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DandyDon

FM2012: Newcastle United thread - Triumphing by brave defending.....well maybe!

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Just asked Cozar to do report on him and he reckons 16M will get them to sell him to me :(

Still worth it. Your not exactly going to get a top quality player for anything less are you?

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Still worth it. Your not exactly going to get a top quality player for anything less are you?

No, of course not :D I'm just like Wenger who doesn't want to go over the top by spending too much on one player :p

Just sold Obertan to Everton for 10M. 8.25M over 48 months plus 35% of next transfer.

Just accepted this invitation for French tour :p

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Just added 7,613 seats to the stadium, also the board upgrading the youth facilities.

15M for Samba plus Fabricio Coloccini?

Liverpool just came in 10M for Ben Arfa. Might sell him and bring in Eriksen from Ajax.

EDIT: I asked 11M for Ben Arfa and Liverpool said no so I put him to clubs and Birmingham offered 10.25M for him. Accepted their bid.

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WHAT!! Got 25M in the bank and 2.4K to spend? Ridiculous.

Sold Ben Arfa. paying 15.25K p/w until 2015.

Have anyone brought Mateo Kovačić?

EDIT: Selling Fabio Coloccini to Dortmund for 4.8M, will pay him 20K until 2013.

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Finally got Eriksen! 50Kp/w :cool: cost me 15M and now the fans saying it's a waste of money.

Prove them wrong Eriksen!

Brought in Owen Hargreaves on free :)

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Nice move with Eriksen, you won't regret it :D Would also recommend Papadopoloulos instead of Samba if you can get him cheaper than what I did.. Him and Subotic.

Everton managed to pick up Gary Cahill for £7m on my game, so he way be worth looking at. Don't mean to sound too disparaging, but what is the point in Owen Hargreaves? Never understood people getting him on a free, Man City offered him another contract and is currently rotting in their reserves looking dreadful.

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Hi Im new on here and enjoyed reading the thread about Newcastle so I thought Id start a new game with Newcastle, wish me luck any advice out there for me.

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Nice move with Eriksen, you won't regret it :D Would also recommend Papadopoloulos instead of Samba if you can get him cheaper than what I did.. Him and Subotic.

Everton managed to pick up Gary Cahill for £7m on my game, so he way be worth looking at. Don't mean to sound too disparaging, but what is the point in Owen Hargreaves? Never understood people getting him on a free, Man City offered him another contract and is currently rotting in their reserves looking dreadful.

I signed him to tutor the youngsters :) Gave up on Samba. Subotic gone to Spurs.

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I've just done this to be fair, picked up Scot Parker and Jermaine Jones on frees to do some tutoring; main difference will be that they will never ever play. Both of them are on £30k+ contracts too :lol:

How's the hunt going for a Right winger? Shaqiri has finally hit some form for me after injuries to Gotze and Hazard early on this season.

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SEASON 2012/2013

After a fantastic season last year, I think this season will prove more challenging with Champion Leagues football creating extra matches and workload on the squad. The off seasons transfers targets were achieved with the addition of a couple squad players for the future.

Transfers Out

Leon Best - Blackburn - $1M

Danny Simpson - Wigan - $2M

Ben Arfa - Wolves - $4M

Ryan Taylor - Portsmouth - $1M

Demba Ba - Everton - $4M

Shane Ferguson - Derby - $250K

Rob Elliot - Portsmouth - $100K

Marveaux - Wigan - $250K Loan Fee

Total $14.5M

Transfers In

David Bentley - Tottenham - $2.6M Transfer Target.

Gary Cahill - Bolton - $15M Transfer Target

Moussa Sow - LOSC Lille - $8M

Zakaria Labyad - PSV - Free

Lucas Digne LOSC Lille - $1.3M

Jack Robinson - Liverpool - $7.5M over 48 months.

OVERALL SQUAD

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I've just done this to be fair, picked up Scot Parker and Jermaine Jones on frees to do some tutoring; main difference will be that they will never ever play. Both of them are on £30k+ contracts too :lol:

How's the hunt going for a Right winger? Shaqiri has finally hit some form for me after injuries to Gotze and Hazard early on this season.

Hargreaves on 11.75K. Not going to look for RW, got like 4 players to compete for RW.

EDIT: Just made a offer to bring Alex Chamberlain on loan.

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Some good seasons reviewed here recently, nice to see some cracking saves developing :thup:

Been away from FM over the weekend, fired the save back up tonight and we're into the January window. With injuries upfront threatening to derail our progress I decided to make a move for another striker just to help keep us on track.

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Not sure what had been happening at Man Utd, but Hernandez was on the transfer list by his request and had been shoved into the reserves. I didn't realise until I saw Barcelona put in a bid for him and decided I might as well take a punt on him too....and slightly surprisingly he chose SJP over the Nou Camp.

EDIT: Grabbed a typical poachers goal against West Brom to score on his debut. Nice low cross from Johnson and there was the Little Pea arriving late to bundle home.

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Pre season wrapped up. Played most of my fringe/youth players against Étoile Fréjus Saint-Raphaël and Olimpia. Disappointed with Wilfried against Carlisle. He had 5 CCC!

Got Spurs at home and then Chelsea away in the league.

Transfers done and dusted.

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Alessandro Bosio

José Antonio Azor

David Faure

Carlos Alberto Velázquez

Krzysztof Kantor

Christian Eriksen

Zakaria Labyad

Owen Hargreaves

Dominic Vose

Jacques Nijssen

-------------------------------------------------------------

Jacques Nijssen is rated at 4.5 stars. I think I paid too much for him, as their club was being a idiot toward me but accepted Ajax 900K for him, glad he went to me.

Just looked at Sergey Stepanov, already got 4 caps! :eek:

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SEASON 2012/2013 Squad Analysis

Keepers -

The return of Forster will add much needed depth and a great addition to Krul for the number one spot. Last season injury to Krul for 3 weeks really disrupted the momentum towards the end of the season and likely cost the club real tilt at the title. Alnwick has been placed in a back up role, currently under the guidance of Krul.

Defence -

Off seasons transfer targets Cahill ($14M) and hot prospect Robinson ($7.5) from Bolton and Liverpool, will add some quality and youth to the back. Williamson was only able to offer back up last season, and will again in this campaign. Taylor & Cahill first choice paring with Tomkins rotating in for his 20 games, with already mention Williamson has cover.

On the defensive flanks, Santon will be asked to take his game up to the next level along with M'Bengue. Both Simpson and Ryan Taylor have departed off season leaving Gosling as a cover at Right back. New signings Digne and Robinson will add competition for cover on the left, but Digne is still touted for a possible short term loan.

Midfield -

The midfield looks solid and is a key area for the squad, with Tiote and Cabaye looking to hold the central positions down as their own. However Henriksen performed brilliantly last season in Tiotes or Cabaye absent, and looks the goods of a Key player at 19 years of age. Adding to this group was PSV youngster Labyad who was signed on a free, a more creative player in the middle will see game time mostly in the cup games and easier home games. Ex-Chelsea midfielder Conor Clifford was picked up on a free as an experimental development player and could be useful in adding to the area as a back up.

On the flanks wee have added David Bentley($2.6M) whom was a transfer target over the summer and Andros Townsend (free) both from Tottenham. Tottenham made a strong bid for Guiterrez offering $5M and Walker, but I was unable to offer Walker contract, so the deal collapsed. Obertan had a building year last, and their are big expectations on him this year to take his game to the next level.

Forwards -

Demba Ba & Best both departed last season, with Demba Ba mostly disappointing. Sow ($8) was brought in to add to Traore and Rochina ($1.5M) who was brought in over the January transfer window. These leaves the squad with 3 very exciting forwards up front. Offering cover is Vuckic who can be used in a variety of roles, which adds to the flexibility of running with a 442 or 4411, and is likely to feature in cup matches this year.

Overall

The squad has depth and can cover all positions well in case of a number injuries or call ups if needed. The Transfer priorities were achieved over the off season and the aim is to now consolidate in the top 4. Assessment of the course of the season will be to see if a number of players can take the next step - Santon, Obertan, Guitierrez and M'Bengue, if so then we should do very well, as there hasn't been a huge turn over of players into the first eleven.

Scouting is concentrated into the following areas -

Graham Carr - (Recruitiment Manager) - Ligue 1 & France

Steve Martin - Uk & Ireland

Steve Nickson - English U18s

Neville Hargreaves - French U19s

Dave Fallows - Belgian Pro League

Paul Montgomery - Eredivisie

Jack Chapman - EPL

Findi Geroge - LIGA BBVA

Ray Clarke - Serie A

Scouting Priorities - Left Side Wingers, Right Side Wingers

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Finally yes! I've beaten Barca, Porto and Real Madrid to reach the CL Final! (Facing my arch rivals Man United, who i just cant seem to beat..)

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However, my players seem to be dominating a lot of the league stats too and Kadlec has finally come good!

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:)

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@john1 @DandyDon Well guys, I don't like to disclose too much *cough, cough*..

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Jealous! Most i've had is about £15m! Hoping that changes soon though..

And how much are people paying for Papadopolous?

In the summer, after finishing my first season i was getting quoted £40+ million!! He's an animal who i need in my team but i'm not prepared to pay that !!

I think this is the next summer signing for me, stats look awesome!

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Good luck for the final then Jack :thup:

That face pic of Kadlec is a little disconcerting.....looks like his hair continues up into a big fan shape above his head, only the photographer couldn't get it in shot :p

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Took a while, but finally got round to finishing my third season.

table1314end.jpg

Unbeaten. Best attack. Some nervy moments in trying to preserve that unbeaten run though, especially when we went down to 10 men at Old Trafford - Hazard picking up a knock after we'd used all of our subs. But, we did it.

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Three of my star players this season were plucked from the Championship or lower. Rodriguez finished as top scorer for the second season running (I would strongly advise anyone to look into signing him). Alex Smithies has become my first choice keeper after impressing when Krul got himself injured, and Tom Cairney is actually keeping Cabaye out of the side! I'm also pleased to have a strong British backbone to the side too.

The Champions League final was a chance for revenge too. After we lost the first leg of the semi at Real Madrid I thought we'd be going out. But we managed to knock 3 past them without reply in the second leg while Barca absolutely slaughtered Chelsea 6-0 on aggregate. Barca were the only other team to beat us this season, when we lost the Euro Super Cup final 2-0.

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Revenge taken. I didn't feel confident when we went a goal behind, but we turned things around and had our hands on the trophy just after half time.

The only downside to having a successful season is that now I'm quite reluctant to make any major signings, despite being given a £48m budget. There's a couple of players I'd like to sign, but I have no idea where they will fit in and I dont want to spend for the sake of it!

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@Geordie_Gaz congrats on the win! nicely done! just to check, what do you do when you are low on possession esp in the midfield zone? I tried to play short pass, lower the defensive line, pass to feet but most of the time there's no help.

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@Geordie_Gaz congrats on the win! nicely done! just to check, what do you do when you are low on possession esp in the midfield zone? I tried to play short pass, lower the defensive line, pass to feet but most of the time there's no help.

I'll make a suggestion here if I may.. First point that would spring to mind would be to ask what formation you are playing? One that would feature 3 men in midfield lends itself to you being much more conducive when looking to retain posession. This will be the case because if Midfielder A has the ball, he should always have at least two other passing options in Midfielder B and C. Therefore if your playing a 442 for example, you may wish to switch formation.

Next point I'd make is that you should look at the passing stats of you midfielders, how many passes are made in relation to the rest of the team, and their completion percentage. If this is low, you should narrow down the analyses and find out what type of passes are going astray. If they are continually looking for through balls, then you may wish to reduce the through ball instruction. The Mentality of a specific player will also be key here as well, having a high mentality will mean that the player will always look for a pass forward; if you were to lower said players mentality they will be more inclined to look for that pass square or backwards.

Also, you may want to narrow your width; this will condense your players, therefore making it easier for your midfielders to find each other, especially when they are set to a short range of passing.

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I'll make a suggestion here if I may.. First point that would spring to mind would be to ask what formation you are playing? One that would feature 3 men in midfield lends itself to you being much more conducive when looking to retain posession. This will be the case because if Midfielder A has the ball, he should always have at least two other passing options in Midfielder B and C. Therefore if your playing a 442 for example, you may wish to switch formation.

Next point I'd make is that you should look at the passing stats of you midfielders, how many passes are made in relation to the rest of the team, and their completion percentage. If this is low, you should narrow down the analyses and find out what type of passes are going astray. If they are continually looking for through balls, then you may wish to reduce the through ball instruction. The Mentality of a specific player will also be key here as well, having a high mentality will mean that the player will always look for a pass forward; if you were to lower said players mentality they will be more inclined to look for that pass square or backwards.

Also, you may want to narrow your width; this will condense your players, therefore making it easier for your midfielders to find each other, especially when they are set to a short range of passing.

I play 4-1-1-2-2 at home. DMC, MC, AML, AMR and 2 Strikers. Maybe like what you mentioned, there's not much option for my midfielder to pass the ball. Maybe i'll try playing narrower and short pass for this game.

My second tactic is 4-2-1-2-1. 2 DMC, MC, AML, AMR and lone striker. I use this tactic against the team i'm not confident of winner as well as away from home. For this tactic i play lower defensive line, short pass and timewasting - sometimes. The possession is not as bad as my home tactic but still fall below 50% overall.

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I play 4-1-1-2-2 at home. DMC, MC, AML, AMR and 2 Strikers. Maybe like what you mentioned, there's not much option for my midfielder to pass the ball. Maybe i'll try playing narrower and short pass for this game.

My second tactic is 4-2-1-2-1. 2 DMC, MC, AML, AMR and lone striker. I use this tactic against the team i'm not confident of winner as well as away from home. For this tactic i play lower defensive line, short pass and timewasting - sometimes. The possession is not as bad as my home tactic but still fall below 50% overall.

Bring your 'Time Wasting' setting right down, and maybe allow a few of your players to hold up the ball. I have all my players hold up the ball, unless they have attacking settings; for example my striker and winger.

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FPqWN.png

Tough group to be in. But as long we fill stadium up at home games :D Looks like everyone in tough group :p Beat Spurs 4-2 and lost to Chelsea 3-0.

Sacked Graham Carr and brought in Admar Lopes from Porto. Mike Ashley refused to expand the scouts so I had to sack Carr to bring in Lopes to find me hidden gems in Portugal U's19.

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Hiya guys heres my transfers for the first season

Transfers In

Grant Smith - 1.2m

Cheik M'Bengue - 7.5m

Danny Wilson - Loan

March Muniesa - Loan

Cieran Clark - 6m

Grant Hanley - 7.5m

Veton Berisha - 22k

Steed Malbranque - Free

Maynor Figueora - 7m

Aleksander Milosovic - 1.5m

Ivo Pekalski - 825k

Willfried - 2.5m

Valon Berisha - 1M

Muhamed Keita - 1.5m

Jesper Juelsgard - 2m

Dan Roger Roland - 625k

Stefan Strandberg - 1m

Markus Henriksen - 3.9m

Andre Jali - 1m

Lucas Andersen - 650k

Siphiwe Tshabalala - 1m

Joseph Baffo - 1.7M

Bashkim Kadril - 2m

Emmanuel Emenike - 8.75m

Ruben Yttergard Jenssen - 1.5m

Total Spent - 61m

Transfers Out

Alan Smith - 500k

James Perch - 375k Loan Fee

Mike Williamson - 3.6m

Jonas Gutierrez - 10m

Fabricio Coloccini - 9m

Tamas Kadar - 1.5m

Rob Elliot - 10k Loan Fee

Sylvian Marveux - 875k Loan Fee

Leon Best - 1.5m

Shola Ameobi - 3.6m

Peter Lovenkrands - 1m

Total Fees Recieved - 32m

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hEVfv.png

VELAZQUEZZZZZZ.

Decided to play this formation

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We had 80% passes completed

Pass completed - Defence - 71%

Pass completed - Midfield - 80%

Pass completed - Forwards - 90%

Tempted to stick with that formation against Middlesbrough :p

We had 6 CCC and guess who got the most?

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OH WHY WILFRIED WHYYYYY?

ARGH!! Arsenal just took Jozak off me. Before the season, Man City took Stan Valckx. RAGING.

But thankfully I've replaced Valckx with another Dutch scout.

Beat Middlesborough 3-0. with a own goal and Wilfried x2. and again, Wilfried had 4 CCC to his name. Stuck with the same formation as well.

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Reached the middle of February 2015 and the club are in the midst of yet another takeover attempt. This will be the 7th attempt now, and it's another local businessman who's promising to wipe out the club's debt should he succeed (aye right :rolleyes:)

The businessmen in question is Ken Dulieu, who I believe is the current Coventry chairman, sometimes referred to as Orange Ken....so the appointment doesn't fill me with a lot of optimism. Hopefully this bid will crash and burn like the previous six.

On the plus side, while our form has taken a little bit of dip we still have a healthy lead in the league and we made it past Liverpool to reach the League Cup final where we'll face Man City.

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Just started another save, this time with lowly Fleetwood Town, don't ask why. Just fancy a different challenge. Will keep a watchful eye over the thread, and will no doubt return to pick up and finish my season at Newcastle soon. Good luck everyone :thup:

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@Geordie_Gaz congrats on the win! nicely done! just to check, what do you do when you are low on possession esp in the midfield zone? I tried to play short pass, lower the defensive line, pass to feet but most of the time there's no help.
I'm not the best person for tactical advice, sorry. Most games I have far less possession, but I play attacking football and my forwards are proving to be pretty prolific.

What seems to be helping me, though, is having a couple of different formations prepared. I then look at the opposition scouting reports and see which of my three formations the opposition struggle against, and choose that formation if that makes sense?

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Good luck for the final then Jack :thup:

That face pic of Kadlec is a little disconcerting.....looks like his hair continues up into a big fan shape above his head, only the photographer couldn't get it in shot :p

Looks the good luck actually worked so thank you!

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Onto next season!

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Nice one...me and my magic baldy bonce will claim some credit for that then ;)

Good result though...not the possession that counts, but what you do with it :thup:

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Signed some more players, I signed Seyi Ojo a 14 year old from MK Dons with great potential, also signed Yaya Sanogo for 3.5m and got Alex Chamberlain on loan for 6 monthes from Arsenal.

Results wise going really well, here is my results over the last few games

Draw 1-1 away to Wolves with Emenike scoring,

Beat Bristol City away 2-1 in the League Cup with 2 goals coming from Willfried,

I somehow managed to beat Man City 3-2 at St James Park with 2 goals coming from Ba and a solo goal from Emenike

Got Liverpool next game bring them on lol.

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my poor boy, sammy ameobi, loaned out to notts Co. after 7games, he's injured. Currently receiving specialist treatment for a broken leg. Expected to be out for 7 to 8 months :(

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maybe it'll wipe the stupid grin from his stupid face that he has in my profile pic.... he annoys me like hell

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Just started another save, this time with lowly Fleetwood Town, don't ask why. Just fancy a different challenge. Will keep a watchful eye over the thread, and will no doubt return to pick up and finish my season at Newcastle soon. Good luck everyone :thup:

Good luck :) I'm also taking sabbatical with Newcastle and might manage AC Milan or some team in Serie A or Brazil.

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2014/15 Season Update - On the way to the Quadrup....ahhhh, oops

newcastleunitedfixtures.png

There was a definite case of getting rather cocky as we screamed off to a huge lead in the league before Christmas, only dropping 2 points in total. Injuries and fixture congestion slowed us up slightly in January and February with 2 shocking away performances at Chelsea and then Southampton (where Tim Krul of course had to play a blinder against us) and put pays to hopes of an undefeated league campaign, but after we brought 3 handy away goals back from Inter and secured the League Cup on penalties against City, I was pretty convinced we were in for a truely special season.

Cue the FA Cup tie against Man Utd and our balloon being swiftly punctured.

Despite dominating the game in terms of possession, and having the greater number of chances we stumbled out of the competition due to a couple of woeful own goals. The first when Rooney's hopeful punt from range bounced off the crossbar and hit the back of Marc-Andre ter Stegen's head and the second when Steven Taylor hooked what looked like an easy clearance into the top corner of his own net.

So all dreams of a trophy clean sweep disappeared like a mirage on the horizon. Barring a massive collapse in March and April we should retain our league title, and we should make at least the Quarter Finals in the Champions League with that away goal bounty against Inter...of course the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid still await, and there could be a chance to gain revenge on Chelsea for that 3-0 mauling they gave us.

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In other developments, Ashley has finally sold up and moved on...but of course he had to accept the bid I least wanted him to. We now have Ken Dulieu as owner, and as if by magic all his promises of wiping out the club debt evaporated as soon as he actually took charge.

Ashley could have accepted the deal from the Scandanavian consortium that was put in earlier in the season, but oh no he had to accept Mr Cheapskate's bid. :mad:

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Good luck :) I'm also taking sabbatical with Newcastle and might manage AC Milan or some team in Serie A or Brazil.

Good luck with the sabbaticals then lads. Hope we'll see you back on here at some point.

I'll be starting a couple of other saves, but I won't be mothballing my Toon save as I want to plow on into the hazy, distant future and see if I can finally get a club to build a new stadium for one thing.

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I thought Id update you guys on my progress, here is the results of the games Ive played recently,

Beat Liverpool at home 3-1 in the League Cup 3rd Round with a Ba hattrick,

Lost away to Sunderland 1-0,

Beat Swansea at home 2-1 with 2 goals from Emenike,

Drew with Norwich 2-2 at St James Park with Emenike and Cabaye getting the goals,

Beat Villa at home 4-1 with a Emenike hattrick and a solo goal from Chamberlain,

Beat Hull 3-1 at home in the League Cup 4th Round with goals coming from a Emenike double and a solo goal from Chamberlain,

Beat Spurs away 2-1 with goals coming from Tiote and Willfried

Beat QPR at home 3-0 with a double from Emenike and a solo goal from Danny Wilson.

Emenike is scoring for fun at the moment with 12 goals in 10 appearences, Im currently 4th in the league.

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Just had probably my most satisfying result as Newcastle boss so far and felt compelled to share it. I'm a few months into my second season now, i've been finding it tricky to fit my new signings into the team and formation,have been struggling with injuries to Wilfried and Ba (and Ben Arfa as usual), and results have been inconsistent, but suddenly, Wilfried came back from injury and this happened...

Newcastle 5 - 0 Chelsea

Wilfried (3)

Gibson

Fierro

I only signed Gibson on a free to bolster my home-grown quota for Europe but he scored a screamer, Wilfried was unstoppable, and Fierro came on as a late sub and was deadly. He's been a great signing for £1m + add ons, 9 goals in 16 starts in all competitions.

And to top that result off, Villas Boas got sacked right after (lol) and i'm apparently in the running with Gullit and Eriksen to get the job :)

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Looks like a good season in any case DandyDon. Are you able to list your squad when you get a chance?

newcastleunitedsquadpla.png

That's the current 1st team squad at the moment Joe. Some of those are youngsters who are getting some game time in the cup games like Louis, Aguilar and Garza. The wingers haven't been quite as impressive this season as the previous two, mostly as they've all had more periods out through injury in comparison. Cabaye is well on his way to his best year for us so far though and Dominguez has just been brilliant.

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I've been tempted by Jack Robinson at left back myself for a while now, particularly as he's not happy at Liverpool (they nearly got relegated in my game). How does he perform for you? I'm a bit put off by his shortness & low jumping stat myself.

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A quick update on my latest results,

Beat Liverpool at home 1-0 with Malbranque scoring the winner,

Beat Wigan away 3-1 with Cabaye scoring a penalty, Danny Wilson and Chamberlain being the other scorers,

Lost 4-1 away to West Brom with Sanogo scoring my only goal in the game,

Beat QPR away 1-0 in the League Cup Qtr Final with Veton Berisha scoring in the 120th minute,

Lost at home to Man Utd 1-0,

Beat Stoke at home 2-1 with Sanogo and Obertan scoring,

Lost 3-1 away to Stoke with Steven Taylor scoring the consolation goal.

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I've been tempted by Jack Robinson at left back myself for a while now, particularly as he's not happy at Liverpool (they nearly got relegated in my game). How does he perform for you? I'm a bit put off by his shortness & low jumping stat myself.

I made a major boob when I signed him at first as he'd been out on loan and arrived having played for 2 teams already, so he spent his first half season ineligible to play. That inactivity set him back a bit I think because it took him a while to find his feet the next season, once he did though he was pretty decent rotating with Pieters. He probably would have been more of a regular this season but he got his arm broken in October and was out for quite a while.

His signing seems to have had an added bonus in that Pieters has generally performed better with the extra competition.

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newcastleunitedsquadpla.png

That's the current 1st team squad at the moment Joe. Some of those are youngsters who are getting some game time in the cup games like Louis, Aguilar and Garza. The wingers haven't been quite as impressive this season as the previous two, mostly as they've all had more periods out through injury in comparison. Cabaye is well on his way to his best year for us so far though and Dominguez has just been brilliant.

Thats a gem of squad the Dandydon. I am looking at selling both Forster and Krul in the off season and targeting Ter Stegen as well.

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Thats a gem of squad the Dandydon. I am looking at selling both Forster and Krul in the off season and targeting Ter Stegen as well.

I'm happy with the squad, it's not quite up there with the squad tommonufc has put together with his new chairman's riches :p but I'm still chuffed with them. Don't think it will need too much work done on it once the season finishes, might bring in another experienced old pro to act as a tutor as Xavi has announced he's retiring and Bandalovski has requested a transfer so I'll be looking for a right back to provide cover for Rafael. Leandro Sequeira has had a cracking debut season so far, so the hefty fee we paid for an 18 year old looks like being money well spent...thankfully.

Yeah ter Stegen has been a great signing, if you're lucky he'll have signed a new contract that includes a minimum release clause. The first time I looked at buying him it was going to cost me 20 million+, but the following season he had the release clause for 9.5 million. Bargain :D

Have to give Eduardo a mention too, he's done a great job when called on, he'd be well worth checking out if ter Stegen doesn't have the cheap release clause when you go spending in the off season.

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Not looking forward to life under my new chairman Ken Dulieu. He's just turned me down flat when requesting to improve our youth facilities, our recruitment network and increasing the budget for our junior coaching. Could be a long summer ahead :rolleyes:

At this rate I'll be feeling nostalgic for Mike.

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Another update on my progress,

Drew at home 2-2 with Blackburn with goals coming from Valon Berisha and Ben Arfa,

Drew 1-1 at home with Chelsea, Danny Wilson getting on the scoresheet,

Lost away 4-0 to Arsenal,

Beat Bolton away 2-0 with Valon Berisha and Bakenga scoring,

Beat QPR away 2-1 in the FA Cup 5th round with Ba and Bakenga scoring,

Got Peterborough in the League Cup Semi first leg next,

Made some January signings in Kristoffer Nordfeldt for free, Mostafa Abdellaoue for 500k and Mushaga Bakenga for free, I sold Milosovic for 1.5m, sold Guthrie for 2.2m and released Steven Harper.

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Another update on my progress,

Drew at home 2-2 with Blackburn with goals coming from Valon Berisha and Ben Arfa,

Drew 1-1 at home with Chelsea, Danny Wilson getting on the scoresheet,

Lost away 4-0 to Arsenal,

Beat Bolton away 2-0 with Valon Berisha and Bakenga scoring,

Beat QPR away 2-1 in the FA Cup 5th round with Ba and Bakenga scoring,

Got Peterborough in the League Cup Semi first leg next,

Made some January signings in Kristoffer Nordfeldt for free, Mostafa Abdellaoue for 500k and Mushaga Bakenga for free, I sold Milosovic for 1.5m, sold Guthrie for 2.2m and released Steven Harper.

Making some good progress in the cups by the look of it. :thup: How are you getting on in the league?

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I decided to try something new.

So I started a new save with the plan of buying wonderkids in the first season for cheap and building them up over time.

Players in:

Serge Aurier £8m

Lucas Digne £2.5m

Vaclav Kadlec £5m

Zakaria Labyad £8m.

Replaced most of the backroom with

Paul Winsper - 5* Fitness

Ludek Mikloso - 4.5 Goal Coach

Giambattista Ventrui - 4.5 Fitness

Martin Keown - 4* Defence

Angel Vales - 4* Tactics

Tosh Farrel - 4* Attack

Tony Coton - 5* Goal Coach and new Assistant Manager

While not ever is Premiere League ready the aim is that by the end of the season they will have developed enough to become leading players and should be around for years to come. That's if the plan actually works ;)

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2014/15 - Season Update - Getting there

newcastleunitedfixtures.png

Despite the disappointment against Man utd in the FA Cup we managed to maintain our focus in the league. We cruised to an easy Cabaye inspired win over Sunderland, and should really have battered Fulham but wasted a host of chances. An Alberto Paloschi hattrick against Liverpool meant Chelsea needed to win on the Sunday to stand any slim chance of stopping us retaining our title, but they were only able to draw 0-0 with Wolves at Stamford Bridge and so we were champions again with 4 matches left.

After crushing Inter at SJP in the second leg of our tie we almost threw away our chances of European glory with a shambolic performance away in Marseille. With the whole defence seemingly off their game Marseille cruised to an easy 3-0 win and gave us an absolute mountain to climb in the 2nd leg.

Normally needing to win at home I play a very attacking 4-4-2 and throw caution to the wind, confident in the teams ability to outscore most opponents, but rather chastened by Marseille's ability to cut us to shreds in the first match, I decided to set the team up in a 4-2-3-1 with a slightly more defensive tweak than I normally used. Hoping to retain possession far more successfully than we had at the Stade Velodrome.

In the end the tactical tweaks paid off as we had 60% of the possession and a far higher rate of successful passes than before. We kept up sustained pressure on Marseille throughout the 90 minutes and after Johnson finally broke the deadlock we looked odds on to score more. A Cabaye penalty right after half time gave us added impetus, and then Musacchio score a screamer from the edge of the box on 65 minutes to level the tie. That however seemed to stiffen the French teams resolve, and despite huffing and puffing for the remaining 25 minutes we couldn't break them down.

Extra time was even more nerve wracking as we searched for the winner as suddenly Marseille started to look increasingly dangerous on the counter, every time they sprang out of defence I was convinced they were going to grab the away goal that would spell curtains for us. Luckily they hadn't brought their shooting boots with them and with Marc-Andre ter Stegen in superhero mode in the penalty shootout it was left to Jack Wilshere to slot our 4th successful spot kick and send us through to the semi finals. Lying in wait for us there are Barcelona.

barcelonavnewcastlespli.png

I opted to play the same 4-2-3-1 that brought us success against Marseille, choosing Tevez to spearhead the attack for his hustle and energy. We went into the break still in touch, only 1-0 down and the game very evenly balanced. When Gaitan arrived at the back post to volley home an Adam Johnson cross I started to think we could grab a win. I took off Tevez and brought on Paloschi to exploit his pace, and several times in the last 15 minutes the Barca defence were forced to back pedal as Paloschi was sent through on goal. One saved effort led to a corner, and after that was cleared back to Cabaye he volleyed in a low ball toward the near post where Alberto nipped in, controlled it and then slid it under Ospina with Barca's defence looking decidedly statuesque. :)

Obviously I'm expecting a very tough second leg, but hopefully with the fan backing at SJP and the bonus of 2 away goals we can secure a place in the final.

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