crouchaldinho

[FM10] When The Saints Go Marching In - Crouchy's Mighty Saints Save!

1,848 posts in this topic

[center][IMG]http://www.sacfc.co.uk/components/com_fpss/images/park408.jpg[/IMG][/center]

[B][U][center]Welcome to Crouchy's 'When The Saints Go Marching In!' Career Thread! [/center][/U][/B]

[center][IMG]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/archive/9/9e/20091026011547!St_albans.png[/IMG][/center]


Whether I shall turn out to be the hero that my favourite club has been waiting for all these years, or whether I shall fail miserably to take the Saints to heights that nobody has ever dreamt possible, these pages must show.

As many of you will already know about my obsession with St. Albans City, I will keep this preface short and sweet. Brevity is the soul of wit and all that. ;)

I have had a few great saves with the Saints over the years. The greatest was undoubtedly on FM07. I had been away from the CM/FM series for a few versions and was just starting to pick it up again. Little did I realise that the game would last so long or to make any kind of impact on my life in the way that it did. The game was eventually a success (with plenty of ‘oh so nearly’ moments of frustration to keep it interesting). FM07 also got under my skin and, although I was following City in real life anyway, the game reinforced my feelings of partisanship and emotional attachment to the Saints. I have since become a more fervent supporter of the club (and of the non-League scene in general).

Every version since 07 has seen me start a game with the Saints. Some have been more successful than others. I am a rather slow and deliberate player. I have a tendency to stop before having any wild and incredible success. Indeed, the furthest I have ever taken St. Albans City was to the Premier League back on FM07.

I cannot promise that I will reach the dizzy heights of the Premier League again. I am apologetic in advance if I fail miserably. In fact, those seeking a rip-roaring ride up the divisions in quick succession might be better pleased by reading elsewhere. I will be building very slowly. No doubt I will be restricted by my own partially towards some of the current Saints players. There are certain players who I would like to keep and see out the careers of. I also want to enjoy the non-League part of it because that's where I find the real fun is! But obviously, I want to take the Saints into the Football League eventually, and to take them to all kinds of success, and hopefully take them beyond my previous saves!

Anyway, to finish up here, I apologise in advance for any inconsistencies or incongruity, plus the inevitable bad grammar and spelling. All that remains to be said is ‘come on you Saints’!


[I]This game is played on FM10 and started with patch 10.3 with no edits made to the database. Leagues loaded are: England (all divisions). Large database selected and players from top clubs in all countries are retained, as well as all players based in England too.[/I]

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I've taken the club information from [URL="http://community.sigames.com/showthread.php?p=4945553#post4945553"]'The FM10 St Albans City FC Thread - Home of the Mighty Saints'[/URL]. It's a great OP by Ryan_SACFC and I hope he does not mind me pinching this bit!


[B][U]Club Information[/U][/B]

[B]Nation:[/B] England
[B]Year Founded:[/B] 1908
[B]Status:[/B] Semi-Professional
[B]Reputation:[/B] Local
[B]Chairman Status:[/B] Happy to stay (for now at least!)
[B]Legends:[/B] Steve Clark, Phil Wood, Wilfred Minter
[B]Icons:[/B] Colin Lippiatt, Lee Clarke, Peter Risley, Kevin Mudd, Richard Evans, Paul Bastock
[B]Favoured Personnel:[/B] Ben Martin, Ryan Frater, Luke Thurlbourne, Solomon Shields, Paul Hakim, Gary Cohen, Godfrey Poku, Jonathan O'Donnell
[B]Fierce Rivals:[/B] Boreham Wood
[B]Other Rivals:[/B] Stevenage, Hitchin, Enfield, Aylesbury, Chesham, Weymouth, Hendon, Bishop's Stortford
[B]Finances:[/B] Insecure
[B]Average Ticket Price: [/B]£10.00
[B]Average Season Ticket Price: [/B]£175
[B]Estimated Value: [/B]£300k
[B]Continental Competition: [/B]None
[B]Media Prediction: [/B]14th
[B]Squad Personality: [/B]Determined
[B]Captain: [/B]Ryan Frater


Here is a photograph of the current Saints captain, Ryan Frater:

[center][img]http://www.sacfc.co.uk/sponsorship/Ryan%20Frater.jpg[/img][/center]


And this photograph of my Centenary t-shirt shows the three Saints legends (from left to right: Wilfred Minter, Phil Wood and Steve Clark)

[center][img]http://img709.imageshack.us/img709/954/img4817p.jpg[/img][/center]

Wilfred Minter, with a staggering return of 356 goals in 362 games, is the Saints all time top goalscorer, and holds the record for scoring the most goals for the losing side in a FA Cup tie (see claim to fame in my next post!)

Former Amateur England international Phil Wood has played more times, 900, for the club than any other player.

Steve Clark is St. Albans City's most prolific post-war goalscorer and the second highest scorer in the Saints history. He is also second in the all-time list of appearances. His 322 goals in 488 games for the Saints included 23 hat-tricks!

Photograph of Steve Clark:
[center][img]http://www.sacfc.co.uk/tpl/images/228.jpg[/img][/center]

Finally, the photograph below shows a snow-covered Clarence Park and gives you an idea of what our ground is like. One of the most pleasant places to watch your football in my very biased opinion!

[center][img]http://www.sacfc.co.uk/images/stories/clarenceparksnowfeb10.jpg[/img][/center]

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Been looking forward to this thread Crouchy, should have waited before asking in the other thread. Going to be interesting to see how far you get, I am hoping to see Prem football for the Saints.

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Good luck in this save, as for the ground, I have been there this season - I watched the mighty H+R take on St Albans

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So, I feel the need to bring you guys up to speed as quickly as I can regarding this little known, unfashionable non-League football club in Hertfordshire. I'll make it quick and painless, don't worry!

[U][B]Club Information[/B][/U]

[B]Club: [/B]St. Albans City

[B]Nicknames:[/B] 'The Saints' or 'City'

[B]Stadium:[/B] Clarence Park

[B]Club Colours:[/B] Blue and yellow

[B]Claim to fame:[/B] You'll like this one. I promise! This proud Hertfordshire club has one major claim to fame. Wilfred Minter, a legendary forward who turned down the opportunity to play professional football to stay with his hometown club and work for his father's family business, can be found in record books as the player to have scored the most goals for the losing side in a FA Cup tie. This feat took place in City's most famous match on November 22, 1922 in a first round FA Cup tie. Having been held by Dulwich Hamlet to a 1-1 draw at Clarence Park on November 18, the replay drew a gate of 4,060. City's New Zealand-born goalkeeper W. Tennant did not appear, his place taken by Alf Fearn who was usually a half-back with the reserves. Dulwich put eight goals past him, the winning goal coming in near darkness at the end of extra time. What put the game in the record books was that City scored seven times, with all seven goals being scored by Wilfred Minter. His feat remains the highest tally by a player on the losing side of an FA Cup tie. Brilliant!

Equally as eccentric, up until the late 90's the ground was famous for having a large oak tree that sat in the middle of the Clarence Park Terrace. It was not unknown for visiting goalkeepers to get the odd acorn thrown in their direction! Alas the oak tree became diseased and was swiftly removed by the management.

[img]http://www.pyramidpassion.co.uk/St._Albans_tree_copyright.jpg[/img]

You can read all about Clarence Park and also see some photographs here - [url]http://www.pyramidpassion.co.uk/html/st__albans_city.html[/url]

[B]Division: [/B]Blue Square South

[B]Transfer Budget: [/B]Yeah, right! Chairman says no money available. Wage budget is tight. It's going to be a one in, one out scenario.

[B]Best Competition History: [/B]Runners-up Conference South in 2006

[B]Recent History:[/B] The most successful period in the clubs history was in the 1920s. The Saints joined the Athenian League in 1920 and won league title at their first two attempts followed by a runners-up place and elevation to the Isthmian League in 1923.

St Albans City weren’t phased by the higher standard of football and they swept to the Isthmian title in their inaugural season followed by back-to-back successes in 1927 and 28.

Those successes meant the Saints had won five championships in eight years, as well as reaching three Amateur Cup semi-finals during the same period.

The FA Cup has never been an especially happy hunting ground for the St Albans City. They have reached the 2nd round on five occasions according to my St Albans City coffee mug (:D), most recently in 1996/97. A 9-2 defeat at Bristol City on this occasion took the gloss off the cup run. :o

The Saints have not had a dull moment in the last four seasons. They were promoted to the Conference in 2005/06, relegated back to the Conference South in 2006/07 and nearly relegated down another level again in 2007/08, saving themselves with an amazing run at the end of the season. Last season was St Albans City's centenary season and they managed to finish in a mid-table position. This year will be a transitional year and will be all about steadying the ship and building for the future.

The Conference South is a very close division this year and I have the feeling that anyone can beat anyone else pretty much, so with some canny management and a few signings, we could push on for a promotion spot. It's an outside chance though and mid-table will probably be more realistic.

St. Albans itself is a beautiful, historic city with Roman ruins and museums juxtaposed with suburban housing provided for the inevitable overflow from London. With a population of 130,000, the city has undoubted potential in terms of its base of footballing support and a great potential catchment area of surrounding villages and towns. Yet, the locals mostly defer to nearby north London clubs Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur, or local sides Luton Town and Watford. We will need to build up the support down at Clarence Park and the best way to do that is to be successful!

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[quote name='AcidBurn']Been looking forward to this thread Crouchy, should have waited before asking in the other thread. Going to be interesting to see how far you get, I am hoping to see Prem football for the Saints.[/QUOTE]

[quote name='hrbfcrule']Good luck in this save, as for the ground, I have been there this season - I watched the mighty H+R take on St Albans[/QUOTE]

Thanks for the encouragement chaps! :thup:

Htbfcrule - just don't mention the score. ;) :(

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The claim to fame is brilliant, love it:thup::D

Don't worry I won't mention the score, you are still ahead of us in the table though

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[quote name='hrbfcrule']The claim to fame is brilliant, love it:thup::D[/QUOTE]

It is rather good, isn't it! :D

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Was wondering when this would show up. Here's to a good read as I like it when teams don't just go to the top in 7 seasons.

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Believe me, it will take me a lot longer than that, if I get there at all. :D

Should be fun either way. Thanks for the encouragement Almondo.

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I should have said in the opening post that I will also be trying to bring some youth players through. I want to get some local St Albans and Hertfordshire lads in the starting XI.

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So, looking at the squad I have at the beginning of this save, I have a very decent spine to set off with.

We have a great goalkeeper in veteran goalie Paul Bastock for starters.

Here is a photograph of the legendary Saints 'keeper:
[img]http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/Baz.jpg[/img]

The only trouble with Bazza, as he is known at Clarence Park, is that he is getting on a bit and I will certainly need to bring in someone as his understudy.

The Saints have got a solid defensive unit, which is one area we look particularly strong in. Peter Smith (see [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/PeterSmith.png"]this screenshot[/URL]) is one player I am looking forward to working with. The left-back is hard working, offers plenty coming forward and will be perfect for the wing-back role I would think.

In the midfield, we have Solomon Shields. The ex-Leyton Orient midfielder is probably the the perfect deep-lying playmaker in my opinion. See [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/SolomonShields.png"]this screenshot[/URL]. Good technique, passing, first touch, creativity. He can run the midfield.

Photograph of Sol Shields:
[img]http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/Shields.png[/img]

What we really lack is a holding player to come in alongside him so this will be something to deal with immediately.

Up front, well it's all about Paul Hakim (see [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/PaulHakim.png"]screenshot[/URL]). Real quality at this level. A skillful player, who oozes class, and who is creative and has plenty of flair. He will get goals as a number 9, or create and still score as a number 10. I'm tempted to play him as a withdrawn striker actually and to get him making runs from deep into the box and receiving the ball in the hole to create for others or make chances for himself.

Photograph of Paul Hakim:
[img]http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/Haks.jpg[/img]

I'm pretty sure I will be sticking with my 4-2-3-1. I did think about going to 4-4-2 for this save but then when you look at the 4-2-3-1 and its relationship with 4-4-2, there isn't too much difference. I'm withdrawing a striker, pushing the wings forward and asking the midfielders to drop back and shield the defence. Voilà, 4-4-2 to 4-2-3-1. I like the kind of football I can get from my team using this formation. What I especially like is that I can fit quite a few attacking players into the line-up. I can see Hakim in the hole, Cohen and Roberts (two forwards by trade who can play wide) in the wide positions, all three behind a lone striker (possibly Lamine Sagna?) Obviously, I will change the system as necessary. I very often switch from 4-2-3-1 to 4-4-2 and 4-4-1-1, and even 4-3-1-2, for instance. But 4-2-3-1 will be the base, I think.

The priority in terms of bringing a few players in will be to bring in an understudy to Bastock, who I feel might last just the one season (he tends to fade quickly on FM :(). I also want to bring in a holder and maybe another DLP as backup for Shields. Another 'hole' player might be good (an AMC). If we can get a defender as well, just to bolster the backline, that would be perfection. Some of this will need to be done with loans as we are low on funds. I will no doubt have to release a couple of fringe players as well in order to bring in new faces. I'm aiming for a squad of 23 ideally, probably with a few youngsters making up the numbers.

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Claim to fame is excellent, crouchy :D

[QUOTE]Whether I shall turn out to be the hero that my favourite club has been waiting for all these years, or whether I shall fail miserably to take the Saints to heights that nobody has ever dreamt possible, these pages must show. [/QUOTE]

We all know the one, and only answer to that. You will UNDOUBTEDLY, fail. :D - Nah, just playing. You have a vast enough knowledge of the game to see the mighty saints to Premiership Glory. :thup:

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I hope you are right Nep!

I have just remembered that I should also have said that one of my aims is to sign up plenty of ex-Saints who are in FM10!

The likes of Ben Martin, Godfrey Poku and Jonathan O'Donnell are the first names on my ex-Saints shortlist! :D

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Thought I might as well record some of the ex-Saints from recent seasons that I'm going to try to bring back to Clarence Park:

Godfrey Poku - now at Luton Town.

Jonathan O'Donnell - now at Luton Town.

Alex Bailey - released earlier in the season.

Luke Thurlbourne - left by mutual consent in November and now at Mildenhall Town.

Danny Green - released earlier in the year. Had a spell at Bishop's Stortford. Now at Billericay.

Hassan Sulaiman - released in pre-season and now at Bishop's Stortford.

Ben Martin - signed for Chelmsford at the end of last season.

Lee Clarke - released and signed for Welling at the end of last summer.

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[quote name='crouchaldinho']
[B]Chairman Status:[/B] Happy to stay (for now at least!)
[/QUOTE]

Until you arrived. Now he wants to leave. :D

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[quote name='Nobby_McDonald']Until you arrived. Now he wants to leave. :D[/QUOTE]

Ha ha! :D

No, what I was alluding to is the fact that the current chairman, John Gibson, has expressed his desire to leave over the last couple of seasons in real life and therefore will probably be looking to leave early on during my adventure with the Saints on FM.

John Gibson isn't the most popular figure down at Clarence Park, let's put it that way, and he will probably be a very difficult chairman to work with in FM too.

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Got through pre-season and played the first month of the season last night. The game flies with only the English leagues loaded. :eek:

Will be posting an update this evening so stay tuned. :D

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I've updated [URL="http://community.sigames.com/showpost.php?p=5037000&postcount=2"]post 2[/URL] with some more information about the Saints legends I want my players to emulate and also a photograph of Steve Clark. :)

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[quote name='crouchaldinho']Got through pre-season and played the first month of the season last night. The game flies with only the English leagues loaded. :eek:

Will be posting an update this evening so stay tuned. :D[/QUOTE]

Looking forward to it Crouchy.

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Same here, Waited for this for a while. What was that Big Burly striker called now that you had in 07?

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John Dawson, signed from Hitchin Town I seem to remember, and played & scored in every division from the Conference to the Championship (retired the season we got promoted to the Premier League :().

Due to the fact that target men were hugely overpowered in FM07, he was able to play to a level way beyond his abilities.

Nevertheless, he was a legend for me on that save. :cool:

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A very detailed introduction to St. Albans and I love the claim to fame :D

Best of luck with this, I'll be following :thup:

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Thanks WH!

That's one thing you can't complain about with me. You always get plenty of detail! Even too much at times! :D

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[IMG]http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/header.jpg[/IMG]


[B][U]PRE-SEASON 2009/10:[/U][/B]


[B]SAINTS 0 - 2 Cheltenham (Pre-season Friendly)[/B]

Outplayed and outclassed by the League Two side. To be honest, we were never really in it!

City scorers: None.
City MoM: Forward Paul Hakim.


[B]SAINTS 0 – 2 Mansfield (Pre-season Friendly)[/B]

This time outclassed by a Blue Square Premier side. It’s all about fitness at the moment really, so I’m not too worried about getting soundly beaten by superior sides.

City Scorers: None.
City MoM: Captain Ryan Frater.


[B]SAINTS 1 – 0 AFC Telford (Pre-Season Friendly)[/B]

At last, a win. It came against this Blue Square North side in a very tight game which we just about edged.

Senegalese striker Lamine Sagna popped up with the goal in the middle of the first-half.

City scorers: Lamine Sagna.
City MoM: Attacking fullback Peter Smith.


[B]SAINTS 0 – 2 Dagenham and Redbridge (Pre-Season Friendly)[/B]

Once again, outclassed by a superior side, this time a League Two team. We were never really in it.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: Adam Everitt.


[B]Bedworth 0 – 0 SAINTS (Pre-Season Friendly)[/B]

Bedworth are in the Southern League Division One Midlands - or whatever it is called this season – in other words, step 4. So this ought to have been a doddle for us.

Far from it. It was a tight game with a draw being the most likely outcome. If the match was going to be decided on points though, it would have gone to them.

Even though it is only pre-season, it’s worrying times for us when we don't turn up against lower league opposition.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: Ryan Frater.


[B]Northwood 1 – 1 SAINTS (Pre-Season Friendly)[/B]

Northwood are in the Isthmian League Division One North, so another Step 4 side for us to play.

We were utterly dominant in this one but lacked a bit of punch. That said, we probably should have won it.

They scored first and we equalised just before half-time through an own goal. The second-half saw a few chances come and go, and we bossed possession, but neither side could make the breakthrough.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: James Fisher.


[B][U]Manager Comments for Pre-Season:[/U][/B]

Not a great pre-season really and we performed quite poorly overall. No real surprises as we were beaten by the better sides. The biggest worry is that we failed to beat the ‘smaller’ teams.

Not too surprising though, with team gelling being so low (not yet developed an understanding). I was able to bring in a few new faces during pre-season to improve the team. Details of my activities in the transfer market are coming up next.

We open up the season with a tricky away at Dorcester, before hosting Worcester at home. I’d like to think we’d be able to get something from these two games against sides who are predicted to finish below us in the league. Come on you Saints!

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[U][B]SQUAD AND TRANSFERS SUMMARY:[/B][/U]

[img]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/archive/9/9e/20091026011547!St_albans.png[/img]


[B][U]Transfers:[/U][/B]

[URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/StAlbansCity.png"]This screenshot[/URL] shows my transfers during pre-season.

The major news, which I was delighted with, was that I managed to get[B] Godfrey Poku[/B] to sign on loan from Luton Town. Godfrey emerged this season in real life and was one of my favourite Saints until Luton Town stepped in to snap him up in January 2010, so obviously he starts FM10 patch 10.3 at Luton.

As you can see from [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/GodfreyPoku.png"]this screenshot[/URL], Godfrey is a really solid defensive midfielder with good technique on the ball and good anticipation of the game. He is strong in the tackle also possesses a pretty lethal long-range shot. I'm delighted to sign him up. I initially offered 3 months and then once he was at the club and had settled in, I offered until the end of the season, and was thrilled to have this accepted by club and player.

I also went in for Jonathan O'Donnell, another ex-Saint and now Luton Town player. JJ, as he is known, emerged at the Saints at the same kind of time as Godfrey Poku in real life, and also moved with him during January. Unfortunately, I haven't managed to agree to terms with the Hatters over bringing JJ back to Clarence Park on loan. :( I am currently in the process of making friends with Hatters manager Richard Money through the media in the hope that it might pave the way to me signing up JJ in the future!

Moving on then, I also signed up another couple of players on loan. Both of these players have been on loan at St. Albans City in real life this season. Striker [B]Craig Calver[/B] was signed up from Southend for three months, and midfielder [B]Jake Beecroft[/B] came in from Rushden for the rest of the season.

I've so far managed to bring four players to the club on free transfers. [B]Ryan Carolan [/B](ex-Chelmsford) is a defender who can play fullback or centre-half, and he will add some quality to the back four. [B]Andy Duncan[/B] (also ex-Chelmsford) is, similarly, another central defender with a lot of experience who should really bolster our back line. [B]Jason Norville[/B] (ex-AFC Wimbledon and Woking) is a forward and potential 'hole' player with good technical skills (but lacking on the physical side). Finally, [B]Danny Williams[/B] (ex-Northwich and Rushden among others) is a right winger who has come in relatively cheaply and who will add some depth on an attacking front.

Going out were a a few reserve/fringe players who either weren't going to make it or weren't worth the money we were paying them. We had to make some cutbacks in order to bring in some new faces.

I have a good sized squad now and no real intention of bringing anyone else in. However, one final signing I would like to make, is to bring in an understudy to Paul Bastock. 'Bazza' has, I regret, only one season left in him. His decline sets in way too quickly on FM. I'm determined to give him a full season this year, which will take him up to his 40th birthday, but I will need someone new after that, so I've got my eyes peeled.


[B][U]First Team Squad:[/U][/B]
[code]
| Pkd | Inf | Name | Position | Nat | Height | Weight | Age | Value |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| GK | | Paul Bastock | GK | ENG | 5'11" | 13 st 12 lbs | 39 | £1.5K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Rsv | Michael Emery | GK | ENG | 5'10" | 11 st 11 lbs | 18 | - |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DC | | Justin Clayton | D RC | ENG | 6'5" | 15 st 1 lbs | 19 | £2K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S2 | | James Quilter | D RC, DM, M C | ENG | 5'11" | 11 st 11 lbs | 26 | £3.5K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DR | | James Fisher | D R, M RC | ENG | 5'11" | 11 st 11 lbs | 25 | £2K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DC | | Ryan Carolan | D LC | IRL | 6'1" | 13 st 3 lbs | 19 | £55K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Peter Smith | D L | ENG | 5'10" | 11 st 0 lbs | 23 | £1.5K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S1 | Rsv | Andy Duncan | D C | ENG | 5'11" | 14 st 2 lbs | 31 | £4.5K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Ryan Frater | D C | ENG | 6'6" | 12 st 1 lbs | 24 | £8K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Rsv | Mark Peters 7/7 | D C | WAL | 6'0" | 13 st 3 lbs | 37 | - |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DL | | Adam Everitt | D/M L | ENG | 5'10" | 11 st 11 lbs | 27 | - |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DMC | PR | Godfrey Poku | DM, M C | ENG | 5'10" | 11 st 11 lbs | 19 | £26K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Jake Beecroft | M C | ENG | 6'0" | 11 st 2 lbs | 20 | £18K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DMC | | Solomon Shields | M C | ENG | 5'10" | 11 st 13 lbs | 19 | £55K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S3 | Rsv | Danny Williams | AM R | ENG | 5'9" | 10 st 1 lbs | 28 | £3.5K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | | Gary Cohen | AM R, ST | ENG | 5'11" | 11 st 0 lbs | 25 | £5K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AMR | | Angus McLachlan | AM RLC, ST | AUS | 5'10" | 11 st 11 lbs | 21 | £1K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AMC | PR | Drew Roberts | AM R, ST | ENG | 5'10" | 11 st 11 lbs | 25 | £2.5K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AML | | Chris Sullivan | AM RL, ST | ENG | 6'0" | 10 st 1 lbs | 21 | £3K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Rsv | James Lindie | AM/F C | ENG | 5'11" | 11 st 0 lbs | 18 | £22K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S4 | Rsv | Jason Norville | AM/F C | TRI | 5'11" | 11 st 0 lbs | 25 | £4.5K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Craig Calver | ST | ENG | 5'10" | 12 st 1 lbs | 18 | £2K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| ST | PR | Paul Hakim | ST | ENG | 5'9" | 11 st 2 lbs | 27 | £20K |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S5 | | Lamine Sagna | ST | SEN | 6'0" | 11 st 11 lbs | 21 | - |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[/code]

The real stars of the squad are the loan players Poku and Calver (I'd really like to sign both ideally but we'll wait and see what happens in the future). Sol Shields is another star and he will be my deep-lying playmaker. Forward Paul Hakim is the other major star of the team and I'm hoping to get him to score plenty of goals. At 27, he is probably at his peak now, and I want him to see out his career at Clarence Park.

As you can see, it's a pretty young side with just a few players like Paul Hakim and Paul Bastock offering real experience. It's a team for the future perhaps more than for now but we'll see how far they can take us this season.

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You ever tried to get a parent club before? I would comment on the signings but know nothing about this level of football. In the past I loaded all players from Reunion and signed about 10 of them great for that level. Good luck, I am hoping for a decent cup run for you to get some cash in. Have you ever made it to the 3rd round in previous saves?

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[IMG]http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/header.jpg[/IMG]


[B][U]UPDATE FOR AUGUST 2009:[/U][/B]

[B]Dorchester Town 1 - 1 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

The opening day of the season is always such an unknown entity. This one turned out to be just as tricky as I expected.

I ended up going with the 4-4-2 for this game. I’m trying to retrain one or two players for the roles of the 4-2-3-1 and therefore felt that, in the meantime, it may be safer to flatten the 4-2-3-1 into 4-4-2 for now.

Although we bossed this game in the midfield, and were in control possession-wise, we were pretty profligate in front of goal. Actually, looking at the game overall, a draw was probably a fair reflection of the performance levels from both teams.

They got an early lead after just 15 minutes before Paul Hakim levelled for us on 25. The rest of the game saw us picking up a couple of pretty bad injuries to Ryan Frater and Paul Hakim, which will keep these two players out for a while.

In the end, Hakim’s injury put him out for a couple of weeks, while Ryan Frater’s injury (torn knee ligaments) has put him on the sidelines for around three months. A pretty big blow for us at an early point this season, which isn’t exactly going to help us find our flow.

City scorers: Paul Hakim.
City MoM: Solomon Shields.


[B]SAINTS 0 – 0 Worcester City (Blue Square South)[/B]

I was hoping for a good home win in this derby of the cathedral cities. :D

In the end it was a dull 0-0 snoozefest of a game. We maybe edged but a draw was definitely a fair result.

It was frustrating to lose yet another player to injury in this game. Peter Smith pulled his hamstring and will likely be out for a couple of months.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: Fullback James Fisher.


[B]SAINTS 0 – 0 Eastleigh (Blue Square South)[/B]

A disappointment against one of the promotion favourites.

Disappointing most of all because we were in control, with lots of possession, and we made plenty of chances.

The injury curse struck again in this game, as we lost on loan striker Craig Calver to injury. He won’t be back until the middle of September.

Without key attacking players like Hakim and Calver, we looked light-weight up front and didn’t offer enough clinical prowess in the final third.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: Centre-back Ryan Carolan.


[B]Welling United 0 – 0 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

This was a great point for us against the Wings, who are one of the favourites to get into the play-offs this season.

They were on top for most of the game and really we were lucky to come away with this result. It took lots of backs-to-the-wall defending from the team to pull it off.

This is our third 0-0 draw in a row. We’re quite obviously struggling in front of goal, which is a worry, but on the other hand, that’s three clean sheets now so the defence is doing its job well!

City scorers: None.
City MoM: Ryan Carolan.


[B]SAINTS 2 – 0 Lewes (Blue Square South)[/B]

A much improved performance and an excellent three points earned against Lewes.

This was more like it! We were firmly on top, totally in charge of possession and created enough to maybe win by three or four.

Drew Roberts scored the opener with a penalty after Justin Clayton was tripped in the area after a corner had landed at his feet about 12 yards from goal.

Our second came through James Fisher about 3 minutes from time. Fish, as he is imaginatively nicknamed, pounced onto a through-ball and rounded the ‘keeper before passing the ball into the net.

Quality stuff from the Saints and most pleasing for me is that this makes it four clean sheets in a row!

City scorers: Drew Roberts (pen), James Fisher.
City MoM: James Fisher.


[B]Bishop’s Stortford 2 – 0 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

Bishop’s Stortford are the nearest thing we have to local rivals in this division, so I saw this Hertfordshire derby as being a must win game.

Our little unbeaten run had to end soon but this was possibly the worst way to lose it.

We were poor from the off and totally unable to cope with the finishing ability of Charlie Sheringham, who scored a brace to win Stortford the game.

A disappointing defeat but now we have the first loss out of the way, hopefully we can bounce back and get another little run going.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: Ryan Carolan.


[B]SAINTS 3 – 1 Hampton & Richmond Borough (Blue Square South)[/B]

A superb performance here to get us our second win of the season. At the end of the game, the commentary said ‘Crouchaldinho’s boys never looked like losing this one’, and it was totally right.

I started with the 4-2-3-1 today for the first time and it worked wonders. Hakim, back from injury, was brought back in as striker, with Drew Roberts dropped back to AM. Chris Sullivan and Angus McLachlan were pushed up on the wings, and Godfrey Poku and Solomon Shields dropped back to DM to shield the defence.

Sol Shields is not yet competent at playing DM but I figure training and experience should speed things along. He did do pretty well in the deep-lying playmaker role today and, in fact, he created our second goal of the afternoon.

We took the lead through Angus McLachlan on the half-hour mark. Godfrey Poku then doubled our lead just before half-time with a trademark long-range effort. A stunning goal!

New signing, Jason Norville, who was on as a sub for Drew Roberts then put the icing on the cake with a penalty to give us our third in the second-half.

Hampton & Richmond replied with a consolation goal in the last 10 minutes, but, like the commentary said, we never looked like losing!

City scorers: Angus McLachlan, Godfrey Poku and Jason Norville (pen).
City MoM: James Fisher.


[B][U]Manager Comments for August:[/U][/B]

I think we can be fairly pleased with a solid, if unspectacular, start to our Blue Square South campaign.

The injuries haven’t helped and we are still very much bedding in as a team (still ‘not yet developed an understanding’ in team gelling terms).

The worry for me is the lack of goals but now Paul Hakim is back in the team, I feel confident we can start putting the ball in the back of the net more often. On the other hand, the defensive record is pleasing, so I hope we can keep that up for the rest of the season.

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Good start to your campaign but damn you for beating h+r :mad:

Can I just ask who scored the h+r goal?

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[U][B]END OF AUGUST 2009 SUMMARY:[/B][/U]

[img]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/archive/9/9e/20091026011547!St_albans.png[/img]

[B]Blue Square South Standings:[/B]
[code]
| Pos | Inf | Team | | Pld | Won | Drn | Lst | For | Ag | G.D. | Pts |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 1st | | Newport Co | | 7 | 6 | 0 | 1 | 15 | 3 | +12 | 18 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 2nd | | Thurrock | | 7 | 5 | 1 | 1 | 11 | 6 | +5 | 16 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 3rd | | Woking | | 7 | 5 | 1 | 1 | 10 | 6 | +4 | 16 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 4th | | Dover | | 7 | 4 | 3 | 0 | 14 | 7 | +7 | 15 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 5th | | Basingstoke | | 7 | 4 | 2 | 1 | 10 | 4 | +6 | 14 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 6th | | Staines | | 7 | 4 | 1 | 2 | 12 | 9 | +3 | 13 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 7th | | Bath | | 7 | 3 | 3 | 1 | 6 | 4 | +2 | 12 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 8th | | Bishop's Stortford | | 7 | 4 | 0 | 3 | 11 | 11 | 0 | 12 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 9th | | Bromley | | 7 | 2 | 4 | 1 | 8 | 4 | +4 | 10 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[B]| 10th | | St. Albans | | 7 | 2 | 4 | 1 | 6 | 4 | +2 | 10 | [/B]
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 11th | | Weston-super-Mare | | 7 | 3 | 1 | 3 | 5 | 6 | -1 | 10 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 12th | | Maidenhead | | 7 | 2 | 3 | 2 | 10 | 7 | +3 | 9 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 13th | | Havant & W | | 7 | 2 | 3 | 2 | 11 | 10 | +1 | 9 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 14th | | Weymouth | | 7 | 3 | 0 | 4 | 6 | 10 | -4 | 9 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 15th | | Eastleigh | | 7 | 2 | 2 | 3 | 11 | 11 | 0 | 8 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 16th | | Worcester | | 7 | 1 | 2 | 4 | 6 | 10 | -4 | 5 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 17th | | Braintree | | 7 | 1 | 2 | 4 | 6 | 11 | -5 | 5 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 18th | | Dorchester | | 7 | 1 | 2 | 4 | 3 | 8 | -5 | 5 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 19th | | Lewes | | 7 | 1 | 2 | 4 | 3 | 9 | -6 | 5 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 20th | | Chelmsford | | 7 | 1 | 2 | 4 | 4 | 12 | -8 | 5 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 21st | | Welling | | 7 | 0 | 2 | 5 | 2 | 9 | -7 | 2 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 22nd | | Hampton & Richmond | | 7 | 0 | 2 | 5 | 2 | 11 | -9 | 2 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[/code]


[B][U]First Team Squad Statistics (all competitions):[/U][/B]
[code]
| Pkd | Inf | Name | Apps | Gls | Ast | MoM | Av Rat | Gwin | Pts/Gm | Age | Nat | Value|
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| GK | | Paul Bastock | 7 | - | - | - | 6.60 | 28% | 1.45 | 39 | ENG | £1.5K|
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DR | PR | James Fisher | 7 | 1 | - | 2 | 7.27 | 28% | 1.45 | 25 | ENG | £2K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DL | | Adam Everitt | 6 (1)| - | 1 | - | 7.07 | 28% | 1.45 | 27 | ENG | - |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DC | Rsv | Justin Clayton | 7 | - | 1 | - | 6.86 | 28% | 1.45 | 19 | ENG | £2K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DC | Inj | Ryan Carolan | 6 | - | - | - | 7.00 | 33% | 1.50 | 19 | IRL | £55K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DMC | | Solomon Shields | 7 | - | 1 | 1 | 6.70 | 28% | 1.45 | 19 | ENG | £55K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DMC | PR | Godfrey Poku | 4 (1)| 1 | 1 | - | 7.12 | 40% | 1.55 | 19 | ENG | £2K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AMR | | Angus McLachlan | 1 (4)| 1 | - | - | 6.76 | 40% | 1.55 | 21 | AUS | £1K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AML | | Chris Sullivan | 6 (1)| - | - | - | 6.43 | 28% | 1.45 | 21 | ENG | £3K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AMC | PR | Drew Roberts | 7 | 1 | - | - | 6.56 | 28% | 1.45 | 25 | ENG | £2.5K|
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| ST | PR | Paul Hakim | 3 (1)| 1 | - | - | 6.58 | 50% | 1.60 | 27 | ENG | £20K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S1 | Rsv | Andy Duncan | 0 (2)| - | - | - | 6.65 | 50% | 1.50 | 31 | ENG | £4.5K|
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S2 | PR | James Quilter | 3 (1)| - | - | - | 6.83 | 25% | 1.50 | 26 | ENG | £4K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S3 | Rsv | Danny Williams | 0 (1)| - | - | - | 6.60 | 100% | 1.65 | 28 | ENG | £3K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S4 | Rsv | Jason Norville | 1 (2)| 1 | - | - | 6.55 | 33% | 1.45 | 25 | TRI | £4.5K|
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S5 | Rsv | Lamine Sagna | 2 (2)| - | - | - | 6.07 | 25% | 1.50 | 21 | SEN | - |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Rsv | Mark Peters 7/7 | 0 (1)| - | - | - | 6.80 | - | 1.45 | 37 | WAL | - |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | | Gary Cohen | 6 | - | 1 | - | 6.32 | 16% | 1.30 | 25 | ENG | £5K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Ryan Frater | 1 | - | - | - | 6.60 | - | 1.45 | 24 | ENG | £7K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Rsv | James Lindie | 0 (1)| - | - | - | 6.40 | - | 1.45 | 18 | ENG | £22K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Craig Calver | 1 | - | - | - | 6.50 | - | 1.45 | 18 | ENG | £2K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Jake Beecroft | 0 (3)| - | - | - | 6.60 | - | 1.35 | 20 | ENG | £18K |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Rsv | Michael Emery | - | - | - | - | - | - | - | 18 | ENG | - |
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Peter Smith | 2 | - | - | - | 6.50 | - | 1.40 | 23 | ENG | £1.5K|
| --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[/code]

Those who have read my 'Calcio Journeyman' thread will know what to have expected here in this summary. However, I have added in a couple of columns of interest to the squad statistics table. 'GWin' shows a percentage of games won when that player was playing, while 'Pts/Gm' shows the points per game earned while that player was in the side. I think it's quite interesting to see this as perhaps an indication of particularly influential players.

Let me know if there are any other statistical columns you are interested in seeing in these end of month summary posts. :)

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[quote name='hrbfcrule']Good start to your campaign but damn you for beating h+r

Can I just ask who scored the h+r goal?[/QUOTE]

It had to happen, didn't it! ;)

It gets worse though! Look where you are in the table at the moment!

The H & R goal was scored by Manny Sackey. A pretty unlikely goalscorer huh? I can't remember hearing of him playing for you this season (but I might be wrong, of course).

[quote name='AcidBurn']You ever tried to get a parent club before? I would comment on the signings but know nothing about this level of football. In the past I loaded all players from Reunion and signed about 10 of them great for that level. Good luck, I am hoping for a decent cup run for you to get some cash in. Have you ever made it to the 3rd round in previous saves?[/QUOTE]

I made it to the third round while still a Blue Square South side in last year's edition of the game. In the third round, we drew Everton away, and I took my St. Albans City team to Goodison expecting a hiding. I think we lost about 4-0 in the end. :D

It set the club up for a good few seasons though. Cleared the debts and allowed me to properly build for the Conference.

I'm looking forward to both the FA Cup and the FA Trophy and I will take both competitions seriously. Unfortunately, the Saints don't exactly have a great pedigree. In real life, this season, we were knocked out of every cup competition in the first round we entered it in, without scoring a single goal in any of them. :mad: Needless to say that I'm hoping for better luck now I am in charge of the virtual Saints!

As for parent clubs etc., I asked the board for one, more out of habit than anything. One of the options was Reading, and I basically accepted them purely because of SCIAG. :D No decent loans to come from them at the moment though.

Thank you both for your comments.

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[quote name='crouchaldinho']It had to happen, didn't it! ;)

It gets worse though! Look where you are in the table at the moment!

The H & R goal was scored by Manny Sackey. A pretty unlikely goalscorer huh? I can't remember hearing of him playing for you this season (but I might be wrong, of course).

[/QUOTE]

H+r always seem to underperform in fm considering we lost in the playoff final for the last 2 seasons. I suppose we are doing a bit rubbish this season but still I would expect them to do better.

As for Manny Sackey we signed him this january and sold him (by sold I mean let him go for free) to Bishop's Stortford just 3 weeks later. I can't even remember if he played a game for us

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[quote name='crouchaldinho']I made it to the third round while still a Blue Square South side in last year's edition of the game. In the third round, we drew Everton away, and I took my St. Albans City team to Goodison expecting a hiding. I think we lost about 4-0 in the end. :D[/QUOTE]

4-0 isn't too bad really, how did you set up your team for that game? Very defensive, play your normal game or even just attack them? And what sort of team talk? I've always felt in games like that in FM you can't always motivate the team as instead of being fired up like they would IRL, most of the team are nervous.

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[quote name='Scoham']4-0 isn't too bad really, how did you set up your team for that game? Very defensive, play your normal game or even just attack them? And what sort of team talk? I've always felt in games like that in FM you can't always motivate the team as instead of being fired up like they would IRL, most of the team are nervous.[/QUOTE]

We were 50/1 for the game. I can't remember the team talk but probably 'no pressure'. Probably approached it quite defensively hoping to restrict their chances. It's a long time ago now though, so I really can't remember exactly what I did. We were 3-0 down by half-time, I remember that much. :D

We were £100k in debt prior to this game and came out of it £300k in the black!

You can read about it [URL="http://community.sigames.com/showpost.php?p=2801669&postcount=74"]here[/URL].

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That's why I never go to the Stories forum. Far too much effort and far too little time. :D

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[IMG]http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/header.jpg[/IMG]


[B][U]UPDATE FOR SEPTEMBER 2009:[/U][/B]

[B]Chelmsford City 1 - 0 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

Second loss of the season for us. It came away to one of the top sides in the league who will be pushing for promotion this season.

To be honest, we probably deserved a point out of this one really. We were equal to them in terms of chances and actually had more possession.

Their goal was a bit of a fluke long-range effort which sailed past Bastock. Unfortunately, we just didn’t create enough to get level.

A bit of a disappointment in terms of the result but not the performance, which was pretty strong against one of the best side in the league.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: James Fisher.


[B]SAINTS 1 – 0 Staines Town (Blue Square South)[/B]

A very tight game indeed and we only just scraped through it to get the three points.

Justin Clayton gave us an early lead from a corner. The rest of the game was very tense with few chances for either side.

We came through the test to record a much needed win. An excellent result against a strong team.

City scorers: Defender Justin Clayton.
City MoM: Justin Clayton.


[B]SAINTS 1 – 0 Havant & Waterlooville (Blue Square South)[/B]

Our second 1-0 win in a row.

This one wasn’t so close though. We really should have won this by three or four. In fact, 5-0 wouldn’t have been an undeserved result, as we absolutely dominated this from start to finish.

We were in charge of possession and made chance after chance. We went ahead through new signing Jason Norville after half-an-hour. Then the injury curse struck again and we lost our goalscorer just before half-time

We just couldn’t find a second goal in this one but we never looked like conceding. A case of job done although I am a little worried by the lack of goals at the moment.

City scorers: Jason Norville.
City MoM: Adam Everitt.


[B]Weymouth 1 – 3 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

With them being relegation candidates, I obviously felt this one was winnable. In the end, we got all the points in some style.

Chris Sullivan grabbed the opener after 15 minutes. James Fisher scored the second before Paul Hakim finished the job off from the penalty spot.

Weymouth got a late consolation but at the end of the match we had beaten them pretty soundly. A superb performance.

City scorers: Chris Sullivan, James Fisher and Paul Hakim (pen).
City MoM: Chris Sullivan.


[B]SAINTS 4 – 0 Harrow Borough (FA Cup 2nd Qualifying Round)[/B]

We finished the month with this very important FA Cup tie against Isthmian Premier League side Harrow Borough.

We were utterly dominant in this one and well worth our 4-0 win.

Striker Paul Hakim opened the scoring on half-an-hour. James Lindie doubled our lead early in the second-half before our winger Danny Williams made it three. Substitute Lamine Sagna grabbed the fourth on 90 minutes to give us a very fine win.

City scorers: Paul Hakim, Jamies Lindie, Danny Williams and Lamine Sagna.
City MoM: Danny Williams.


[B][U]Manager Comments for September:[/U][/B]

Three wins from four in the league and an all important FA Cup win. It’s been a good month. That’s 9 points from 4 matches in the Blue Square South as well, which is a superb return.

We’re looking better and better with each game right now and the confidence is really high. I would really like us to go on a little run in the league but next month will be tough, as we have to face the likes of Newport County and Woking. Hopefully we can surprise the big boys and push on a little bit. I’m quite pleased with how things are going right now anyway.

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[U][B]END OF SEPTEMBER 2009 SUMMARY:[/B][/U]

[img]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/archive/9/9e/20091026011547!St_albans.png[/img]

[B]Blue Square South Standings:[/B]
[code]
| Pos | Inf | Team | | Pld | Won | Drn | Lst | For | Ag | G.D. | Pts |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 1st | | Newport Co | | 11 | 8 | 1 | 2 | 25 | 10 | +15 | 25 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 2nd | | Woking | | 11 | 7 | 3 | 1 | 19 | 10 | +9 | 24 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 3rd | | Dover | | 11 | 6 | 4 | 1 | 19 | 9 | +10 | 22 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 4th | | Weston-super-Mare | | 11 | 6 | 2 | 3 | 16 | 7 | +9 | 20 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 5th | | Staines | | 11 | 6 | 2 | 3 | 15 | 10 | +5 | 20 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 6th | | Basingstoke | | 11 | 5 | 4 | 2 | 16 | 10 | +6 | 19 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[B]| 7th | | St. Albans | | 11 | 5 | 4 | 2 | 11 | 6 | +5 | 19 | [/B]
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 8th | | Thurrock | | 11 | 5 | 3 | 3 | 13 | 11 | +2 | 18 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 9th | | Maidenhead | | 11 | 4 | 4 | 3 | 16 | 10 | +6 | 16 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 10th | | Havant & W | | 11 | 4 | 4 | 3 | 14 | 11 | +3 | 16 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 11th | | Bath | | 11 | 4 | 4 | 3 | 11 | 11 | 0 | 16 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 12th | | Bromley | | 11 | 3 | 6 | 2 | 11 | 7 | +4 | 15 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 13th | | Dorchester | | 11 | 4 | 3 | 4 | 12 | 10 | +2 | 15 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 14th | | Chelmsford | | 11 | 4 | 3 | 4 | 9 | 12 | -3 | 15 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 15th | | Bishop's Stortford | | 11 | 5 | 0 | 6 | 15 | 19 | -4 | 15 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 16th | | Weymouth | | 11 | 3 | 2 | 6 | 8 | 17 | -9 | 11 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 17th | | Eastleigh | | 11 | 2 | 3 | 6 | 14 | 20 | -6 | 9 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 18th | | Lewes | | 11 | 2 | 3 | 6 | 9 | 15 | -6 | 9 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 19th | | Worcester | | 11 | 2 | 3 | 6 | 10 | 19 | -9 | 9 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 20th | | Braintree | | 11 | 1 | 4 | 6 | 7 | 17 | -10 | 7 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 21st | | Hampton & Richmond | | 11 | 1 | 3 | 7 | 5 | 18 | -13 | 6 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 22nd | | Welling | | 11 | 0 | 3 | 8 | 7 | 23 | -16 | 3 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[/code]


[B][U]First Team Squad Statistics (all competitions):[/U][/B]
[code]
| Pkd | Inf | Name | Apps | Gls | Ast | MoM | Av Rat| Age | Nat | Value |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| GK | | Paul Bastock | 12 | - | 1 | - | 6.67 | 39 | ENG | £1K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DR | | James Fisher | 12 | 2 | - | 2 | 7.29 | 25 | ENG | £2.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DL | | Peter Smith | 4 | - | 1 | - | 7.30 | 24 | ENG | £4.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DC | | Justin Clayton | 12 | 1 | 1 | 1 | 6.97 | 19 | ENG | £1.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DC | Inj | Andy Duncan | 3 (3) | - | - | - | 6.80 | 31 | ENG | £5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DMC | PR | Godfrey Poku | 8 (1) | 1 | 1 | - | 6.90 | 19 | ENG | £2K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DMC | | Solomon Shields | 12 | - | 2 | 1 | 6.77 | 19 | ENG | £55K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AMR | Inj | Danny Williams | 2 (3) | 1 | 1 | 1 | 6.86 | 28 | ENG | £3.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AML | | Chris Sullivan | 9 (2) | 1 | 2 | 1 | 6.62 | 22 | ENG | £3K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AMC | | James Lindie | 2 (2) | 1 | - | - | 6.97 | 19 | ENG | £20K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| ST | PR | Paul Hakim | 8 (1) | 3 | 1 | - | 6.69 | 27 | ENG | £20K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S1 | PR | James Quilter | 4 (4) | - | - | - | 6.75 | 26 | ENG | £4K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S2 | Loa | Jake Beecroft | 0 (5) | - | - | - | 6.64 | 20 | ENG | £18K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S3 | Loa | Angus McLachlan | 3 (5) | 1 | - | - | 6.75 | 21 | AUS | - |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S4 | Rsv | Adam Everitt | 9 (1) | - | 1 | 1 | 7.14 | 27 | ENG | £1K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S5 | Rsv | Lamine Sagna | 2 (3) | 1 | - | - | 6.33 | 21 | SEN | £500 |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S6 | Rsv | Michael Emery | - | - | - | - | - | 18 | ENG | - |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S7 | Rsv | Mark Peters 7/7 | 0 (2) | - | - | - | 6.85 | 37 | WAL | - |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Ryan Carolan | 8 | - | - | - | 7.05 | 20 | IRL | £50K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Drew Roberts | 9 | 1 | 1 | - | 6.50 | 25 | ENG | £2.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Jason Norville | 2 (4) | 2 | - | - | 6.60 | 26 | TRI | £4.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | | Gary Cohen | 9 | - | 1 | - | 6.37 | 25 | ENG | £5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Ryan Frater | 1 | - | - | - | 6.60 | 24 | ENG | £1K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Craig Calver | 1 | - | - | - | 6.50 | 18 | ENG | £2K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[/code]

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Looking good so far Mr C. unlucky with the loss at the start of september though you got a good result in the FA cup.

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Thanks Almondo. Doing nicely at the moment but a difficult month ahead where I have to face Newport County and Woking. Should be a challenge!

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FA Cup second round? As it's September I'm guessing you meant qualifying round?

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Very good month there, seem to be finding a bit of goalscoring form as well in the last few matches

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C'mon The Wings, they need Carruthers in to pick them up off the bottom.

Great start Crouchie.

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Cheers for the comments chaps! Hopefully a new update coming soon when I get some time to write it up. :D

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[IMG]http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/header.jpg[/IMG]

[B][U]UPDATE FOR OCTOBER 2009:[/U][/B]

[B]Weston-super-Mare 2 - 1 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

Weston-super-Mare are the surprise package of the season, riding high in the tables and on a bit of a winning streak.

I fancy our chances of pulling off another three points but nothing goes quite right for us today.

They take the lead 20 minutes in and we pull level through a Paul Hakim penalty at the end of the first-half.

Unfortunately, we lose the battle in the second-half and they end up grabbing a winner with quarter of an hour still on the clock. Try as we might, we cannot break through to get an equaliser.

There is no doubt that W-s-M edged it and I’m really disappointed by our performance in this match.

City scorers: Paul Hakim (pen).
City MoM: Paul Hakim.


[B]Clitheroe 0 – 1 SAINTS (FA Cup Third Qualifying Round)[/B]

We were huge favourites to defeat the Northern Premier League Division One North side and progress in the FA Cup but it wasn’t quite as simple as that.

Clitheroe put up a real fight and it took us until the 90th minute to win the tie through a Gary Cohen goal.

We dominated possession but didn’t create enough chances and I am relieved that we managed to get through without a replay.

To get to the fourth round fulfils the board’s target for the season. I’m still determined that we might go a little further though. I really want to be in the hat for the first round proper.

City scorers: Gary Cohen.
City MoM: Defender Andy Duncan.


[B]SAINTS 1 – 2 Newport County (Blue Square South)[/B]

I want to make a note here to never use the ‘we can win’ talk ever again. :mad:

'We can win' seems to be a totally random team talk to me, more often than not throwing up the much hated ‘seemed demotivated, looked delighted’ result which essentially gives the opposition a two goal head start.

As I am at home to the favourites for the title who are also currently top of the league, this seems like a reasonable choice, but apparently not. It results in a loss which makes me feel very angry because I hate losing when playing at home. :mad:

So, Newport County basically scored twice in the first half. We pulled one back through Paul Hakim just before half-time but never looked like getting level.

We played okay but Newport edged it. Of course, the ‘seemed demotivated’ reaction played a significant part in the final result. I’m very angry about it but I have learned my lesson.

City scorers: Paul Hakim.
City MoM: Paul Hakim.


[B]Bedford 0 – 2 SAINTS (FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round)[/B]

So we badly needed to bounce back here against the Southern League Premier Division side in the FA Cup. A win here would see us through to the 1st round proper.

In the end, this was a hugely dominant display. It might really have been 4-0 in the end, such was our superiority.

Jason Norville opened the scoring with a penalty and Danny Williams doubled our lead before half-time. Gary Cohen was on fine form in this match, laying on an assist and making a number of great runs with the ball. A great team performance overall.

City scorers: Jason Norville (pen), Danny Williams.
City MoM: Gary Cohen.


[B]Lewes 0 – 1 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

We badly needed to bounce back in the league now after two straight defeats. This was a huge result for us and a really solid performance.

Jason Norville grabbed the only goal of the game. Lewes played okay but we had more possession and created quite a lot of chances. Really, we were well worth our win and even might have scored another couple of goals.

A terrific result for us to get us back on track in the league.

City scorers: Jason Norville.
City MoM: James Fisher.


[B]SAINTS 5 - 2 Weymouth (Blue Square South)[/B]

With an away game against Woking coming up in midweek, and also an FA Cup 1st round tie next weekend, I took the decision to rest some players in this match. At one point it looked as though it might backfire on me but in the end we came good and won this one quite easily.

They opened the scoring in the first 10 minutes before we pulled level through a Peter Smith free-kick.

Then they took the lead again. My friend’s brother, who is in the game as a ‘faceinthegame’ regen took this opportunity to score his first ever goal for Weymouth. :mad: Chris Sullivan levelled for us just before half-time.

In the second-half we went all out to win it and goals from Gary Cohen (a penalty) and James Lindie (a brace) ended up making this a lot easier than it seemed at times.

In the end we had been hugely dominant and were full value for this win. A great result.

City scorers: Peter Smith, Chris Sullivan, Gary Cohen (pen) and James Lindie x2.
City MoM: James Lindie


[B][U]Manager Comments for October:[/U][/B]

The losses against Newport County and Weston-super-Mare hurt me but otherwise this was a pretty decent month.

The progress in the FA Cup is massive for a club like ours. Any funds we can bring in from this competition will really help and I’m delighted that we’ve made the first round proper.

We won two out of four in the league, which isn’t really great, but it’s not too bad either. It was good to get back on track with wins at Lewes and against Weymouth at home.

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[U][B]END OF OCTOBER 2009 SUMMARY:[/B][/U]

[img]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/archive/9/9e/20091026011547!St_albans.png[/img]

[B]Blue Square South Standings:[/B]
[code]
| Pos | Inf | Team | | Pld | Won | Drn | Lst | For | Ag | G.D. | Pts |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 1st | | Newport Co | | 15 | 10 | 2 | 3 | 29 | 13 | +16 | 32 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 2nd | | Woking | | 15 | 9 | 5 | 1 | 23 | 12 | +11 | 32 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 3rd | | Dover | | 17 | 8 | 7 | 2 | 26 | 14 | +12 | 31 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 4th | | Weston-super-Mare | | 15 | 9 | 3 | 3 | 27 | 10 | +17 | 30 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 5th | | Dorchester | | 16 | 7 | 5 | 4 | 21 | 14 | +7 | 26 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[B]| 6th | | St. Albans | | 15 | 7 | 4 | 4 | 19 | 12 | +7 | 25 | [/B]
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 7th | | Bromley | | 16 | 6 | 7 | 3 | 16 | 11 | +5 | 25 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 8th | | Bath | | 15 | 6 | 6 | 3 | 18 | 14 | +4 | 24 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 9th | | Staines | | 15 | 7 | 3 | 5 | 18 | 15 | +3 | 24 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 10th | | Basingstoke | | 17 | 5 | 8 | 4 | 18 | 14 | +4 | 23 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 11th | | Havant & W | | 16 | 6 | 5 | 5 | 21 | 18 | +3 | 23 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 12th | | Chelmsford | | 15 | 6 | 3 | 6 | 16 | 16 | 0 | 21 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 13th | | Bishop's Stortford | | 16 | 7 | 0 | 9 | 20 | 26 | -6 | 21 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 14th | | Thurrock | | 15 | 5 | 5 | 5 | 15 | 16 | -1 | 20 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 15th | | Maidenhead | | 15 | 4 | 6 | 5 | 20 | 16 | +4 | 18 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 16th | | Eastleigh | | 16 | 4 | 4 | 8 | 22 | 28 | -6 | 16 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 17th | | Lewes | | 16 | 4 | 4 | 8 | 12 | 21 | -9 | 16 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 18th | | Worcester | | 15 | 3 | 6 | 6 | 11 | 19 | -8 | 15 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 19th | | Weymouth | | 16 | 4 | 3 | 9 | 13 | 28 | -15 | 15 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 20th | | Braintree | | 16 | 3 | 4 | 9 | 12 | 23 | -11 | 13 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 21st | | Hampton & Richmond | | 15 | 2 | 5 | 8 | 10 | 23 | -13 | 11 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| 22nd | | Welling | | 15 | 0 | 3 | 12 | 8 | 32 | -24 | 3 |
| -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[/code]


[B][U]First Team Squad Statistics (all competitions):[/U][/B]
[code]
| Pkd | Inf | Name | Apps | Gls | Ast | MoM | Av Rat| Age | Nat | Value |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| GK | PR | Paul Bastock | 18 | - | 1 | - | 6.67 | 39 | ENG | - |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DR | | James Fisher | 18 | 2 | 1 | 3 | 7.25 | 25 | ENG | £3K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DL | Rsv | Peter Smith | 9 | 1 | 1 | - | 7.24 | 24 | ENG | £8K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DC | | Justin Clayton | 18 | 1 | 1 | 1 | 6.91 | 20 | ENG | £1.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DC | PR | Andy Duncan | 9 (3) | - | - | 1 | 6.83 | 32 | ENG | £5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DMC | Rsv | James Quilter | 5 (6) | - | - | - | 6.76 | 26 | ENG | £4K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| DMC | Loa | Jake Beecroft | 1 (10)| - | 1 | - | 6.75 | 20 | ENG | £18K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AMR | | Angus McLachlan | 4 (6) | 1 | - | - | 6.74 | 21 | AUS | £2.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AML | PR | Chris Sullivan | 10 (6)| 2 | 3 | 1 | 6.77 | 22 | ENG | £3K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| AMC | | James Lindie | 5 (3) | 3 | - | 1 | 6.96 | 19 | ENG | £20K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| ST | Rsv | Lamine Sagna | 3 (3) | 1 | - | - | 6.16 | 21 | SEN | £500 |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S1 | Rsv | Mark Peters 7/7 | 0 (3) | - | 1 | - | 6.87 | 37 | WAL | - |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S2 | | Solomon Shields | 17 | - | 3 | 1 | 6.73 | 20 | ENG | £55K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S3 | PR | Godfrey Poku | 13 (2)| 1 | 1 | - | 6.93 | 19 | ENG | £28K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S4 | Rsv | Danny Williams | 7 (3) | 2 | 2 | 1 | 6.86 | 28 | ENG | £4K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| S5 | PR | Gary Cohen | 14 (1)| 2 | 4 | 1 | 6.55 | 25 | ENG | £7K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Ryan Carolan | 8 | - | - | - | 7.05 | 20 | IRL | £50K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | PR | Drew Roberts | 9 | 1 | 1 | - | 6.50 | 26 | ENG | - |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Jason Norville | 5 (4) | 4 | - | - | 6.74 | 26 | TRI | £6K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Inj | Adam Everitt | 10 (1)| - | 1 | 1 | 7.16 | 27 | ENG | £1.5K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Rsv | Ryan Frater | 1 | - | - | - | 6.60 | 24 | ENG | £1K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | PR | Paul Hakim | 13 (1)| 5 | 2 | - | 6.78 | 27 | ENG | £20K |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| - | Rsv | Michael Emery | - | - | - | - | - | 18 | ENG | - |
| ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
[/code]

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[URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/JonathanODonnell.png"]JJ O'Donnell[/URL] signs for the Saints on loan. :cool:

It's only a three month deal but that's the best I could get. I've been telling Richard Money how much I love him for ages. :D

For those who don't know, JJ used to be a Saint before Luton Town snapped him up and I've been desperate to bring him back to Clarence Park for a spell with us. :)

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[IMG]http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/header.jpg[/IMG]


[B][U]UPDATE FOR NOVEMBER 2009:[/U][/B]

[B]Woking 2 - 0 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

With a massive FA Cup 1st Round fixture coming up on the Saturday after this midweek match, I decided to rest some players and do quite a bit of rotating.

The result was, as expected, not particularly good. The truth is that we don’t have the strength and depth to compete in the league [I]and [/I]the cup. At the moment, for me, the cup is taking priority.

It’s a pretty terrible performance here against one of the favourites in this division. We’re all over the place. A result and performance best forgotten.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: James Quilter.


[B]SAINTS 2 – 0 Welling United (FA Cup 1st Round)[/B]

We got a little lucky with this draw really. A home match against struggling Welling was definitely a winnable tie.

Here we were in the 1st Round of the FA Cup. I was determined that we should win this match and go through to the 2nd Round for only the sixth time in our entire history.

Resting players in the last game worked for us and we were totally dominant here. A Paul Hakim brace of goals in the first twenty minutes sealed the win. Welling never looked like getting back into the game and we were through to the 2nd Round of the Cup! A great achievement!

City scorers: Paul Hakim x 2.
City MoM: Paul Hakim.


[B][I]SAINTS DRAW STOCKPORT COUNTY AT HOME IN THE SECOND ROUND OF THE FA CUP.[/I][/B]


[B]Basingstoke Town 1 – 2 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

Back to the league and a tricky away match at the Camrose.

I played a full strength side here hoping to get back on track in the league.

Jason Norville put us in front from the penalty spot after quarter of an hour. The ‘Stoke pulled level after half-an-hour but 5 minutes later JJ O’Donnell restored our lead, with the starlet scoring his first ever goal for the club. :cool:

This was a bit ‘smash and grab’ in truth. We really got this win against the general run of play.

Still a very tenacious performance and a fantastic result.

City scorers: Jason Norville, JJ O’Donnell.
City MoM: JJ O’Donnell.


[B]SAINTS 3 –1 Braintree Town (Blue Square South)[/B]

We got ourselves going in the league again with back-to-back wins.

Braintree actually took the lead in this game in the first 10 minutes. But we came back strongly towards the end of the first-half and pulled level through Danny Williams going into the break.

In the second-half, Danny Williams was on fire, first putting us in the lead, and then creating the third goal for Paul Hakim to seal the points.

An outstanding display by our new signing, winger Danny Williams.

City scorers: Danny Williams x2, Paul Hakim.
City MoM: Danny Williams.


[B]AFC Hayes 1 – 0 SAINTS (FA Trophy 3rd Qualifying Round)[/B]

The FA Trophy is hugely important to me so this really hurts.

I rested some players here, with one eye on the upcoming FA Cup tie. Recent games have taken it out of some of our regulars and so they got a much needed rest. But the truth is that this was a strong side that should have been good enough to win this game. I’m making no excuses.

The Southern League Division One South and West side defended resolutely and consigned us to a most embarrassing defeat.

We controlled the game in terms of possession and created enough to win this game. We just weren’t good enough to win this match and that’s pathetic really. I'm not at all happy.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: Gary Cohen.


[B]Bromley 3 –0 SAINTS (Blue Square South)[/B]

The fact is, when you’re on a run in the FA Cup, it inevitably happens that your form drops a bit in the league. You’re having to plan ahead, to rotate players and to keep everyone fresh for the challenge.

I decided to rest some key players today, noting that we have an all important FA Cup 2nd Round tie against Stockport County at home coming up next!

We were really poor today. I mean shockingly bad. Maybe this was a bit of a hangover from the FA Trophy defeat to AFC Hayes too.

We lost a goal in the first-half and then really got caught while chasing the game in the second-half for the other two goals.

A poor display and an even poorer result. This further illustrates the lack of depth in the current squad.

City scorers: None.
City MoM: James Fisher.


[B]SAINTS 1 – 0 Stockport County (FA Cup 2nd Round)[/B]

With the loss in the FA Trophy and the heavy defeat away to Bromley in the league, I felt that things really weren’t going our way at the moment.

This result more than made up for any of my previous upset. I mean to say, wow! :eek:

I don’t exaggerate when I say that this is probably up there with my biggest FM achievements. When I last managed to get to the Third Round of the FA Cup, in FM2009, my team faced non-League sides in every round until meeting Everton at Goodison Park. This time around, my team had to beat League One opposition.

Before the game, it was predicted that Stockport [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/Crouchaldinho-3-1.png"]would pile of the misery and easily win the game[/URL]. So, how did we come away having won the tie?

Well, [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/StAlbansvStockport-2.png"]we lined up with a 4-2-3-1 [/URL]and I put out what I consider to be my strongest team, minus right-back James Fisher who wasn't in particularly good condition and therefore would be on the bench rather than starting.

Before the game, I decided to tell the lads to do it ‘for the fans’. It was a huge game here, potentially a career defining game for some of them, and I wanted to drive the passion up in them and get them really motivated for this game.

I actually decided that we would go out to attack Stockport. It paid dividends as we quickly found ourselves 1-0 up after just five minutes. JJ O’Donnell sent Jason Norville clean through on goal and he unleashed a fierce shot high at goal. An absolutely clinical finish and the ‘keeper had no chance. This will probably be one of the best and most historic goals ever scored at Clarence Park under my management!

We continued to attack and actually had our chances to make it two. It was a marvellous first-half performance.

At half-time, I encouraged the lads and prayed that we would be able to keep Stockport at bay for another 45 minutes.

I couldn’t even sit down. I was standing up with my hands clasped together hoping and praying that we would get through.

I’ve no idea how we did it. I became progressively more defensive as the half wore on. Stockport had their chances and in truth were incredibly unlucky not to have got back into the game. I mean, on another day they probably would have won this one!

Fate was on our side. Some great defending and some tenacious backs-to-the-walls stuff kept us ahead. Those last five minutes of game time seemed like an age.

When the final whistle went, I am not too ashamed to admit that I danced around the room like a madman and went to find Mrs Crouchaldinho to explain what had happened. If I'm being honest, I'm not sure that she really understood the enormity of the situation but I wasn't going to let that spoil it for me. I poured myself a whisky and made a toast to our success!

For the first time in their history, I had taken St. Albans City through to the FA Cup Third Round! Would we get to play Premier League opposition? Regardless, it was going to be an absolutely huge occasion for myself as manager and of course for our virtual fans! :D

Here are the [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/StAlbansvStockport.png"]match stats[/URL].

Here is the [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/Crouchaldinho-9.png"]match report[/URL].

Finally, [URL="http://i811.photobucket.com/albums/zz40/Crouchaldinho_SACFC/Crouchaldinho-2-2.png"]this message[/URL] telling me that we would have to beat the likes of Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool if we wanted to win the competition amused me greatly!

City scorers: Jason Norville.
City MoM: Defender Ryan Carolan.
Attendance at Clarence Park: 2,146.


[B][I]ST. ALBANS CITY DRAW BOLTON WANDERERS AT HOME IN THE FA CUP! THE SAINTS WILL PLAY BOLTON AT CLARENCE PARK IN JANUARY![/I][/B]


Manager comments for the month coming in the next post as I have used too many images!

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[B][U]Manager Comments for November:[/U][/B]

Phew, what a month! I mean seriously... but let’s not get straight to the FA Cup!

It has been disappointing and slightly frustrating when we’ve lost to Woking and Bromley away. Also, saying goodbye to the FA Trophy and suffering the ignominy of getting beaten by a lower league side was a particular low point.

But then there were two great wins in the league against Basingstoke and Braintree. Having said that, 6 points from 4 games isn’t a great return, but as I said above, you often have to sacrifice a bit of league form to get a run in the FA Cup.

There we go, I’ve said it now. The FA Cup. What a beautiful, magical competition. I don’t care what the Manchester Uniteds of this world think about it. I love it for times like this.

My team of part timers have gone up against a fully professional outfit playing in League One and we’ve beaten them. Football eh? Unbelievable!

Now we’ve drawn a Premier League team in the Third Round. Let me just say it again: St. Albans City have never been in the Third Round of the FA Cup before. This will be a first. And a Premier League team too. The Premier League with all its money and hype and WAGs and so on. The closest thing you get to a WAG at Clarence Park is the dog who attends every match alongside his owner with a Saints scarf tied around his collar. :D It’s massive! I’m a bit excited about it, can’t you tell? :o

The draw might have been better to us. It would have been better to have been away so we could have got more money. And it would have been preferable to draw Liverpool and done a Havant & Waterlooville at Anfield. But we’ll take Bolton at Clarence Park. It should be a great occasion!

Come on you Saints! [IMG]http://www.calciouk.co.uk/htdocs/forum/Smilies/gialloblu.gif[/IMG]

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