Hoddle’s Murcia. Barcelona beat Valladolid 4-1, but lost 0-1 away to Elche, and by now the fourth-placed finish was out of sight. That’s no reason to slack however, and the Catalan team ended their season with a 7-0 win over the Murcia team that undid Real. Lucas Volman’s side had some good wins this month, but also some bad losses. As well as losing the Murcia game, they lost 1-3 at home to Zaragoza, but won two away matches 3-0, at Recreativo and at Valencia, and beat Lorca 2-0 on the last day of the season. However, they had their chance to avenge their loss to Atlético in the title battle, by playing them in the Copa del Rey Final.

Road to the Final – Copa del Rey

Lucas Volman’s Real Madrid, like most La Liga teams, started their Copa del Rey campaign in the Fourth Round. There, they faced another Real, Real Unión, and they didn’t let their opponents have a look-in, winning 3-0 away and 5-0 at home to notch up eight goals over the two-legged tie. They continued their goalscoring prowess in the first leg of their Fifth Round tie, at home to Athletic, which they won 3-0. Unfortunately, they shipped three goals in the return leg, but still advanced thanks to the one goal they scored in Bilbao. Atlético Madrid, meanwhile, had an easier time in the first two rounds, beating Huesca 2-0 away and 4-0 at home in the Fourth Round, and winning their Fifth Round home tie 4-0 as well, against Valladolid, winning 7-0 in total. They faced a trickier Quarter Final, against Barcelona, but came through it 2-1 on aggregate despite a 0-1 loss at the Nou Camp.

Real Madrid returned to more comfortable matches in their Quarter Final, winning both legs of their Last Eight tie with Getafe, 2-1 away and 2-0 at home. This sent them through to the Semi-Finals, where they met Valencia. They lost the away leg, 0-2, but optimism inspired a comeback in the match at the Bernabéu, where they won 3-0 to put themselves in the Final. Atlético booked their ticket to the Nou Camp with a 2-1 win over Zaragoza, helped by a 1-1 win on Zaragoza’s turf.

Atlético Madrid came into the Final fighting, and dominated Real for much of the game, although Lucas Volman’s side were not completely against the wall. Just like the other Finals so far, a goal came just before half time, when Sergio Agüero completed a cool finish in the first minute of first half stoppage time. El Derbi madrileño was won by Atlético with Coutinho’s goal just after the hour mark. The Brazilian forward started in his own half, but ran through the middle of the field and let loose a shot from a tight angle to make the scoreline 2-0, which was how it ended.

We’ll conclude in England, of course, where West Brom took the final relegation spot, and ended up finishing ten points behind 17th-placed Leicester. West Ham joined Everton in gaining automatic promotion from the Championship, while Middlesbrough, Wigan, Bolton and Southampton entered the playoffs. Steve Tilson’s Middlesbrough put out Southampton 5-4 in the Semi-Final, while Wigan got two 1-0 wins over Bolton. The Final at Wembley ended 1-1, and penalties made Middlesbrough the winners, after Wigan missed their first and last kicks from the spot. As for Tom Smith’s Arsenal, they played three dead rubbers, drawing 2-2 at Q.P.R. but beating both Leicester and Huddersfield. The real match of the month for them, other than the Champions League Semi-Final where they needed to win 3-0, was the FA Cup Final, against Liverpool.

Road to the Final – FA Cup

Tom Smith’s Arsenal had a very easy tie in their FA Cup Third Round match upon their entry into the competition: an away trip to Watford, who finished the season bottom of the Championship. The Gunners won 5-0, setting up a Fourth Round tie with Stoke. Rafa Benítez’s Liverpool, meanwhile, had a more tentative start to their campaign, drawing 1-1 at home to West Brom but banishing any demons with a 2-0 win away in the replay. The Reds then faced a brutal Merseyside derby at Goodison Park, but Everton aren’t what they used to be, even though they won the Championship this year, and Liverpool won the match 1-0. Arsenal also won their match 1-0 at the Britannia, and were rewarded with a home tie against Sheffield Wednesday in the Fifth Round. The Owls were seen off 3-1, allowing the Gunners to proceed to the Sixth Round to face Blackburn.

Liverpool’s Fifth Round match was at Loftus Road, a very tiny stadium where the Reds eked out a 2-1 win. This meant a trip to the rather bigger Stadium of Light for the Last Eight, where a 2-2 draw followed. Sunderland were duly knocked out in the replay at Anfield, 3-0. Arsenal’s Sixth Round went easier: they beat Rovers 2-0 at the Emirates. And the Gunners booked their Final place with a 1-0 win over Leeds at Wembley. Liverpool also won 1-0, beating Chelsea to reach their second FA Cup Final in three years.

Wembley was literally full, and you’ll never guess who refereed the Final? That’s correct: Howard Melton Webb. Francesc Fabrègas put Arsenal in front in the 13th minute, with an impulsive and accurate shot from just outside the penalty area. But hold on! Wait one minute! Go back to Update 132, and see what happened then. Arsenal took the lead, held the lead, held the lead, held the lead, before Edison Cavani scored in the last minute. Liverpool then went on to win the FA Cup on penalties. This time, Tom Smith’s team held the lead, held the lead, held the lead, before Edison Cavani scored in the last minute, taking full advantage of Arsenal follow-the-ball defending, striking Georginio Wijnaldum’s beautiful cross sweetly, and scoring probably one of the greatest goals ever in terms of technique. Now, as the full time whistle went and extra time passed without incident, Arsenal would need to avoid groundhog day. Now, as the full time whistle went and extra time passed without incident, Arsenal would need to avoid groundhog day. Liverpool started, with their assist-man Giorginio Wijnaldum scoring the first spot kick. Now, as the full time whistle went and extra time passed without incident, Arsenal would need to avoid groundhog day. January signing Dinko Leovac whizzed his penalty into the bottom-left corner of the net to level the scores. Steve James scored for Liverpool, Andrés Guardado for Arsenal. Zhang Xin scored for Liverpool, but Víctor Manuel Marañón hit the post with his shot, swinging the advantage the Reds’ way. But then Fabianski saved! Edison Cavani took his penalty high and central, and Lukasz Fabianski simply jumped to keep Arsenal in it. Henri Saivet levelled the scores. Jack Wilshere scored for Liverpool, Diogo for Arsenal, meaning it was time for sudden death. Denílson scored for Liverpool, and Francesc Fabrègas, like fellow goalscorer Edison Cavani, put his high and central and had it saved. Liverpool did it again! Now, as the full time whistle went and extra time passed without incident, Arsenal would need to avoid groundhog day. But they didn’t.

Manager of the Update

As this update is so long, I thought it would be really difficult to give this award. Actually, it turns out it’s not, and;

Lord Weeman, Napoli

wins the award as the only manager to take home silverware this month. Although they didn’t manage to close any more of that gap on Serie A leaders Inter, they did have a decent month in the league, and Weeman pulled off the incredible feat of winning them the Champions League. They lost their domestic cup final, but then so did Lucas Volman and Tom Smith, the latter of whom was also under consideration this month.

Job Securities

 [b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b]
 1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4711
   - Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   4711
   - PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Very Secure   4711
   - weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Very Secure   4711
 5th Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Stable        4711
 6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800

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English Premier League

Italian Serie A

Spanish La Liga

Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[b] Update Winner, Club                 [/b]
Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli

All Star Top Ten – Goals Scored at Current Club

[noparse]
[/noparse]  [font=Courier New][size=2][b]Pos +- Username      Manager           Original Club Current Club Goals (Pr/G) Chnge[/b][/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]1st  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] Haowan        Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona     1903 (2.41) [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#ff0000][size=2]-0.02[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]2nd  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] tomsmith1989  Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal       1765 (2.25)  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0.00[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]3rd  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] Romanista1994 Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid   1519 (1.98) [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#ff0000][size=2]-0.01[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]4th  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] weeeman27bob  Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli        1159 (1.83) [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+0.03[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]5th  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] PluckaDuck    Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese       1051 (1.66) [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#ff0000][size=2]-0.04[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]6th [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] BenArsenal    Ben Cee           Inter         Valencia       726 (2.18) [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+0.02[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]7th [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] el sid        Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter          680 (2.13) [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+0.02[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]8th [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] spartans5     Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City       603 (1.95) [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#ff0000][size=2]-0.02[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]9th [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] MikaelS       Mikael Schøler    Bologna       Juventus       555 (1.73) [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#ff0000][size=2]-0.04[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New]
[/font][font=Courier New][size=2]10th NE brettney1980  Brettney Joven    Wigan         Leeds          340 (1.63)  n/a[/size][/font]

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I thought about this just before when I was reading the latest batch of updates, you are a very, very good writer Canvey!! Both fictionally and factually, you are really informative. Just came to my head :D

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Thank you very much [noparse]:)[/noparse].

Update 156

Years: 13, Months: 156, Days: 4741

The failures and successes of last season are already being swept under the carpet as a new season unrolls. And that’s a darned shame, as Lord Weeman’s Napoli deserve to revel in their Champions League victory, and Arsenal really did well to secure the English Premier League last year. Still, onwards and upwards as they say, so let’s see what our managers got up to in June, starting in Italy.

Tyler Burrows’s continued his kooky transfer workings this month. 19-year-old central defender Vincenzo Calzavara was sold to A.C. Milan this month for £1.5M. Marco van Basten’s side already owned half of the youngster, who came through the youth system at Udinese, after they bought that 50% last season for £7.5M. Udinese also gave the half of 17-year-old left winger Antonio Cusimano that they owned to Catania for nothing, after they bought their stake two years ago for £200k, while three players were released from the club.

Napoli had no notable transfer dealings, but they are predicted to finish 3rd this year, an accurate forecast in my opinion, given their two consecutive placings there. Lord Weeman became the first of our managers to get themselves on their club’s Favoured Personnel list, earning the honour for taking the Neapolitan side to Champions League glory. Udinese, meanwhile, are tipped to finish 7th, which would be an improvement if it occurs.

Bookies say that A.C. Milan will pip their rivals and roommates Inter to the title, but I’m not so sure. Fiorentina, who were promoted from Serie B last year, are tipped to finish 14th. Hopefully the management of Walter Zenga will prove better than that of either Lars Tommersen or Theo Stigarakis, who proved to be among the worst managers in the club’s long history.

Over in England, where the transfer window has just opened, Tom Smith’s Arsenal obviously haven’t been involved in any dealings. However, Smith is reported to be interested in Leicester’s Craig Robson, a 27-year-old striker with 14 England goals to his name. The Foxes survived last season thanks in part to nine goals from their captain, while he scored 19 in all competitions. Chelsea and Valencia are also rumoured to be interested in securing his services.

The Gunners, who have Portuguese manager Smith available for one more season at £245k p/w unless they choose to renew his contract, are the bookies’ favourites to finish 2nd this season, behind Lawrence Lazewski’s Carling Cup-, Club World Championship- and UEFA Super Cup-holders Man City. Personally, I would pick the London side in the title race, given the work Smith has done recently to successfully end his three-season estrangement from the title and the spend that he is still predicted to make. West Ham and Middlesbrough, two of the sides promoted from last season’s Championship, are both expected to make the drop back down, but Fréderico Canvey’s Everton are, according to the papers, capable of a 15th-placed finish, with Crystal Palace the team likely to fill the void, although I’m sure dafuge’s Hull will give them a run for their money. Queens Park Rangers are Championship title favourites after their relegation from the top flight last year. Blackpool feature in the Championship for the first time since 2009 after Joey Barton guided them to promotion last year.

Spain, as usual, has yet to reset, although there are the standard transfer rumours in the Spanish press. Real Madrid have been linked with two goalkeepers, either of whom is expected to make the journey to the Bernabéu when their contract runs out. Barcelona are apparently hot on the trail of Atlético Madrid’s 24-year-old Danish fullback Klaus Weibel, who would cost £4.6M and who speaks Danish, England, Spanish and, to basic levels, German, Norweigan and Swedish. Napoli’s Marouane Fellaini are a target for Racing, who could pay as much as £1.1M for the 33-year-old’s services.

June is also a month packed full with international dates. World Cup qualifying was one of the chief items on the agenda. Liam Ferguson’s England won both their games, beating Lithuania 2-1 in Vilnius with goals from Theo Walcott and Arsenal target Craig Robson. They then destroyed powerless Andorra 8-0 at Wembley, with Robson grabbing five goals. Saul Goode’s Wales also won both games, neither of which were easy, beating Sweden 1-0 and Serbia 2-0, both at home. Spain drew two away matches so the Welsh are level on points. Scotland beat Albania 2-1 and drew goalless in Macedonia; Ireland thumped Kazakhstan 6-0 but drew goalless at home to Poland, and Northern Ireland lost in Italy and in Romania.

Brazil became South America’s second qualifier for the World Cup, after hosts Argentina, when they drew with Uruguay and beat Paraguay this month. They also travelled to Argentina for the Confederations Cup, where they lost to the host nation on penalties in the Final, with Pato, who scored Brazil’s only goal in the headline match, missing the decisive spot kick. Spain beat the Netherlands to claim third place, but while the Final penalty shootout was a paradigm, with Pato’s miss being the only one, the one in this match saw nine penalties missed and just seven scored. Peru, Chile and Uruguay also sit in the South America’s qualifying spots, with Colombia looking to reach the intercontinental playoffs. They could face Honduras, who occupy the respective spot in North America. Mexico, the United States and Guatemala sit in the automatic qualification places there, with Panama and Bermuda somewhat adrift.

Asia’s qualifying groups are now completed, with Australia, China, the United Arab Emirates and Japan taking the automatic qualification spots. Iran will face Saudi Arabia for the right to play New Zealand, while Kuwait, Oman, Uzbekistan and North Korea miss out altogether. One game was played in African qualification, and it’s Morocco, Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Nigeria and Ghana that top the groups after two games. In youth competitions, one of the many tournaments this month saw Robert Boyle’s England u21s travel to Turkey for the European u21 Championship. Victory over Switzerland was followed by defeat by Ireland, with Reading striker Andy Porter netting a hattrick, and the English ended their group stage by drawing with group-toppers Italy. Ireland went through in second place, meaning England’s campaign was much less successful than the last tournament in 2019, when they won the trophy. Ireland knocked out Greece in the Semi-Finals, thanks to another two goals from eventual top goalscorer Porter, while Italy beat Spain 4-0. Italy won the title with a 4-2 win at the Izmir Atatürk.

So that’s all for this month. Next month sees some early action in European competition, along with transfers galore if the papers are to be believed. See you then.

Manager of the Update

It’s never easy to give the June award, but;

Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)

picks this one up, almost as a reward for his eight years of service to his national team. This month, their World Cup qualifying campaign was bolstered with small but important wins over Sweden and Serbia, which puts them level with Spain, the winners of the past two World Cups. Liam Ferguson’s England also did well, winning both games with an 8-0 trashing of Andorra, while Tyler Burrows was the only manager of ours to really do anything significant.

Job Securities

[b] Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b]
 1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4741
   - Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   4741
 3rd PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Stable        4741
   - weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Stable        4741
   - Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Stable        4741
 6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[size=2][b]Update Winner, Club                [/b][/size] 
[size=2]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)[/size]

All Star Top Ten – Goals Conceded at Current Club

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username      Manager           Original Club Current Club Gls (Pr/G) Chnge[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] tomsmith1989  Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal      682 (0.87) [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-0.01[/size][/color][size=2] *[/size]
 [size=2]2nd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Haowan        Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona    670 (0.85) [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]+0.01[/size][/color][size=2] *[/size]
 [size=2]3rd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] PluckaDuck    Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese      594 (0.94) [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]+0.01[/size][/color][size=2] *[/size]
 [size=2]4th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] weeeman27bob  Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli       564 (0.89) [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-0.03[/size][/color][size=2] *[/size]
 [size=2]5th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Romanista1994 Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid  532 (0.69)  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0.00[/size][/color][size=2] *[/size]
 [size=2]6th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] MikaelS       Mikael Schøler    Bologna       Juventus     290 (0.90) [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-0.03[/size][/color]
 [size=2]7th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal    Ben Cee           Inter         Valencia     283 (0.85) [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]+0.08[/size][/color]
 [size=2]8th NE brettney1980  Brettney Joven    Wigan         Leeds        244 (1.17)  n/a[/size]
 [size=2]9th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] el sid        Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter        234 (0.73) [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-0.06[/size][/color]
[size=2]10th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] spartans5     Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City     232 (0.75) [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-0.05[/size][/color]

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Haowan losing his 'very secure' stance at Barca, could be a sign of things to come... (Clutching at straws of course :D )

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These 5 are incredibly impressive. How long has it been just them at this point?

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About 3 seasons since the last go got sacked I think.

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Yes, as of that last update, it was 941 days since Leo Dodge left Tottenham.

Update 157

Years: 13, Months: 157, Days: 4772

It’s August and mere days remain before the commencement of the domestic football season in England. Still, there is July to talk about, so we’ll do that now, starting in Spain.

Valencia have been made title favourites for La Liga this season, and their continuing oscillation between first and fourth place says that they're due victory this year. Although Atlético Madrid, who are predicted second and who want to protect their crown, will have something to say about that, of course. Lucas Volman’s Real Madrid are tipped to finish 3rd, and a £16.75M spend this month is actually around about that level. They brought in 28-year-old goalkeeper Iker Vázquez, 12 years younger than the other Real Madrid ‘keeper Iker, Casillas, for £1.4M, and tireless 22-year-old Brazilian midfielder Tiago for £15.25M. Both signings were from Valencia, while two young fringe players moved out to Zamora for a combined total of £750k. 30-year-old Brazilian fullback Andrade joined Haowan Madridstas’s Barcelona for £8.75M, 21-year-old goalkeeper Oriol Sanz joined Villarreal for £230k, and is soon off to Xerez, and Daniel Schwaab, after 222 league games for the club, joins Roma for £2.3M.

It was in fact Barcelona who made the bigger spending waves, perhaps in an effort to avoid a fourth consecutive fifth-placed finish, which is, incidentally, the papers’ prediction for them. As well as the Andrade signing, Barcelona confirmed the speculation that they were in for 24-year-old Danish player Klaus Weibel, signing the fullback for £5.5M. Weibel once missed a decisive penalty for Atlético Madrid to give their rivals Real the Copa del Rey. Central midfielder Francesco Bolzoni joined from Roma, and cost the most of all three, £14.75M, giving Haowan Madridstas a total spend of £29M. Some of this was recouped with the sale of Gaël Kakuta, who signed from Man United two years ago, for £11.75M. He’ll be back in Manchester, playing for his former rivals, Lawrence Lazewski’s Manchester City, who spent £37.5M this month. Albacete, Gimnàstic and Lorca are all expected to get relegated from La Liga, which would be good for newly-promoted Málaga, who are capable of a 13th-place finish, according to the Spanish Football Post.

Our friend in England, Tom Smith, has made a number of signing this month, but has shown austerity in his spending. Liverpool’s 20-year-old Scottish goalkeeper David Barker and 35-year-old goalkeeper Tom Heaton joined for free, while commanding fullback Micah Richards, with 83 England caps to his name, cost the club just £2.9M when he arrived from Man City. Walter Díaz, the Honduras captain who has been at A.C. Milan for the past seven years, signed from Marco van Basten’s team for £4M. I consider the defender (right, centre), wing back (right), defensive midfielder, midfielder (right, centre) a steal considering his versatility, ambition, and the fact that he has 60 caps for the Central American country at the age of 28. Since two goalkeepers came in, 27-year-old Italian one Rudy Osti had to leave after a year at the club, joining Cool Manager’s Inter for £2.7M.

So, what about Europe? Two rounds of the Europa League took place this month, and Falkirk, Steaua Bucharest, Llanelli, IFK Göteborg, Shamrock Rovers, Derry City and Wisla Krakow were among the winners in the Second Qualifying Round, of which Steaua, Shamrock Rovers and Wisla made it through the Third. Tyler Burrows’s Udinese were also playing in the Third Qualifying Round, against Dinamo Tirana. They romped to victory, winning the first leg 4-0 in Albania and the second 5-0 in Italy. They await the Fourth Qualifying Round draw, along with Leeds, Galatasaray, Sevilla, AEK Athens, AZ Alkmaar and Motherwell, who also won in this round. The winners in that round will join Juventus, the defending champions, in the group stages.

The Champions League qualifying also took place, and my highlight is Dundee United’s 3-0 lead over Fenerbahçe in the Best Placed Second Qualifying Round, after the first leg in Scotland. CSKA Moscow look sure of progression after they beat Young Boys 4-0 in Switzerland. Isn’t that illegal? Valencia await for one team in the next round, that team being either Metalist Kharkov or Panathanaikos, while Liverpool will meet Standard Liège or Red Bull Salzburg. The winner of the Dundee United match will have to beat 2017 Europa League winners Lazio if they want to make the group stages.

It’s time to conclude in Italy, where transfers galore mean I guarantee this won’t make you snore! It’s been a busy time at Lord Weeman’s Napoli, after a Champions League title has netted them a large windfall. They opened the month signing Torino’s Mattia Silvestri, an 18-year-old striker with a ‘Finishing’ attribute of 16, for a grand total of £7.2M. Later that week Mike Hay joined the club, departing St James’ Park for San Paolo for £15.75M. The former West Ham, Rangers, Ipswich and Middlesbrough central midfielder has taken to the field 15 times for England (listing Jeremy English, who managed Hay at under-21 level, among his favoured personnel) and scored thrice, including in the Euro 2016 Final and in World Cup 2018 against Romania. Napoli then bought half of Rimini’s 19-year-old right winger and striker Luca Pastore two days later for £6.25M. Later in the month, Spanish striker Daniel Resino, who is aged 26, has a ‘Finishing’ attribute of 17 and lists Lucas Volman among his favoured personnel despite only playing ten times under the Italian, joined from Cádiz for £7.75M. 25-year-old Croatian goalkeeper Ivan Dumancic joined from A.C. Milan for £350k, but was subsequently sold to Lyon after five days for £1.8M. That goalkeeping void (although it was just a backup position) was filled by Juventus’ Antonio Piccolo, who joined for £170k on the penultimate day of the month.

But Napoli’s spend was not just financed by their Champions League money. Lord Weeman was keen to sell players too, and not just the wheeling-and-dealing involved in the Dumancic switch. Mauricio Isla joined Blackburn for £1.3M, 25-year-old leftback Lorenzo Viscido joined Atalanta for £1.6M, and 20-year-old midfielder Rosario Bosi left for Livorno for £4M. But the biggest sale was the £8.75M transfer of 23-year-old central defender, described as towering due to his 6’4’’ stature and his brilliant heading, to Genoa*. 21-year-old left winger Joe Egan, who was born in the small town of Cleator Moor, Cumbria, but who came through Napoli’s youth system, presumably due to Weeman’s English influence, was one of thirteen players to be released by the club. Rhyl, King’s Lynn and Port Talbot are said to be interested in the two-footed player.

Writer's Notes: * =I obviously forgot to include this guy's name, and am actually unable to check at the moment!

Napoli weren’t the only ones spending money in Italy, as Tyler Burrows will be all too keen to point out. As if buoyed by the cash cow of European football after a year’s absence, the Andorran manager, who this month received a contract extension which takes him to 2025, bought four players for a total of £13.75M. Half of Siena’s 24-year-old striker Antonio Martino joined Udinese for £375k and Belarus captain Vladimir Yurchenko signed from Robert Boyle’s Aston Villa for £2.8M. Burrows bought two players for £5.25M each; Roma’s 24-year-old central defender Davide Anaclerio and Getafe’s 22-year-old central midfielder Luca Mattioli, who will now play his fourth consecutive season at a different club and at his sixth Italian club, but who has never commanded a price tag of over a million pounds before. 19-year-old central defender Vincenzo Calzavara left the club for title chasers A.C. Milan, netting Burrows’s club £1.5M.

That’s all for this month, and about time too! Our managers should stop spending money: it doubles the size of the report I have to write!

Manager of the Update

It was a month of heavy spending and some selling too. But he normally gets this award around this time and I wouldn’t want to let him down.

Tyler Burrows, Udinese

picks up the trophy for his 9-0 win over Dinamo Tirana in the Europa League qualifying phases. Usually, those ties do nothing to tax a team from our three nations, but to win it with nine goals is still a powerful showing. Tom Smith gets a mention for making the smallest transfer loss of all of our managers, and while normally that could betray a lack of ambition, plenty of spending last season implies the opposite. If I wanted to reward ambition I would give Lord Weeman the award, but he doesn’t get among the headlines here despite his £20M loss as we’ve yet to see how that manifests itself.

Job Securities

 [b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b]
 1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4772
   - Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   4772
   - Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   4772
 4th PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Stable        4772
   - weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Stable        4772
 6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

 [b]Update Winner, Club            [/b]     
Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)
Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese

All Star Top Ten – Goal Difference at Current Club

 [font=Courier New][size=2][b]Pos +- Username      Manager           Original Club Current Club GlDif[/b][/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]1st  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] Haowan        Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona    +1233 *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]2nd  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] tomsmith1989  Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal      +1083 *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]3rd  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] Romanista1994 Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid  + 987 *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]4th  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] weeeman27bob  Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli       + 595 *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]5th  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] PluckaDuck    Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese      + 466 *[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]6th [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] el sid        Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter        + 446[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]7th [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] BenArsenal    Ben Cee           Inter         Valencia     + 443[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]8th  [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] spartans5     Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City     + 371[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]9th [/size][/font][font=Courier New][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][/font][font=Courier New][size=2] MikaelS       Mikael Schøler    Bologna       Juventus     + 265[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
[/font][font=Courier New][size=2]10th NE brettney1980  Brettney Joven    Wigan         Leeds        + 106[/size][/font]

Lifespan – 5 to 10 Years

  [b]Pos Username             Manager             Club       Days[/b]
 7th TaylorB              Ben Taylor          Fiorentina 3442
 8th fergysafc            Liam Ferguson       Man City   2783
 9th JSalter              James Salter        Reggina    2710
10th mikeytwigge          Mikey Twigge        Palermo    2507
11th BenArsenal           Ben Cee             Inter      2502
12th super_lampard        Super Lampard       Lecce      2119
13th Cardiovascular       Cardio Vascular     Genoa      2010
14th Lower Leagues Rule   Jonte Rhodes        Lazio      1968

Lifespan – 2 to 5 Years

[b]  Pos Username             Manager             Club       Days[/b]
15th hasdgfas             Tim Aubel           Fulham     1705
16th ~Ian~                Bryan McGuinness    Everton    1701
17th rancer890            Ricky Nakano        Middlesbro 1614
18th ssestig              Theo Stigarakis     Catania    1405
19th bermybhoy            bermybhoy           Atalanta   1320
   - IlikeJellybeans      Jellybean Man       Numancia   1320
21st m1234566778          Maz Armley          Racing     1288
22nd el sid               Cool Manager        At. Madrid 1263
23rd spartans5            Lawrence Lazewski   Valencia   1259
24th Greasy Chip Butty    Andy Morton         Sporting   1244
25th Martin_              Martin Bojangles    Hull       1241
26th clrkaitken           Clark Aitken        Roma       1237
27th Waghlon              Lars Tommersen      Villarreal 1230
28th Walcott’s Wonderkids Brucie Bonus        West Brom  1210
29th Almondo              Arnold J. Rimmer    Bolton     1208
30th Neji                 Neji Hyuuga         Deportivo   999
31st Jack Rudd            Lisa Jeffries       Juventus    925
32nd pnefc22              Wobill Luman        Betis       889
33rd AtilasMiserly        Will de Mote        A.C. Milan  882
34th JoeLatics            Joe Gleeson         Espanyol    873
   - Blanco               Cristobal Blanco    Recreativo  873
36th ian_1982             Maurice Jobson      Man United  852
37th Ridleys              James Ridley        Siena       843

Lifespan – 1 to 2 Years

[b]  Pos Username             Manager             Club      Days[/b]
38th conners              Sirus Lannock       Málaga     628
39th MikaelS              Mikael Schøler      Bologna    613
40th Swafe                Saul Goode          Osasuna    551
41st hamilton162          Tom Hamilton        Mallorca   509
42nd kashmirshazad        Shazad Ali          Newcastle  508
43rd DiscoStu94           Da Hoover Man       Sampdoria  501
   - ScottT!              Scott Tysoe         Sunderland 501
45th canvey!!             Fréderico Canvey    Stoke      476

Lifespan – Less than 1 Year

  [b]Pos Username             Manager             Club      Days[/b]
46th corinthiano          Mathias Brunckhorst Chievo     327
   - Neilio               Neilio              Almería    327
48th Robert_296           Robert Boyle        Blackburn  326
49th brettney1980         Brettney Joven      Wigan      320
50th TigerJoe             Joe Seddon          Getafe     271
51st jack.browne          Jack Browne         Sevilla    250
52nd NepentheZ            Neppo Monster       Cagliari   236
   - dafuge               dafuge              Torino     236
54th KiddingChoc          Zach Machios        Portsmouth 235
   - Whoopy D             Whoopy D            West Ham   235
56th d-machine            David Machine       Athletic   229
57th PaulHartman71        Jeremy English      Liverpool  204
58th Chimpos              Phill Ewles         Valladolid
   - tadr                 Andre da Conceiçao  Chelsea
   - markcator3006        Mark Cator          Aston Villa

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First manager of the month award in a while. Hopefully these new signings can make a good difference in the team as we look for trophies finally!

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Sorry about the five-day wait between updates!

Update 158

Years: 13, Months: 158, Days: 4803

The new season is under way, so we’ll get straight down to business by starting with the news in England during the month of August.

Lawrence Lazewski’s Man City lead the Premier League after three games played, and are in fact the only side to have won all three, beating Liverpool, Newcastle and Blackburn this month. Fulham, Chelsea, Tottenham and Ipswich are all two points further back after two wins and a draw, but it isn’t going so well for Tom Smith’s Arsenal. Although it is early days, the title holders are in a poor 11th place, having lost 1-5 at home to Bryan McGuinness’s Chelsea, before a win over Blackburn and a draw at Anfield. A match against Man City awaits next month, but Arsenal’s league position should increase nonetheless, after Smith made the most expensive transfer ever (given that Ronaldo’s, Kaká’s and Ibrahimović’s haven’t happened in this game) when he bought Leicester’s powerful striker Craig Robson, with whom he had been linked, for £48M. Robson, whose ‘Finishing’ is rated as 17 and ‘First Touch’ at 18, has been at Leicester since 2016 and got his first England cap in 2018. Incidentally, he shares my birthday. He already picked up his first piece of silverware at Arsenal as the Gunners ran out 1-0 victors over Liverpool in the Community Shield at Wembley. It took a 90th-minute goal from Spanish midfielder Víctor Manuel Marañón for them to reap the rewards of their two-to-one shot ratio.

Over in Spain, the league has just got under way, but Atlético Madrid and Valencia proved their desire for the title by each being one of the eight sides to win their first game. Barcelona lost, suffering a 0-1 defeat at home to Valladolid, and Lucas Volman’s Real Madrid drew at Racing. Volman is currently Secure, presumably due to a humiliating home derby defeat to Atlético Madrid in the Super Cup. Real lost that home leg 0-2, and a 1-0 victory away wasn’t enough to clinch the title. The Spanish giants continued their raid on Valencia this month, bringing in 31-year-old French player Morgan Schneiderlin, who played at Atlético before his move to Ben Cee’s side, for £8M. Barcelona also made one transfer, selling Spanish (that’s right) midfielder Mark Byrne to Deportivo for £325k.

This month saw the conclusion of the qualifying stages of European football. CSKA Moscow won 6-0 at home to Young Boys in the Champions League Best Placed Second Qualifying Phase to compound a 10-0 drubbing, while Dundee United progressed on away goals despite a 1-4 defeat at Fenerbahçe. A similar 1-4 away loss in the first leg of their Third Qualifying Phase match, at Lazio, wasn’t returned with a 3-0 home win, but instead with a 0-1 home loss, so Dundee United enter the Europa League. CKSA Moscow, Valencia and Liverpool all won their first legs away, at FC Twente, Panathanaikos and Standard Liège respectively, and all went through with home victories too. Bayern Munich beat PSG 6-1 at home and so the French 3-2 victory wasn’t enough to stop last year’s runners-up. The group stage draw sees holders Napoli playing against CKSA Moscow, FC København and Lyon, while Arsenal play Basel, Benfica and Trabzonspor and Real Madrid play Dortmund, Lillestrøm and Liverpool. Inter and Valencia meet yet again, in their group with Braga and Partizan Belgrade.

In the Europa League, Tyler Burrows’s Udinese beat Rapid Wien with a 2-0 home win and a 3-0 one in Austria, while Barcelona beat Lokomotiv Moscow 5-0 at home, meaning a 0-2 defeat in Russia had no effect. PSV Eindhoven, Portsmouth, Palermo, Rangers, Wolfsburg, Leeds, Betis, Sevilla, Porto, Tottenham, Roma, Galatasaray and Shakhtar Donetsk were some of the other sides to make it through the Fourth Qualifying Round.

The season has kicked off in Italy, although our two sides have yet to play. Cool Manager’s Inter lead the league, after their 2-1 victory at Sampdoria, although Parma also won by the same scoreline. A.C. Milan, however, were held to a draw at home to Lazio, so Inter already have two points in their favour in the title race. But they did lose the Italian Super Cup this month, being beaten on penalties by Roma. Lord Weeman’s Napoli travelled to Monaco this month to play the UEFA Super Cup against fellow Italians, Mikael Schøler’s Juventus. A brace from Lauri Dalla Valle epitomised the clinical finishing of the Neapolitans as they ran out 4-0 victors in front of an 18,500-strong crowd. Weeman made four transfers this month, continuing his spending by buying Palermo’s 25-year-old winger Raffaele Conti for £3.9M, Lazio’s 28-year-old centreback Francesco Andreoletti for £4.6M and Genoa’s 24-year-old central midfielder Gianluca Di Clemente for £8.25M. Youngster Raffaello Casadei left the club for £450k, joining Bologna. Udinese made two transfers, signing for free a promising 17-year-old Argentine goalkeeper Filippo Manzini, and selling 28-year-old ‘keeper Maurizio Magnani to Modena for £1.6M.

Based on the spending of all our managers so far this season, I have a few predictions. Napoli, who have just had two consecutive third-placed finishes, will finish second or higher, and are likely to win the league. A cup double is also on the cards for them, although fixture congestion tells me that they will win exactly one of those cups (Champions League & Coppa Italia). Udinese will make an improvement in their fortunes, but won’t get Champions League football. Arsenal will lose out on the title to Man City, and will finish second, but may win either the Carling Cup or the FA Cup. Barcelona will finish fifth again, although a slump to sixth isn’t out of the question, and Real Madrid will not win La Liga, and will probably finish third. We can only wait and see.

Manager of the Update

This month’s winner is;

Tyler Burrows, Udinese

after he swept through his European match against Rapid Wien and made a £1.6M profit with some wise transfer dealings. He beat Lord Weeman to the award after the Napoli manager won the UEFA Super Cup in style. Tom Smith showed his ambition with a £48M transfer, and won the Community Shield, but made an indifferent start to the league season.

Job Securities

  [font=Courier New][b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b]
 1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4803
   - Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   4803
 3rd Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Secure        4803
 4th PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Stable        4803
   - weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Stable        4803
 6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/font]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[size=2][b]Update Winner, Club                [/b][/size] 
[size=2]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)[/size]
[size=2]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]

Hall of Experience – Top Ten Oldest Managers (I’m now going to do these lists in a Hall of Fame vs. Hall of Shame style format)

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club Age[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid   61 *[/size]
   [size=2]- [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] IlikeJellybeans Jellybean Man     Numancia      Fulham        61[/size]
   [size=2]-  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Swafe           Saul Goode        Osasuna       Wales         61[/size]
 [size=2]4th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] NepentheZ       Neppo Monster     Cagliari      Wigan         60[/size]
   [size=2]-  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Almondo         Arnold J. Rimmer  Bolton        Newcastle     60[/size]
 [size=2]6th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-2[/size][/color][size=2] SCIAG           Leo Dodge         Tottenham     Roma          59[/size]
   [size=2]- [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+2[/size][/color][size=2] ScottT!         Scott Tysoe       Sunderland    Rangers       59[/size]
   [size=2]- [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-2[/size][/color][size=2] Haowan          Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona     59 *[/size]
   [size=2]- [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+2[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter         Valencia      59[/size]
[size=2]10th NE Waghlon         Lars Tommersen    Villarreal    Betis         57[/size]
   [size=2]-  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] PluckaDuck      Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese       57 *[/size]

Hall of Youth – Top Ten Youngest Managers

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club Age[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st NE canvey!!        Fréderico Canvey  Stoke         Everton       47[/size]
   [size=2]- NE MikaelS         Mikael Schøler    Bologna       Juventus      47[/size]
 [size=2]3rd NE mikeytwigge     Mikey Twigge      Palermo                     48[/size]
   [size=2]- NE fergysafc       Liam Ferguson     Man City      England       48[/size]
 [size=2]5th NE Ridleys         James Ridley      Siena         Sampdoria     49[/size]
 [size=2]6th NE Chimpos         Phill Ewles       Valladolid    Besiktas      50[/size]
 [size=2]7th NE Neilio          Neilio            Almería       Palermo       51[/size]
   [size=2]- NE Robert_296      Robert Boyle      Blackburn     AV/ENG u21s   51[/size]
   [size=2]- NE el sid          Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter         51[/size]
[size=2]10th    5 managers                                                    53[/size]

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Update 159

Years: 13, Months: 159, Days: 4833

Italy is our first port of call as we seek to examine what went on in the month of September, and how well our managers did in their attempts to start the new season brightly. Bob Bradley’s Lazio lead Serie A, but they are level on points with second-placed Inter. The next two places are filled by our clubs, Tyler Burrows’s Udinese and Lord Weeman’s Napoli respectively, although while the majority of clubs, Lazio included, have played six games, our two have only played four. In September, Udinese won all four matches, beating Catania 4-1, Frosinone 3-0, Modena 2-1 and Fiorentina 1-0. Napoli also beat Modena and Fiorentina, but drew at home to Parma. They ended their month on a high, beating Leo Dodge’s Roma 3-0.

In Spain, not only are Cádiz the unlikely leaders of La Liga, but Gimnàstic are the unlikely second-placed team, while title favourites Valencia are eighth. Lucas Volman’s Real Madrid are 4th, five games into the new season, after they got three 1-0 wins over Elche, Sevilla and Getafe this month. Unfortunately, the month started with a 1-2 loss at home to Albacete. Haowan Madridstas’s Barcelona are sixth: they beat Athletic and Gimnàstic in confident showings, 3-0 and 4-0 respectively, but were overcome by an even more confident showing when they lost 0-5 at Cádiz. They ended the month with a 3-1 victory at home to Champions League hopefuls Zaragoza.

The European competition group stages are now well under way, and we’ll start with the Champions League. Arsenal travelled to Switzerland to beat Basel 3-1, and then hosted Benfica at the Emirates, romping to a 5-0 victory. Napoli also won 5-0, this time away to FC København, but that was followed by a 3-3 draw at home to CSKA Moscow. They lead the way on goal difference but CSKA are a threat, and Lyon, with their 6-0 win over the Danes, also mean business. Real Madrid have a tough opponent in their group in the form of Liverpool, and so want to do as well as possible in the other games. Unfortunately, this month they drew at Dortmund before beating Lillestrøm 2-0 at home, but are in second place behind the Reds.

In the Europa League, Tyler Burrows’s Udinese found themselves in a group with Standard Liège, Kayserispor and CFR Cluj. They won their first two games, 3-0 in Romania and 2-0 at home to Standard. Barcelona, meanwhile, meet two relatively big names in their group. However, Paris Saint-Germain’s heavy defeat to Bayern Munich in the Champions League qualifying and PSV Eindhoven’s 1-4 home loss to Barca in the first match of this group stage implies that they won’t offer much resistance. The other team in the group are Israel’s Maccabi Netanya (Netanya incidentally is twinned with my hometown), whom Barcelona beat 5-0 at the Nou Camp and who lost their first game at home to the French also.

In England, Bryan McGuinness’s Chelsea have taken the spot at the top of the Premier League, but Man City are still looming close by, as are Fulham and Tottenham. Tom Smith’s Arsenal are ninth, but they got another difficult game out of the way this month, a 0-1 defeat at Man City. Their other games they won, over West Ham and Middlesbrough, and they also reached the Carling Cup Fourth Round after a 1-0 victory over Aston Villa in the Third Round. Theo Walcott scored the winner deep into first half stoppage time at the Emirates, and the Gunners go on to face a trip to Southampton. Liverpool are out of the way after they lost at the Chelsea Stadium in Round 3, and a Manchester derby at Old Trafford in the Fourth Round will take another of the bigger sides out of the draw.

There was more World Cup qualifying this month, and England became one of the first European sides to qualify for the 2022 World Cup. Liam Ferguson’s team won 4-0 in Norway and 5-0 at home to Moldova this month, meaning that they are eight points beyond the second-placed Norwegians, and therefore will be making the trip to Argentina. New Arsenal signing Craig Robson got two of the goals in the Norway victory, but sprained his ankle in the Wembley match, where five different players scored, and so is out of action for a week. France were the other team to qualify from Europe, after they won 2-1 in Scotland and beat Armenia 4-0. The Scots still harbour some hope, with games against Albania and Armenia, but second-placed Belgium shouldn’t have any difficulty winning at home to Armenia or FYR Macedonia. Saul Goode’s Wales beat the Faroe Islands 2-1 this month but suffered a reversal of that scoreline in Spain. But a Spanish loss in Serbia means the two sides are still level on 15 points, alongside Sweden. However, the Spanish have two home games against the bottom two teams, the Faroes and Georgia, while Wales travel to Georgia and Sweden. Germany, Portugal, Israel, Croatia, the Czech Republic and Romania all top their groups.

Peru became the third nation to qualify from South America, joining hosts Argentina and qualification group winners Brazil. The rest of the teams are very closely-knit and sixth-placed Paraguay could catch up any one of Chile, Colombia and Uruguay, who occupy the next two qualification spaces and the playoff place respectively. Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia are out. In North America, the United States booked their place with wins over Mexico and Honduras, and Guatemala also secured their very first World Cup appearance when they beat Panama and Mexico this month. The Mexicans are in third place, and with matches against the two bottom-placed teams (Panama and Bermuda), look likely to nab the last qualification space, leaving Honduras content with the playoffs. Africa also qualified its first side, after Cameroon ran rampant in their group with Gabon, Benin and Zambia, and Morocco, the Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Ghana lead the groups with four of the six games played.

So that’s all for September. With European football, domestic football, international football and cups awaiting in October, it isn’t to be missed!

Manager of the Update

All of our teams played six games this month so it is easy to declare;

Tyler Burrows, Udinese

as the winner of this award, as his team won all six of their matches. They made a fine start to the league season with four victories, and have notched up impressive clean sheet victories in both Europa League matches. Tom Smith won five of his matches, but lost a tricky game at Man City, while Lord Weeman, whose side won four of their matches, was held to two home draws against Parma and CSKA Moscow. Our two Spanish sides, however, both suffered undignified losses to teams considered relegation fodder.

Job Securities

[noparse]
[/noparse][font=Courier New][size=2][b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b][/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4833[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
   [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]- Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   4833[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]3rd Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Secure        4833[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]4th PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Stable        4833[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
   [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]- weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Stable        4833[/size][/font][font=Courier New]
 [/font][font=Courier New][size=2]6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/size][/font]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[size=2][b]Update Winner, Club                [/b][/size] 
[size=2]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)[/size]
[size=2]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]

Hall of Profligacy – Top Ten Highest Fee Spent

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club Player                Fee[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+7[/size][/color][size=2] tomsmith1989    Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal      Craig Robson#     £48   M *[/size]
 [size=2]2nd [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] Haowan          Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona    John Heitinga     £37.5 M *[/size]
 [size=2]3rd [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] el sid          Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter        Chris Heslop#     £32.5 M[/size]
 [size=2]4th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter         Valencia     Cristiano Ronaldo £30.5 M[/size]
 [size=2]5th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] ~Ian~           Bryan McGuinness  Everton       Chelsea      Carlos Vela       £27   M[/size]
 [size=2]6th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] fergysafc       Liam Ferguson     Man City      England      Michael Essien    £26.5 M[/size]
 [size=2]7th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid  Adriano           £23   M *[/size]
 [size=2]8th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] weeeman27bob    Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli       Laure Dalla Valle £22.5 M *[/size]
 [size=2]9th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] SCIAG           Leo Dodge         Tottenham     Roma         Mario Gómez       £21.5 M[/size]
[size=2]10th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] spartans5       Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City     John Fleck        £19.75M[/size]

Hall of Austerity – Top Ten Highest Fee Received

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club Player               Fee[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  0 brettney1980    Brettney Joven    Wigan         Leeds        Chris Heslop#     £32.5M[/size]
 [size=2]2nd [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+5[/size][/color][size=2] Robert_296      Robert Boyle      Blackburn     AV/ENG u21s  Redouane Bacha#   £30  M[/size]
 [size=2]3rd [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] Waghlon         Lars Tommersen    Villarreal    Betis        Giuseppe Rossi    £29.5M[/size]
 [size=2]4th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter         Valencia     Freddy Adu        £27  M[/size]
   [size=2]- [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] PluckaDuck      Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese      Carlos Vela       £27  M *[/size]
 [size=2]6th[/size][color=#ff0000][size=2] -1[/size][/color][size=2] spartans5       Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City     Michael Essien    £26.5M[/size]
 [size=2]7th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] ~Ian~           Bryan McGuinness  Everton       Chelsea      Mikel Arteta      £25.5M[/size]
 [size=2]8th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] m1234566778     Maz Armley        Racing                     Adriano           £23  M[/size]
 [size=2]9th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] weeeman27bob    Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli       Takayuki Morimoto £21  M *[/size]
[size=2]10th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] SCIAG           Leo Dodge         Tottenham     Roma         Gaël Kakuta       £20.5M[/size]
   [size=2]-  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid  Adriano           £20.5M *[/size]

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Liking the hall of fame/shame type updates canvey, kutgw :thup:

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Update 160

Years: 13, Months: 160, Days: 4864

We’ll start the October report with World Cup news.

Liam Ferguson’s England concluded their World Cup qualifying campaign this month with two dead rubbers, drawing 2-2 in Turkey and beating Lithuania 6-0 at Wembley. 33-year-old striker James Vaughan got two of the eight goals, as did Adam Pepper who scored a brace in the Lithuania match. Norway, who lost to Lithuania but beat Moldova, took second place over Turkey, who won 5-0 in Andorra in their final game, but the Norwegians won’t enter the playoff. In Group 2, Spain held off Saul Goode’s Wales to take the qualification spot when the Spanish thrashed the Faroes 6-0 and Georgia 3-0. Wales also won both games, 2-0 in Georgia and 4-1 in Sweden, but lost out on results between teams. Serbia finished third, a point behind the Welsh. Group 3 saw Denmark win both their games this month, and so cost Germany an automatic trip to Argentina. The Germans were held to a draw in Ukraine in the first game of the month, and a win there would have put them top. But they enter the playoffs, after fighting off Finland and Ukraine for that right.

The Portuguese finished atop Group 4, beating San Marino and drawing in Greece this month. The Greeks missed out on qualification altogether, as Hungary’s two 1-1 draws this month got them the playoff spot. In Group 5, the Netherlands continued their general decline by finishing third. Despite two victories this month, including one over group winners Israel, they couldn’t catch up second-placed Switzerland, who got 2-0 wins over Cyprus and Iceland to conclude their group stage. Croatia won Group 6, holding off Slovenia with two victories this month, scoring three goals in both. Slovenia, who also won both matches, held off the campaign of Russia and of fourth-placed Austria.

October was a very good month for the Irish national football team, who overturned the Czech Republic to win Group 7. The Irish beat Bosnia & Herzegovina 5-0 before winning 1-0 in Kazakhstan, while the Czechs drew in both Poland and Bosnia. Those two nations came the closest to making the playoff spot, but a two-point cushion seperates the Czech Republic from third-placed Poland. In Group 8, Scotland won the last two of their games, but as predicted, they couldn’t catch up Belgium, who also won both games. France, of course, top the group, and the Belgians enter the playoff. And finally, Italy held off Romania’s challenge and ended up winning Group 9 comfortably, smashing their main contenders 4-0 this month. They ended their campaign with a 2-1 win in Northern Ireland, who finished 3rd behind Romania.

So the playoff draw has been made, and I would say Wales have a favourable one, with their two-legged tie coming against Romania. Germany should get through against Slovenia, while I’d tip Belgium to beat Hungary. The Czech Republic face Switzerland in the fourth playoff, and though it isn’t easy to call, I’ve been impressed by Switzerland in recent years and so will opt for them. In South America, Uruguay and Colombia took the last two qualification spots, leaving Chile to enter the intercontinental playoff. Mexico thrashed Bermuda 4-0 and Panama 6-0 to ensure qualification, and even finished above Guatemala, and so Honduras enter the playoff from the North of the continent. Egypt, the Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Ghana joined Cameroon in qualifying from Africa, while Iran will face New Zealand to qualify after they beat Saudi Arabia 6-4 on aggregate in the Asian playoff.

So now we can return to domestic football, starting in Spain. Atlético Madrid lead La Liga after a brilliant month, but Cádiz are still going strong in second place. Lucas Volman’s Real Madrid are third, having beaten Valladolid, Athletic and Lorca this month, and drawn with Gimnàstic. Volman also led his side to victory in the first leg of their Copa del Rey Fourth Round match, where they won 2-0 at Eibar. Haowan Madridstas’s Barcelona are continuing their poor form, and sit 7th, losing to Lorca and drawing with Betis this month, but beating both Hércules and Valencia, the latter with a convicing 4-1 victory. Barcelona travelled to Rayo for their cup tie, where they won 1-0. Atlético Madrid await in their next league match.

In England, Tom Smith’s Arsenal are continuing their slow but steady settlement into form, and a consequent rise in positions. This month started fairly poorly, with 2-2 draws against Hull and Portsmouth, but the Gunners won 3-0 at the Stadium of Light and 2-1 at Elland Road in the second half of the month. Chelsea lead the league on 28 points and another two London sides, Tottenham and Fulham, are three points further back. Huddersfield lead the Championship but Stoke, after a 1-4 loss at Bolton and with the team 20th, sacked their manager James Salter, and appointed Lee Clark as his replacement. Salter, who enjoyed a 2710 day-long spell at Reggina, was only in charge of this club for less than a year, although that is longer than his 153-day spell at Sporting. Reading also sacked their manager this month, as did Portsmouth, who sit 18th in the Premier League. Salter, as well as Ben Taylor and Maz Armley, have been linked to the latter, although the favourite is Theo Stigarakis.

I mentioned European football at the end of the last update and that is what you shall get now. Just one game was played in each of the European competitions this month. In the Europa League, Udinese travelled to Turkey where they beat Kayserispor 4-0. Barcelona beat Paris Saint-Germain 4-1 at the Nou Camp, while the biggest victory of the round was for Portsmouth, who beat fellow Brits Dundee United 6-0. Fans were riding on a wave of joy after the match but little did they know that manager Ian Holloway would be sacked nine days later after defeat at home to Man City. In the Champions League, all three of our sides won. Tom Smith’s Arsenal also travelled to Turkey, where they beat Trabzonspor 2-0, while title holders Napoli beat Lyon 2-1 at home, securing the result with two goals in the first four minutes. Real Madrid hosted Liverpool, and despite an absolute domination of their Merseyside opponents, they only got a goal, and a win, thanks to a goal from Basque attacking midfielder Iosu Alkorta in the 90th minute.

Our two Italian clubs remain in much the same position as last month after October elapsed. Cool Manager’s Inter lead Serie A, and following in one-point intervals are Juventus, Udinese and Napoli. Third-placed Udinese, managed by outspoken Andorran head coach Tyler Burrows, won four of their six games, beating Parma at home and Livorno, A.C. Milan and Sampdoria away. Logically, their two defeats came to the two teams above them, as they lost 0-5 at Inter and 1-2 in Turin to Mikael Schøler’s Juventus. Lord Weeman’s Napoli did slightly better, winning bread-and-butter games over Sampdoria, Brescia, Livorno and Mantova, but also losing at Inter and drawing at home to Neilio’s Palermo. The draw for the Coppa Italia First Round, which will be played in December, has been made, and Napoli host Torino while Udinese host Mantova. There was one sacking of note in Italy this month; Parma dispensed with the services of Super Lampard when he left them in 18th in the league. Lampard, who has also enjoyed spells at Lecce, Bologna and Ipswich, lasted 341 days at Parma, his shortest ever club tenure. James Salter and Theo Stigarakis have also been linked with this job.

That’s the month over, but there’s plenty to come next month, including World Cup qualifying playoffs. Until then, goodbye, auf wiedersehen, ciao ciao!

Manager of the Update

This month’s winner is;

Lucas Volman, Real Madrid

for putting in a solid month, not being spectacular but winning five games and drawing just one. Tom Smith at Arsenal also did well, winning thrice and drawing twice. And Lord Weeman’s month wasn’t too bad either, it’s just a shame about a close and possibly crucial defeat at Inter.

Job Securities

[size=2][b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4864[/size]
   [size=2]- Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   4864[/size]
   [size=2]- Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   4864[/size]
 [size=2]4th PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Stable        4864[/size]
   [size=2]- weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Stable        4864[/size]
 [size=2]6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/size]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[size=2][b]Update Winner, Club                [/b][/size] 
[size=2]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)[/size]
[size=2]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Oct 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]

Hall of Loyalty – Top Ten Longest Time at Current Club/Nation

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club Days[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid  4864 *[/size]
   [size=2]-  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] weeeman27bob    Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli       4864 *[/size]
   [size=2]-  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] PluckaDuck      Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese      4864 *[/size]
   [size=2]-  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] tomsmith1989    Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal      4864 *[/size]
   [size=2]-  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Haowan          Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona    4864 *[/size]
 [size=2]6th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Swafe           Saul Goode        Osasuna       Wales        3066[/size]
 [size=2]7th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter         Valencia     2362[/size]
 [size=2]8th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] el sid          Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter        2359[/size]
 [size=2]9th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] MikaelS         Mikael Schøler    Bologna       Juventus     2311[/size]
[size=2]10th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] spartans5       Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City     2075[/size]

Hall of Flexibility – Top Ten Shortest Time at Current Club/Nation

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club Days[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st NE dafuge          dafuge            Torino        Hull          326[/size]
 [size=2]2nd NE Robert_296      Robert Boyle      Blackburn     Aston Villa   329[/size]
 [size=2]3rd NE SCIAG           Leo Dodge         Tottenham     Roma          356[/size]
 [size=2]4th NE Waghlon         Lars Tommersen    Villarreal    Betis         464[/size]
 [size=2]5th NE ~Ian~           Bryan McGuinness  Everton       Chelsea       478[/size]
 [size=2]6th NE IlikeJellybeans Jellybean Man     Numancia      Fulham        679[/size]
 [size=2]7th NE NepentheZ       Neppo Monster     Cagliari      Wigan         693[/size]
 [size=2]8th NE ScottT!         Scott Tysoe       Sunderland    Rangers       718[/size]
 [size=2]9th NE Almondo         Arnold J. Rimmer  Bolton        Newcastle     730[/size]
[size=2]10th NE canvey!!        Fréderico Canvey  Stoke         Everton       894[/size]

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Update 161

Years: 13, Months: 161, Days: 4894

My goodness, it’s December already, and it doesn’t seem that long since the season started! The managers, in a few hours time, will open the first window of their advent calendars. Unfortunately for Tyler Burrows, the Andorra national football team heroes calendar was discontinued due to lack of demand, so he has gone for a Power Rangers calendar this year. Rumour has it his favourite is the pink one.

The Udinese manager is having a stellar season so far, and his team sit in third place after 13 games, with a neat six-point cushion protecting them from fourth-placed A.C. Milan. In November, Tyler Burrows played Leo Dodge’s Roma, beating them 2-0 before winning 3-0 at home to Brescia. Udinese also hosted CFR Cluj in the Europa League, beating the Romanians 4-0 and hence qualifying for the knockout stages, along with Standard Liège. Lord Weeman’s Napoli drew 1-1 at Rimini, and our two managers met in an encounter in Naples to end the month. New signing Luca Mattioli opened the scoring for Udinese just after half time, but Marek Hamsik levelled the scores for the home team on the hour mark. Two goals then came at ten minute intervals, first Choco for Napoli, and then Stevan Jovetic with the equaliser for the visitors ten minutes from time. 2-2 was the final score, leaving Napoli fifth in the league. In the Champions League this month, they travelled to Lyon, where they lost 1-2 to the French side, but atoned for that defeat with a 7-0 drubbing at home to FC København, with brace-scorer Choco being the only player to net more than once. Elsewhere in Italy, the Parma vacancy was filled by former Fiorentina boss Ben Taylor, it being his first job back in the game since his dismissal from Artemio Franchi in 2017.

We’ll travel to Spain next, where La Liga is led by a Madrid duo. Atlético are the top team, of course, although Lucas Volman’s second-placed Real are just a point behind them. This month was a very good one for Volman, as his team beat Cádiz and Hércules 4-1 and Zaragoza 2-1 away. They also beat Eibar 2-0 to record a 4-0 aggregate win in the Spanish Cup. Champions League football saw a hard-earned draw at Liverpool and a 4-0 win over Dortmund. As for Barcelona, Haowan Madridstas’s side sit in a very poor ninth place. They drew with Atlético Madrid and Málaga this month, and lost to Recreativo. The cups were some respite, as they thrashed Rayo 5-1 for a 6-1 aggregate win, and beat PSV Eindhoven 2-1 in their Europa League group, which they currently lead with a 100% record. Racing sacked manager Víctor Fernández this month, with the team one place above the drop zone, and hired as a replacement former Fulham, Portsmouth and Villarreal manager Tim Aubel, whose sole title came in the form of the 2017 Carling Cup with Pompey.

This month saw the conclusion of the World Cup qualifying, with playoff rounds on five continents. Saul Goode’s Wales were drawn against Romania, but suffered a 1-3 away defeat, with Werder Bremen striker Dumitru Dobre, fairly prolific in the 2018 World Cup, netting twice. Belgium and Slovenia drew at home, 2-2 with Hungary and 1-1 with Germany respectively, so looked in danger of losing out in the second legs. The Czech Republic hosted Switzerland, and the Alpine nation, impressive under the management of Marco Padalino, won 2-1. Sure enough, Switzerland progressed, drawing 1-1 at home, thanks to Czech striker Tomás Pekhart scoring in the 89th minute. Germany beat Slovenia 4-0, with three goals from everyone’s favourite adoptee Luis Manuel Molina. The Hungary-Belgium match was similar to the Switzerland-Czech Republic match, in that it ended 1-1 with a late goal from the visitors. Despite having two men sent off, Hungary held on until the 87th minute, when Anthony Vanden Borre netted the rebound of his missed penalty. But the Hungarians proceed on away goals nevertheless. Wales’ match also ended a draw, which does put them out. Sam Vokes scored twice in two minutes a quarter of an hour into the match, but Dimitru Dobre scored again at the end of the first half, with 2-2 being the final score. The Czech Republic sacked their manager, Jozef Chovanec, and appointed Bayern Munich manager Pavel Nedved as his successor. The four times Champions League winners looked to Fulham to fill their vacancy, appointing Jellybean Man. His tenure in Germany will be a far cry from the days of getting Numancia relegated to the second division. We’ll examine in due course Fulham’s replacement manager.

After losing out on an automatic qualification spot to Guatemala, Honduras would have to beat Chile if they wanted to make the 4000-mile journey to Argentina next year. As it was, they made the 3500-mile journey to Santiago, but it didn’t seem worthwhile, after Honduras lost the home leg to the South Americans, 1-4. Chile simply compounded their victory at home with a 3-0 win. Meanwhile, Iran faced New Zealand in the Asia-Oceania playoff. Young Olympiakos striker Holger Leschinski netted twice in a 3-0 victory in Tehran, and the Iranians also won 2-0 in Auckland to pile the misery on New Zealand and to book their own World Cup place.

It’s time to end in England, and where better to start than at Craven Cottage? Fulham were left reeling at the departure of Jellybean Man, who left them fourth in the league, but, on the plus side, seemed to be going downhill with both league and cup defeats to Blackburn (who were doing so badly they sacked Steven Gerrard at the end of the month) and a 0-5 implosion at Chelsea (John Fleck scored thrice with two spot kicks). James Ridley, who had had success at a club of similar stature to Fulham, Sampdoria, was called in as a replacement, directly from the Genoan team for £1M. Former Lecce, Bologna and Parma manager Super Lampard took the Sampdoria position. Elsewhere in England, former Fiorentina manager Theo Stigarakis completed the treble of nations when he was appointed as head coach at Fratton Park, and Wigan, after he left them 11th in the Championship when they were predicted 4th, sacked Neppo Monster, replacing him with Sol Campbell.

As for Arsenal, Tom Smith’s Gunners continued their climb, moving up one place this month to third. They share the 27-point mark with title favourites Man City, but are a massive eight point behind Bryan McGuinness’s Chelsea. McGuinness, who has won the Community Shield with the Blues and the Europa League with Everton, would like to add the Premier League to his repertoire. Arsenal won all their games this month, winning 6-0 at home to Trabzonspor and 2-0 at home to Basel in the Champions League, and therefore qualifying along with Benfica, and beating Southampton 2-0 away in the Carling Cup Fourth Round. 2-0 victories also came in the league against Everton and Ridley’s Fulham, with the home match with Crystal Palace having ended 3-0 in Arsenal’s favour. Bolton, the last Championship side remaining in the competition, will host the Gunners in the League Cup Quarter Final, while Leicester are already in the Final Four after beating Blackburn 4-0. Everton take on Chelsea and Man City face Spurs. In the FA Cup Third Round, Arsenal have a very favourable home tie with Wolves. Middlesbrough-Blackburn, Man City-Hull and Crystal Palace-Sunderland make up the three all-top flight ties of the round.

Here’s to a good Christmas for all of our managers!

Manager of the Update

This month’s winner is;

Tom Smith, Arsenal

after he guided his team to six wins out of six, without conceding any goals. He had a fine month, which Tyler Burrows and Lucas Volman, though they both won all of their games but for one draw, couldn’t even come close to matching.

Job Securities

[size=2][b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4894[/size]
   [size=2]- Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   4894[/size]
   [size=2]- Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   4894[/size]
   [size=2]- PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Very Secure   4894[/size]
 [size=2]5th weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Stable        4894[/size]
 [size=2]6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/size]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[size=2][b]Update Winner, Club                [/b][/size] 
[size=2]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)[/size]
[size=2]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Oct 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Nov 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]

Hall of Fame – Top Ten Longest Time at a Club (Ever)

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Longest at  Days[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] SCIAG           Leo Dodge         Tottenham     Tottenham   3800[/size]
 [size=2]2nd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] TaylorB         Ben Taylor        Fiorentina    Fiorentina  3442[/size]
 [size=2]3rd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] fergysafc       Liam Ferguson     Man City      Man City    2783[/size]
 [size=2]4th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] JSalter         James Salter      Reggina       Reggina     2710[/size]
 [size=2]5th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Martin_         Martin Bojangles  Hull          Aston Villa 2591[/size]
 [size=2]6th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Chimpos         Phill Ewles       Valladolid    Olympiakos  2532[/size]
 [size=2]7th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] mikeytwigge     Mikey Twigge      Palermo       Palermo     2507[/size]
 [size=2]8th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] m1234566778     Maz Armley        Racing        Sevilla     2504[/size]
 [size=2]9th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter         Inter       2502[/size]
[size=2]10th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Robert_296      Robert Boyle      Blackburn     Newcastle   2127[/size]

Hall of Shame – Top Ten Shortest Time at a Club (Ever)

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Shortest at Days[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] dafuge          dafuge            Torino        Everton      145[/size]
 [size=2]2nd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] JSalter         James Salter      Reggina       Sporting     153[/size]
 [size=2]3rd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Waghlon         Lars Tommersen    Villarreal    Fiorentina   174[/size]
 [size=2]4th NE m1234566778     Maz Armley        Racing        Villarreal   180[/size]
 [size=2]5th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] NepentheZ       Neppo Monster     Cagliari      Cagliari     236[/size]
 [size=2]6th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] ssestig         Theo Stigarakis   Catania       Mallorca     240[/size]
 [size=2]7th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] Almondo         Arnold J. Rimmer  Bolton        Man United   268[/size]
 [size=2]8th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] canvey!!        Fréderico Canvey  Stoke         Valladolid   285[/size]
 [size=2]9th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] brettney1980    Brettney Joven    Wigan         Wigan        320[/size]
[size=2]10th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] Robert_296      Robert Boyle      Blackburn     Blackburn    326[/size]

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Haven't been mentioned for three updates. :worried:

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Update 162

Years: 13, Months: 162, Days: 4925

Happy new year, everyone! Let’s see what our five managers did in December 2021, starting on the Iberian peninsula.

Atlético Madrid continue to lead La Liga, and their rivals, Lucas Volman’s Real Madrid, have fallen a place this month to third. They opened the month with a win over Lars Tommersen’s Betis, but then lost to both Atlético themselves, and to Recreativo. Still, it could be worse: Haowan Madridstas’s Barcelona are eighth, although he is still Very Secure in his position. They actually had a good month, beating Getafe 2-1, Racing 3-0 and Murcia 6-0, but they’ll need to continue those good months to rise up the table. One place below them are Valencia, who beat Albacete 2-0 this month before an 8-0 win over Elche. That was followed, however, by a loss to Sevilla, and the board saw fit to get rid of manager Ben Cee, who had spent 2410 days in charge, 92 days short of his longer tenure at Inter. Martin Bojangles was the favourite for the job, but it went instead to Manchester United manager Pierluigi Casiraghi. The Red Devils appointed Dave Jones at Old Trafford. James Salter also started work in Spain, replacing Félix Sarriugarte who was sacked as Athletic boss this month.

Over in Italy, Lord Weeman’s Napoli are continuing their mediocre season, perhaps suffering from a Champions League hangover. They won half and lost half of their games this month, opening with defeats against Genoa and Lazio before bouncing back for two 2-0 away wins at A.C. Milan and Atalanta. Napoli also travelled to China this month to play the Club World Championship. They beat South Korea’s Seongnam 6-0 in the Semi-Final, with four goals from Brazilian forward Choco, before beating Brazil’s Grêmio 2-0 to lift the title. Meanwhile, Tyler Burrows’s Udinese are having a great season. Inter fell away from the top of the league this month, to be replaced by Mikael Schøler’s Juventus, but Udinese are second, two points behind the leaders. In December, they beat both Rimini and Atalanta and drew at Palermo. They also booked their passage into the Coppa Italia Quarter Final with a 3-1 win over Mantova. Napoli got there by beating Torino 3-0. Both sides travel to Rome for the next round, with Udinese facing Lazio and Napoli facing Roma.

This month saw the conclusion of the European competitions’ group stages. Udinese ended their Europa League round robin with two wins, achieving a 3-1 victory in Belgium against Standard Liège, and then winning 2-0 at home to Kayserispor. Haowan Madridstas’s Barcelona also won both their European games this month, with a 5-0 win over Maccabi Netanya and a 3-1 one over Paris Saint-Germain, both away. Both teams top their groups, while Juventus, Portsmouth, Roma, Tottenham, Sevilla, Palermo, Betis and Leeds are the other teams from our three nations through. Barcelona face Spartak Moscow in the Last 32, with a tie against Portsmouth or Roma to follow, while Udinese face AS Monaco, while PSV Eindhoven or Leeds await.

As for the Champions League, Arsenal won 3-1 at Benfica this month, although they had already sealed top spot in the group. Holders Napoli drew goalless at CSKA Moscow, and so finish behind group winners Lyon. And Real Madrid travelled to Dortmund where they secured a 2-0 victory, allowing them to beat Liverpool to the top of the table. Chelsea, Man City, Inter, Lazio and A.C. Milan also topped their groups. The matches between Valencia and Cool Manager’s Inter ended 1-1 in Spain and 1-0 to Inter in Italy. The Round of 16 has been drawn, and holders Napoli have a tough time of it, as they play Arsenal. However, they did beat the Gunners in last year’s Semi-Final. Jellybean Man’s Bayern Munich will play host to Real Madrid (and vice versa), in a replay of the 2017 Final. Other interesting ties see Liverpool meet A.C. Milan, Valencia meet Chelsea and Atlético Madrid play Lawrence Lazewski’s Man City.

It’s time to conclude the report in England. The vacant Blackburn hot seat was filled by former Racing and Sevilla boss Maz Armley. He won three and lost three of his first six games in charge. Other hiring and firing news saw the inevitable arrive as dafuge was sacked from Hull, following his 366-day stint which left them 18th in the Premier League. Assistant manager John Terry was promoted to take full charge of the team. Shifting our focus now to successful teams, Tom Smith’s Arsenal are second in the league, but leaders Chelsea have a mammoth ten-point lead at the top. In December, the Gunners won all but one of their games, beating Tottenham, Ipswich and Aston Villa at home, and Man United and Leicester away, but drawing at St James’ Park, thanks to a 90+4th minute equaliser for the Magpies, who dominated the match. The London club also quelled any hopes of an upset by thrashing Bolton 5-1 in the Carling Cup Quarter Final. Yet Smith’s team are not expected to go any further, as Chelsea await in the two-legged Semi-Final. Leicester meet Man City in the other match.

The transfer window is now open, and, given the poor seasons some of our managers are having, may need to be utilised to maximum effect. Two rounds of the FA Cup and of the Copa del Rey await next month, with European football commencing in February, including that tantalising Napoli-Arsenal match. It’s not to be missed!

Manager of the Update

It’s a close one this month, but;

Tom Smith, Arsenal

just edges it for me. He won seven of his matches this month, and was only denied an eighth by a 90+4th minute goal at Newcastle. Haowan Madridstas, who won all five of his games, pushed him close, but the fact that Smith played more games and a generally healthier season so far gave him this one. Tyler Burrows continues his great season at Udinese with another unbeaten month, and Lord Weeman won the Club World Championship this month, although it came at the cost of league form.

Job Securities

[size=2][b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4925[/size]
   [size=2]- Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   4925[/size]
   [size=2]- Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   4925[/size]
   [size=2]- PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Very Secure   4925[/size]
 [size=2]5th weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Stable        4925[/size]
 [size=2]6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/size]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[size=2][b]Update Winner, Club                [/b][/size] 
[size=2]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)[/size]
[size=2]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Oct 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Nov 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Dec 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]

Hall of Receiving - Top Ten Players Bought (Number)

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club  No[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] IlikeJellybeans Jellybean Man     Numancia      Bayern Munich 97[/size]
 [size=2]2nd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Neilio          Neilio            Almería       Palermo       89[/size]
 [size=2]3rd [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter                       79[/size]
 [size=2]4th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] weeeman27bob    Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli        78 *[/size]
 [size=2]5th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+2[/size][/color][size=2] canvey!!        Fréderico Canvey  Stoke         Everton       74[/size]
 [size=2]6th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-3[/size][/color][size=2] Martin_         Martin Bojangles  Hull                        72[/size]
 [size=2]7th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] el sid          Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter         68[/size]
   [size=2]- NE spartans5       Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City      68[/size]
 [size=2]9th NE PluckaDuck      Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese       67 *[/size]
[size=2]10th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-3[/size][/color][size=2] ssestig         Theo Stigarakis   Catania       Portsmouth    66[/size]

Hall of Giving – Top Ten Players Sold (Number)

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club  No[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter                       89[/size]
 [size=2]2nd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid   87 *[/size]
 [size=2]3rd [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] el sid          Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter         80[/size]
 [size=2]4th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] PluckaDuck      Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese       79 *[/size]
 [size=2]5th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] m1234566778     Maz Armley        Racing        Blackburn     73[/size]
 [size=2]6th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] IlikeJellybeans Jellybean Man     Numancia      Bayern Munich 72[/size]
 [size=2]7th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] weeeman27bob    Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli        71 *[/size]
 [size=2]8th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-2[/size][/color][size=2] Haowan          Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona     67 *[/size]
 [size=2]9th NE canvey!!        Fréderico Canvey  Stoke         Everton       63[/size]

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Final 5 still trudging along. A great season this one, hopefully I can make a real charge in the second half of the season :)

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Update 163

Years: 13, Months: 163, Days: 4956

Let’s examine our managers’ antics in January, starting in England.

I think it’s time for Tom Smith to rule out any hopes of winning the Premier League this year. Not only did his Arsenal team slip to third this month, but Chelsea have opened a sixteen-point gap over second-placed Man City, with fourteen games to play. Arsenal sit a point behind the Citizens, after the Gunners opened the month with two difficult games, both of which they lost. A trip to Chelsea Stadium saw Bryan McGuinness’s Pensioners win 3-1, before Man City won 1-0 at the Emirates. Arsenal ended the month with a 2-0 win over visiting Liverpool and a 5-0 one over visiting Hull. Despite the league loss, Arsenal beat Chelsea in the Carling Cup Semi-Final, winning 3-1 at home and progressing on aggregate when the Blues could only win 1-0 in the return leg. Smith’s side also got through two rounds of the FA Cup, beating Wolves 3-0 and, like their Carling Cup equivalent, playing at St Mary’s in the Fourth Round, where they beat Southampton 1-0. Hartlepool await in the next round, while Man City await in the League Cup Final. Elsewhere in England, after he won only three of his fifteen league games in charge, Theo Stigarakis was sacked from Portsmouth after 90 days. Keen to avoid relegation and looking for a manager that could stabilise the club and provide a lasting legacy, they hired…dafuge? Still, he couldn’t do worse than Stigarakis, who gave Mr Get-Fired-a-Lot a run for his money.

Over in Italy, Tyler Burrows’s Udinese have dropped form a bit, but they remain in a desirable position. January saw them struggle a bit, and despite wins over Mantova and Lazio, they drew with A.C. Milan and Juventus and lost to Genoa and Catania. They did, however, also beat Lazio in the Coppa Italia Quarter Final, 4-2 after extra time in Rome, and so face Roma in the Semi-Final. They sit 3rd in Serie A, one place ahead of Lord Weeman’s Napoli, who have patched up their lacklustre season with a good month. 3-0 wins over Catania and Livorno and 2-0 ones over Frosinone, Modena and Fiorentina were marred slightly by a loss at league leaders Juventus, and also a loss to Leo Dodge’s Roma in the Coppa Italia.

Of course, January wouldn’t be January without transfers. Our Italian teams were busy in the transfer window this month, with Udinese signing Sokratis Papastathopoulos from Liverpool for £2.6M while selling youngster Alberto Antoniolo to Empoli for £240k and central midfielder Luca Mattioli to Inter for a whopping £19.5M. Udinese also made a bit of money on 18-year-old goalkeeper Filippo Manzini, who had joined for free from Argentina, first selling half of him to Inter for £5.75M, then selling all of him to Man City for £1.6M. Napoli were also very busy, buying ‘cultured’ 23-year-old defensive midfielder Gianni De Santis for £14.5M, split between his two owners Inter and Sampdoria. Lord Weeman also bought half of Atalanta’s 18-year-old right winger Fausto Piazza for £7.75M, while egg-headed (and not very good) centreback Emanuele Rinaldi joined Ascoli for £675k, 30-year-old Turkish striker Ugur Ates joined Sampdoria for £5.25M and unambitious centreback Francesco Andreoletti joined Roma for £9.25M. But Napoli’s biggest outgoing transfer was the sale of 23-year-old Ivorian rightback Franck Kone to A.C. Milan for £19M, almost a £10M increase on his purchase price last season.

In England, Tom Smith’s Arsenal made two big incoming transfers, presumably in an attempt to rectify their title challenge. 28-year-old Australian centreback Don Taylor arrived from Man City for an extravagant £11.25M, and 26-year-old striker Wesley Oliver from Trinidad and Tobago joined from Portsmouth for £17.25M. Oliver, who scored in his first game for the club (and only one so far), has a ‘Finishing’ attribute of 18, a ‘First Touch’ one of 16, and already lists Smith among his favoured personnel. Meanwhile, Real Madrid’s goalkeeper Iker Vázquez, who had cost Lucas Volman £1.4M from Valencia, arrived at the Emirates for £1.3M. Two players left Arsenal; Tom Heaton signed for Hull for £525k and 22-year-old centreback Charlie Hall joined Rapid Wien for £1.8M. Alongisde the sale of Vázquez, Real Madrid offloaded 20-year-old fullback Javier Susaete to Zamora for £400k and 20-year-old midfielder Diego Sánchez Yepes to Levante for £850k. 25-year-old Italian leftback Ermanno Maradini arrived at the Bernabéu from Mantova for a fee of £6.5M. Real Madrid’s rivals Barcelona were slightly less active, making a profit on goalkeeper Matteo Ancelotti, who joined Getafe for £350k, and buying a replacement goalkeeper, Andrea Ventura, from Roma for £525k.

As for Barcelona’s league performance, it was another indifferent months. While victories, and good ones too, came over Albacete and Sevilla, Haowan Madridstas’s team drew with Elche and Valladolid and lost to Real Madrid. Real Madrid were also their Copa del Rey Fifth Round opponents, but here Barca won, 6-4 on aggregate after an enthralling 3-3 second leg draw at the Bernabéu. The Catalonian team also squeezed past Lars Tommersen’s Betis, winning 4-3 on aggregate despite a 1-3 loss in the first, away leg. Atlético Madrid await. Real Madrid had a decent month in the league. As well as that win over Barca, they beat Málaga, Murcia and Racing this month. But the year started badly with a 1-4 loss at Valencia, which marked a third consecutive loss, and that cup exit won’t be welcomed by the fans.

Onwards we roll, then. To February!

Manager of the Update

It was a pretty poor month all round, but;

Lord Weeman, Napoli

gets this award for being the best of a bad lot. He lost two games, at Roma in the Coppa Italia and at Serie A leaders Juventus, but won every other game with ease. Tom Smith guided his Arsenal team through two competitions, taking them to the Final in one of them, but it didn’t come without his team losing games.

Job Securities

[size=2][b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4956[/size]
   [size=2]- Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   4956[/size]
   [size=2]- Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   4956[/size]
   [size=2]- PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Very Secure   4956[/size]
 [size=2]5th weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Secure        4956[/size]
 [size=2]6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/size]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[size=2][b]Update Winner, Club                [/b][/size] 
[size=2]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]
[size=2]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)[/size]
[size=2]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/size]
[size=2]Oct 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/size]
[size=2]Nov 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Dec 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/size]
[size=2]Jan 22 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/size]

Hall of Spending – Top Ten Players Bought (Value)

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club  Value[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter                       £804M[/size]
 [size=2]2nd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Haowan          Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona     £666M *[/size]
 [size=2]3rd  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] el sid          Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter         £624M[/size]
 [size=2]4th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+2[/size][/color][size=2] spartans5       Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City      £577M[/size]
 [size=2]5th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid   £551M *[/size]
 [size=2]6th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] weeeman27bob    Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli        £521M *[/size]
 [size=2]7th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-2[/size][/color][size=2] fergysafc       Liam Ferguson     Man City      England       £515M[/size]
 [size=2]8th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] tomsmith1989    Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal       £441M *[/size]
 [size=2]9th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] ~Ian~           Bryan McGuinness  Everton       Chelsea       £347M[/size]
[size=2]10th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Martin_         Martin Bojangles  Hull                        £269M[/size]

Hall of Earning – Top Ten Players Sold (Value)

 [size=2][b]Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club  Value[/b][/size]
 [size=2]1st  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter                       £499M[/size]
 [size=2]2nd [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] spartans5       Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City      £333M[/size]
 [size=2]3rd [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+1[/size][/color][size=2] el sid          Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter         £306M[/size]
 [size=2]4th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] PluckaDuck      Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese       £299M *[/size]
 [size=2]5th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-3[/size][/color][size=2] Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid   £295M *[/size]
 [size=2]6th [/size][color=#008000][size=2]+3[/size][/color][size=2] weeeman27bob    Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli        £292M *[/size]
 [size=2]7th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-1[/size][/color][size=2] ~Ian~           Bryan McGuinness  Everton       Chelsea       £287M[/size]
 [size=2]8th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Haowan          Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona     £267M *[/size]
 [size=2]9th [/size][color=#ff0000][size=2]-2[/size][/color][size=2] fergysafc       Liam Ferguson     Man City      England       £266M[/size]
[size=2]10th  [/size][color=#0000ff][size=2]0[/size][/color][size=2] Martin_         Martin Bojangles  Hull                        £234M[/size]

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Is 90 days the shortest stint by any of our managers? Pretty sure Daf can break it for me if it is :p:D

Edit: After looking at post #1472 I am \o/

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My laptop's hard drive has corrupted so I'm without internet access for the moment. It may also turn out that I am without the 60 to One save files, at least until December 11th. I will try and keep you posted!

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Note: I now have my laptop back and at least a smattering of files from my corrupted hard drive. Among these was one 60 to One save file, but not the database or anything else. Upon loading up the game, it tells me that it cannot find the database and will now play with the default database, but all the managers are still there, so I hope that that won't make a difference.

Update 164

Years: 13, Months: 164, Days: 4984

Let’s see how our managers did in February, starting in Spain.

It looks very likely that this season’s La Liga title will be going to Vicente Calderón. Josep Guardiola’s Atlético Madrid lead the league by ten points, with second-placed Real Madrid having just fifteen games to try to make up that deficit. This month, Lucas Volman’s side beat Elche and Getafe 2-1, and Albacete 4-0. However, they suffered defeat in Germany when they travelled to play Bayern Munich, as Jellybean Man’s Bundesliga side won 2-0 with a brace from 31-year-old midfielder Christian Weigl. Elsewhere in Spain, Haowan Madridstas’s Barcelona won all four league games, beating Athletic, Gimnàstic, Cádiz and Zaragoza. The Catalonian side sit fifth in the league, but had mixed success in the cups this month. While they cleared the Europa League Round of 32 with a 5-2 aggregate victory over Spartak Moscow, the first leg of their Copa del Rey Semi-Final at the Nou Camp saw visitors Atlético Madrid win 3-1.

Another good month has kept Tyler Burrows’s Udinese in title contention in Serie A. They got two 1-0 away wins over Frosinone and Fiorentina, a 2-1 home victory over Modena and a 3-1 home victory over Livorno, which puts them second and two points behind leaders Juventus. Burrows’s side also had no problem in progressing in the Europa League, beating AS Monaco 2-1 away and 2-0 at home. As for Lord Weeman’s Napoli, they are hanging in the Champions League qualification places. They beat Parma this month before falling to defeat at Roma. This was followed by a goalless draw with Sampdoria, although the month did end with a 2-0 win over Inter. In the Champions League, Napoli welcomed Arsenal to San Paolo, and came away with a 1-0 win thanks to a 70th minute goal from right winger Vittorio Mattioli. Given that Arsenal won their own home leg against Napoli 1-0 last year, this result doesn’t look good enough to get Napoli through without, at least, penalties. But Weeman is confident of another upset over the Gunners.

Who, by the way, have had a good month in the league. Tom Smith’s side beat Middlesbrough, Portsmouth, West Ham and Blackburn this month, the latter two both 4-0, and currently sit third behind Lawrence Lazewski’s Man City, who played five games and won all five. The two teams also met in the Carling Cup Final at Wembley, where, despite Man City’s pressure, the match remained goalless at half time. It took 25-year-old Scottish striker Sam Law seven minutes after the restart to net for the Citizens, splitting the Arsenal defence as he powered the ball into the bottom corner. The Gunners had their chances, but the result for Man City was put beyond doubt in the 90+4th minute, when 24-year-old central midfielder Bobby Hall curled a wicked shot into the net. Such an amazing strike seemed apt to give Lazewski his 10th title with the club, and his 15th one overall. But some cup respite did come for Arsenal among their Carling Cup and Champions League defeats, as they beat Hartlepool 3-0 in the FA Cup Fifth Round. A home tie against Middlesbrough awaits in the Last Eight, while Chelsea play Man City, and Huddersfield, the last Championship side in the competition, travel to White Hart Lane.

Just over three months remain now before Spain open the 2022 FIFA World Cup against Egypt. But plenty of challenges remain ahead for our managers. Who will win, Arsenal or Napoli? Can Udinese take the title? Will Real Madrid overcome Bayern Munich? And will Barcelona be forced into yet another 5th-placed finish?

Manager of the Update

It’s pretty clear that;

Tyler Burrows, Udinese

should win the award this month, after he guided his team to six wins from six, which put him in close contention for the title, despite the pre-season predicted finish of seventh, and put them through to Europa League Last 16. Lucas Volman also had a good league month, but saw his team lose at Bayern Munich.

Job Securities

[font=Courier New]  [b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   4984
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   4984
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   4984
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Very Secure   4984
 [/font][font=Courier New] 5th weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Secure        4984
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/font]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[font=Courier New]  [b]Update Winner, Club                [/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
 [/font][font=Courier New]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Oct 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
 [/font][font=Courier New]Nov 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Dec 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jan 22 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Feb 22 Tyler Burrows, Udinese[/font]

Hall of Fame – Top Ten Hall of Fame (Nty = Nationality, Ntn = Nation, Eur = Europe, Wld = World. Lawrence Lazewski is in the England HOF)

[font=Courier New]  [b] Pos +- Username        Manager           NAT Original Club Current Club Nty Ntn Eur Wld[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st  [color=blue]0[/color] Haowan          Haowan Madridstas ESP Barcelona     Barcelona    1st 1st 3rd 3rd
 [/font][font=Courier New] 2nd  [color=blue]0[/color] Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      ITA Real Madrid   Real Madrid  3rd 2nd 5th 5th
 [/font][font=Courier New] 3rd  [color=blue]0[/color] tomsmith1989    Tom Smith         POR Arsenal       Arsenal      1st 3rd
 [/font][font=Courier New] 4th  [color=blue]0[/color] spartans5       Lawrence Lazewski USA Valencia      Man City     1st 8th
 [/font][font=Courier New] 5th  [color=blue]0[/color] ian_1982        Maurice Jobson    RWA Man United    (retired)    1st
 [/font][font=Courier New]   -  [color=blue]0[/color] BenArsenal      Ben Cee           SIN Inter                      1st
 [/font][font=Courier New] 7th NE clrkaitken      Clark Aitken      CAN Roma          (retired)    2nd
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - [color=green]+1[/color] el sid          Cool Manager      ENG At. Madrid    Inter        2nd
 [/font][font=Courier New] 9th [color=red]-2[/color] Jack_Rudd       Lisa Jeffries     CAN Juventus      (retired)    3rd
 [/font][font=Courier New]10th NE MikaelS         Mikael Schøler    DEN Bologna       Juventus     7th[/font]

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Fantastic return this month, worth the wait. KUTGW Canvey!! and mon a sacking.

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Hot off the presses:

Update 165

Years: 13, Months: 165, Days: 5015

Our managers clear the 5000-day mark, so let’s examine their performances in March, with the season rapidly drawing towards its close.

In England, Tom Smith’s Arsenal enjoyed victory all month. First, they beat visiting team Brettney Joven’s Leeds 3-1, before a 4-0 victory over Middlesbrough in the FA Cup Sixth Round. Napoli then came to visit, and the Italians were knocked out of the Champions League after the Gunners won 2-0 in their London home. League victories over Sunderland, Crystal Palace, Everton and James Ridley’s Fulham then followed. Arsenal currently sit second, but, with six games to go, they are ten points behind leaders Chelsea, and are almost certainly not going to win the league.

Over in Spain, Barcelona’s troubles continue, and, after a dreadful month in which they picked up just three points, Haowan Madridstas’s side have been dragged down to seventh in La Liga. They first played away to Atlético Madrid in the Copa del Rey Semi-Final, losing 0-2 to go down 1-5 on aggregate. Then, in the league, they thrashed visitors Lorca 5-1. Their next three domestic fixtures, however, weren’t so good: they lost away to both Hércules and Atlético, and at home to Betis, a fellow battler for a top four position. Their European adventure also came to an end: Leo Dodge’s Roma won the first leg of the two teams’ tie 2-0 at home, and the Italians, despite losing 3-5 at the Nou Camp, went through on away goals.

Our other manager in Spain, Lucas Volman, had a better month, although his team Real Madrid also left Europe after being unable to muster anything more than a 1-1 draw at home to Bayern Munich in the second leg of their Champions League tie, leading to a 1-3 aggregate elimination. However, three very comfortable victories in the league, against Sevilla, Valladolid and Gimnàstic, accompanied a 1-0 win in Bilbao against Athletic, and a rather disappointing 0-3 loss at Cádiz at the end of the month. Real are second, and, if they are to beat rivals Atlético to the title, will need to get an average of one point more per game than the leaders; Volman’s side are ten points behind with that many fixtures to fulfil.

Let’s travel over to Italy now, where both our managers are in fiery contention for Champions League spots. We’ll go top to bottom, which means we start with Tyler Burrows’s Udinese, who are third. All in all, they had a good month. They played four league fixtures, notching up wins over Parma and Sampdoria, drawing at Roma, and unfortunately losing at home to second-placed Inter. They booked their place in the Europa League Last Eight with a 4-1 aggregate victory over Brettney Joven’s Leeds, and also got a narrow but important 1-0 win in the first, home, leg of their Coppa Italia Semi-Final with Roma.

Napoli also had a decent month. As already revealed, their campaign to defend the Champions League ended when they were knocked out by Arsenal, so they just have the league to concentrate on now. They beat Brescia, Mantova and Rimini before a credible 2-2 draw at Sicilian giants Palermo, home to former Ipswich manager Neilio. Napoli travel to Udinese in the first game of next month, a crucial fixture in the race for third or even for fourth place. Mikael Schøler’s Juventus maintain a narrow two-point lead over Inter at the top of the table. Fiorentina are 19th.

While we had five managers in Europe at the start of the month, we now just have two. As well as Champions League victories for Arsenal and Bayern Munich, A.C. Milan triumphed over Liverpool on penalties, Inter knocked out Zaragoza, and Chelsea beat a struggling Valencia. Benfica overcame Lazio, Lawrence Lazewski’s Man City triumphed over La Liga leaders Atlético Madrid, and Feyenoord went down at the hands of Lyon. In the next round, Arsenal face Bayern Munich, while Inter and A.C. meet in a Milan derby. In the Europa League Quarter Finals, Tyler Burrows’s Udinese face Sevilla. Every Europa League Quarter Final has an Italian team involved, so they may be very prominent in the Semi-Finals. Burrows, I’m sure, will want to get his team as far as possible.

Manager of the Update

Without doubt;

Tom Smith, Arsenal

deserves this month’s award. Knocking Middlesbrough and Napoli (last season’s Champions League winners) out of cups, he also took his team to victories to five victories from as many games in the league. Tyler Burrows gets an honourable mention for being the only other manager to not be eliminated from a cup competition this month.

Job Securities

[font=Courier New]  [b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   5015
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   5015
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   5015
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Very Secure   5015
 [/font][font=Courier New] 5th weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Secure        5015
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/font]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[font=Courier New]  [b]Update Winner, Club                [/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
 [/font][font=Courier New]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Oct 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
 [/font][font=Courier New]Nov 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Dec 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jan 22 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Feb 22 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Mar 22 Tom Smith, Arsenal[/font]

Hall of Consistency – Top Ten Most League Wins

[font=Courier New]  [b] Pos +- Username      Manager           Original Club Current Club Wins[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st NE tomsmith1989  Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal        8  *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 2nd NE BenArsenal    Ben Cee           Inter                        6  *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 3rd NE Haowan        Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona      5  *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 4th NE el sid        Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter          4
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - NE Romanista1994 Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid    4  *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th    10 others                                                    1[/font]

Hall of Glory – Top Ten Most Cup Wins

[font=Courier New]  [b] Pos +- Username        Manager           Original Club Current Club Wins[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st NE Haowan          Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona     21  *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 2nd NE Romanista1994   Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid   20  *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 3rd NE spartans5       Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City      14
 [/font][font=Courier New] 4th NE tomsmith1989    Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal       12  *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 5th NE el sid          Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter          9
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th NE BenArsenal      Ben Cee           Inter                        7
 [/font][font=Courier New] 7th NE weeeman27bob    Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli         6  *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 8th NE SCIAG           Leo Dodge         Tottenham     Roma           4
 [/font][font=Courier New] 9th    4 others                                                       2[/font]

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Update 166

Years: 13, Months: 166, Days: 5045

With the season rapidly reaching its close, the first title winners and relegated teams have already been confirmed. Let’s take a look at our managers’ performances in April, starting in the wonderful boot that is Italy.

Mikael Schøler ’s Juventus lead Serie A like a beacon, but things are so close that any of the top four could be considered title contenders. The Old Lady, with 78 points, is level with Cool Manager’s Inter, two points ahead of Napoli and four points ahead of Udinese. The latter, managed by 58-year-old Andorran Tyler Burrows, won 75% of their league games this month, beating Rimini, Brescia and Atalanta, all away. Ironically, Udinese’s loss was their only home game, when Lord Weeman’s Napoli beat them 2-1 at Friuli. Napoli had a good month; after that victory, they went on to beat Genoa, Atalanta and A.C. Milan, with some convincing margins too, before a 2-2 draw away to Lazio. Udinese’s Coppa Italia dream came to an end this month, when their 0-2 loss at Roma put them out in the Semi-Finals, 1-2 on aggregate. Leo Dodge’s victors will face A.C. Milan in the Final, but the best they can realistically hope for league-wise is a fifth-placed finish. Fiorentina became the first team to be relegated from Serie A, and would do well to finish 19th.

Over to the Premier League now, where just a game or two remain for each top-flight side. Tom Smith’s Arsenal are one of the teams with two games to play, but no matter what happens, they will end this season as league runners-up. This month, Bryan McGuinness’s Chelsea clinched the league title with a 1-0 win at home to Ipswich. Earlier in the month, Arsenal had travelled to play the East Anglian side, and drawn 1-1. This was followed by the same result at White Hart Lane in the North London derby, before wins over Man United and Leicester. The Red Devils, who have been enjoying mixed results under Dave Jones, also lost to Arsenal in the FA Cup Semi-Final at Wembley. The tie was goalless after ninety minutes, before Diogo broke the deadlock in the first minute of extra time. 26-year-old Tobagan striker Wesley Oliver then netted a brace to make the result look much more convincing than it was. Arsenal will get the opportunity to deny Chelsea a double, as they meet the Blues at Wembley next month. In other Premier League news, Blackburn and West Ham have been relegated, with the former sacking manager Maz Armley and replacing him with Jim Magilton. Crystal Palace are also likely to go down, but could survive at Aston Villa’s or Hull’s expense. Q.P.R. won the Championship and will be joined in next season’s Premier League by runners-up Sheffield Wednesday.

How did our two European contenders get on this month? In the Europa League, Tyler Burrows’s Udinese had to travel to Spain, to face mid-table La Liga side Sevilla. Unfortunately for Burrows, two own goals and a penalty helped Sevilla to a dominant 4-0 victory, even though the Italian side had the better of shots and possession. In the return leg, Udinese threw the kitchen sink at their Spanish opponents, but could only muster a nonetheless-impressive 3-0 win, which saw them narrowly and painfully eliminated. Sevilla went on to face table-toppers Juventus in the Semi-Final, while an all-Italian encounter sees Palermo face Roma. After legs in Sicily and Spain, the ties are level, so it looks like a Roma-Juventus Final is on.

As for the Champions League, and Tom Smith’s Arsenal, they faced Germany’s Bayern Munich this month. Although Toni Kroos put Bayern 1-0 up at the Emirates after four minutes, Arsenal were 3-1 up before half time, and, despite a missed penalty, won 4-2. A brace of goals in the first seven minutes at the Allianz-Arena pushed the aggregate to 5-3, before an own goal from grey defender Stefan Bader put the Gunners 2-1 ahead on the night. Craig Robson made it three just after the hour, but a concentrated effort from the home side in the last ten minutes saw them push the aggregate to 7-4, then 7-5, and finally 7-6, the latter with Victor Irineu’s 90+1st minute goal. However, Arsenal weathered the storm to progress. Meanwhile, A.C. Milan got two 1-0 victories on their way to beating Inter in the Derby della Madonnina. Man City and Chelsea both tallied massive aggregate wins, 4-0 over Lyon and 6-0 over Benfica respectively. After the Semi-Finals, Arsenal hold a narrow 1-0 lead over A.C. Milan, with a trip to Italy awaiting them, and a five minute double salvo gives Chelsea the advantage over Manchester City.

It’s time to end our report in Spain. Lucas Volman’s Real Madrid started April very well, beating Zaragoza, Lorca and Hércules before a goalless draw at Betis. A 3-1 win over Valencia followed, before the Derbi madrileño at the Bernabéu. Atlético Madrid took the lead within 15 minutes, thanks to Freddy Adu, but Real had it level before half time. However, in a thirteen-minute spell around the hour mark in the second half, visitors Atlético netted a further three times. Morgan Schneiderlin’s 88th minute goal for Volman’s side was scant consolation, as Atlético’s 4-2 victory in the derby meant they had secured the La Liga title.

Meanwhile, eager to get the season back on track, Haowan Madridstas’s Barcelona really pummelled some opposition at the Nou Camp this month. Recreativo were beaten 6-1, and Málaga 8-0. Yet away trips were less profitable: Valencia won 3-1 at the Nuevo Mestalla, and Murcia put up a big fight in their match hosting Barça, leading to Madridstas’s team winning 6-5 in a stunning encounter. Finally, the month ended with a 2-2 draw at Albacete. For all their efforts, however, Barcelona still sit in 7th place. La Liga, with about five games left to be played, hasn’t relegated any teams yet.

Cup finals and races to the finish line await next month, so don’t miss that. I’ll see you then.

Manager of the Update

This month’s winner is;

Lord Weeman , Napoli

for an unbeaten month with four wins out of five, including victory over fellow Champions League spot contenders Udinese. Honourable mentions go to Tom Smith, who guided his Arsenal team through two cups, and Haowan Madridstas, who knocked up some impressive wins even though his team’s league position remained unchanged.

Job Securities

[font=Courier New]  [b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   5045
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   5045
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   5045
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Very Secure   5045
 [/font][font=Courier New] 5th weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Secure        5045
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/font]

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Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[font=Courier New]  [b]Update Winner, Club                [/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
 [/font][font=Courier New]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Oct 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
 [/font][font=Courier New]Nov 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Dec 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jan 22 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Feb 22 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Mar 22 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Apr 22 Lord Weeman, Napoli[/font]

Hall of Fame – Top Ten Most Games Played at Current Club/Nation

[font=Courier New]  [b] Pos +- Username      Manager           Original Club Current Club Pld[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st [color=#00b050]+1[/color] tomsmith1989  Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal      843 *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 2nd [color=red]-1[/color] Haowan        Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona    841 *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 3rd  [color=#0070c0]0[/color] Romanista1994 Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid  817 *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 4th  [color=#0070c0]0[/color] PluckaDuck    Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese      686 *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 5th  [color=#0070c0]0[/color] weeeman27bob  Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli       680 *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th [color=#00b050]+2[/color] MikaelS       Mikael Schøler    Bologna       Juventus     371
 [/font][font=Courier New] 7th  [color=#0070c0]0[/color] el sid        Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter        369
 [/font][font=Courier New] 8th [color=#00b050]+1[/color] spartans5     Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City     368
 [/font][font=Courier New] 9th [color=#00b050]+1[/color] brettney1980  Brettney Joven    Wigan         Leeds        262
 [/font][font=Courier New]10th NE canvey!!      Fréderico Canvey  Stoke         Everton      150[/font]

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Joint top of the Serie A, MON :mad:

Losing to AC Milan in the CL though :(

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Update 167

Years: 13, Months: 167, Days: 5076

The 14th season of thrilling football in 60 to One has come to an end. At this point ten years ago, seventeen managers remained in contention for the 60 to One crown. Now just five are left, but they are doing their best to extend the contest for as long as possible.

We’ll start our May review in Spain, where the rain falls mainly on the plain. Atlético Madrid had already won the league, but second place was on the card for Lucas Volman’s Real Madrid, and indeed that was what they achieved. Victories over Recreativo and Murcia, and draws with Málaga and Barcelona, gave them the runners-up medal. Haowan Madridstas’s Barcelona, meanwhile, beat Getafe, Racing and Elche, and then lost at Sevilla before the final-day El Classico, which finished 2-2 at the Nou Camp. Unfortunately for Barça, the sixteen goals that they scored in their three wins weren’t enough to lift them any higher than seventh, which is where they finish. However, seeing as Atlético Madrid lifted the Copa del Rey with victory over Zaragoza, and both those sides finished in the top four, Madridstas’s team will be in next season’s Europa League. Albacete, Lorca and Racing were fired, and the latter ended Tim Aubel’s 166-day tenure at the club, replacing him with former Fiorentina and Portsmouth boss Theo Stigarakis.

So how did the season end in Italy? Lord Weeman’s Napoli beat Catania 4-2 and Juventus 3-0 before losing the final game of the season to Frosinone. Tyler Burrows’s Udinese were thrashed 0-4 at Mantova, but got big wins over Genoa and Palermo before losing at Lazio. Cool Manager’s Inter drew with Frosinone before beating Modena and Fiorentina, and Mikael Schøler’s Juventus got convincing wins over Brescia, Roma and Rimini, alongside that loss to Napoli. All this meant that Juventus took the title, ending a nine-year streak of Milan dominance. Inter followed up, with Napoli third and Udinese fourth. Parma, Brescia and Fiorentina were relegated. Fiorentina, who sacked their previous manager after relegation was confirmed in April, appointed former Wigan boss Neppo Monster. Former Fiorentina manager Ben Taylor, who had been managing Parma, got the sack this month. A.C. Milan won the Coppa Italia with victory over Leo Dodge’s Roma

But Roma still had the Europa League Final to play, in Clermont-Ferrand, and Juventus were their opponents. Leo Dodge’s side took the lead in the 17th minute and consolidated it with three minutes left in the half, but a late first half goal for Juventus left things close at the break. On the hour mark, an Andrea Mazzarani miss from the spot put Roma on shaky ground, and sure enough, Mikael Schøler’s side equalised seven minutes later. The match was settled neither in normal time nor in extra time, so penalties were needed. Both sides scored their first nine, but a miss from Romanian midfielder Vlad Pop meant that Juventus defended their Europa League title with a 10-9 penalty win.

Indeed, that wasn’t the only European final this month.

Road to the Final – Champions League

Lawrence Lazewski’s Manchester City were drawn into Group B of the Champions League, alongside Bayern Munich, Zenit St Petersburg and AS Monaco. Not an easy group, but then again, not too difficult. Indeed, City romped past their Russian and French counterparts, beating Monaco 6-0 at the City of Manchester Stadium, and netting that aggregated score in their two games against Zenit. They also beat Bayern both times, 1-0 in Germany and 2-1 at home, and didn’t take their foot off the pedal until the final game, a 0-0 draw on the Mediterranean coast. This, however, still gave them a difficult Last 16 tie, against La Liga leaders Atlético Madrid. A 1-0 win in Spain set up progression, after a 1-1 home draw.

Meanwhile, Tom Smith’s Arsenal were in Group F, and weren’t likely to be troubled by Benfica, Basel or Trabzonspor. Indeed, the Gunners won all six matches, beating (home then away) Benfica 5-0 and 3-1, Basel 2-0 and 3-1, and Trabzonspor 6-0 and 2-0. Yet they too had what looked like, on paper at least, a tough draw: defending champions Napoli. They fell 0-1 in Italy, but made it up with a 2-0 victory at the Emirates, which put them into the Quarter Finals. Here, they faced Bayern Munich, last year’s runners-up. A 4-2 win at home didn’t make Arsenal that comfortable, although they soon consolidated that by taking a confident lead in Germany. But Bayern pulled goals back, three of them, winning 4-3 on the night. A narrow 7-6 aggregate victory put Arsenal through.

Man City had an easier Quarter Final tie, against Lyon. A 3-0 win in Manchester was followed by a 1-0 one in France, sealing and all-English Semi-Final against the Premier League winners, Bryan McGuinness’s Chelsea. The trip to the Chelsea Stadium ended badly, with the Pensioners netting a 2-0 victory, but that score was reversed back up north, meaning penalties had to be used to settle the scores. Both teams scored one from their first two spot kicks, but Chelsea missed their fifth while City scored their next three, putting the Citizens into the Final. Arsenal, meanwhile, beat A.C. Milan 1-0 at home with an Henri Saivet goal, and another goal from the 31-year-old Frenchman secured a draw in Milan and 2-1 aggregate progression.

After an exhausting five mile drive, the Manchester City team disembarked from their coach at Old Trafford for the Champions League Final. Although Man City really dominated the opening stages of play, the Arsenal defensive line held firm and all their shots, albeit frequently on target, came from long range. The breakthrough came in the 22nd minute, when such a long shot from Peruvian forward Reimond Manco was parried by Arsenal ‘keeper Lukasz Fabianski, allowing Paraguayan right winger Julio Samaniego to knock the ball home. Arsenal had a couple of half-chances, before, in the 34th minute, some good passing football was capped with a wonderful long-range strike from England midfielder Adam Pepper. With Hatem Ben Arfa missing for the Gunners what could be described as a sitter, Arsenal couldn’t muster any response before half time, and so entered the break two goals down. Things went from bad to worse for them after the restart, when a succession of poor clearances allowed Man City’s Scottish striker Sam Law the space and opportunity to rifle a shot into the goal, which he gladly did. Arsenal bossed the rest of the game, but some decent City defending, some poor composure in the penalty area from the London team’s strikers, and some spectacular saves from City ‘keeper Oded Nachmias kept the score at 3-0, and gave Lawrence Lazewski’s team their third Champions League title in four years.

As we’re with the English teams, we’ll finish off in England. Tom Smith’s Arsenal won both their games this month 2-1, against Aston Villa and Newcastle, and finished the season second. Crystal Palace beat Everton but drew with James Ridley’s fifth-placed Fulham, and so were relegated alongside Blackburn and West Ham. Huddersfield beat Coventry in the Championship Playoff Final, and so will join Q.P.R. and Sheffield Wednesday in promotion to the top flight. The FA Cup Final took place in front of a capacity crowd at Wembley.

Road to the Final – FA Cup

Tom Smith’s Arsenal started their cup campaign in the Third Round, like any other Premier League team. Here, they beat Championship side Wolves 3-0, leading to a Fourth Round tie at St Mary’s. Southampton were seen off with a 1-0 Arsenal win. Arsenal’s Final opponents, Bryan McGuinness’s Chelsea, met Nottingham Forest in the Third Round, and ran out 2-0 victors at the City Ground. Crystal Palace awaited, and a rather disappointing 2-1 home victory put the Eagles to bed. Then; a Fifth Round tie hosting Liverpool. The Reds were seen off by the same scoreline.

Arsenal’s Fifth Round tie was their easiest yet: League One Hartlepool. They beat the Monkey Hangers 3-0, and went one better against Middlesbrough in the Sixth Round. They booked their Final place with a 3-0 victory over Man United at Wembley, and got there without having conceded a goal. Chelsea, meanwhile, beat Man City 3-1 in the Sixth Round, before winning 2-1 against Tottenham in their Semi-Final.

With a heavy downpour in HA9, Arsenal made the brighter start to the Final, going ahead in the 19th minute with £48M striker Craig Robson pouncing on Lukasz Fabianski’s goal kick to open the scoring. However, Chelsea had it level before half time, with a goal from 23-year-old Serbian striker Stefan Pejic. And the Pensioners were the next to take the lead, going ahead with just eighteen minutes to play. It looked like Arsenal were going to go down at the death, before home-grown Gunner Jay Hewitt, 23, made it 2-2 with a scrappy finish in the 90+3rd minute. The first half of extra time passed without incident, but, five minute into the second half, 25-year-old attacking midfielder Lee Taylor delivered the hammer blow for Arsenal with his header from Joe Mattock’s cross. Mattock himself made it 4-2 with just seconds left on the clock. It is worth considering that for two sides considered to not particularly nurture English talent, a whopping eight (!) of the starting 22 players were English, with a Scot and an Irishman playing too. Anyway, Bryan McGuinness had done the double, and netted the fourth trophy of his career.

Manager of the Update

With all the sides ending the season pretty poorly, I feel obliged to give this one to;

Lucas Volman, Real Madrid

for winning twice and drawing twice this month, and thefore being the only manager unbeaten. To be honest, Volman was the only manager whose work for the season was done, and while one must give credit to Haowan Madridstas for some big wins this month, the Barcelona manager couldn’t lift his side to any higher than 7th. Similarly, our other three managers fell a bit short of the mark.

Job Securities

[font=Courier New]  [b]Rank Username             Manager             Club        Security      Days[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st tomsmith1989         Tom Smith           Arsenal     Very Secure   5076
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - Haowan               Haowan Madridstas   Barcelona   Very Secure   5076
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - Romanista1994        Lucas Volman        Real Madrid Very Secure   5076
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - PluckaDuck           Tyler Burrows       Udinese     Very Secure   5076
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - weeeman27bob         Lord Weeman         Napoli      Very Secure   5076
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th SCIAG                Leo Dodge           Tottenham                 3800[/font]

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English Premier League Table

Italian Serie A Table

Spanish La Liga Table

Manager of the Update – Previous Winners

[font=Courier New]  [b]Update Winner, Club                [/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jan 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Feb 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Mar 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
 [/font][font=Courier New]Apr 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]May 21 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jun 21 Saul Goode, Wales (formerly of Osasuna)
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jul 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Aug 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Sep 21 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Oct 21 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid
 [/font][font=Courier New]Nov 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Dec 21 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Jan 22 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]Feb 22 Tyler Burrows, Udinese
 [/font][font=Courier New]Mar 22 Tom Smith, Arsenal
 [/font][font=Courier New]Apr 22 Lord Weeman, Napoli
 [/font][font=Courier New]May 22 Lucas Volman, Real Madrid[/font]

Hall of Victory – Top Ten Most Games Won at Current Club

[font=Courier New]  [b] Pos +- Username      Manager           Original Club Current Club Won Percent Chnge[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] tomsmith1989  Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal      590 (69.6%) [color=#92d050]+0.3%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 2nd  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] Haowan        Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona    562 (66.4%) [color=red]-1.0%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 3rd  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] Romanista1994 Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid  550 (67.0%) [color=red]-0.1%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 4th  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] weeeman27bob  Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli       397 (58.1%) [color=#92d050]+0.7%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 5th  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] PluckaDuck    Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese      377 (54.6%) [color=#92d050]+1.2%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] el sid        Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter        255 (68.5%) [color=red]-2.0%[/color]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 7th [color=#92d050]+1[/color] spartans5     Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City     243 (65.5%) [color=#92d050]+2.1%[/color]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 8th [color=#92d050]+1[/color] MikaelS       Mikael Schøler    Bologna       Juventus     227 (60.2%) [color=#92d050]+0.6%[/color]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 9th [color=#92d050]+1[/color] brettney1980  Brettney Joven    Wigan         Leeds        120 (45.6%) [color=red]-2.3%[/color]
 [/font][font=Courier New]10th NE ~Ian~         Bryan McGuinness  Everton       Chelsea       82 (71.9%)  n/a
 [/font][font=Courier New]   - NE canvey!!      Fréderico Canvey  Stoke         Everton       82 (53.9%)  n/a[/font]

Hall of Defeat – Top Ten Most Games Lost at Current Club

[font=Courier New]  [b] Pos +- Username      Manager           Original Club Current Club Lst Percent Chnge[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 1st  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] PluckaDuck    Tyler Burrows     Udinese       Udinese      179 (25.9%) [color=#92d050]-0.7%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 2nd  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] weeeman27bob  Lord Weeman       Napoli        Napoli       140 (20.5%) [color=#92d050]-0.2%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 3rd  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] Haowan        Haowan Madridstas Barcelona     Barcelona    133 (15.7%) [color=red]+1.0%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 4th  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] Romanista1994 Lucas Volman      Real Madrid   Real Madrid  113 (13.8%) [color=red]+0.6%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 5th  [color=#548dd4]0[/color] tomsmith1989  Tom Smith         Arsenal       Arsenal      108 (12.7%) [color=red]+0.1%[/color] *
 [/font][font=Courier New] 6th [color=#92d050]+1[/color] brettney1980  Brettney Joven    Wigan         Leeds         82 (31.2%) [color=red]+1.0%[/color]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 7th [color=red]-1[/color] MikaelS       Mikael Schøler    Bologna       Juventus      74 (19.6%) [color=#92d050]-1.0%[/color]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 8th [color=#92d050]+2[/color] spartans5     Lawrence Lazewski Valencia      Man City      57 (15.4%) [color=red]+0.1%[/color]
 [/font][font=Courier New] 9th NE Neilio        Neilio            Almería       Palermo       51 (33.8%)  n/a
 [/font][font=Courier New]10th NE el sid        Cool Manager      At. Madrid    Inter         46 (12.4%)  n/a[/font]

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Thank you, Jim.

World Cup Preview

With another exciting season over, the exodus of fans from Europe, and from other places worldwide, to South America has begun. Argentina are the hosts of the 22nd FIFA World Cup, and will be looking to claim a victory on home soil like they did in 1978. As last year’s runners-up, that is entirely possible for Néstor Gorosito’s team.

We’ll start the preview, logically, in Group A, where champions Spain are the clear favourites to win the group. They’re in pursuit of their third consecutive Jules Rimet trophy, and are looking to reinforce their position as the only European team to have won the title outside of Europe. I would probably tip Uruguay to join Spain in the Last 16, although Hungary could pose a threat. Egypt could too, of course, but I think the North African side will leave the group empty-handed, or at least bottom.

Group B sees a nice eclectic mix from four continents. Germany are looking to claim their first title as a unified country, and, to be honest, I don’t see any of their groupmates going any way to impeding that. Colombia will surely finish bottom, while I think Cameroon will also lose out in the battle against Australia, who, in my opinion, have the tenacity to reach the knockout stages for the first time since 2006. In Group C, hosts Argentina might see some resistance from Mexico, but otherwise have an easy group. China, appearing for the first time in twenty years, will be fighting it out with Israel for third place, in my view, with the Mexicans joining the host nation in qualification.

Group D also offers a poor choice of opposition for the big seed. France are clear favourites to proceed, having reached the Final in 2006 and 2010, and still being a major player on the world stage, while Nigeria would be my tip to join them. Having said that, Romania could put up a struggle, although I expect the United Arab Emirates to go down pretty easily. In Group E, Italy are the team of choice, but the group is one of the more difficult ones. Japan and Ghana are two high-performing nations from outside Europe or South America, while Ireland can’t be completely discounted. Still, I’m going to completely discount Ireland, and just about tip Japan to finish second, ahead of the Gold Coast team.

Groups F and H offer some tantalising football. In the former, Brazil should progress with ease, and should net plenty of goals in their games against Iran, Guatemala and Switzerland. I think the Swiss have what it takes to pick up the pieces and finish second, but Iran might just do that instead. In Group H, one might normally pick Portugal to proceed, but with Chile, Denmark and the United States as opponents, it isn’t so simple. I think Denmark will lose out in a tough group, and that the United States will profit. I’m thinking that Chile can oust Portugal to get through too, although don’t quote me on that.

And finally, Group G, where Liam Ferguson’s England lie. The teams on offer here aren’t easy, but the 1966 winners should pull through. Peru are obvious favourites to finish bottom, with Côte d’Ivoire and Croatia fighting it out with England for progression. I think England and Croatia will do it, with the Eastern Europeans capable of topping the group.

So, my picks in order of expected finishing position,

Group A: Spain, Uruguay, Hungary, Egypt

Group B: Germany, Australia, Cameroon, Colombia

Group C: Argentina, Mexico, Israel, China

Group D: France, Nigeria, Romania, United Arab Emirates

Group E: Italy, Japan, Ghana, Ireland

Group F: Brazil, Switzerland, Iran, Guatemala

Group G: Croatia, England, Côte d’Ivoire, Peru

Group H: United States, Chile, Portugal, Denmark

And now, a stats burst. This time, we’ll look at which countries the World Cup superstars ply their trade in.

[font=Courier New]  [b]League System No National Team(s)[/b]
 [/font][font=Courier New]England      116 Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, China, Colombia, Croatia, Denmark, England,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 France, Germany, Ghana, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 Peru, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]Spain        102 Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Denmark, Egypt,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 England, France, Germany, Ghana, Hungary, Iran, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 Nigeria, Peru, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, United States, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]Italy         80 Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, China, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Denmark,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 England, France, Germany, Ghana, Hungary, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Nigeria, Portugal,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 Spain, Switzerland, United States, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]France        48 Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Cameroon, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Denmark, France, Guatemala,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 Iran, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, Portugal, Romania, Switzerland, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]Germany       38 Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, Croatia, France, Germany, Hungary, Nigeria, Romania,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 United Arab Emirates, United States
 [/font][font=Courier New]Netherlands   25 Australia, Brazil, Cameroon, China, Croatia, Ghana, Hungary, Iran, Israel, Japan,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 Mexico, Portugal, Romania, Switzerland, United States
 [/font][font=Courier New]Brazil        23 Argentina, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, Colombia, Egypt, Ghana, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 Peru, Switzerland, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]Portugal      19 Brazil, Hungary, Portugal, United States, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]Denmark       16 Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Denmark, Iran, Romania, United Arab Emirates
 [/font][font=Courier New]Switzerland   15 China, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Guatemala, Hungary, Iran, Mexico, Romania, Switzerland,
 [/font][font=Courier New]                 Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]Argentina     12 Argentina, Cameroon, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru
 [/font][font=Courier New]Mexico        12 Argentina, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Iran, Japan, Mexico, United States
 [/font][font=Courier New]Greece        11 Argentina, China, Colombia, Ireland, Japan, Mexico, Romania
 [/font][font=Courier New]Ukraine        9 Ghana, Hungary, Japan, Portugal, Switzerland, United States, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]United States  9 Mexico, United States, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]Scotland       7 Australia, China, Denmark, Ireland, Nigeria
 [/font][font=Courier New]Turkey         7 Denmark, Hungary, Iran, Romania
 [/font][font=Courier New]Russia         6 Cameroon, Iran, Japan, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uruguay
 [/font][font=Courier New]Croatia        5 Chile, China, Croatia, Denmark
 [/font][font=Courier New]UAE            5 China, United Arab Emirates
 [/font][font=Courier New]Australia      4 Australia, Chile, Hungary
 [/font][font=Courier New]Austria        3 Egypt, Ghana, Nigeria
 [/font][font=Courier New]Belgium        3 Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Romania
 [/font][font=Courier New]Czech Republic 3 Côte d’Ivoire, Hungary
 [/font][font=Courier New]Estonia        3 Cameroon, China, Japan
 [/font][font=Courier New]Israel         3 Israel
 [/font][font=Courier New]Japan          3 Japan
 [/font][font=Courier New]Norway         3 Japan, Nigeria, United Arab Emirates
 [/font][font=Courier New]Poland         3 Colombia, Egypt, Nigeria
 [/font][font=Courier New]Romania        3 Croatia, Romania
 [/font][font=Courier New]Sweden         3 Australia, Denmark
 [/font][font=Courier New]2 PLAYERS: Colombia (Colombia), Cyprus (Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire), Finland (China, Hungary)
 [/font][font=Courier New]           Qatar (Colombia), Saudi Arabia (Ghana, Nigeria)
 [/font][font=Courier New]1 PLAYER: Albania (Egypt), Algeria (Nigeria), Cameroon (Cameroon), Georgia (Chile), Guatemala (Guatemala),
 [/font][font=Courier New]          Iceland (Cameroon), Ireland (Ireland), Lithuania (Peru), Moldova (Côte d’Ivoire), Nigeria (Nigeria),
 [/font][font=Courier New]          Peru (Peru), Slovenia (Guatemala), Uruguay (Uruguay)[/font]

Next time, the 2022 FIFA World Cup!

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