noikeee

[FM11] Barcelona’ing the way through the lower leagues – is it even possible?

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Got some very classy looking players there, so if they gel, anything is possible. Good to see a consistently inconsistent club too :D

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Have just read the whole thread, cracking stuff!

Glad you enjoyed it.

Made some decent signings and a good start. Can't complain with 4 wins out of 4 with 3 clean sheets too.
Got some very classy looking players there, so if they gel, anything is possible. Good to see a consistently inconsistent club too :D

Yeah I definitely think I got some good deals this summer, and with 50M€ to spend I'd do poorly not to get top quality really.

Mid-season update being cooked up at this moment.

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Roma 2027/2028 - mid-season update

150px-AS_Roma.png

Transfers

A rare transfer window without signings, only sales. Egyptian full-back Amr Abou Grisha was rotting in the bench and left to Cagliari for 5M€. Likewise, promising 19 year old Dutch striker Job Koster was sold to Man Utd for 5M€ + 50% of profit from next sale. He was good but his attributes weren't convincing enough for me to picture him being a regular first team player in the future.

League

ASRomaRoma_Fixtures-2.jpg

This is shaping up to be a bittersweet season, I've got little to complain about my team's performances yet it's not enough to catch up with Napoli who are having an insanely good year (they have some insanely good players - I wish I had a forward like João) and Inter is ahead of us too. Thankfully the league table is now starting to make a bit more sense after our recent good run as we were also behind Fiorentina and Parma for a while - and that I cannot accept as those teams, particularly Parma, are clearly inferior to ours.

We've had some really bright moments, beating Inter 3-0 was pretty awesome, particularly with their right-back scoring a brace of own goals, and I loved to beat the other Milan team 3-0 at the San Siro, they may be having a terrible year but it's still 3-0 at the San Siro. That came right after another particularly spectacular result, winning over our ultra-fierce rivals Lazio 4-0. For bad moments, really can't beat the loss at Padova, with the punishing pace upfront in the league we can't afford to lose points to rubbish teams like that.

SerieATIMInformation_LeagueTable-2.jpg

Cups

ASRomaRoma_Fixtures-3.jpg

The Europa League groups didn't exactly go to plan, it was tighter than I expected and we weren't qualified yet when we received Partizan in the last match. That wasn't a problem but we came 2nd in the group behind PSV and that means having to face Atlético Madrid in the next round, who are probably the toughest opponents we could've been drawn with. Again, Atlético aren't regular crap Atlético anymore, they've become an european monster of a club over the last 2 decades.

The Italian Cup aka Coppa Italia aka TIM Cup, is a bit bonkers because all we needed was to win two games at home to easy opponents to reach the semis (altho our feeder club Siena threatened to pull an upset). With Napoli having been knocked out, our next opponents Inter are in theory the best team left, but then again we beat them twice in the league, so I'm fairly positive on this trophy.

Players

Hard to point out a star in this group really, it's just been a blur of high average ratings all across the team yet there's no huge stand-out, goals and assists are mostly evenly divided all throughout the players. I supppose I should mention centre-back Mike Kunert for the highest av. rating in the side so far (7.40), the flairy winger Billel Zarabi has been a threat, Marquinhos has been absolutely superb for a full-back, Mignon Pedro has had the best performances I've ever seen for a defensive midfielder, and AMRC Kévin Duval seems to have a talent for deciding difficult matches, he has surprised me.

Finances

The typical picture here, I get over-enthusiastic with wages, realise the club is losing money and start selling backup players. 73K€ in the green, which is pretty much the same as zero.

Goals for the rest of the season

It's looking like we may catch up Inter now and grab 2nd which would be nice, frankly I was expecting to have a proper go at the title this season already but Napoli are crazy good and don't seem to want to drop points, there's little we can do if they don't slip up. I was looking into repeating the Europa League trophy feat this season too, but there's a large amount of quality teams left and we're probably facing the biggest of all already next round, so no promises there. I do want to get some silverware and the cup looks like the most realistic prospect at the moment.

I feel a tad disappointed with the way things have unfolded, but at the same time we're winning so many games that I wonder if I'm not being harsh on the team and myself. Things are still open in all competitions anyway and we'll keep on fighting.

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Thanks, it's always encouraging to hear from readers although this is all more for personal enjoyment than anything else.

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If you can win the game in hand then you are right back in the title challenge.Good luck for the rest of the season.

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Roma 2027/2028 - season review

150px-AS_Roma.png

League

ASRomaRoma_Fixtures-1.jpg

I should've been pleased that we only had one defeat in the remaining 16 matches of the season, but bloody hell is the top of the Serie A competitive right now. It wasn't enough. Inter pulled away at an amazing pace and we were mathematically out of contention with 2 matches to be played. Napoli got a little bit left behind and we did catch them by the penultimate fixture, but it didn't help that our single defeat in the league since February was against them so we lost 2nd place on result between teams.

In my defence, our final score of 88 points is the club's highest ever, and an astonishing 9 points higher than the last time the club won the league, 3 seasons ago. Looking at the past few Serie A tables this points total would've been enough to be champions almost every time, not this season though as Inter were incredible. Worth mentioning the only 2 league matches they lost all season long were against us.

At least we've comfortably qualified for the Champions League group stages, which shall be my first experience in the competition in this career.

SerieATIMInformation_LeagueTable.jpg

(League positions graph)

Cups

ASRomaRoma_Fixtures-2-1.jpg

Now on this I have no right to be remotely happy about it. Total disaster, leaving us with no silverware this season. Atlético and Inter were hardly easy opponents being two of the world's best teams at the moment, but I certainly didn't expect to fall at the very next hurdle in both competitions after the mid-season update. I don't even want to write much about it and try to give any excuses.

Top 5 key players

(Full squad and stats)

5. Lewis Holmes (ST) - A surprise as he overtook my preferred striker Damion Avinel in the pecking order, by simply being more lethal. Top scorer with 20 goals. I think I need an even better forward though, I think he is a little limited for a team aiming at conquering the world.

4. Billel Zarabi (AMR) - On 12 goals and 17 assists he was probably our most reliable source of danger all year long, but I was expecting more from his Cristiano Ronaldo-esque attributes.

3. Kévin Duval (AMC, AMR) - Another surprise as I didn't expect him to make the impact he did. At the beginning I favoured Andrezinho and Rogerinho but soon he settled himself as the undisputed #1 choice for AMC.

2. Mignon Pedro (DMC, DL) - A monster, our team captain clearly is the face of the club. Stats may look slightly unimpressive but that's because I give him a defensive DMC role. Incredibly reliable, don't remember a single bad game by him.

1. Mike Kunert (DC) - Because with 11 goals, saving our asses on tight matches so, so many times, he was the guy that made the most difference in the whole squad - excelling defensively too of course.

Finances

Help, I'm screwing this up. 6.7M€ in the red. I need to cut down on wages, there's no way we should be paying 700K€/month for squad players like Ignacio Juaréz. I'm even considering selling Mignon Pedro because he's 28 and paid that same ridiculous amount of wages, which could either turn out to be a genious move or a colossal mistake as he's our better player.

Conclusions and future expectations

Average season. I can't really blame the team for the league, which was unlucky not to end up with a better reward, but we had genuine hopes for winning the cup and blew it, and our Europa League performance was poor. I won the bloody thing last year with a considerably weaker side...

I want to progress to the next level, but am a little worried things may stall for a while. Much of our squad is aging, some of them key players like Pedro (and I didn't help buying a few 28+ y.o. players), and after my spending spree I've left the team a little unstable financially. Let's see if the Champions League money helps things, meanwhile I have little option but to keep insisting on what I'm doing.

Career overview

[b]Season   Club (nation)         League (tier)                          Notes[/b]
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
10/11    Praiense (POR)        2ª Divisão Sul (3) - 4th
11/12    Praiense (POR)        2ª Divisão Centro (3) - 1st            Lost in promotion playoff
12/13    Kettering (ENG)       Blue Square Premier (5) - 7th           
13/14    Kettering (ENG)       Blue Square Premier (5) - 22nd         Resigned mid-season
        Venezia (ITA)         Seconda Divisione Girone A (4) - 15th  Won relegation playout
14/15    Venezia (ITA)         Seconda Divisione Girone A (4) - 4th   Lost in promotion playoff
15/16    Venezia (ITA)         Seconda Divisione Girone A (4) - 3rd   Lost in promotion playoff
16/17    Venezia (ITA)         Seconda Divisione Girone A (4) - 1st   Promoted, Serie C Cup winners
17/18    Venezia (ITA)         Prima Divisione Girone A (3) - 6th
18/19    Dresden (GER)         3.Liga (3) - 8th
19/20    Dresden (GER)         3.Liga (3) - 13th                      Resigned mid-season
        Belenenses (POR)      Liga Orangina (2) - 10th
20/21    Belenenses (POR)      Liga Orangina (2) - 2nd                Promoted
21/22    Belenenses (POR)      Liga Zon Sagres (1) - 4th                 
22/23    Belenenses (POR)      Liga Zon Sagres (1) - 4th              League Cup winners
2023     Krylya Sovetov (RUS)  Prem'er Liga (1) - 10th                 
23/24    Celta (SPA)           Liga Adelante (2) - 4th                Lost in promotion playoff
24/25    Celta (SPA)           Liga Adelante (2) - 1st                Promoted
25/26    Celta (SPA)           La Liga (1) - 6th
26/27    Celta (SPA)           La Liga (1) - 7th                      Europa League winners
27/28    Roma (ITA)            Serie A (1) - 3rd

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And now for tactics, as it didn't fit in the previous post because I wanted to post another picture:

Tactical watch

ASRomaRoma_Tactics.jpg

Mid-season after the cup and Europa League disasters I decided to make a few changes to make my team more flexible. I had way too many sliders overrunning things across the whole side. I decided to pretty much get rid of all of them and stick to the basics. Then as the game unfolds I can more easily switch things with a few clicks without unbalancing the team.

We're still playing a sort of 4-2-3-1, but now one of the DMCs pushed into a MC position on "supporting deep-lying playmaker" role, and given playmaking duties, and with full-backs usually on "attacking wing-back" role. It seems to be working slightly better.

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Disregard the financial issues, I just got 18 million euros(!!!!) from selling the 50% profit from next sale clauses I had on two average young strikers I sold to Chelsea and Man Utd. Amazing. One of them is 20 years old and has 10/10 for finishing/composure. :lol:

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On bad news, I've just seen this result from the latest Euro 2028 fixtures in England:

PortugalvRussiaInformation_Overview.jpg

Incredible. Appalling. I think international management's really boring in FM, but am considering now to apply for the Portugal job which should inevitably open up after this humiliation. Someone needs to restore our honor. :mad:

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Don't you feel that employing a playmaker and a target limits the way your team plays? I had experiences with that and I often saw the team insisting too much on those two players.

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Don't you feel that employing a playmaker and a target limits the way your team plays? I had experiences with that and I often saw the team insisting too much on those two players.

That's not what I see in the pitch, maybe because I also have "play down both wings" checked, and those two players play in the middle. That seems to be enough variation to keep the opposition guessing.

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Lisbon, 9th of July of 2028

Portugal_FPF_crest.png

I am delighted to announce that the FPF (Portuguese football association) has appointed me as manager of the portuguese national team, just ahead of the 2030 World Cup to be held in... Portugal!! :eek: I took it before even knowing we were going to be the hosts, but it's such an once-in-a-lifetime chance there's no way I would say no to it.

Unfortunately, I look at the recent results and it looks like I have quite a task in my hands to meet the expectations, which will undoubtedly be high. We haven't been in a major competition semi-final since 2006:

PortugalHistory_Competitions.jpg

Then the squad looks really old. This is the team that went to the Euros:

PortugalPortugal_Players.jpg

Key players

Jorge Rocha (ST) - Total legend for Portugal, on the same level as Eusébio, Figo and Cristiano Ronaldo. Made his whole career with Inter, becoming top scorer of the Serie A on an unbelievable 9 different occasions. Lost 5 Champions League finals with the club, is the club's top scorer ever with 364 league goals, and the national team's top scorer ever with 109 international goals. Unfortunately he'll be 35 by the time of the World Cup.

Luis Pinto (MR, ML) - The star from my brief period as the manager of Portugal U19s a few years back, now a regular for Man City.

Manoel (DL, DC) - One of many brazilian-born portuguese internationals, and probably the best of the lot, unfortunately is a bit past his best by now.

David Jardim (D/WB/M L, DC) - I've managed him before when he was a youngster, I had him on a loan from Benfica for 1 season at Belenenses. Quality attacking full-back.

Pedro Figueiredo (AMC, MC) - Closest thing we have to a Rui Costa clone at the moment, but not as good as the original.

Expectations

Lots of work ahead. I've set up a ton of friendlies for the remaining of the year and throughout 2029, to test the various possible solutions. All will depend on our form for that critical month of June two years from now.

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Been reading this on and off for a while, you have done rather well up to now, and slowly moving up the league chains in various countries. Looks like an interesting career and project. Good luck with Portugal. Hope the 109-goal machine is still capable of hitting them home, almost literally, when the time comes.

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Id love to see a screenie of Jorge Rocha's career, if its possible, and a screen shot of his Biography :)

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Really interesting to see how you do with Portugal on a short time-frame!

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Hope you can do a good rescue mission.

Bloody well hope I do, the World Cup doesn't come to Portugal very often...

Been reading this on and off for a while, you have done rather well up to now, and slowly moving up the league chains in various countries. Looks like an interesting career and project. Good luck with Portugal. Hope the 109-goal machine is still capable of hitting them home, almost literally, when the time comes.

Thanks. It's been a nice ride over the whole career, I find it fun to go deep into the future in FM. Obviously the progress is at a rubbish rate compared to some of the folks here in the forum who have a sharper talent for winning, but I'm quite pleased to have consistently climbed the ladder at a realistic pace so far. Only a few more steps to go all the way now...

Sadly I have some doubts Jorge Rocha will still be there for the World Cup as a regular choice, I mean 35 years old...

Id love to see a screenie of Jorge Rocha's career, if its possible, and a screen shot of his Biography :)

Sure.

(Career)

(Biography)

No idea on why he was never picked for the top 3 in the Ballon d'Or. I should've taken a screenie when he was at the peak of his powers, totally awesome forward.

Really interesting to see how you do with Portugal on a short time-frame!

Not quite that short, I have two years and tons of friendlies to prepare the team...

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I suppose not, but I think you'd have been better served having a bit of competitive football to test your mettle with. Although won't you have the Confederations Cup the summer before? That's "competitive" I suppose.

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Back to my italian day job...

Roma 2028/2029 - season preview

150px-AS_Roma.png

Transfers

Here's the new guys:

Gideon Gabriel (AMR, AML) (free) - Quality promising winger for free, but next time I'll remind myself of using my single non-EU from abroad transfer spot for a top player. He's not that - yet.

Alexandr Kuznetsov (GK) (free) - Not visibly better than my previous 1st choice Christensen, but sweet deal nonetheless.

Mior (M/AM LC) (8.5M€) - Hints of potential should turn this good, but flawed player into something more complete.

William (MC) (free) - 32 years old, but again, can't complain about the price. Just lacks a tiny bit of physical stats to be world class.

Pedro Abreu (DC, DMC, MC) (11.75M€) - I avoided mentioning him in the Portugal update on purpose to save him for this one. Maybe I overpaid a little for a player lacking a bit in technical ability, but in terms of intelligence and physical stats he's great.

Nem (DL) (6.75M€) - I got rid of Pato and this guy perhaps is slightly worse at the moment but being 8 years younger and with a full star of potential untapped it was a no-brainer. Is going to be a world class attacking full-back.

Sergio (M/AM C) (15M€) - Looks who's back! I can't believe I paid only 300K€ to sign him back then for Celta... I had to get him back to develop him personally into one of the world's best midfielders.

And the guys who left: Rogerinho (825K€), Abdel Hamid (2.4M€), Daniel Rietz (1.5M€), Ignacio Juaréz (FINALLY!! 9M€), Pato (9M€), Renato Di Berardino (1.5M€), Mehdi Gillet (free), and reserve players Abuda (1.6M€) and Savino Cannone (500K€).

Youth intake

Not something I ever focus on because they're almost invariably not that great, but this kid Vanni Fiovaranti looks like he could actually be something really special. Awesome stats, 4 stars of PA...

Finances

Currently 6.2M€ in the bank, which should be enough to sustain us this season, thanks to a slightly lower wage budget and hopefully, some Champions League prize money.

Full Squad

ASRomaRoma_Players-2-1.jpg

I still think we need a better forward but for now I'm going to settle for what we have, and try to develop Ivanov with some extra playing time this season. I don't think the squad is any better than last year, but we're younger and that means more potential to slowly develop this bunch into a truly world class bunch.

First fixtures

ASRomaRoma_Fixtures-2-2.jpg

Not quite the beginning I was expecting, dropping 4 points already is a very bad idea if this is going to be anything like last season. But we were wildly unlucky against Palermo, and Milan was a very difficult tie anyway, so let's remain positive.

In the Champions League, our group is Man Utd, Wolfsburg and Basel. Not "easy" but given that we were only 3rd seeds, I can't complain as it could've gone much worse.

Predictions, conclusions, etc

It's probably about time I win anything of note. As stated above, I don't think the squad's better but if we can repeat the same points total we could win the league anyway. Inter switched managers for the first time in almost 2 decades (Laurent Blanc replaced Leonardo), and even under Leonardo I don't believe they could pull off that amazing performance for two consecutive seasons.

If the league fails I definitely want to win the cup. As for the Champions League, it's only our first attempt and the italian teams have been poor lately, so let's take it a step at a time. Quarter finals would be good.

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I suppose not, but I think you'd have been better served having a bit of competitive football to test your mettle with. Although won't you have the Confederations Cup the summer before? That's "competitive" I suppose.

It doesn't appear in the calendar yet so I didn't even think about it. You're right, it's going to be held next Summer in Portugal.

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Some nice looking signings there - looking forward to seeing more of Sergio!

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Rocha certainly has had an amazing career - he might be the most impressive goalscorer over the span of an entire career I have ever seen in any FM game. Its a shame he never won the CL - but truly a legend. Cant believe Inter bought him for 800k! Fioravanti is certainly someone to be excited about :)

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Very unlucky on last season 88 points should be enough to win the league, to finish 3rd is amazing. I think Sergio will make the difference for you next season. He's amazing for a 19yr old. GL at Portugal but I agree that the international management is a bit dull. I always find I regret taking any of the jobs and resign after a couple of games. Not sure how it could be improved though tbh.

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More than decent season with Roma, 88 points is a good return which would win the league more often than not. I suppose anything less than a title challenge next season would be a disappointment?

Hopefully, you can restore a bit of pride into the Portuguese national team, and have a solid World Cup on home soil. That being said, I do tend to agree with SnakeXe comments about the lack of competitive football. You probably won't know for definite how good your squad is until you've played your first World Cup group match, but at least you'll get a fair idea from the friendlies.

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Some nice looking signings there - looking forward to seeing more of Sergio!
Very unlucky on last season 88 points should be enough to win the league, to finish 3rd is amazing. I think Sergio will make the difference for you next season. He's amazing for a 19yr old. GL at Portugal but I agree that the international management is a bit dull. I always find I regret taking any of the jobs and resign after a couple of games. Not sure how it could be improved though tbh.

Not sure Sergio can make an impact already, I'm easing him slowly into the team and he was nervous at first and has yet to impress after a few matches, Kévin Duval is the king of the AMC position anyway (although the fact he always get himself into good positions then sends the finish miles away from the goal annoys me - a finishing stat of 9...). Sergio's more of a long-term investment, I'm sure he'll be class but needs to work a little on his mental skills first.

Rocha certainly has had an amazing career - he might be the most impressive goalscorer over the span of an entire career I have ever seen in any FM game. Its a shame he never won the CL - but truly a legend. Cant believe Inter bought him for 800k! Fioravanti is certainly someone to be excited about :)

It's also a shame he'll be so old for the World Cup at Portugal, he somehow still seems my better forward though and scored his 110th in my first game in charge, so I might still drag him to the tournament.

I got Fiovaranti to be tutored by Mignon Pedro which is the best player of my whole team, but he then got himself a bad injury immediately, hopefully he's not injury prone...

More than decent season with Roma, 88 points is a good return which would win the league more often than not. I suppose anything less than a title challenge next season would be a disappointment?

Hopefully, you can restore a bit of pride into the Portuguese national team, and have a solid World Cup on home soil. That being said, I do tend to agree with SnakeXe comments about the lack of competitive football. You probably won't know for definite how good your squad is until you've played your first World Cup group match, but at least you'll get a fair idea from the friendlies.

Yeah I'm aiming at the title with Roma. With Portugal I'm a little worried, friendlies often mean nothing, key players have been withdrawn from the squad by their clubs, but my first 2 matches in charge haven't convinced me at all. 0-0 at home with China... :o

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Good first season with Roma although the Europa League was a bit disappointing.Also the best of luck with Portugal,Rocha was definitely a Portugese legend!

Good luck for the new season,hope you can add some silverware to your collection.

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Merry Christmas everyone! Time for a short Portugal update:

Portugal 2028 - year review

Portugal_FPF_crest.png

Fixtures

PortugalPortugal_Fixtures.jpg

Slightly shaky so far. We did okay against a reasonably strong algerian side, albeit the winning goals only came in the second half. Failing to score against China despite knocking at their doors all game long was a lot more worrying. Then my first big test was against Netherlands, and while it was concerning to waste a 1-0 lead and let the dutch turn it around, we still managed to draw the game, and probably should have won it.

The Confederations Cup draw puts us in Group B against New Zealand, Saudi Arabia and France. We should be able to qualify as the national FA demands.

Players given international debuts

Henrique Bruno (DC) (Celta) - A personal signing of mine, was starting to break into the first team when I left Celta. Good young player but fairly slow and should not be a regular.

Gonçalo Trindade (AMC, ST) (Sevilla) - Lacking in creativity which is not good for his position, but scored on his debut against Algeria.

Carlos Rosa (DMC, MC) (Benfica) - Brazilian-born player who had been at Benfica for ages and gained portuguese nationality, he's a complete player and should play regularly despite already being 32 years old.

João Gomes (ST) (Trabzonspor) - Very exciting forward, but a suspicious lack of goals in Turkey and a poor debut for Portugal does not bode well for him.

Pingo (DL, DC) (Lazio) - Another brazilian. Portugal not being wildly blessed with good centre-backs, I'm puzzled as to why he hadn't yet been called up.

Emanuel Silva (DMC, MC) (Stoke) - Quality defensive midfielder who again I have no idea how did he manage to avoid caps for so long.

Carlos Paulista (ST) (Benfica) - I'd like to thank the FM gods for this one! This brazilian gained the nationality after playing for Benfica for 5 years and I immediately called him up before the Netherlands game - where he scored. World class striker, I'm already trying to sign him for Roma.

"Carlos Rosa" and "Carlos Paulista" are nicknames, as FM is producing too many players named "Carlos" and it was getting confusing. I renamed my Roma brazilian international DMC Carlos da Silva too.

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Roma 2028/2029 - mid-season update

150px-AS_Roma.png

Transfers

Alan Fabbri (D/WB R) (1.5M€) - Bit expensive for a kid that won't play anytime soon, but 3.5* of PA.

Carlos Paulista (ST) (28.5M€) - The most expensive signing of my career so far, I'm confident it'll be worth it as I needed a world class striker. The national team management job is already paying off for my club career.

The signing of Carlos was only possible through the sale of Damion Avinel to Man City for 24.5M€. I had identified Damion as a key player when I arrived at the club but unfortunately he was wildly disappointing for his theoretical great skills.

This puts me in a slightly awkward financial position of being 1.5M€ in the red, and striker Lewis Holmes about to break a goalscoring record clause that will cost us another 4M€.

League

ASRomaRoma_Fixtures-3-1.jpg

Crazy stuff here, could this be the season I've been waiting for my entire career? Those first few months were quite weird, we were playing unconvincingly and the team always entering the pitch nervously, but we never failed to somehow scrap a win every game. A very long unbeaten run ended in the Delle Alpi, but the next fixture we beat title rivals Napoli (who are now even tougher to beat having been taken over by a tycoon), and that sparked us into a period of a few great performances.

By the Christmas break we had a 7 points gap over Napoli and looking good to run away with the league comfortably, but then points lost to Parma, Palermo and Fiorentina opened everything up again. Frankly I feel Napoli are still just a tiny little bit better than us and this means trouble ahead. It's all shaping up for an exciting close finale to the league.

SerieATIMInformation_LeagueTable-1.jpg

Cups

ASRomaRoma_Fixtures-4.jpg

Half-time in Basel and we were looking good to cruise to 6 points in 2 games but then they surprised us and came back from a 0-2 to 2-2. This forced us to get points from the Man Utd games, thankfully we just grinded out two results in two tight games - first an extremely late equaliser by Gomes gave us a point in Old Trafford, then we beat them at home with a Kévin Duval freekick. A humiliation of Wolfsburg in Germany ensued, with Lewis Holmes particularly inspired, which qualified us. Unfortunately I made a very bad error of judgement in the final game, naming a team of youngsters to get them some european experience, and Basel surprised us - again. This meant losing 1st place in the group, and we now have to face Arsenal in the next round.

In the cup, it all came down to the craziest of games against Milan. Zarabi pulled a late equaliser, we turned around a 2-goals defficit in penalty kicks, yet still lost. I'm disappointed because I'm still yet to win a major domestic cup (Portuguese League cup and Italian Serie C cup don't count), but we can now focus on the biggest competitions.

Players

This is so weird, we're leading the Serie A yet our top goalscorer is an attacking midfielder on merely 8 goals - the exciting Kévin Duval, by now becoming possibly Switzerland's greatest ever player. For all the quality nobody really stands out, it's again all a blur of high but not spectacular average ratings. Some of our best players have been quite unexpected, like the senegalese centre-back Mamadou Ba, or our new keeper Alexandr Kuznetsov. And then there's Gomes, showing his talent from the left-wing. But there's no super striker or anything like that.

Goals for the rest of the season

Are we starting to lose our mojo now, or can we hold on for the title? Let's find out, it's going to be close. I think anything can happen in the Champions League too, Arsenal are probably the equals of us, they have the core of the English national team with some stellar players but nothing we haven't faced before.

Exciting times in Rome.

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Very commanding position at the half way stage. Looking like a two horse race for the title, good luck!

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I notice this thread again for the first time in ages and suddenly you're managing Roma. :eek: It seems you're doing pretty well and could be looking to push on with the signings you have made. :thup:

Also, you got a brilliant youth player in Fioravanti, he looks like he'll become the new De Rossi. I'm looking forward to seeing how he progresses in your team.

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Shaping up to be a great season!

Yes it is, although we're facing now an absolutely critical point as I'll post next.

Very commanding position at the half way stage. Looking like a two horse race for the title, good luck!

Yeah there's no doubt it's all between us and Napoli. Inter fell apart this season after Leonardo finally left as manager, and while Milan have bounced back they're not keeping up.

I notice this thread again for the first time in ages and suddenly you're managing Roma. :eek: It seems you're doing pretty well and could be looking to push on with the signings you have made. :thup:

Also, you got a brilliant youth player in Fioravanti, he looks like he'll become the new De Rossi. I'm looking forward to seeing how he progresses in your team.

I quite like Roma and that was a factor in taking their job - although my fav italian team is Inter, don't ask me how that works. Not sure I'll stick around for long enough to develop Fioravanti though.

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ArsenalvRomaInformation_Overview.jpg

This was pretty awesome despite Kunert's disastrous game - my front 4 all bagged one goal and one assist each, and we're into the quarters, where we're facing... Portsmouth. That sounds random and is a pretty nice draw because they're not tycoon based or anything like that, just a medium-top level team in England that has broken into the top 4 in the league the last two seasons. If we overcome them, it's Barcelona or Marseille in the semis which is much much tougher.

In the league, with 9 games to go, Napoli are a single point behind us and on a high. Our next two fixtures could make or break the season - Inter away then Napoli away. :eek:

In this random mini-update I'd also like to mention that Kévin Duval scored two decisive braces on the last two Serie A matches and is on an impossibly awesome run of form for a midfielder. :thup:

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Portsmouth are hardly a team to fear. Amusing that Arsenal lost even with being gifted 2 own goals.

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Portsmouth are hardly a team to fear. Amusing that Arsenal lost even with being gifted 2 own goals.

Yes we're favorites vs Portsmouth, but they do have some talents, there's this regen called Ben Calvert who bags 30 goals per season. Will post a screenie later.

Arsenal were easier than expected, we only scrapped a tight 1-0 win at home, but then they just let everything go in in the second leg. I think our wide 4-2-3-1 is more effective than their narrow version of it (2 MC's, 3 AMC's).

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NapolivRomaInformation_Overview.jpg

HUGE win. Could this be the decisive step towards the title? We tied with Inter the previous match, Napoli did the same versus Parma, it means now a 4 points lead with head-to-head advantage, 7 games to go.

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Lets see an attribute and career shot of this Ben Calvert!

Thats a huge victory against Napoli away from home - surely it must be in the bag now?

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(Ben Calvert) (Career stats)

Incidentally, he was harmless in the first leg - completely unlike our own english striker who decided to dominate the game by himself. I swear I'm not going to start putting up a picture of every game, but this was exceptional, again:

RomavPortsmouthInformation_Overview.jpg

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RomavBarcelonaInformation_Overview.jpg

Yes!!!! This was SO tense! Barça were unfortunate with all those injuries, but we were the best team in this match and were unlucky not to score an away goal on the 1st leg so overall we probably deserved it.

The opponent in the final is Man Utd and the game is going to be held in the San Mamés Barria.

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Wow! Good luck in the CL final! Three English clubs in a row? Harsh going!

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It gets better:

CludioAlegriaNews_Inbox-15.jpg

My first domestic title! It was quite a sloppy match to clinch it, but who cares. This was the penultimate game of the league, so we can now rest our top players for the big game in Bilbao.

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Congrats! And good luck on that final, don't play defensive, finals are to win :thup:

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Congrats on your first domestic title! I sense a double in the offing...

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UEFA Champions League Final - San Mamés Barria, Bilbao, Spain - 26th of May 2029

The biggest match of my career, as the recently crowned italian and english champions face each other. Man Utd are more used to this, they've won the competition 5 times, but have not been in the final since 11 years ago. Whereas Roma was last here in 2011 and has never won the trophy. Whatever happens it'll be the first time since that very year Man Utd won their last, that the trophy won't go to either Spain or France, the two countries that have dominated the competition for the past decade. This time it is Italy versus England.

Let's see the lineups:

RomavManUtdPreview_LineUps.jpg

No surprises whatsoever in Roma's picks, it's been the main starting eleven for months now. Billel Zarabi is just about recovered after being out for a few weeks, while all eyes are on the spectacular Kévin Duval who has had a wonderful season. Lewis Holmes is not a fashionable player being a somewhat limited striker, but has been on splendorous form lately in the Champions League - who forgets his poker versus Portsmouth and the winner against Barcelona - and should be a danger.

Manchester United field the attacking and unusual 3-4-1-2 formation that they usually play, nothing that Roma didn't already beat in the Group Stages! The stars of this side would be the supersonic forward Tommy Davis, one of England's best ever players, his supporting playmaker Wesley Haynes, also a star for England, and former FIFA Ballon D'Or winner Hamza Benali, who became world champion for France in the 2026 World Cup. They have a few other sensational players but enough screenies and talk for now, I want to start the match!

First half

13th minute - Danger for Man Utd! A magnificent through ball by Wesley Haynes picks the run from Tommy Davis who beats Mike Kunert on pace, but Kuznetsov saves it.

32nd minute - This has been a cagey half so far, and most of our efforts have been from distance, yet it's Man Utd who nearly score from distance, Esteban Mahe's low drive from outside the area coming very close to the right post.

33nd minute - Lewis Holmes receives the ball deep into Man Utd's half and embarks on a run past Jorge Costa into the area, but shoots over the bar.

34nd minute - Man Utd create serious danger again through the middle! Some short passing by Haynes finds Chilufya, who dribbles past Kunert, gets into an one-on-one with Kuznetsov and fires it low, but the russian goalie again tips it for a corner.

39th minute - GOAL FOR ROMA, 1-0! Man Utd was seemingly on top but it's Lewis Holmes with another sublime mazy run who receives the ball from Gomes still in the centre circle of the pitch, eludes Luis and Jorge Costa as he advances to the area, and fires it low for a superb solo goal.

41st minute - Nearly the equaliser! Haynes' run through the middle of Roma's defence finds Tommy Davis unmarked, but he fires it straight at Kuznetsov.

44th minute - Roma hits the post! Kévin Duval's corner from the left finds Mamadou Ba who beats Lemaire in the air, but the turkish keeper Uysal makes a remarkable save and tips it into the post!

End of the first half and we're quite lucky to be ahead as Man Utd has had already 3 one-on-ones. I set the tactic to counter, drop Carlos da Silva to a DMC position, and tell the team to retain possession. We need to diminish the space both in front and behind our defense.

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Second half

45th minute - Man Utd replace Benali and Rimi for centre-backs Filé and Diomandé at half-time. Puzzlingly, they seem to be playing way more defensively now too, with a 5-2-1-2 formation.

52nd minute - Yellow card already for Filé after a tackle on Lewis Holmes.

56th minute - Gomes' cross from the left nearly results into an own-goal from Man Utd's Lemaire, but keeper Cihat Uysal pushes it away.

59th minute - GOAL FOR MAN UTD, 1-1! They hadn't created danger yet in the second half, and a free-kick far from our goal seemed harmless, but Wesley Haynes is having a great match and strikes it directly into the top corner - Kuznetsov looked maybe a little bit at fault in goal!

66nd minute - Mamadou Ba hits the post, again! Another corner from Kévin Duval, again the senegalese centre-back powers a promising header but it's just a little bit too accurate.

68th minute - Substitution for Roma, Zarabi leaves for Andrezinho. The french winger was playing nervously and not at his flairy best.

83rd minute - Playmaker DMC Carlos da Silva is replaced by Roberto Amoroso, Mignon Pedro receiving playmaking duties.

85th minute - Luis' cross from the left finds Chilufya's head in the penalty spot but Kuznetsov tips it over the bar.

89th minute - Gomes sees a yellow for a foul on Luis.

92nd minute - Marquinhos sees a yellow for another foul on Luis, deep into the Roma area.

End of 90 minutes. Little happened in the 2nd half bar for the goal and Ba hitting the post, Man Utd has been less dangerous but we're not creating much neither - despite setting the strategy as attacking again. I bring in youngster Mior for left-winger Gomes.

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First half of extra time

90nd minute - GOAL FOR MAN UTD, 2-1! Disaster as they score without us touching the ball! Haynes has a great run through the middle and finds Nizar Ben Amor, just having entered the pitch to replace Chilufya, scoring on his first touch on the ball.

93rd minute - Mignon Pedro finds Kévin Duval in the area but he shoots wide.

95th minute - A flairy run from Mior from the left into the middle opens space for the run of Kévin Duval but keeper Uysal tips it wide.

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Second half of extra time

115th minute - Man Utd nearly kills the game. Gonzalez's corner finds Diomandé unmarked in the keeper's area but he heads it straight at Kuznetsov.

118th minute - GOAL FOR ROMA, 2-2! Unbelievable, I thought we were finished! Holmes' run through the right finds the head of Duval in the area, he hits the bar. The ball falls to Pedro who involuntarily passes it back to Kévin Duval who this time doesn't miss!!!

120th minute - Krizanac gets a late yellow as he is desperate to end Tommy Davis' run.

The match goes to penalties - just like in the semi-final! Huge drama in Bilbao!

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Penalty kicks

0-1 - Esteban Mahe fires the first home for Utd.

1-1 - Mior fires it into the top corner despite playing nervously.

2-1 - Haynes gives no chance to the keeper.

MISS! - Kévin Duval hits the bar! He never misses, this decisive time he does...

3-1 - Gonzalez shoots into the top corner despite Kuznetsov guessing it.

MISS! - Lewis Holmes hits the post! Surely it's over...

MISS! - Tommy Davis allows Kuznetsov to save it. Bit late now for a comeback?

3-2 - Mamadou Ba fires it through the middle and keeps Roma in the game.

MISS! - Unbelievable! Kuznetsov stays in the middle of goal and Jorge Costa shoots right at him!

3-3 - So close to the post and to the keeper but it goes in, Kunert takes it to sudden death!

4-3 - Luis scores and puts the pressure back on us.

MISS! - So gutting! The experienced Andrezinho hits the bar! MAN UTD WIN THE UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE!

30573hp2.jpg

RomavManUtdInformation_Overview-1.jpg

What a crazy match, I suppose Man Utd was the better team, but it's so annoying to go this far, come back from the dead twice (the 118th minute goal, coming from a 2-penalties disadvantage) and still lose. Not the way I wanted the season to end, but still a vintage season...

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