abulezz

Bromley FC (...And the Rest of the World)

817 posts in this topic

Wow, great start to the season! Hopefully you can maintain this form and get into the Premier League next season.

Also, it's funny how one player's career can go so differently from save to save. The Manoel of your game just got bought by Madrid for a huge fee and has been capped multiple times by Brazil. Mine, on the other hand, was a €2 million signing who's going back to Brazil at age 29 for €5 million. And to be honest, I don't think their attributes are all that different.

abulezz's Manoel

ArsenalMetro's Manoel

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Fantastic. Did similar with Luton Town on the Unemployment challenge. Was quite easy, and having been an LLM veteran of sorts for a few years now, breezed through the leagues comfortable. Just a 2 year stint in the Championship being the only blip in my staggering ascent through the leagues. ( in hindsight, it was a blessing in disguise )

NB : although it may seem a bit redundant now, i set my best players at a million or two over what most teams would wanna bit and set to "reject lower offers" , seems to deter bids somehow.

Thanks for commenting! Ive been playing the game for the past 14 years - in FM09 I decided to try my hand at taking over a small club as opposed to Premier League clubs, and set about turning Gateshead into footballing giants :) It took a few years, but I got them up to the Premier League and then the CL. A very enjoyable save overall. In FM10, I took over Bromley and immediately fell in love with the club - I did fantastic, getting promoted every year until I reached the Premier League, and won it within 5 years of being in the top division. This save has been slightly more challenging, but just as enjoyable nonetheless! As for the pricing of players, I've recently been told about that tactic, and I've utilized it on my best players, and will do so again with Magnusson!

Wow, great start to the season! Hopefully you can maintain this form and get into the Premier League next season.

Also, it's funny how one player's career can go so differently from save to save. The Manoel of your game just got bought by Madrid for a huge fee and has been capped multiple times by Brazil. Mine, on the other hand, was a €2 million signing who's going back to Brazil at age 29 for €5 million. And to be honest, I don't think their attributes are all that different.

abulezz's Manoel

ArsenalMetro's Manoel

I think one of THE most interesting parts about the game is seeing how players develop in everyone's saves, as well as the newgen and the careers they end up having. You are right, they are pretty much the same player - I have no idea why Real Madrid paid so much for him, really!

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Had a look this afternoon through the whole 4 pages, superb performance (looking good for 5th promotion in 6 years) and lots of work done in those world updates. :eek: I get myself very immersed in the game world like you, even get "attached" to some regens who don't even play for my team, but don't have the time to go to that length in the updates.

I hope Spain don't become as good as they've been in your save, I mean another 3 finals and 2 trophies...

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Had a look this afternoon through the whole 4 pages, superb performance (looking good for 5th promotion in 6 years) and lots of work done in those world updates. :eek: I get myself very immersed in the game world like you, even get "attached" to some regens who don't even play for my team, but don't have the time to go to that length in the updates.

I hope Spain don't become as good as they've been in your save, I mean another 3 finals and 2 trophies...

Thanks! The updates do take alot of time to prepare, but I enjoy doing it, so its all good :) I do hope that people enjoy reading them, though! Its very easy for me to get lost in the game world - I dont know if Im the only crazie here, but sometimes I find myself announcing the matches to myself!

Spain have been very good, but Brazil ruined them in the Word Cup 2014 Finals, and despite their torrid performance in the Copa America, in terms of pure talent, they are currently the best team in my save by miles. All the new great looking newgens seem to be coming from Brazil and France, too!

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Bromley December Update 2016/2017

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Overview

If we had any sort of defensive awareness, it was thrown out the window in our first game in December away to Preston North End. We conceded 2 goals in the first half alone – the good news was we scored 4 of our own, with Emmanuel Musah hitting a brace. Elliot Law and Kevin Long scored the other two goals, and of course, Porvaldur Magnusson was fantastic in the midfield. The second half, however, was as bad as it could get – we conceded another two goals, and Musah picked up an injury. After the game, upon further review, it was announced he had a pulled hamstring and was ruled out for six weeks, a huge blow considering he had scored 12 leagues goals in 20 appearances for us.

Our next match was at home against Bolton, a game I had penciled in as being the toughest of the month for the squad. Unfortunately, the team played with absolutely no urgency, and we lost the match 2-0 – a hugely disappointing result for us considering we just did not even try. Our offense was terrible, the defense made mistake after mistake, and there was simply no team play. We retained our position in 2nd Place, two points ahead of Peterborough and four points back from Reading, but I could not hide my disgust and I let the team have it in the dressing room after the match. We drew away to home 2-2 against Ipswich, which pushed our winless streak to three games. A few days after the match, Jesper Alberts strained his wrist and got ruled out for two weeks.

We ended our winless streak against Burnley away from home with a great 1-0 win, despite missing Musah and Alberts. During the game, Lovro Scrbec got injured, but thankfully, it was not serious and he was cleared afterwards. We had one more match before the end of the season against Derby at home, so I was hoping we could make it two wins in a row and end the year on a good note. Magnusson recorded his tenth assist of the season, good enough for third best in the league. Against Derby, we won 3-1, with our captain Law getting a brace, taking his tally to 9 goals in the league. It was a fantastic way to end the year, and we continued to hold our place in the table.

January is going to bring more the same – a couple of tough away matches mixed with some winnable home games. The big one, however, is the Manchester City game in the FA Cup 3rd Round at the City of Manchester Stadium. We get to face the Premier League champions and really get to test ourselves against the best team in the country. No matter what the result, I am excited to see where we stand against the best. The best part to the end of the year was finally getting our star midfielder Magnusson to agree to terms – he will be payed £6,750 base salary + another £6,250 per appearance. The only thing I really did not want but the agent kept insisting on was the £2,500,000 minimum release clause, but he would not sign the deal without it. Hopefully, no one will try to scoop him up.

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Going well. Hope you can keep it up in the final stretch. Law looks to have upped his game this year after a poor return last season

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Going well. Hope you can keep it up in the final stretch. Law looks to have upped his game this year after a poor return last season

Yes, he has and the main reason is that he simply got better - take a look at his attributes over a stretch of a year and a half: 20152016 - January 2017

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Going really well so far, looks like it's going to be an exciting second half of the season.

Great news on getting Magnusson to sign a new deal although obviously with a £2.5m release fee you may struggle to keep him long term, heres hoping no-one comes in for him.

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Going really well so far, looks like it's going to be an exciting second half of the season.

Great news on getting Magnusson to sign a new deal although obviously with a £2.5m release fee you may struggle to keep him long term, heres hoping no-one comes in for him.

Thanks! Honestly, I hate including minimum release clauses in my contract, and £2.5m is so low for a player of his calibur. Im hoping I'll be able to offer him a new contract in the summer without one!

Well done on the season so far hopefully promotion awaits

I hope so, too! Athough Im not sure how a 5,000 stadium will handle Premier Leaguee football!

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You can almost smell the Premier League :D Keep it up!

Indeed I can! The team isnt letting up - Im just hoping we wont hit a wall, we need to keep this form up.

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Bromley in the Premiership :) sounding good!

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Bromley in the Premiership :) sounding good!

Thanks! Its getting more and more likely as the season gets closer to its end and Im still in the Top Two!

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Bromley January Update 2016/2017

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Overview

The January opened up in a frenzy of activity for us, with our new Brazilian signing Alexandre joining the club on Free Transfer from Atletico Mineiro on £4,300 per week wages. The 18 year old central defender was the replacement ton Nikolay Nakov, currently doing squat all for Celtic - I was really looking forward to seeing this boy in action. At the other end of the transfer market, we let go of Ketil Tajet (young Norwegian defender who has not amounted to anything) for £100,000, and also sold unhappy Patrick Bantamoi, initially bought in the summer to the man the goal before the signing of Rafaele Di Gennaro, for £40,000 to Italian Serie B outfit Nocerina. Tom Parkes and Moha also made their exit from the club, both for £0. I needed to get wages off of my books, and they were unhappy with the lack of first team football.

We won a fantastic 2-1 away victory over Huddersfield Town, keeping our promotion hopes very much alive with a three point advantage on Sunderland. Our FA Cup matchup against Manchester City was an expected loss, but I was honestly very proud of my boys. We held our own for most of the match, and they only beat us 1-0. The result was one I held my head up high about, and I felt it was good omen that we were able to contain the Premier League champions to just one goal at their home ground.

Our next game against Rotherham United was a lot closer than the scoreline suggested – we won 3-1, but it was our opponents who pressured us for most of the match. Still, it was another three points picked up at home, where we had lost once all season. Goals from Law and Scrbec, who was MotM, and two assists from Magnusson did the trick for us, and we managed it at the end. The game was not without incident, though – our captain, Elliot Law, was ruled out for the next couple of weeks after stubbing his toe in the match. Just a few days after the match, we signed Paul Black for £250,000 from Oldham, with weekly wages of £4,000. He will rotate with Matthew Morgan at the left back position, giving us further depth in our defense. Just after, we battled to a 1-1 draw away to Sheffield Wednesday, a result I was relatively satisfied with, leaving us in 2nd Place, five points behind Reading.

Our last match of the season was on January 31st, home to Watford. However, we were hit with bad news a few days before the game – Musah pulled his groin muscle in training, and was ruled out for the next five weeks, a huge blow for the squad. When the date arrived, it was announce that the match was postponed due to a water-logged pitch at Hayes Lane, thus ending our month with the fans and I further anticipating the construction of the new Bromley Stadium. It really can’t come quick enough.

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Football News

January 1st, 2017: The January transfer window kicked off with Paris Saint-Germain (1st in Ligue 1) acquiring Billel Omrani from Napoli for £11,750,000. The 23 year old French striker was bought by the Italian club in 2015 for £2,900,000, and has scored 27 league goals in 51 appearanes for the club since then. In 2015/16, he was named the Serie A Top Goalscorer with 18 goals, and was called to the 2016 Serie A Team of the Year. Paris Saint-Germain will be paying him £44,500 a week.

January 5th, 2017: Luis Ramirez, who was one of Venezuela’s best players in the World Cup 2014 at the age of 19, made the switch from Espanyol to Shakhtar for £13,500,000. The midfielder had spent just half a year at the Spanish club, joining in the summer of 2016 from Deportivo Tachira of Venezuela for £2,700,000. Development: 20142017.

January 7th, 2017: Inter Milan, in its quest to retain the Serie A title for a third straight time, acquired two young stars on the same day, signing Stefan Bell from Mainz for £17,250,000, and signing Ruben Yttergard Jenssen from Udinese for £21,500,000. Bell had been arguably Mainz’s finest player the past few years, winning their 2016 Player of the Year (the third straight year he had won it), and getting named to the 2016 Bundesliga Team of the Year for the second time in a row. Unfortunately, the club had been relegated at the end of 2016 and were now languishing in the German 2nd Division, prompting the sale of their finest talent. Jenssen has become one of the best midfielders in the Serie A since joining Udinese in 2013 from Bayern Munich, winning the Udinese Player of the Year three times (2014, 2015, 2016), and getting named to the 2016 Serie A Team of the Year. He was also crowned the 2016 Serie A Fans Player of the Year, and won the Norwegian Player of the Year three times (2014, 2015, 2016).

January 11th, 2017: Although the English clubs were uncharacteristically quiet this transfer window, Manchester City still pulled off its second biggest signing, acquiring 26 year old English right back Martin Kelly from Liverpool for £22,500,000. This was a very surprising transfer, and many felt that Man City had overpaid for the English international. A product of Liverpool’s youth academy, he had spent his entire career with them before his move, but had never won any personal awards of note. He was part of the Liverpool squad that lifted the back to back in 2013 and 2014.

January 21st, 2017: Sevilla signed Greek midfielder Kostas Fortounis from Kaiserslautern for £13,250,000, bolstering its rank with a winger in its quest win back a Champions League spot. The 24 year was the German club’s Player of the Year in 2014, and is considered to be the Greek’s national team most talented member.

January 30th, 2017: The biggest transfer of the window was left to the final day, and most peculiarly, featured Manchester City selling a player instead of buying. Real Madrid acquired Mauricio Isla for £23,500,000, just one and a half years after Man City paid Tottenham £21,500,000 for him. Isla was a big part of Man City’s Premier League winning squad in 2016, and was subsequently named their 2016 Player of the Year and called to the 2016 Premier League Select.

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Olympics 2016 – Brazil

After winning the Olympics for the first time in their history in 2012, the defending champions Mexico crashed out in the Group Stages, gathering a measly two points. They were beat out by Spain and surprising South Korea, but their left back, Jose Luis Ortega, was one of the best performers at the tournament. In Group C, Brazil and Ecuador (the latter led by Henry Quintero) qualified, while Mali and Ivory Coast topped their respective groups, joined by Belarus and Switzerland in 2nd Place.

Ivory Coast made it all the way to the Finals, beating Switzerland and the tournament’s Cinderella story Belarus on its way. Lacina Troare and Seydou Doumbia were the team’s best players, and they led them to their showdown with Brazil. The South Americans, and hosts, defeated South Korea and Spain before meeting up with the Ivory Coast, and in the Finals, their star Xaropinho scored a brace to give the Brazilians their first ever Olympics title. The striker set the record for highest Average Rating, getting 8.45 AR over 6 matches, and led the tournament with 6 goals.

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Still going well and just need to keep it up for the final stretch. Only losing 1-0 to City and giving a good account of yourself is a great sign of how far you have come.

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Still going well and just need to keep it up for the final stretch. Only losing 1-0 to City and giving a good account of yourself is a great sign of how far you have come.

By all means, I was proud of my result away to Man City, current Premier League champs. Hopefully, we'll be playing them alot more next year :)

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AFRICAN CUP OF NATIONS 2017 – LIBYA

GROUP A

Ivory Coast: 2 (L. Traore, I. Toure)

Mali: 0

Burkina Faso: 1 (K. Traore)

Central African Republic: 1 (Zuma)

Ivory Coast: 3 (S. Coulibaly (2), Doumbia)

Central African Republic: 0

Burkina Faso: 2 (Sanou, Kabore)

Mali: 1 (Soukouna)

Ivory Coast: 0

Burkina Faso: 0

Mali: 2 (Soukouna, A. Keita)

Central African Republic: 1 (Dopekoulouyen)

OVERVIEW: Mali, who had been one of the most impressive African teams this decade, making the World Cup 2014 Second Round and advancing to the ANC 2012 Finals, crashed out in the Group Stages this time around. Instead, it was Ivory Coast and a talented young Burkinabe team that beat qualified out of the group, while the Central African Republic, in their first major tournament this decade, finished in last place, managing to gain only one point in three games.

GROUP B

Libya: 0

Ghana: 2 (J. Ayew, Boateng)

Sierra Leone: 1

Nigeria: 2 (Okonronkwo (2) )

Libya: 0

Nigeria: 4 (Ideye (2), Okoronkwo (2) )

Ghana: 0

Sierra Leone: 0

Nigeria: 1 (Ideye)

Ghana: 2 (Boateng, J. Ayew)

Libya: 2 (Benali, Al Haasy)

Sierra Leone: 3 (M Bangura (2), Koroma)

OVERVIEW: Group B featured the hosts, one of Africa’s most accomplished teams of the decade, and possibly their most underachieving team of the decade. Sierra Leone, who had a magical run in 2013 when they lost out in the Semi-Finals (defeating then defending champions Ghana in the Quarter-Finals), finished 3rd in the group, ahead of the hosts (with former Bromley player Ahmed Benali), who managed to gain zero points. Africa’s most underachieving team, Nigeria, finished 2nd Place to Ghana, thanks to Obinna Okoronkwo’s 4 goals and Brown Ideye’s 3 goals. Ghana topped the group, with Jordan Ayew playing especially well.

GROUP C

Senegal: 1 (Diouf)

South Africa: 1 (Jayiya)

Morocco: 3 (Belhanda, El Arabi, El Hamdaoui)

Cameroon: 0

Morocco: 2 (Assaidi, Guezoui)

Senegal: 1 (Diouf)

Cameroon: 2 (Ndjeng, Mbarga)

South Africa: 3 (Erasmus (2), Jayiya)

Morocco: 2 (Chamakh, Guezoui)

South Africa: 2 (Ndulula, Jayiya)

Cameroon: 2 (Mbarga, Bong)

Senegal: 1 (Pouye)

OVERVIEW: The obvious group of death in this year’s version of the African Nations Cup, Group C featured four of the heavyweights of African football, including the last two champions, Cameroon (2015) and South Africa (2013). Morocco, who played hosts in 2015, were still considered one of the top teams in Africa despite underachieving in recent tournaments, and Senegal were Quarter-Finalists in 2015, losing to eventual Finalists Ivory Coast. There was no underachieving from the Moroccan team this year, however, as they topped the group – they were joined in the Quarter-Finals by South Africa, who had fantastic performances from Shalke striker Bhongolwethu Jayiya, who scored 3 goals for them. Cameroon crashed out due to a 3-2 loss to South Africa and an embarrassing 3-0 defeat to Morocco.

GROUP D

Egypt: 4 (Kamel, Gedo, Hosny, Farag)

Cape Verdie: 0

Algeria: 5 (Ziaya (2), Mahaya (2), Belhadj)

Angola: 0

Algeria: 1 (Belhadj)

Egypt: 0

Angola: 1 (Rafael)

Cape Verde: 2 (Djaniny, Ze Luis)

Algeria: 2 (Medjani, Belhadj)

Cape Verde: 1 (Ze Luis)

Angola: 1 (Geraldo

Egypt: 0

OVERVIEW: Bitter rivals Algeria and Egypt were grouped together in Group D, and they both ended up qualifying to the Quarter-Finals, although the latter just made it through. While Algeria won all three of its games, the other three teams all had three points, and the North Africans went through on goal difference.

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Quarter-Finals

Morocco vs. Egypt

Al Bayda Community Stadium, Al Bayda: The two North African rivals both had been underachievers this decade, save for Egypt’s trip to the Semi-Finals in the ANC 2015, but a trip to the Semi-Finals this year would change all that. It was Morocco who would pull of a 3-2 victory in a very entertaining match, thanks to Marouane Chamakh’s brace. Four of the goals came in the first half, save for the Chamakh’s second goal, which came at the beginning of the second half. His performance crowned him the MotM.

Morocco: 3 (Chamakh (2), El Kaoutari)

Egypt: 2 (Hosny, Ragab)

Ghana vs. Ivory Coast

Misurata Community Stadium: The ANC 2015 Finalists and World Cup 2014 Semi-Finalists, Ivory Coast, took on their eastern neighbors Ghana in a much that promised much. However, it did not live up to its billings – instead of the free flowing, strong attacking football that was expected, it was dull, one sided affair. Ivory Coast won the game 1-0, but they were the much better team. Ghana, for all its talent, could not get it together. Ivory Coast’s goalscorer, Salomon Kalou, won the MotM.

Ivory Coast: 1 (Kalou)

Ghana: 0

Burkina Faso vs. Nigeria

Hugo Chavez Stadium, Benina: On one side, you had Africa’s most populous nation and one of its most storied footballing nations – on the other, there was a very young team that was steadily improving and had made the Semi-Finals of the ANC 2015 in Morocco. What happened was perhaps the most surprising result in the history of the competition, as Burkina Faso defeated Nigeria an amazing 5-1. All credit had to go to their Portuguese head coach, Paulo Duarte, who had been with the team throughout the decade, and has overseen the vast improvement the nation had made. Koh Traore scored a brace, but the MotM went to midfielder Mamadou Kebe, who delivered 2 assists.

Burkina Faso: 5 (K. Traore (2), Sanou, Kabore, Kierna)

Nigeria: 1 (Okoronkwo)

Algeria vs. South Africa

11 June Stadium, Tripoli: The ANC 2013 champions South Africa made very short work of their opponents in this Quarter-Finals clash, with its two best players of the tournament thus far each scoring a brace. Bhongowelthu Jayiya hit two goals in the second half while Kermit Erasmus scored two goals in the first half. It was Jayiya who won the MotM, as he had provided Erasmus with both assists and finished with a 9.5 AR.

South Africa: 4 (Erasmus (2), Jayiya (2) )

Algeria: 0

Semi-Finals

South Africa vs. Ivory Coast

Al Bayda Community Stadium, Al Bayda: Perhaps the two most impressive teams in this year’s edition of the African Nations Cup, it was the West Africans who defeated the 2013 champions 3-1, marking their second straight Finals appearance in a row (they lost to Cameroon in 2015). Ivory Coast were clearly the better team on the day, and would have had a clean sheet if it wasn’t for a late own goal in the dying seconds of the match. Striker Lacina Traore won the MotM after scoring a goal and recording an assist, finishing with 8.8 AR.

Ivory Coast: 3 (L. Traore, Gradel, Doumbia)

South Africa: 1 (Konate O.G)

Morocco vs. Burkina Faso

11 June Stadium, Tripoli: Burkina Faso were the surprise team of the tournament, and Morocco featured its best player, Younes Belhanda. Unfortunately for the North African team, the tournament’s finest player was out of this match with a bruised rib, and the Burkinabe team took full advantage of that, winning the match 2-1 and advancing to their first ever ANC Finals. Left winger Jonathan Pitroipa won the MotM, and it was going to be a rematch of not only the Group A matchup earlier in the tournament (which ended 0-0), but it was a chance to redeem the ANC 2015 loss Ivory Coast handed their northern neighbors in the Semi-Finals of the ANC 2015.

Burkina Faso: 2 (A. Traore, Pitroipa)

Morocco: 1 (Guezoui)

Finals

Burkina Faso vs. Ivory Coast

11 June Stadium, Tripoli: This was Ivory Coast’s second straight Finals appearance (and third of all-time), and they were fighting to win their second title in their history (their first was in 1992 in Senegal). Burkina Faso were enjoying their first ever trip to the Finals, and under the tutelage of long time head coach Paulo Duarte, the team had made incredible progress and featured some of the best young talent on the continent. On this day, however, experience trumped youth, as Ivory Coast won the match 2-1. Truth be told, it was not the most entertaining of matches – not a lot of shots on goal and a lot of back and forth play in the midfield made this one of the duller Finals in recent memory. Gervinho won the MotM, delivering both assists to the goals and finishing with 7.9 AR. Ivory Coast were African champions for the second time in their history, and further solidified their position as the best team on the continent during this decade.

Ivory Coast: 2 (Doumbia, Kalou)

Burkina Faso: 1 (K. Traore)

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Awards

Best Player

Younes Belhanda, Morocco (4 Appearances, 1 Goal, 3 Assists, 2 MotM, 8.20): The 26 year Marseille midfielder was the best player in the tournament bar none going into the Semi-Finals, but a bruised rib kept him out of the eventual shock loss to Burkina Faso. Morocco would come in 4th in the tournament, but there was no denying Belhanda’s brilliance. A French Ligue 1 champion with his club, he has also been one of Africa’s top players the past few years, and is currently one of the most important players at Marseille.

Best Goalkeeper

Landry Kaba, Ivory Coast (5 Appearances, 2 Goals Conceded, 3 Clean Sheets, 7.00): The unsung hero of Ivory Coast’s squad, the 23 year old Dinamo Bucharest goalkeeper took over the reigns from Vincent de Paul Angban, who had been the nation’s start for the past few years. Kaba did a fantastic job between the posts for the champions, conceding only two goals and maintaining the stability needed in the back that allowed the team to go all the way and win the title.

Top Goalscorer

Obinna Okoronkwo, Nigeria (4 Appearances, 5 Goals, 1 MotM, 7.65): The 23 year old Young Boys (Switzerland) striker took the tournament by storm, scoring 5 goals and becoming one of the hottest young talents to come out of the continent. He possesses fantastic pace and is a good finisher – the fact that he is only 23 should have suitors lining up offers for him come the offseason.

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CHAMPIONS CUP 2016/2017

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Group A: Manchester United surprised no one by topping the group after an one year absence from the competition, but it was Turkish champions Trabzonspor who shocked Roma and qualified alongside them. Young Boys stayed competitive, but followed Roma to an early exit, as well.

Group B: One of the strongest teams in Europe the past few year, Lyonnais topped a fairly straight forward group, and were joined in the Second Round by PAOK Salonika, the new Greek champions. Anderlecht and Benfica, who were favorites to finish second in the group, were knocked out.

Group C: German giants Bayern Munich finished topped of the group, winning a perfect six games and conceding only two goals. Tottenham qualified in 2nd Place, just barely beating out Spanish upstarts Malaga, who did well in their first Champions League campaign. Zeljeznicar Sarajevo of Bosnia did well to reach this stage, but finished bottom of the group.

Group D: The 2014 champions Real Madrid and 2013 Finalists CSKA Moscow finished 1st and 2nd in the group, knocking out 2015 champions and Semi-Finalists last year, Fiorentina. Vitesse of Holland finished last in this competitive group.

Group E: French champions Marseille have been wildly impressive in the group stages of the competition the past few years, and this season was no different, topping the group by winning five of their six games. They were joined by Spanish club Villareal, knocking out Standard Liege and Sparta Prague.

Group F: For English Premier League champions Arsenal topped this competitive group, while Sampdoria finished 2nd Place. Shakhtar disappointingly finished third, and Fenerbahce finished in last place, both getting knocked out in the process.

Group G: Defending champions Barcelona topped the group, finishing ahead of Italian Serie A champions Inter Milan. Celtic and Lech were knocked out, as was expected at the beginning of the draw.

Group H: Premier League champions Manchester City were very impressive, topping the group with five wins out of the six games. They were joined by FC Porto – once again, German champions Dortmund were hugely disappointing, failing to qualify to the Second Round and actually finishing in last place. Dinamo Bucharest finished third and was also knocked out.

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Bromley February Update 2016/2017

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Overview

Our first match of the month was against struggling Swindon, and I was expecting to come away with three points even though we were playing at their ground. Andy Dixon, my 20 year second choice keeper (and Bromley youth product), spoke to me in January about wanting to be more involved in the first team, so I had given him the past few starts. He was to have another go today, possibly his last in this stretch before starting our first choice goalkeeper Rafaele Di Gennaro again, and he did not disappoint, although the rest of the team. While Dixon won the MotM for his performance, the rest of the team failed miserably, and we ended up drawing 0-0. The fact that our GK won the MotM was a telling sign on how the game went, with chance after chance being wasted by our opponents. Bluntly said, we were terrible and I let my squad know it. We were lucky to come away with a point when we deserved to lose.

We did not play any better at home against Charlton, drawing 0-0 while showing no initiative or ambition. It just seemed the last couple of matches that the players were tuned off, and there was no urgency. The draw sent us down to 3rd Place, three points behind Sunderland, who had overtaken us. I kept Andy Dixon in goal for one more match, and he earned his second clean sheet in four matches. I felt it was time for a team meeting – somehow, one wrong response led to another, and we finalized the meeting with a grand total of zero good reactions and a mind-boggling TWENTY-SIX negative reactions! Oh boy…

Up next we had another home again, this time against 18th Place Wigan. They were in terrible form, having lost their last five games, and this seemed like the perfect game for us to regain our confidence and undo the damage I had done in our last team meeting. That is exactly what happened as we ran 4-0 winners, with Lovro Scrbec scoring a brace for us. Steven Saunders picked up yet another injury, ruling himself out of competition for six weeks with a groin strain, but it was still an exciting day. We were still in 3rd Place, yes, and still three points behind Sunderland, but we were a safe nine points ahead of Peterborough, who were in 4th Place. Just after the match, I sat with Ebby Harwood’s agent and offered the player a new contract, ending in 2020, for £2,000 a week. He thoroughly deserved it.

Blackpool was our next opponents – they were 15th Place, so I did not think it was unreasonable to expect us to beat them, even if it was away from home. I decided to keep young Dixon in goal, as he was in top form. What followed was possibly the worst half of football I had ever seen from my team. How we only went into halftime down 1-0 is beyond me, but we were awful. We did not have a single meaningful chance on goal, and spent the entire half desperately trying to contain onslaught after onslaught. The second half, however, we seemed to pull together, and even though Blackpool remained the better team, they had no answer for our counter-attacks. Twice we caught them, and twice we scored. Our captain, Elliot Law, put the match away with a late penalty kick, and we somehow won the match 3-1. Go figure.

We ended the month going away to Norwich, and I was happy to come away with a 2-2 draw at Carrow Road. Musah picked up yet another injury, however, twisting his knee and getting ruled out for another month. It was very frustrating, as he has been our main attacking threat, but such was life as a manager. We were still in 3rd Place, but only goal difference separated us from Sunderland in 2nd Place, and we were just three points off of Reading at the top of the table. By contrast, we had built a ten point lead on Peterborough, who were in 4th Place.

For the upcoming month, I was looking for more of the same from the squad. We have six games, and we need gain at least 12 points. We finish off march with a huge home game against Sunderland, so we need to make sure we stay in the picture up till then.

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Football News

February 26th, 2017: Blackburn Rovers were finally bought today by a consortium led by Graham Baker, replacing former owner and chairman Anuradha Desai. Baker said in his statement the group had big plans for the club much sooner than later, hinting at possible investments into the club. The club is currently in 10th Place in the Championship and are managed by David Moyes.

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C'mon Brom in the Prem! Any other thread I'd mention failing to get promotion could be a blessing in disguise as your side really isn't fully ready, but at your amazing rate of progress can't picture you suddenly getting caught out in a relegation battle, even with tiny Bromley in the huge Premiership.

Interesting African Cup of Nations, nice to see Burkina Faso coming good under the helm of Paulo Duarte.

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Certainly does look like a tight nervy finish on the cards, good luck!

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C'mon Brom in the Prem! Any other thread I'd mention failing to get promotion could be a blessing in disguise as your side really isn't fully ready, but at your amazing rate of progress can't picture you suddenly getting caught out in a relegation battle, even with tiny Bromley in the huge Premiership.

Interesting African Cup of Nations, nice to see Burkina Faso coming good under the helm of Paulo Duarte.

Certainly does look like a tight nervy finish on the cards, good luck!
Burkina Faso used to produce incredible newgens for me on FM11.
Hang in there, looks tight.

Thanks guys! My team just wont let up - its fantastic! They refuse to lose, and it seems to me that the Premiership dream is just a few short weeks away! I just want to point out that there has been no cheating or "lose and reload" tactics, no editors or editing of any kind, or importing of any type of tactics or training - Ive done everything manually. There has been a couple of occasions Ive given my Ass Man a chance (holidayed for a day), but they have been very winnable cup ties, nothing major. So in light of that - GO BROMLEY! I believe in my boys, theyve been superb :)

Burkina Faso continue to develop quickly, and theyve got some world class defenders coming through their ranks.

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MASSIVE month coming up!! Cardiff, Peter'boro & Sunderland....make or break time. Good look pal.

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MASSIVE month coming up!! Cardiff, Peter'boro & Sunderland....make or break time. Good look pal.

Well, we've already beaten cardiff and Peterborough, so we've gotten ourselves to a good start :)

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Youth Intake 2017

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The youth intake is in for the season, and I think this is my best crop yet. Kieran Holland (5*) is a gem at right back – he’s going to be special. Kevin Long currently occupies the spot, and has proven to be quite capable, but Holland will certainly be given chances and the opportunity to develop.

All the 4.5* look to be capable players, although I don’t see anyone of them turning out to be a bonafide star. Matt Saunders looks to be the best of that bunch, but he is also a right back, so he might find chances limited behind Long and Holland. Looking at his attributes, I will be looking to retrain him into a central defender, where he will be of more use. Charalobos Misailidis (half Greek) is 6’8 (!!), and looks to be quite capable of becoming a squad player. His aerial ability is already fantastic, and he should get some runs in cup ties and what not. Finally, there is GK Garry Walters – I don’t see him ever developing into a starting GK for us, but he could prove to be quite a capable backup. Sudanese GK Noureldin Al-Mahi gets a 4.5* but I don’t really see it.

There is one more intriguing prospect – my backroom don’t seem to be big fans, but Aboobakar Boodhun of Mauritius looks to me like he could develop into something useful. I will offer him a contract and give him some runs, and hopefully, my instinct will prove correct!

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Going great guns there. keep it up.

Holland is definitely a star in the making there. Already has excellent attributes for his age and that 20 for determination will help him to progress. Hope you get him tied down on a long term deal.

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CHAMPIONS CUP 2016/2017

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Second Round

Tottenham vs. Barcelona (5-1)

First Leg – White Hart Lane, London (Att: 36,310): This was a rematch of the 2016 Finals, with Tottenham looking to exact revenge on Barcelona for beating them, which was exactly what they did. Tottenham came out 4-0 winners in an epic match, handing the defending champions one of their worst defeats in recent memory. Edison Cavani, the Champions League’s Best Player in 2016, hit an outstanding hat-trick, with Gareth Bale contributing a goal and two assists. The latter won the MotM with a 9.9 AR, playing the perfect game, and Barcelona were left dumbfounded over what had happened. They were going to need a small miracle at the Nou Camp to turn this tie around.

Tottenham: 4 (Cavani (3), Bale)

Barcelona: 0

Second Leg – Nou Camp, Barcelona (Att: 86,586): After Tottenham’s spectacular victory in London and Barcelona’s struggles on the domestic front, there was a lot of talk about the “Era of Barcelona” coming to end. This match only further fueled that talk, and it became the first time the team did not make the Semi-Finals in seven years. Not only did they lose the tie, but they could not even gather themselves to win at home, drawing 1-1. Cavani scored his 6th goal of the campaign, and despite his MotM performance, Lionel Messi could not carry his team this time around.

Barcelona: 1 (Messi)

Tottenham: 1 (Cavani)

Trabzonspor vs. Arsenal (1-6)

First Leg – Huseyin Avni Aker, Trabzon (Att: 25,249): The Turkish champions, playing at home, were no match for Arsenal, as the English club ran out 3-1 winners in a match that they dominated. Jack Wilshere captured the MotM, scoring a brace and recording a 9.6 AR. Arsenal were widely expected to ease through this tie, and did nothing to dispel those expectations.

Trabzonspor: 1 (Del Valle)

Arsenal: 3 (Wilshere (2), Hernandez)

Second Leg – Emirates Stadium, London (Att: 59,535): It was another good performance by Arsenal, with another goal by Wilshere. This time, however, Aaron Ramsey won the MotM, scoring a goal, as well. Trabzonspor were, again, unimpressive – they simply were no match for Arsenal’s skill and talent.

Arsenal: 3 (Wilshere, Hernandez, Ramsey)

Trabzonspor: 0

Sampdoria vs. Manchester City (4-2)

First Leg – Luigi Ferraris, Genoa (Att: 36,348): Surprisingly, the English Premier League champions, Manchester City, were the second best team in this match, as Sampdoria won 2-1 at home, playing a more solid game than their opponents. In fact, it was a Hulk 86th minute goal that saved the English their blushes, after Sampdoria had taken a two goal lead. South Korean striker Ji Dong-Won won the MotM, having scored the Italians’ second goal and generally giving the Man City defense all game.

Sampdoria: 2 (Pozzi, Ji Dong-Won)

Manchester City: 1 (Hulk)

Second Leg – City of Manchester Stadium, Manchester (Att:47,405): This was Alan Shearer’s last game in charge, and the one that was considered the final straw, as Manchester City lost at home against the Italians 2-1. Shortly after the match, Man City announced the sacking of the manager that had led them to the Premier League title in 2016. The current English champions looked completely uninspired, and even the goalscorer Ezequiel Lavezzi looked like he had done so by mistake. The MotM was Sampdoria’s Romanian midfielder Alexandru Chipciu, who had 2 assists and an 8.5 AR.

Manchester City: 1 (Lavezzi)

Sampdoria: 2 (Pozzi, Klose)

Villareal vs. Bayern Munich (2-4)

First Leg – El Madrigal, Villareal (Att: 23,000): Bayern Munich have not had the best of decades, and in fact, had not the German Bundesliga since 2010. They had advanced to the Quarter-Finals of the tournament once since reaching the Finals in 2010, in 2012, and had not gotten out of the Group Stages since then. This season, however, it seemed they meant business, defeating Villareal in Spain 2-0 in a most convincing manner. Albin Ekdal took the MotM, delivering an assist and scoring a goal. Villareal, who had done well in the domestic league in 2015/16 finishing 2nd Place to Barcelona, were currently in 3rd Place, but they were no match for the Germans – they would face an extremely tough game in Munich, one that was not likely to end well for them given their performance on this day.

Villareal: 0

Bayern Munich: 2 (Ideye, Ekdal)

Second Leg – Allianz Arena, Munich (Att: 63,825): Villareal put up a good fight in Germany, but the talent Bayern Munich have at their disposal was too much for the Spanish club to handle. The game ended in a 2-2 draw, and the Germans comfortably advanced to the Quarter-Finals. Kevin Strootman was the MotM, recording an assist and a 7.9 AR.

Bayern Munich: 2 (Muller, Kroos)

Villareal: 2 (Heung-Min, Johansen)

Porto vs. Lyonnais (4-3)

First Leg – Estadio Do Dragao, Porto (Att: 50,948): The Portuguese league Runners-Up had not gotten to this stage in the Champions League in three years, and were ready to challenge Lyonnais for the right to participate in the Quarter-Finals. Italian striker Fabio Borini hit an outstanding hat-trick as the home squad defeated the French 4-2, despite the match itself being relatively even. Borini took the MotM in what was a very entertaining matchup in Porto.

Porto: 4 (Borini (3), Jonsson)

Lyonnais: 2 (Belfodil, Kleber)

Second Leg – Stade de Lumieres, Lyon (Att: 61,556): Despite playing a fine game at home, Lyonnais were sent packing the Second Round by underdogs Porto after only managing to win 1-0, with Garry Bocaly scoring the only goal of the game. Porto did not look anything like the team that scored four goals in Portugal, playing uninventive and lacking any real urgency. Neuton, Lyonnais’ Brazilian defender, won the MotM.

Lyonnais: 1 (Bocaly)

Porto: 0

PAOK vs. Manchester United (0-6)

First Leg – Toumba, Salonika (Att: 28,701): Manchester United were not the team that had reached four Champions League Finals in five times in seven years from 2008 to 2014, but they were still one of Europe’s top sides. PAOK were newcomers at this stage in recent times, and it showed, as Man Utd came out 4-0 winners in Greece. Youngster Joaquim Sousa hit a brace, while Eden Hazard captured the MotM, scoring a goal and recording an 8.8 AR.

PAOK: 0

Manchester United: 4 (Sousa, Rafael, Hazard)

Second Leg – Old Trafford, Manchester (84,333): After a comfortable win in Greece, Manchester United took their foot of the gas at home and still ran out 2-0 winners. Javier Hernandez, continuously one of the top scorers in the competition season after season, nailed a brace to give his squad the victory. He was also the MotM as Man Utd qualified to the Quarter-Finals.

Manchester United: 2 (Hernandez (2) )

PAOK: 0

CSKA Moscow vs. Marseille (2-0)

First Leg – CSKA-Peschanoye, Moscow (Att: 35,000): Marseille had been one of the most impressive teams the past couple of years in the Champions League, advancing to the Semi-Finals in 2016 before losing to eventual champions, Barcelona. It was not their day in Russia, however, as CSKA Moscow, led by club legend Vagner Love, defeated them convincingly 2-0. It was not an entertaining match, with relatively few chances, but Moscow will be happy with the end result. Their midfielder Sekou Oliseh won the MotM.

CSKA Moscow: 2 (Love, Rat)

Marseille: 0

Second Leg – Stade Velodrome, Marseille (Att: 60,650): CSKA Moscow redefined the meaning of buckling down and playing with a ten man defense, doing it to perfection against Marseille in France in the second leg of this tie. The French had 15 shots compared to Moscow’s 2 shots, but they barely threatened Akinfeev’s goal. The end result was a 0-0 draw, much to Marseille’s frustration, with defender Willy Boly winning the MotM for CSKA Moscow.

Marseille: 0

CSKA Moscow: 0

Real Madrid vs. Inter Milan (4-1)

First Leg – San Siro, Milan (Att: 80,018): The Serie A champions had done some shopping in the January window and had reinforced their squad, but it was Real Madrid, through a Fabio Coentrao goal, who took the victory 1-0 in this tightly contested affair. Inter were very disappointing, failing to score a single goal at home, while Sergio Ramos took home the MotM award after getting an assist and recording an 8.7 AR.

Inter Milan: 0

Real Madrid: 1 (Coentrao)

Second Leg – Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid (Att: 74,730): The biggest matchup of the Second Round did not end up living up to its billing, as Real Madrid ran out 3-1 winners over Inter Milan, thanks to Gonzalo Higuan scoring a brace. Inter Milan, as they were at home, were disappointing, failing to threaten Madrid. The MotM was Higuan, who was glad to have delivered such a fine performance in the midst of a very disappointing personal season.

Real Madrid: 3 (Higuan (2), Ronaldo)

Inter Milan: 1 (Doumbia)

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Bromley March Update 2016/2017

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Overview

To start the month off, we had three games in seven days – two straight home games against Watford and Blackburn, and an away game to Cardiff. We pulled off a great result against Watford, beating them 2-0, but by the time the Blackburn game came around, my team’s physical condition was not the best. We had an answer from the heavens, however – the game was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch at Hayes Lane, and the match was pushed for further this month. This left us away to Cardiff a few days later, and despite a tough game, we managed to come away with a 2-1 victory. We had not lost in the Championship in thirteen games, and were three points behind Reading for the top spot, but with a game at hand.

We faced Peterborough next, who were in 4th Place fighting to keep their playoff place. It was a very tight match, but we managed to pull off a 1-0 victory in front of the home fans. We were not able to repeat that feat against Blackburn, however – to our disappointment, we only managed a 0-0 draw, meaning we had to try and get points away to Hull, not the easiest of feats. I called up my new youth academy signing Kieran Holland and named him to the bench. We fought hard and strong, and in the second half, Elliot Law found the net for us, as he had done all season in tight situations. Holland made his debut, and the plan is to bring him in as often as possible in order to help aid his development. The win put us in First Place, three points ahead of Reading, with just eight more games to go.

The game against Sunderland was the last of the month, and one of our most important matches this season. We needed a good result, not only to keep us in First Place, but to also put further distance between us and our opponents, who were in 3rd Place. Our captain Elliot Law again delivered an important goal to give us a 2-0 victory, even though Lovro Scrbec got injured with a twisted knee, ruling him out for five weeks. Emmanuel Musah made his comeback, as well, coming on as a substitute for the injured Scrbec. Lose one striker, gain another, it seems. The important thing was, however, we pulled off a victory that made us that much closer to an automatic promotion to the Premier League.

We now have at least a play-off spot confirmed, but I need that automatic promotion! That’s the aim, and given how many points are between us and Sunderland in 3rd Place, we have a great chance of achieving that. We’ve got a rough schedule in April, including a big match against Reading at home. That could be the match that wins it for us or sees us in 2nd Place (hopefully we will not fall past that!)

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Football News

Manchester City finally sacked Alan Shearer today, March 7th, after slipping to 5th Place in the Premier League. Shearer led the club to their first title in 48 years in 2016, but fell out of favor with the owners after a slow start to the season. Shearer is the current Premier League Manager of the Year, and his sacking has been met with criticism for not giving him enough time to turn his team around after achieving the goal set out for him last season. His last game in charge was a home loss to Sampdoria which knocked them out of the Champions League, and was widely considered the last straw by the owners.

In an previously odd twist that has become all too common, Arsenal manager Andre Villas-Boas announced his resignation from the club and joined Manchester City as their new manager, getting paid a ridiculous £70,000 a week. Just three days after that, on March 17th, Arsenal announced Alan Shearer as their new manager – the teams effectively swapped managers.

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Yes!!!! Automatic promotion almost assured now.

Yes indeed :) I can almost taste it!

In other news:

Everton Takeover Completed

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Awesome, the Premier League awaits, you'll probably win it in a couple of years.

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Awesome, the Premier League awaits, you'll probably win it in a couple of years.
Great promotion! Best of luck in the Premier League.

Thanks! I highly doubt I'll win the Premiership in a couple of years - with all the high spenders, its a very tough league to crack even the Top Six. Its been a fntastic ride though - Five Promotions in Six years!

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And there was me thinking at the start of the season you would end up in the playoffs, happy to be wrong :D

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And there was me thinking at the start of the season you would end up in the playoffs, happy to be wrong :D
Brilliant news. I think you'll suprise a few teams and be quite competitive next year.

Thanks! Its been a greaat season - Im desperate to stay up in the Premier League once I finally do get there :)

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CHAMPIONS CUP 2016/2017

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QUARTER-FINALS

CSKA Moscow vs. Sampdoria (3-2)

First Leg – CSKA-Peschanoye, Moscow (Att: 35,000): The Russians’ defense was at it again, not allowing their opponents a single goal in the first leg. Sampdoria certainly did not lack the effort, but CSKA Moscow’s defense has proven to be one of the stingiest in the competition this season. They scored two goals of their own, with Vagner Love securing the MotM for his performance up front.

CSKA Moscow: 2 (Ponedelnik, Necid)

Sampdoria: 0

Second Leg – Luigi Ferraris, Genoa (Att: 36,348): Moscow struck first through their young striker Nikolay Ponedelnik, leaving Sampdoria having to score four goals in order to win. It was a feat too large, as they only got halfway – they won the match 2-1, but lost the tie, as CSKA Moscow made its second ever trip to the Semi-Finals (the first was in 2013, when they lost to Barcelona in the Finals).

Sampdoria: 2 (de Jong, Dong-Won)

CSKA Moscow: 1 (Ponedelnik)

Porto vs. Tottenham (2-3)

First Leg – Estadio Do Dragao, Porto (Att: 50,948): This was not an entertaining game by any stretch, and the only goal of the game was gifted to Porto by Tottenham’s defender Dedryk Boyata through an own goal. Tottenham especially would be very disappointed with their performance and lack of ingenuity – a total of nine shots between both teams were taken, and only three were on target. Such was the dullness of this first leg.

Porto: 1 (Boyata O.G.)

Tottenham: 0

Second Leg – White Hart Lane, London (Att: 36,310): This was another drab affair that did not find any excitement until extra-time, when those thirty minutes made up for the one hundred and eighty minutes before it. Gareth Bale scored in normal time, and the match went into extra-time, where Tim Matavz scored in the 108th minute, seemingly giving Tottenham the victory. However, in the 118th minute, Tom Huddlestone scored an own goal, which meant Porto was going through. Frantically, Tottenham pushed forward, and they broke through in the dying seconds of the game, again through Matavz, who nailed his second goal and pushed Tottenham through to the Semi-Finals in heartbreaking fashion for Porto.

Tottenham: 3 (Matavz (2), Bale)

Porto: 1 (Huddlestone O.G.)

Arsenal vs. Manchester United (2-0)

First Leg – Emirates Stadium, London (Att: 60,631): The All English Quarter-Finals matchup was a mouth-watering draw, but it failed to live up to expectations, ending in a 0-0 draw in London. Arsenal GK Wojciech Szczesny won the MotM – without his heroics, Arsenal would have surely lost to their rivals at home.

Arsenal: 0

Manchester United: 0

Second Leg – Old Trafford, Manchester (Att: 94,746): They did not perform at home, but Arsenal managed to outplay and outhustle their rivals in Manchester, winning the match 2-0 and advancing to the Semi-Finals at their expense. Manchester United were expected to win this match, and considering they were First in the Premier League, many thought of them as the better team. However, Arsenal had other plans, and Abel Hernandez won the MotM, scoring a goal in the process.

Manchester United: 0

Arsenal: 2 (Hernandez, Chamakh)

Bayern Munich vs. Real Madrid (1-4)

First Leg – Allianz Arena, Munich (Att: 66,000): The biggest tie of the Quarter-Finals promised much, but failed to deliver in its first leg, with the match ending 0-0 in Munich. The German club, who are close to sealing the Bundesliga, were saved by their GK Manuel Neuer, who won the MotM for his performance. Real Madrid returned to Spain having held their opponents to zero goals at home.

Bayern Munich: 0

Real Madrid: 0

Second Leg – Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid (Att: 74,730): This was more like it, although Bayern Munich would disagree. Real Madrid, who look set to win the La Liga title this year, dominated this game from start to finish, ending with a 4-1 victory that propelled them to the Semi-Finals for the first time since 2014. Angel Di Maria played a fantastic game, scoring a brace and collecting the MotM – at the other end, Bayern Munich simply had no answer to Real Madrid.

Real Madrid: 4 (Di Maria (2), Higuan, Ozil)

Bayern Munich: 1 (Ideye)

SEMI-FINALS

Real Madrid vs. Arsenal (5-1)

First Leg – Emirates Stadium, London (Att: 60,361): These two teams faced each other in 2015 in the Second Round, when Real Madrid were defending champions. It was Arsenal who knocked them out, thanks mostly to a 3-0 victory in London. This season, Arsenal had yet to lose a single match, and had only conceded 4 goals in their 10 matches. Abel Hernandez had scored 6 goals in 8 appearances, and, along with Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere, they were the team’s best performers. Real Madrid had lost two matches, but in the Group Stages, but had convincingly overcame Inter Milan and Bayern Munich on their way to the Semi-Finals. Cristiano Ronaldo, again, was their best performer, and they have had solid contributions from captain Iker Casillas as well.

An exciting first half came to a climactic finish when Mesut Ozil converted a beautiful free kick, giving Real Madrid the lead heading into the second half. It took just six minutes into the second half for Marouane Chamakh to equalize the match, but thirteen minutes later, Gonzalo Higuan gave his squad the lead again. The match was put beyond any doubt when Nicolas Nkoulou scored a screamer from outside the box, giving Real Madrid a 3-1 victory, putting one foot in the door for the 2014 Champions League winners. Arsenal were extremely wasteful, and paid the price. Despite losing, Chamakh’s performance earned him the MotM, but sadly for them, he was the only bright spot on the team.

Arsenal: 1 (Chamakh)

Real Madrid: 3 (Ozil, Higuan, Nkoulou)

Second Leg – Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid (Att: 74,730): In truth, after the result in London, this tie was over before the second leg had begun, and nothing changed after it was done. Real Madrid came away 2-0 winners thanks to a Gonzalo Higuan brace, giving him 6 goals total in the competition. Real Madrid were headed to the Finals in hopes of recapturing the Champions League title as they did in 2014.

Real Madrid: 2 (Higuan (2) )

Arsenal: 0

Tottenham vs. CSKA Moscow (2-1)

First Leg – White Hart Lane, London (Att: 36,310): The beaten Finalists last year went into this match missing two of their most important players – Gareth Bale was injured and was possibly out of the second leg as well, while Salomon Rondon was serving a suspension. They had not been very impressive during this run, but had somehow found themselves in the Semi-Finals thanks to the brilliance of Edison Cavani, who had scored 6 goals in 9 games, as well as the missing players. For CSKA Moscow, who made the Finals in 2013, their path had been slightly less dramatic, but were a surprising addition to this stage, nonetheless. Nikolay Ponedelnik was their leading goalscorer, and GK Igor Akinfeev and club legend Vagner Love were both amongst the mai contributors.

It took exactly 20 seconds for Cavani to find his 7th goal of the tournament, giving Tottenham a dream start in front of their home fans. Just 14 minutes afterwards, he converted his second goal off of Youssef Msakni cross, and Tottenham had a 2-0 lead in the first fifteen minutes. That is the way the first half ended, but the English club were clearly the better team going into the second half. The last forty-five minutes of the game came with plenty of chances and exciting football, but there were no more goals to be had. Cavani finished as MotM thanks to his fantastic brace.

Tottenham: 2 (Cavani (2) )

CSKA Moscow: 0

Second Leg – CSKA Peschanoye, Moscow (Att: 35,000): There was no goals conceded early in the match by CSKA Moscow this time around, but they also could not find the net themselves in the first half. It was not from a lack of chances, but more because of some great goalkeeping by Fernando Muslera. Cavani did not have a good half, and was very much contained by the Moscow defense. In the second half, with time slowly disappearing, Vagner Love converted a superb cross into Moscow’s first goal in the 66th minute. They needed just one more goal to even up the score with Tottenham. At the end, despite being wasteful up front and shaky in the back, Tottenham held on to win on aggregate, advancing to their second consecutive Finals in a row.

CSKA Moscow: 1 (Love)

Tottenham: 0

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FC Lorient Takeover Completed

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FC Lorient was bought by Mercel Le Mentec in an internal takeover today, May 6th, 2017, ending the acquisition saga that had started more than six months ago when Mentec attempted to buy the club the second time. Before that, Mentec had attempted to buy the club from Loic Ferry in late 2015, but the two could not come to an agreement. Two other buyers tried but could not come to terms with Ferry between Mentec's first and second attempts in 2016, and in August 2015, there was yet another buyer who could not agree with Ferry on the specifics.

Now that the club has put nearly two years of chaos behind it, the hope is Mentec will be able to guide the club further than its mid-table mediocrity. The current manager is Jean Louis Garcia, who has been at the club for just over six months. The club is currently worth £16,500,000.

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Bromley April Update 2016/2017

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(Charlton, Swindon, and Preston were relegated)

Overview

Crystal Palace were one of the worst teams in the league, while we currently were on top of it, so naturally, we got totally dominated and lost the match 3-0. It was just painful to watch – we couldn’t put two passes together, and we got run over down the wings over and over again all game long. This just made our upcoming match against Reading that much more important. The match was the debut of youth academy product Aboobakar Boodhun – he did alright, nothing spectacular, but he was not the worst player on the field.

We lined up against Leicester at home next, and we came away with a 1-0 victory, bringing us closer to our dream of the playing in the Premier League next season. It was not without a big price, however, with Raffaele Di Gennaro straining his knee ligaments, ruling him out for three months, and the rest of the season. Andy Dixon would be our starting goalkeeper for the final stretch of the season. He did not fail, and in our biggest game of the season, Dixon won the MotM in our 1-0 home victory against Reading. Musah scored the only goal of the game, and it put us seven points ahead of our opponents with four games to go. Most importantly, however, the three points we gained qualified us for automatic promotion to the Premier League! Our incredible season was drawing to an incredible close, and not only were we about to head to the Premier League automatically, but we were going to do so as champions of the Championship!

Nottingham Forest was next, and we were still riding the wave of excitement knowing Premier League football awaited us next season, scoring three games, with Musah grabbing a brace. However, we also conceded three, which left us with a 3-3 draw. However, at home to Preston, the team did awful – it seemed just because we sealed our promotion, they took their foot of the gas and no longer felt the need to try to win. We drew 1-1, but young Holland, my star youth intake right back, showed his immaturity and grabbed a straight red card in the dying seconds of the match. Reading were now only three points behind us with two games to go.

We sealed the npower Championship title at Bolton, defeating them 2-1 in a match where we were clearly the superior team. They had a late consolation goal, but through the game, we were better. Not only did we fight our way to automatic promotion, but we did so in style, winning the league along the way. This was an amazing feat – I honestly thought, looking at my team at the beginning of the season, we would be good for another mid-table finish, but the development of the boys, I think, played a big part in leading to such a successful season. We finished off the season with a 1-1 draw against Ipswich at home, but I was not too concerned. Let the Premier League party begin!

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That table really makes great reading :D

Looking forward to seeing what you do with your squad over the summer to prepare for life with the big boys.

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That table really makes great reading :D

Looking forward to seeing what you do with your squad over the summer to prepare for life with the big boys.

The squad is going to need heavy work - board permitting, ofcourse. They made my job he last summer, Im hoping they wont do the same again!

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Rayo Takeover Completed

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May 19th, 2017: The ownership of Rayo Vallencano changed hands today, with Pablo Sanchez Paniagua, a local businessman, acquiring the club from Raul Martin Presa. The transaction went through without too many issues, and was resolved in a reasonably quick manner. The Madrid club was relegated from the Spanish Primera Liga in 2013, but under manager Paco Herrera, managed to win promotion in 2015. They have been in the La Liga since, finishing in 17th Place twice in a row.

The club is currently estimated to be worth £16,500,000, but has a loan debt of £14,500,000. Its finances are known to be secure under the new ownership.

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