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PGC: The Italian Job for FM15

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gillespie still unemployed

Its been a long few months for Andrew Gillespie after being led on by Inter Milan and having been told to wait by Napoli it seems he has itchy feet and the boredom of not having a job really seems to be getting to him. With rumours of corruption spreading throughout Serie A and court hearings resulting in sackings at inter Milan and pisa Gillespie should have spent his time seeking interviews to take over at either of these high profile clubs but it seems he has been more intent on partying and enjoying spending some of the reputed 2million earnings from his time at Spezia.

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The rumoured resurfacing of the infamous bunga bunga parties has been flatly denied but the press and social media is rife with stories of prostitutes exclusive parties and high profile guests. Gillespie has found himself at the centre of many of these rumours and after photos of him surfaced on social media after a day out at the horse racing its clear that his priorites are not with football these days

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These pictures prompted a statement from Gillespie -

" After recent pictures of myself being released to the media I would like to apologise to all those involved I am 100% dedicated to finding a new job and feel I have a lot too give as I manager at this level I will be putting my name forward to any jobs I think suitable and cant wait to get back into work its been a hard time for me recently and I have spent my time doing things not appropriate for a manager of a football club these indiscretions are behind me and im ready to get back to work "

It remains to be seen where this undoubtedly talented manager will end up next and if he can curb his social life enough to tempt a top club into taking a chance on him.

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Stuart

Its been a strange old couple of weeks for me in clan. With Me out of a job the last time we spoke i asked the lads to keep an eye on any jobs for me as i have a tone of thing going on outside of clan at the moment. So when i came back on the Monday it was a nice suprise to see that i had got the Inter job. This was a massive chance for me to kick on and make a name for myself in Italy and around Europe.

The Summer went well with 5 great new signing, The club had a good set up anyway so adding the class needed was sure to move things along and push me up the league.

ENTER THE MOTHER OF ALL SCHOOL BOY ERRORS.

This Monday i was rushing home to get on in time for clan, As i signed onto skype i saw there had been a big whoha going on with one clan member leaving and alot of unhappy members. After being told my Corner setting were on short and not mixed like the rules on clan state it soon became clear the Error i had done. I had a warning not long ago from Andy as again my corner were not set to mix, The reason for this was i build my tactics on SP using short corners and when it came to clan i had forgot to switch them back to mix. So now this was my Second warning and it meant me losing my Inter job. I held up my hands up to my error and with the clan knowing of me getting married this sunday and Rushing about to get things sorted knew it was a honest error. It was my own fault for not switching my corners back to mix so a vote was called to see what league i would be sent down to.

The clan Voted and i was send down to B and not the Dreaded C league that some members wanted. Again i found myself away from the game for a few hours and when i came back i had to pick a side below the lowest Human manager. Andy was the lowest and to my shock Palermo had dropped below him. This was a massive break for me and took them as quick as i could.

So now i sit here as Palermo manager back in B but lucky to have a club that is far to big for this league. There is a little debt at the club and the back 4 is shocking but i have already made some signing that will come in the summer and a i have 2 more players coming in so far. Its Gutting to lose inter but im lucky to have Palermo.

Well thats you upto date on whats been a very strange season for me in clan.

More soon

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Fiorentina Appoint Gillespie

Fiorentina today appointed Andrew Gillespie as manager in a busy day for the new manager he also had to think over a late offer from fallen giants AC Milan who despite offering more money didn't even get an official interview with the in demand manager. speaking in his press conference Gillespie said

" I applied for Fiorentina because I wanted the job there was no point meeting Milan im a man of my word I told the board this was my first choice it really is a dream come true this is a massive club with a massive reputation finally im at a club that matches my own ambitions and a board that believes in me I cant wait to get started "

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These were the scenes as manager Sean Black announced to the Stoke City fans that his latest trophy in the premiership would be his last reports are suggesting that the manager was frustrated at the lack of challenge in English football

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After debating over a big move to Spain or the lure of international management Sean Black opted for Perugia F.C.

Thousands had gathered in hope and expectation that a deal could be reached between Black and Perugia and after hours of speaking to the clubs owners Black released his statement saying '' I had several options available to me after a very successful spell at Stoke but there is only one place that ticked all the boxes for me and it was Perugia this club doesn't belong in C division and I will stop a nothing until I take this club to the summit of Italian football I realise that this cannot happen over night but I am 100% dedicated and looking forward to the challenge ''.

Having come in with 10 games to play Perugia closed the gap from 14 points to 3 points and only just missed out on automatic promotion we will follow Black's team closely as they prepare to embark on a journey through the very tough Italian playoff system.

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Just a quick update to my previous post we managed to clinch promotion to B which was fantastic we have a pretty poor squad here so I will need to be heavily focussed on getting in the right men this window there is no room for error in the market.

I will report back soon with a pre season update.

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Sean Black Who ?

In a surprising attack Andrew Gillespie as spoke out at Perugia's surprise appointment of manager Sean Black in an unprecedented outburst he made his feelings clear about Black and English football in general

" I don't care what he won over there English footballs a joke they pay there cleaners more than our under21's when was the last time England won anything there footballs a joke and if Black thinks he can bring that English long ball mentality over here hes going to get a shock. Our league is tactically superior and the level of football we play at is a much higher standard he wont have millions to spend its going to be a tough job I hope hes up too the task cause the fans down that way don't mess around they've had a lot of false dawns and wont accept anything less than a high serie B finish this year. Don't get me wrong hes started well and sneaking promotion was a good beginning but its going to be a huge summer for him and his coaching staff "

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Fiorentina in Champions League Finish

Fiorentina has 25 million reasons to be cheerfull this morning after taking Fiorentina into a surprise Champions League finish and securing there financial future for the next season ahead Fighting off Italian super club Juventus and struggling giants Roma on the last day and nearly pipping San Marino too 3rd meant that the last round of fixtures had almost the whole of Italy on the edge of there seats right up too full time. A clearly delighted Gillespie acknowledged the fans and players after the game.

"Wow what a finish ive missed this this is what top top level footballs all about we came with a game plan weve lost too a good Juventus team and an outstanding Pro Vercelli team in this run in one blip against Sampdoria aside the teams been excellent they've bought into what I see ahead for this team and everyones pulled together I think theres ome top top talent here I know the finances are a problem but im up too the task I want young hungry players here Ive already got a couple of crackin loans lined up this club is never going to stand still its onwards and upwards for us FORZA VIOLA "

The manager as he said isn't wasting any time with rumoured loan moves for exciting midfield duo Pokorny and Bohac already at an advanced stage he has made it very clear there is no money available at the club but hes going to beg borrow or steal to get in another defender and a back up striker. Outgoings are inevitable and Victor Ibarbos time at the club appears to be over as does Vestergaards who had been told to find a new club. Argentinian international right back Gino Perruzi has been moved on already and more departures look likely.

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In a really difficult run in Gillespie had some top performances against San Marino Ac Milan and undoubtedly for Gillespie The stand out 2 nil drubbing of old team Spezia will last long in the memory. The victory against AC Milan was made even better by the huge pressure on the players as a defeat would have seen them out of the champions league reckoning and the AC Milan fans still hurt by Gillespies refusal to take an Interview for theyre vacant managers position.

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With finances in a real mess this is going to be a huge challenge for Gillespie and his staff hes going to have to work some magic in the transfer market and bringing in top quality is going to really difficult. On the flip side though Gillespie plans to bring through some youngsters who might not have got a chance under the previous management and the fans here love too see players coming through the youth system so if theyre good enough the games will be there especially with Champions league football available.

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And so an exciting season lies ahead and an intresting window too even with finances the way they are im sure Gillespie has some fireworks planned before deadline day mayby the fans should take the next 2 weeks to recover from the teams last day heroics and pray for more of the same next season

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BLACK STRIKES BACK

After an astonishing outburst from the new Fiorentina manager which has left Italy worrying yet again about his mental health Sean Black has this to say in return.

'' I have to say his comments made me laugh this man has been given a career lifeline at Fiorentina after spending so long out the game the entire Italian population was worried he wasn't going to make it into the next week never mind his next team he had a great spell at Spezia but then when the going got tough and competition got fierce his bottle well and truly crashed one would imagine and hope that Gillespie can sort out his own problems and his own team to try and avoid further disaster he has a very good opportunity to get his career back on track but for me he spends to much time in the pubs and clubs and babbling to the media than he does creating his winning formula I can only wish him all the best and hope we draw him in the cup so we can embarrass his over payed team '' .

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AndyF - Novara

After winning the last 4 games of the season we finished the season with a solid 12th place, we conceded way to many goals again to have any chance of a play-off berth with the opposition hitting a total of 79 goals.

In the last few games of the season defensively we were looking more solid than previously conceding only 4 in 6 games, so I'm hoping for this improvement to continue into next season and be a lot more tighter at the back for the whole season enabling us to improve on this seasons point tally of 59.

Another thing that needs addressing is the discipline among the squad after picking up 76 yellow and 7 red cards, the main culprit being Belgium Dimitri Lavalee who set a new Novara record.

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Home Fixtures

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Away Fixtures

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In the final game of the season a 2-0 home win against Chievo, a crowd of over 10,000 passed through the turnstiles which was new record attendance at the Silvio Piola resulting in bringing in the biggest gate receipts in the clubs history.

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With the board only expecting us to be competitive this year they are delighted that the club achieved a mid-table finish, underlining their decision to offer me a new contract in January when things wasn't going so well.

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Full Season Transfers

I'll be looking at keeping at least 4 of the players on loan this season for the upcoming campaign.

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Finances

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Well that's it for my EoS post and I'm looking forward to next season, its gonna be a tough one with Sean, Stu and Mike all in Serie B but all i ask is for the players to give 100% all of the time and we'll see what comes next May.

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Our 2022 season has now finished, and what an eventful one it was as well!

Ryan Callan's Pro Vercelli became the first human club to win Serie A, storming to the title in record style. They also became the first human club to win European silverware, after destroying Galatasaray in the Europa League final.

Ali's San Marino won the Italian Cup for a second time, and finished a club record third in an exciting finish to the season, any two of four clubs able to clinch Champions League spots on the final day, with Andy Gillespie's Fiorentina stealing fourth at the last.

Elsewhere in A, Pedro Nervio was fired for game exploitation and dismissed from the clan, without him Pisa finished second, while Mike Pauwels resigned from Monza when the season had barely begun, later taking over at Atalanta in B. Kim Smedegård struggled defensively at Avellino and finished 17th, while reaching the Cup semis. Stuart Abrey was also fired for game exploitation, and was forced to drop down a division, from Inter to Palermo.

Elsewhere in B, Jonas Christensen secured promotion to A with Siena through the playoffs, storming the final, and Andy Fallon finished a strong 12th, after returning Novara to B.

In Serie C/A Davie Milligan received his marching order from Reggiana, after his yo-yo three seasons in charge, and is now rebuilding at Cremonese, while Sean Black returned to the clan, after over a year away, and immediately secured the promotion of Perugia to B through the playoffs, after taking over after the January window.

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My end of season table, having come in around 14 points behind top spot I reckon we did okay to put the pressure on the long time leaders.

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The star of the show, my two star goal machine his form was quite unreal, and he is my player of the season.

I now venture into B with a squad not fit for this division, the club off the park is actually in good shape, however that's all good but what we need to build is a team worthy of holding their own in B, maybe even pushing on and grabbing a playoff spot you never know.

Till next time :thup:

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After such an incredible season, it deserves a post worthy. If you can't be bothered reading it, there's a TL;DR at the end!

END-SEASON REVIEW (2021/22)

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SUMMER WINDOW

JULY 1

Out: Michal Cizek (Empoli £3m), Ze Paulo (free)

Cizek was one the crop of promising Czech youngsters I bought a few seasons ago, of which only Popelka has become a fixture in my side. Cizek showed promise in his early forays, but last season struggled when given the chance, one match-winning performance aside. Allied to the fact he hadn't developed his attributes, he was sold to Serie B Empoli for a £1m profit, and was top scorer in B. Ze Paulo was a short-term midfield solution signed in January and had now served his purpose.

JULY 3

In: Walter Osvaldo (San Lorenzo £6m)

The previous summer it was a toss-up between this guy and Dudé for my striker option. I plumped for Dudé, but now I needed a striker to replace Cizek, and with this guy still available, I decided to take the plunge on his excellent finishing and physicals.

JULY 5

In: Vojtech Kubista (Marseille £4m)

With my change in formation working well in the latter half of last season with players playing on the wings unsuited to that position, I needed to invest heavily in 'defensive' wingers. Now Kubista doesn't come under the role of traditional winger, but with good all-round stats, and superb physicals, possessing great long throws and able to play in the centre of midfield too, this was a no-brainer at this price.

JULY 6

In: Adama Traoré (Arsenal 12.5m)

Out: Ladislav Bohac (Avellino loan)

Adama Traoré was another winger signed as I committed to my new formation. Superb pace and strength allied to good technical attributes, able to play both sides, with excellent PPMs, this was a bargain, signed for less than his value. Ladislav Bohac was part of the 'Czech Bunch' and is bizarrely low star-rated, but Kim was only too happy to take him on-board at Avellino, and I was only too happy for him to gather more experience.

JULY 8

In: Thierry Ambrose (Man City £4.9m)

I had Ambrose on loan two seasons previous, where he impressed briefly before getting injured. With him available at such a cheap price (knowing how his value can grow), and with Ongenda on the way out, this was another no-brainer deal. I was actually surprised I snagged him, as some big clubs were in also, his pace and finishing invaluable. His PPM of 'looking for pass instead of attempting to score' was alleviated by myself a little by re-training him to 'hit first-time shots'.

JULY 11

Out: Hervin Ongenda (West Ham £15m)

I had bought Ongenda for £6m way back in Serie B, with the 'Tom Cleverley windfall', but it took him a full year to bed in, scoring just two goals in that time. Once he did so, he was very effective however, giving me two 20 goal, 20 assist seasons, totalling 53 league goals for me. But when West Ham offered £15m up front, combined with the Ambrose deal, I couldn't say no. His effectiveness had also waned with the new formation.

JULY 15

In: Sinisa Zgela (£8m Pisa)

Zgela is a Croatian winger who Pedro and AndyG had fought over back when he was 18, and with Pedro moving in the opposite direction to me (wingers to wingbacks), there was no place for Zgela, and I took the plunge, in a deal good for both parties, with me paying way above his value, but him possessing excellent potential.

JULY 22

In: Derek Hughes (Nottm Forrest loan)

Out: Srdjan Mijailovic (Real Madrid £7.5m)

Derek Hughes was signed as a fifth choice and promising centre-back who I could take a look at over an extended period of time. Mijailovic was being forced out due to the formation change. He is a one-trick defensive pony, a very good one-trick pony, but nonetheless, I needed a little more flexibility and I was over-subscribed in midfield. He was frustrating me however, turning down Milan, Villareal and San Marino, and I was beginning to think I wouldn't be able to sell him at all, never mind get a decent fee. However, it paid off for him, and me, as Real came in with a good offer, matching Milan's, and he got £170k pw (from £25k pw)! I had signed him on a free four seasons previous. Best agent ever. He promptly was placed in the Castilla squad!

AUGUST 19

Out: Ezequiel Rescaldani (Napoli £34m)

At this point, my transfer dealings were over. I hadn't strengthened my back line as much as I hoped to but I was fairly satisfied. However, my plans were changed when Napoli made an offer I really couldn't refuse. 'Resca' was my best striker, but had turned 29 in the summer, so I couldn't turn down this kind of cash. I signed him for £4.5m four years previous and he had scored 71 league goals, three of those seasons above the 20 goal mark.

AUGUST 23

In: Helder Penetra (PSG £28m)

I decided to reinvest the money from Rescaldani into the defence first. After being knocked back from several targets, I bid for Penetra on the off-chance he was available, after PSG signed one of my DC targets called Wagner. To my surprise he was available, one of the best young DCs in the world. Not exactly blessed with technical skill mind, I had been chasing him since his days at Sporting Lisbon, who PSG bought him off for £22.5m two years previous.

AUGUST 31

Out: Sandy Walsh (Augsburg £10m)

Walsh I signed from Ajax two seasons previous for £9m, and he had been an excellent player for me at right-back. With my move to 3-4-3 however, there was no place for him, with Penetra coming in, as he was too short to play centre-back and not technically gifted enough to be retrained as a defensive winger. A real shame, one of my favourite players.

NB: I had meant to sign a striker to replace Rescaldani, but I failed to get the paperwork done in time for Marcão from Benfica (who would score 30 in a breakthrough year for him), so would have to be one striker light until January.

FIRST HALF SEASON

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As you can see, mainly positive results. A few too many draws early on, especially in the Champions League where we were handed a stupidly hard group. Our inability to put away CSKA in the first game and Schalke in our second match with them cost us, as Chelsea capitalised on every half mistake we made too. The tonking of CSKA in the last game at least gave us the Europa League consolation. In the league I was fuming we weren't top earlier, especially after we lost to a San Marino penalty, after they played awfully, with us not much sharper. But by the halfway point of the season we were on top of the pile, despite having two men sent off in a defeat versus title rivals Pisa, straight after beating Juventus. Our goal scoring prowess was really shining through, hitting 8 teams for four or more goals, including that 8-1 versus Lazio. Our defensive frailties were exposed in games versus Fiorentina and Chelsea though, and there wasn't exactly a glut of clean sheets., something that had to be fixed, with better personnel or a slight shift in tactics.

WINTER WINDOW

JANUARY 2

In: Kurt Zouma (Barcelona £27.5m), Remigio Ramirez (Fiorentina £25m)

Out: Carlos André (Milan £6m)

After the first part of the season, I still felt the centre-back positions needed strengthening, with the option of Sviatchenko or André, alongside Penetra and Bianchetti, not satisfying. To answer this, I turned to Kurt Zouma, for big bucks, and sold Carlos André, who I had signed two years previous for £10.5m, an arduous process that was too. I retrained him to centre-back from right-back, but he never really performed, despite excellent physicals, and is one of my semi-failures in the market. In the previous window I had tried to sign Marcão from Benfica as my fifth striking option, but he signed a new contract, and I decided to look closer to home. Remigio Ramirez was joint highest scorer in the league at the halfway stage, having transferred to Fiorentina from Napoli for just £9.5m last January, a deal I was gutted to miss out on. So now I needed a new striker, I decided he was still worth paying £25m for as proven Serie A talent, over foreign promise for £20m such as Marcão.

JANUARY 4

Out: Bjorn Engels (Torino £2m)

Now on to one of my real failures in the market. Three seasons ago I signed him for £9.5m and soon as I signed him knew I had overpaid by around £3-4m. Tall and aggressive, he never really improved his defensive attributes, probably because I never really trusted him, and therefore didn't get the games required to improve.

JANUARY 5

Out: Dudé (Man Utd £40m)

And back to one of my big successes in the market. I signed striker Dudé for £10.5m 18 months previous, and spent much of the first half of the season injured, including losing three pace and one acceleration attributes after straining his knee ligaments, a bizarre occurrence. He remained fairly effective thanks to his movement and his finishing, but I was very surprised when Man Utd came in and activated his £40m release clause. I was more than surprised, I was delighted! After all, this was a player who was now my fifth choice striker!

JANUARY 8

In: Alexandru Tudorie (Real Madrid £7m), Luis Gustavo (Pisa loan)

Out: Petr Pokorny (Cagliari loan)

And to replace Dudé I turned to Real Madrid and the Romanian target man, Alexandru Tudorie who was valued at £14m but transfer listed at just £7m. Despite his hefty wages, I decided to go for him, betting on his value being much higher than that, even if he wasn't effective, by the end of the season. To bolster midfield I turned to Luis Gustavo on loan, to add depth and numbers rather than truly challenge for starts. Petr Pokorny was on his way out, on loan again, another member of that 'Czech Bunch'. He hasn't really developed like I hoped, but again needs games and still has time.

NB: Eighteen months ago my strikeforce consisted of Michael Cizek, Angel Correa, Hervin Ongenda, Dudé and Ezequiel Rescaldani, a quintet that cost me £31.5m in total. They were sold for £122m in total. The current quintet cost me £53m in total, for the same, if not better, output, a £69m profit. In theory, my current quintet cost negative £37.5m then. #notbad

JANUARY 9

In: Marco Asensio (Man Utd loan)

I was really using the loan system to bolster my squad, and Asensio, who can play left wing or playmaker, was another one those options, having been on the transfer list at Man Utd for as long as I can remember.

JANUARY 14

In: Simone Scuffet (Udinese £25m)

This was a luxury signing, made possible by Manchester United's ludicrous splashing of the cash on Dudé. Scuffet doesn't need much introduction, he was better than my current incumbent, Osman Hadzikic, and as such I signed him, having not been fully satisfied with this position for a while. A bonus is that he is home-grown.

JANUARY 20

Out: Osman Hadzikic (Sampdoria loan)

Naturally, Hadzikic had to be moved on following Scuffet's signing, but surprisingly no-one wanted to sign him permanently, so off on loan he went instead.

JANUARY 25

In: Martin Kovar (£1m Jablonec), Hrvoje Krncevic (Hajduk free)

Two cheap youngsters, both midfielders, signed on the off-chance that they will turn out well.

SECOND HALF SEASON

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This was more like it; just seven non-greens, two of which in second legs of ties sealed in the first leg. Frustrating though was the loss to San Marino who, after defeating me in the Cup quarter-final again, went on to win the whole Cup. Again. This was my own fault for playing too aggressively, and my strategy became more reserved as the second half of the season wore on. I know that's difficult to believe, considering our results, but it really did! In this half we hit 13 teams for four or more, including two eight-goal hauls in the league and a six-goal mauling of Bayern Munich. We really hit form after demolishing San Marino, keeping seven clean sheets in ten games, despite that blip against Spezia. By the time this run of clean sheets came to an end, we had finally shaken off Pisa in the race for the title, who had been within four points since Christmas, a ridiculous state of affairs, considering I had a 75% win ratio! As it was, we won the league by a country mile, hitting more than 120 goals and scoring 92 points.

In the Europa League it was easy progress between Munich and Milan, but we had a trio of crazy games versus AC. First up, we won 5-2 in the first leg of the Europa League semis, their ridiculous attack keeping them in the hunt (Fierro and a beastly regen named Mputu), before what seems like a stale normal 1-1 draw in the league followed. That game was anything but, as their keeper scored a 9.4 (without an assist) after saving over 25 of my shots, including six or seven clear cut chances. They also took the lead in the 86th minute, and I thought 'typical, utterly batter them and get beat', but my team surprised me once more, with a 92nd minute goal, one that their keeper couldn't do anything about. Then the icing on the cake was the crazy 4-4 draw in the return leg of the Europa League, as they took 2-0, 3-1 and 4-2 leads, giving me a heart attack. Osvaldo saved the day however, scoring all four of our goals to grab a 4-4, 9-6 on aggregate!

Three particularly sweet moments were 1) beating Juventus and sealing the title at the same time, ending their decade-long dominance over Serie A, and then 2) beating Pisa in their own backyard to celebrate, including leaving out a few rested players, my closest challengers for the title, and 3) destroying Galatasary in the Europa League final, despite a semi-wobble in the middle part of the match at 2-1, as Ferati put the icing on his vintage cake of a season by scoring four.

PLAYER PERFORMANCES

Main players only (rating, goals/assists)

DEFENCE

Matteo Bianchetti (7.38, 17/2), Helder Penetra (7.20, 3/3), Kurt Zouma (7.20, 3/0), Simone Scuffet (7.14), Erik Sviatchenko (7.05, 3/0)

The defence really struggled in the first half of the season, and indeed until the end of February, but once Zouma and Scuffet bedded in and we played a little more conservatively the defence was brilliant. Add to this the bonus of my captain Bianchetti scoring 17 goals (!), at least half of these rebounds. When I signed him for £2.5m several seasons ago, purely based on two years of outstanding defensive stats in the league at lowly Empoli, I never dreamed he would be the captain to lift my first Serie A.

CENTRAL MIDFIELD

Tomas Popelka (7.40, 1/3), Lorenzo Crisetig (7.24, 2/2), Youri Tielemans (7.16, 2/9), Marius Lundemo (6.65, 0/1)

Popelka did fantastically well to come back from a broken leg, and other small niggles, to perform so well for me. As the playmaker, he was often the 'second assister', finding players on the wing or edge of the box well, and always showing for the ball while being defensively solid. Less defensively solid but still a good performer was Tielemans, though it has taken three years to extract this kind of season from him. He bore all playmaking responsibility while Popelka recovered and he coped well, his set-piece deliveries especially dangerous. Crisetig was played in the more reserved role in midfield and had his best season yet for us, rarely putting a foot wrong. It was a season horribilis for club icon Lundemo however, as he endured his worst season of eight at the club, immediately following his best! No matter which role I played him in he just didn't perform and eventually griped about the lack of playing time.

WINGERS

Adama Traoré (7.58, 8/13), Vojtech Kubista (7.40, 0/10), Sinisa Zgela (7.30, 3/10)

Traoré ran riot all season. Early on he was forced into the left midfield role, due to Kubista's hot form and Zgela's bedding in, which affected the team shape as he would cut inside constantly on his preferred right foot. This was just something I had to cope with, but just before Kubista sustained a serious injury around February, Zgela had bedded in, and the twin-threat of Traoré down the right and Zgela down the left, who is a natural left-footer, was too much for most teams. The shape of the team improved immeasurably and so did the form. Kubista had an excellent start to the season, his physicality and long throws causing all kinds of problems for opposing teams. Here's hoping the serious injury won't ruin him.

STRIKERS

Arianit Ferati (7.80, 29/38), Walter Osvaldo (7.58, 44/11), Remigio Ramirez (7.46, 17/10), Thierry Ambrose (7.42 (24/20)

Instead of a description, I will simply leave these pictures of the four main strikers' records this season:

Arianit Ferati (one hat-trick, one double-brace)

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Walter Osvaldo (four hat-tricks, one double-brace)

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Remigio Ramirez (one hat-trick, one quintuple)

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Thierry Ambrose (one hat-trick, one double-brace)

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I think the above striker records are ample final word on this season.

TL;DR

Spent lots of money. Received lots of money. Scored lots of goals. Won Serie A and Europa League at a canter.

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Davie-former reggiana manager well things didnt go to plan for me the othere week i had net problems on

tuesday and wednesday and i missed the start of the season infact i missed the 1st 19 games my ass

man played a 451 defensive formation and it didnt work whatsoever. My net was back up and running

for monday but i only managed to play 1 game before i got the sack

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So i got the boot from reggiana but insted of wasting my profile and the badges i have picked up i

applied for another job in Lega pro and managed to get it my new side is

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Unione Sportiva Cremonese is an Italian football club, based in Cremona. The club was founded in 1903. Cremonese played the 2005/2006 season in Serie B, having won and were therefore relegated to Serie C1 for 2006/07. It currently plays in Lega Pro Prima Divisione.

Their last appearance in Serie A was in 1996.

Cremonese won the Anglo-Italian Cup in 1992/93, beating English club Derby County in the final at Wembley Stadium.

Some of the famous players who played for Cremonese include Gianluca Vialli, Władysław Żmuda, Anders Limpar, Giuseppe Favalli, John Aloisi and Enrico Chiesa.

History

Cremonese was in Serie A in its first season (1929–30) but entered a long period of decline, languishing in the lower leagues before the late 1970s. By 1984 they had achieved promotion to Serie A, with one-year spells in 1984–85, 1989–90 and 1991–92.

Cremonese had a successful run in the 1992/93 Anglo-Italian Cup, beating Bari 4-1 in the semi-final, and Derby County 3-1 in the final at the old Wembley Stadium: Cremonese's scorers were Corrado Verdelli, Riccardo Maspero and Andrea Tentoni, with Derby's goal scored by Marco Gabbiadini.

Under Luigi Simoni, Cremonese returned to Serie A in 1993. With a side containing quality in the form of defenders Luigi Gualco and Corrado Verdelli, midfield playmaker Riccardo Maspero and forwards Andrea Tentoni and Matjaž Florijančič, Cremonese held their own in Serie A with a highly respectable 10th place finish in 1993–94 but would be relegated in 1996.

Relegation resulted in the decline of the club, plummeting to Serie C2 by 2000 before achieving successive promotions back to Serie B by 2005. Giovanni Dall'Igna, another defender from the Serie A years, has since returned to the club. However, Cremonese were relegated to Serie C1 in the 2005/2006 season. Cremonese have tried to return to Serie B since: their best attempt was in the 2009/10 season, when they were beaten by Varese in the promotion play-off final (2-1 on aggregate).

Team kits

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Stadium

Stadio Giovanni Zini is a football stadium in Cremona, Italy. It is currently the home of U.S. Cremonese. The stadium was built in 1929 and holds 20,641

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Well theres my new side i took charge of them 22 games into the season and was asked to get a middle table finish by the board in which i did

as for the upcoming season i will try and get into a playoff place buy yet again i have a side with no money whatsoever the budget is 18k but am used

to this now .

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Alessandro Jacobo - San Marino Calcio

Serie A - 3rd Position

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I briefly touched on my 'treading-water' visions for the clubs future in my last post, and this was something I really believed would come to fruition. My struggles in the transfer market were on view for all to see, as my side barely improved from last season, with the exception of Neneca, my star striker (more on that in another post). In the grand scheme of things though, it was a great season. Yes it went down to the wire, but thankfully, both me and AndyG both qualified for the Champions League. I am hopeful that this will provide increased competition, after the departure of Pedro.

The season itself began extremely strongly and I could barely believe what I was witnessing at times. We topped the table for much of the first half, playing some incredibly good football - a mixture of possession football (in an attempt to transform an average back line into a water-tight unit) and a handful of searing counter attacks (a nod to my FM12 'one-touch' passing style that opened up even the best of defences). Teams were bamboozled by our displays, as we changed up our 'team instructions' to suit the style of play/formation we were facing. By the time the AI had figured out how we were set up for that game, we were keeping the ball and therefore nullifying their chances as they rampaged forward. The fact that I had a back 5, with 3 Centre-backs made this all possible. It was the formation that I had used to propel The Titani up the leagues in rapid fashion.

The second half of the season was a completely different story, however. The narrative changed, and Ryan's Pro Vercelli began to take off. Blitzing his opponents by 3 or 4 goal margins became the norm, as we slipped down the table, victims of our own early success. I spent the most part of the second half of the season pondering on what could have possibly gone wrong. This wasn't just 'one of those seasons', but a trend that needed bucking. The last 3 seasons had seen us challenging, before falling by the wayside, scrabbling to nick a European place. Below, I list what I believe are the three main symptoms that need addressing.

1. 5212 formation - too conservative when opposition teams sit back. Great on the counter attack, as teams always attack the small club that is San Marino, but not so good when they sit back once they realise that we sit a-top the Serie A tree. I have played around with team instructions, mentality and shape within this formation, which resulted in minimal success. We would perform strongly in the next couple of games, before the opposition worked us out and shut us down. Even on an Attacking mentality, we still struggled, as it looked as though we had no players forward at times, when the ball was played directly to one of the Centre-Forwards. This no doubt had something to do with the play-roles I had selected as well, but it did seem as though I was trying to play attacking football with a formation that had it's limitations in that regard. That's not to say it wasn't a success, it really was. 3rd position and the Italian Cup is an excellent season, but I need to push this side to their absolute limits if I want to chase down Pro Vercelli.

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2. Perspective - After sitting at the top of the league for half of the season, it does heighten your expectations. Should we have really been there? No, of course not. This is San Marino, with the 17th largest wage budget in the entire league, a 7000 seater stadium and (if we are lucky) a seasonal transfer budget of no more than £12m. We had over-achieved thus far, and I should have taken that into account. Of course teams were going to sit back after we'd played them once, they weren't going to make the same mistake twice. More fool me for expecting that to happen. My goal was a top 4 finish and subsequent qualification to the Champions League and we managed that with added extras.

3. Counter Attacking system - Not conducive to the footballing environment AI teams insist on playing. Teams that sit back hold all the cards when playing us, as we do not get enough men in the box. Our risk free system needs changing if we are to really push this team to it's limits. That doesn't mean we need to switch to 'overload', or 'control', but rather, consider how the players move when we have the ball. If the opposition are sitting back, it's our job to pull them out of position with solid off the ball movement and some clever build up play. What I am keen to avoid, is the gung-ho tactics that pile everyman and his dog forward, in the hope that we stumble into the oppositions box and nick a goal. Being relatively weak at the back means we have to be careful. Unfortunately, I do not have the finances to suitable strengthen here (yet). I think I have settled on a system that gets the best of both worlds, but that will no doubt change depending on how the opposition set up.

Conclusion (in theory)

After testing a few variants of my 5212, I ended up taking a leaf out of Ryan's book, and pushed my Wing-Backs into Wide Midfielder positions. I had really considered switching to another formation that I have had success with over the last few FM's, but that meant completely changing squad personnel. A task that would set me back a few seasons. So, I now have a 3412 formation to add to my armoury. In theory, this should play in exactly the same way that the 5212 does, with the exception of the Wing-backs, who will play higher up the pitch and have more influence in the oppositions half. I have yet to decide on the roles I want to use, mainly because I have big plans during the Summer window and I am hoping to bring in a few 'leading A' players.

I am very wary of the back 3 and their limited capabilities. None of them are particularly quick, technical or even aerially strong. My long term plans are to find a Libero type, in the support role (as the attacking role does not work as it should). It could be argued that the 'support' role doesn't work either, but the sort of football I want my Libero to play, is that of a ball-playing defender who isn't scared of stepping up into the Defensive Midfielders position and playing some delightfully clever passes. I am not too interested in him rampaging into the oppositions half and leathering shots from outside the box, as this is not productive to how I play. I want my 'Libero' (for want of a better word) to be the man to take the ball out of defence - the main link to the midfield. Without the ball, I want him to act like a 'Sweeper' and be the last man standing, sweeping up any long balls, or counter attacking through balls. In truth though, this is all theory. I have an idea of how this will play out in game, but there will no doubt be snags. Thankfully, I am now on my Holidays and have just under two weeks to solidify my vision into a reality.

Italian Cup - Winners!

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Our second Italian Cup win in FM2015 and we did it in some style. Yes, it was Genoa in the final, but we performed admirably and took them apart. The 4-0 victory flattered no-one as we were clinical in front of goal and refused Genoa any real chance. The real highlight of the Cup run, was knocking out Ryan's conquering Pro Vercelli. Admittedly, they hadn't quite found their lethal form, but they were still scoring bucket loads, and to win 4-2 at his ground was a great achievement. It should be noted, that it was my assman in control of that game, but he played with my team selection and tactic, of which I had developed in an attempt to exploit Ryan's tactical weaknesses. Unfortunately, Ryan changed his tactical instructions soon after this game and completely nullified me in our next meeting in the league.

Champions League/Europa League - There's always next year

Nothing to write home about here. After finishing 4th last season, we were knocked out of the Champions League at the qualifying stage. We then proceeded into the Europa League, where we were knocked out by QPR in the First Knockout Round. I have never been a manger that succeeds in Europe, with just 2 Champions League wins in 56 season from FM12 - FM15. I honestly have no idea why this is, perhaps I am simply too conservative, but from early interpretation of the games in Europe, it seems like a much harder competition to previous versions. I am hoping it resembles real life, with top managers and teams playing cagey football and looking to win the tie in the home leg, but time will tell.

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We did it! We're going up!

So, Siena are in Serie A! But before we got to that, let's talk a bit about the regular season... When the season started, I was out on St. Patrick's Day when the first games were played.

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In the first two cup games, I was in charge, and it was against fairly easy opponents, but in the first 6 league games, my assistant manager handled the games - Which resulted in 2 points...!

I then came back... and we started racking up the points!

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So with 4 games left, we were lying in second place... Due to the close league, second place was the last automatic promotion spot, so we just had to hang on to that, and we would be in A!

But then...

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4 defeats in a row...! And we dropped down to a sixth spot... But despite having bottled that second place, I was still satisfied with the season... We were predicted a mid-table finish, and the board was aiming for the same, while my goals were a PO spot, which the sixth spot secured us...

However, I was pretty convinced that the first round of the PO would be our only round... We were up against Bologna in a one-legged match...

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We had control of the game, but it a red card towards the end got my nerves going...

The next round gave us Bari - a team I historically have had problems against... And a 1 - 1 in the first leg at home meant we had to go on the offence in the away leg... It went above my expectations, and we knocked them out with a 3 - 0 away win...

That meant Verona in what looked like a tough final... But... After two games, we came out with a 7 - 2 aggregate win and we were up!

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So now we're in A!

We didn't exactly break any records with our play during the season, and it was actually a fairly average season on most accounts. A goal average of 1.9 per game, which was a bit below our normal average, and 1.4 conceeded per game...

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So for our first season in A, the board have given me a transfer budget of 11 million and a wage budget of 156K... The current squad is fairly bloated, and I'll be looking to sell quite a few of my fringe players, since they don't have the quality for A anyway... Unfortunately, I also made a few transfers during the final half of the season under the impression, that I would still be in B in the next season...

To get the squad ready for A, I'll be looking to sign either a new GK or renewing the contract of Lecomte, who's been my first choice the past couple of seasons...

I'll be looking to then strengthen my central defence with a new first-choice DC, my midfield with a new first-choice MC with high vision and either a new first-choice striker or a young substitute...

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PGC: The Italian Job FM15

It's all gone wrong for Ali. No doubt Turner will be giving his account of events on how this happened. :D

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PGC: The Italian Job FM15

It's all gone wrong for Ali. No doubt Turner will be giving his account of events on how this happened. :D

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A schoolboy error on my part has left me out of a job. Sad times at San Marino as the fans and the board mourn their most successful manager to date. :lol: A legend at the club, the rumours are that no human manager dares step into my shoes in the fear that they will not live up to the standards set. ;)

Seriously though, I have no idea what the future holds. A good club with a strong fan base would be ideal, a fallen giant like Roma or Inter Milan perhaps. Maybe even Spezia, who are languishing in the bottom half. Perhaps I'm aiming too high? Who knows. My rep is listed as 'Continental', so hopefully that counts for something. In truth, I was hoping to be a one club man on FM15, something I haven't managed since FM12, but there is nothing that can be done now. If it could be done, we would have reloaded to the previous save, but unfortunately, said previous save was completed just after my 'resignation'. We live by our mistakes?

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AndyF - Novara

It's the halfway stage and we sit in a fantastic position 12pts clear at the top of the tree, it could be 15pts but we succumbed to a dire 4-0 defeat away to Verona on the final gameday of the week.

At the end of July I was offered a player on loan who i had been chasing in previous seasons with Ryan signing Cirelli after leaving San Marino on a free transfer. With Prahic hitting 47 goals in the previous 2 seasons I was in too minds whether to sign him as i wanted Prahic to continue as my number one striker and rightly so. Then the club took a call from Pro V's manager Callan in which he stated that Cirelli can move without being a first team regular or even on a rotation basis, with this news i was straight in with an offer and it was truly accepted.

What a signing it has turned out to be looking back in hindsight as Prahic got injured in the 4th game of the season after suffering a broken ankle (putting him out for 3 months) in the game versus Atlanta when Lino Davolis's two footed challenge went unpunished by the referee.

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With 16 goals in 22 games his goal ratio is 1 every 110 minutes which I'm very pleased about even thou its not the best in the league, he currently sits top of the goal scoring charts, games won, average rating and is in the top 10 for assists in the player stats. Prahic has now recovered from his injury and even thou Cirelli has been in outstanding form he'll still face a fight to keep his place in the side as I keep faith with the Croatian but Karlo know's hell soon be a bench warmer if he don't perform to the expected standards.

The records are there to be broken this year and the team will be looking to continue our great run of form and not dwell on the Verona result, which ended our 16 game unbeaten run, and take the top spot because to be fair with the lead we have we should be picking up another title this year even with the youngest team in the league.

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Until Next Time......

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Forza Viola

What a season so far for the Fiorentina faithfull, When they appointed Gillespie at the end of last season the club was in a real mess, shocking finances millions of debt and a squad punching above its weight in 5th spot. After a great run in the final games the manager surpassed expectations and by finishing in 4th place gave the club a shot at the millions available in the champions league.

With no money available and the manager clearing 250k aweek off the wage bill to steady the ship new signings were going to be difficult. Man U were already sniffing around superstar striker Maric but when Italian champions Pro Vercelli came in with a 35 million pound offer His time was over at Fiorentina. With Gillespie receiving a whopping 4.8 million off this huge fee he went to work bringing in loan players and strengthening the squad with European football and a tough serie A campaign ahead.

David Monteleone

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Alexander Milosavlejevic

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Monteleone has proved himself too be a great signing, strong at the back and a real threat from set - pieces while Milosavlejevic has filled the void left by Marics departure and De Lucas's injury. Its hard to single out specific players too be fair, the whole team really has bought into Gillespies vision. They are strong in the tackle work hard for each other and aim too force other teams into mistakes, taking advantage quickly and effectively. The teams playing a very unfashionable 4 4 2 but its not quite that simple sometimes looking more like a 4 2 4 in attack, and the defence has carried on from last season with some really outstanding performances. The proof is in the results and a 3 -0 demolition of then top Napoli really signalled to the rest off Italy that Fiorentina meant business. A rather lucky 1 - 0 win away at Pro Vercelli mayby wasn't the best performance but the game and result summed up everything Gillespie has the team doing, hard work ,closing down , making the opposition work for evey chance in front of goal and the win kept the momentum going into the game against San Marino where Fiorentina romped home to a 4 - 0 win.

Arguably the performance of the season was a very hard fought win over Barcelona at home, this was summed up by the rather crazy return leg which finished 8 - 5 too the Catalan giants. By beating Galatasaray and losing away on the last day with qualification already guaranteed Fiorentina finishing a close second too table topping Basle leaving Barca and Galatasaray facing early exits from Europes premier competition.

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As the fixtures show its been a heavy pace with only 2 defeats in the league at this the half way point. The team despite qualifying in there champions league group, did struggle at points especially away from home. The best performances have came against the bigger teams and the team has struggled against the so called lesser teams, this will need to be worked on if the team is to continue picking up points in the second half of the season.

It remains to be seen what the second half of the season will bring for Gillespie, but a new contract must be on the horizon he is quickly becoming a fans favourite and despite being top at the moment a champions league finish would surely be a huge success for the manager and the club

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To say our form was on and off would be an understatement, but we end the season with our heads held high in a very decent 9th position only 1 point outside the playoffs.

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Being Predicted 19th and not much really expected of us the board were pretty delighted with this years effort.

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I have this little beauty coming in for the next season, I am hoping he can continue to improve and lead us onto promotion next year.

Summer window update

Well its been a busy one for us I wouldn't say I am over the moon at the moment but things are certainly better, we have secured at least a better defence and more numbers in the squad to deal with them injuries that come around oh so often in B, my hope is to end the window on a high possibly securing one or two more players in the one or two spots I am lacking.

Hopes for this season ?

Last year we did well to get into 9th place with practically the same back four as we had in C, the team lacked in depth and quality, the mistakes were comical at times and we were just way to inconsistent.

I hope this year that our team will strive on and at least finish inside the top 5 that is my personal goal, the board want mid table and my media prediction is 16th, but with my budget and numbers now I fully believe that a top 5 finish is a real possibility.

The other lot.

Davie done a Davie and bottled it when he got near the end and now he has spent the last few days spewing at his playoff loss :D.

Ryan as per usual had a good season without doubt the man to beat at the moment, and he will be very keen to reclaim his crown.

Gilly aka party boy from Jackass now finds himself in a very good side going very well I expect him to push hard for that title.

Jonas handled his stint in A very well to be fair and now that he has spent a fair bit this window I think there is a lot to come from his Siena side.

Stu had a season like myself good one week crap the next game to game managing a different side but now that he has had more time at Palermo he will show what he is about.

Ali now at Roma after his blunder :D will once again no doubt show the clan he is a top manager.

Andy had a great season with Novara his attack was leathal and his all round play all season was top notch now he has a job on in A we shall see how it goes.

Good season lads :applause:

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What a finish to the season, the mighty Viola were in the title race right to the end and after winning there last 3 games of the season managed to secure 2nd place in the league, finishing a point ahead of last seasons champions Pro Vercelli. In a stunning season where Gillespie and his revolutionary 4 4 2 system took serie A by storm the team took some huge scalps and if it wasn't for 2 very poor games against San Marino and Spezia the team would have been crowned champions.

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Despite goalscoring proving difficult in the early part of the season Fiorentina managed a well above average 75 goals in the league. After selling last seasons top scorer for 35 million to Pro Vercelli Gillespie brought in striker Alesander Milosaljevic and he repayed his faith with 22 league goals, finishing joint top goalscorer in serie A.

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With the so called bigger teams struggling to cope with Fiorentinas new tactics and especially the mixture of pace and power up front. The team had some huge results during the season most notable was the 4 nil demolition of Napoli and the even more outstanding 3 nil home win over last seasons champions Pro Vercelli. This performance included a wonder goal from the Violas super star Serbian striker but the real heroes were the defence, who didn't give the opposition a sniff at goal all game so frustrated was there manager Ryan Callen that he stormed out off his dug out with ten minutes still to play refusing to speak to the press for a number of days.

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This by no means was the only team to suffer at the hands off one of the meanest defences in Italy, Gillespie has carried on from the hard work put in place last season and built his team from the back with a solid back line and goalkeeper stopping the other team playing and limiting there time on the ball, with most of the opposition attacks ending in long pointless shots at goal due too the difficulty involved in getting through the solid Fiorentina back line.

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Something Gillespie takes great pride in is the Italian Spine running through the team he feels it contributes to the togerthness and solidity the team shows on and off the pitch, but also knows how much pride the fans take in having youth products come through into the first team and having current internationals playing for Fiorentina.

The fans are really taking to Biongiovanni who broke through from the reserve team when Gillespie took charge and despite his young age his pace has been ripping defences to shreds all season, he has formed a formidable partnership with Milosavljevic and the future looks bright for the Viola with these 2 now signed too long term contracts.

Biongiovanni

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The other player who has come through the youth ranks at Fiorentina is young defender Cappeletti, he played a big role this season and other than one poor game against Barca was rock solid and will surely see even more football this season, with his patience paying off and the manager saying he sees him as being a big part of the future of this club.

Cappeletti

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Its a huge summer ahead for Fiorentina, with finances improving will they be able to attract the top talent needed to make a title challenge ? who knows Gillespie seems up to the task and if he keeps getting the best performances he can from his young squad then it could be a very exciting season ahead.

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Alessandro Jacobo - Roma

Not much to say really. Applied for Roma after their manager was sacked for a poor season. A 9th place finish, which leaves them bereft of any European consolation, but gives me an opportunity to get my eye back in the game at a high level. I am honestly not sure what this season is going to hold. I was given a whopping £0 transfer budget, with my first task to trim the wage budget back by £200k p/w. Not a particularly hard challenge, as some of the older heads where on £90k and have been moved on to new pastures.

The first team squad was huge. I am talking around 30 players, which I have pruned down to a respectable 22 via loaning and transfer listing. This has given me around £5m to spend for the remainder of the window, although truth be told, I am not sure we will be buying anyone. The board expect Europa Qualification and the media expect 8th place. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't aiming for a Champions League place - 4th no doubt, behind Gilly's Fiorentina, Ryan's ProV and Juventus. However, I have a very makeshift squadwith some major retraining going on, so anything above 7th I would be satisfied with.

The first seasons at new clubs are never my strongest, having been sacked at Man City during FM13 after taking over with similar circumstances, as well as countless other initially mediocre seasons before and after. I'm hoping to buck the trend here though, and if truth be told, the only thing that could slow us down this season is the considerable lack of pace amongst my first 11. Kevin Strootman is my best player, and whilst he possesses excellent mental attributes, his physicals leave a lot to be desired. I'm hoping a more withdrawn role in Defensive Midfield will help secure our back three and not overly expose his obvious weaknesses. I have also decided on a similar approach for the other slower members of the squad, especially those who play further up field, but more on that once the season get started when I can fully assess how they are performing.

Pretty excited about the facilities at Roma. They boast a much bigger stadium than Marino ever did, a sizeable fan base as well as great training and youth facilities. The future looks rosy here.

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Well what can i say i finished 2nd in the table only losing 2 games drawing 15 was the problem but i only conceded 27 goals

in 38 games and scored 68 so i cant moan in that regard.

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So i went into the playoffs thinking i have a really good chance here where in the 1st round i play trapani which i won 3-1

and went through to the semi final. At this stage i come up against the 3rd placed team in my division salerntana (i beat them

twice in the league) the 1st leg was away and to my utter astonishment they wacked me 6-1 a proper thumping.

Now comes the home game and a could not see us doing anything and i thought correctly a 2-1 defeat leaving the score

8-2 on aggregate. I conceded 27 goals in 38 games then this rubbish happens 8 in two games it was that bad i was taken

away from the stadium by an ambulance i was in a state of shock.

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On to this season now and yet again i have a rubbish transfer budget of £3500 yes am not joking and my wage buget is 38k per

week.My aim is 2 win the league and go up as champions anything else i will be gutted not going through that playoff thing again :o

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So my first season in Serie A is officially over, and it's time to reflect on the past season and look towards the new...

When the season began, I had a lot of insecurities about my team... Sure, we had handled the PO of B without any difficulty, but looking at my past performances against Serie A sides, I knew we would have to step our game up, if we wanted to stay up.

As the transfer window progressed, I found that many of my players became unsettled, and a lot of the fringe players from B were on their way out, either on loans or on permanent deals.

I knew that I needed to strengthen all areas except for my GK, if we were to stand any chances, so in came 4 new strikers - 1 was a left-over from my end of the season signings, before I knew I was going to A. We also signed 3 new CB's and 3 MC's, 2 of which were only in on loan..

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Looking at the transfer overview, it's actually not a great picture of the deals, since many of the outgoing deals were loans, and many of the in-going deals were youth players signed through the trials at the academy, but something had gone wrong, so they all came at the end of the season...

From the above deals, these were the most interesting players:

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Most of my goals throughout the season came from Hodzic and Edmilson, while Blin started to gain some momentum in the final games... I'm a bit concerned, that we might be too dependent on Hodzic's form at the moment though, so I'm hoping other players will start contributing more in the new season.

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We did manage to get 10 points clear of relegation, and for our first season up, I was quite happy with that, although it really was a very difficult season...

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In the new season, we're still in the transfer window, but in the final 2 weeks though, so I'm not expecting many more deals from my own side... The current situation is that I've gone on a spending spree... The finances at the club are looking great, the board have granted improving the youth facilities, we're increasing our spending on youths, and we're getting a new stadium...

On to the transfers... I've spent a whopping 26.5M on new players this season... Which is a lot for my standards! I normally just get free players in and that's it... We've also let 10 players go - including my 1st and 2nd choice GK!

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Here's the most interesting players from the bunch:

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As you can see, it's a lot of young players, which is because I feel the core of the team is pretty much in place... I had to buy a new GK, and funnily enough, I wound up buying one of Ryan's former youths: Ferrero...

I'm also very excited about Luyten, my new 17 year old... He's a bit of a gamble at the price, and while he might not be ready for too much Serie A yet, I'm planning on giving him some appearances from the bench, and then take it from there...

So, my hopes for this season is as simple as this: I want to stay up!

I'm under no delusions regarding my team. I saw how difficult it was for us last season, and I'm expecting this season to be just as difficult. If my primary keeper gets injured, we're ****ed. If I get 2 injuries in MC, we're ****ed... So there's too many pieces that need to be on my side, before we have a good season...

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AndyF - Novara

After 2 seasons in Serie B we are into the top tier of Italian football after winning the league comfortably in the end by 9pts.

At times its wasn't as comfortable as it looked after reaching the end of January, after having lost only 3 games in the league, we found ourselves with an 11pt lead at the top of the table and firm favorites for the title. Then a 2-1 defeat at the hand of Seans Perugia in a game we dominated and to be fair should have picked up all 3pts, resulted in us going on a run where we only managed one win in the next 7 games picking up only 5 points in the process. With Monza picking up 14pts during this period our lead had now been whittled down to just 2pts.

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I'm not gonna lie I was getting nervous it was 'squeaky bum' time so after the defeat to Ancona I ordered the players in for extra training sessions and then locked myself in the office working on ways to turn this round. This seemed to pay off as 1 defeat in the final 8 games along with Monzas inability to keep up the form from mid season enabled us to pull away from our challengers and pick up our second title in 3 seasons.

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In the cup we managed to progress to the 1st Round unluckily losing to Roma going out on penalties, this after being up 2-0 with 30 minutes to go of normal time but on the plus side the club garnered some much needed funds with over £1M being bought into the Novara coffers.

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With the season over its was on to the end of season awards and with club being successful on the pitch it was no wonder the majority of the first XI where contenders for an award. Of course not everyone can win but those that did were Myself, Milutinovic, Miracoli and Vergouwen all picking up silverware. Even thou he didn't pick up an award this year a big mention must go to Gianluca Cirelli who whilst on loan from bitter rivals Pro Vercelli hit a club record 29 goals beating the clubs previous best of 27.

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So onto the new season and the aim is just to stay in Serie A and try and make into the 2nd Round of the cup something the club hasn't managed to do yet. Miracoli will be a big loss as he has left during this transfer window to join Sampdoria after they triggered his £5M minimum release clause.

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Until Next Time....

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Stuart - Palermo

After a shocking first half to the season there was a massive turn around after the winter break. We hit some form and pulled away from the bottom 3. We even started playing some nice football and with 6 games to go i found myself charging towards to the final playoff place. Our form was only 2nd to the outstanding Andy who we had to play in our final 6 games, I lost 2-1 at home to him but we was unlucky to lose with andys front line having that touch of class being the only difference in what was a end to end game. This was a blow to our playoff place, even with a outstanding 2-1 away win away to Monza we had left it to late as we just ran out of games.

So now the season is over with what do i take from my first season as manage of Palermo. First job was to keep as many of my loan as i could, i was able to keep all ut 2 but i have added some more loan to my side that are sure to help me along. There is little money here and the debt always seems to be hanging around us like a bad smell. The facebase is good with a 11,000 Avg and the ground itself is in good nick so thats a plus. There is work do to on the training ground and there is little in the way of youth but them that can wait till we are back in A.

There will be a full run down of the in's and out's at the club and the Genral info of my club.

Till then

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Its been an outstanding first half of the season for me. Sitting 3rd and 1 point off top leaves me with hope for the 2nd half of the season, With little money to spend in the winter window i will have go go with what i have go for the rest of the season. This is not really an issue as i have cover in all over the pitch. The board are more than happy with me and a new contract deal on wednesday shows the board are happy with the way things are going. I also got the debt down over the summer with the sale of some players making almost 3 million. Below is the busy i did over the summer.

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As i said the first half of the season has been great for me see is a how things have been going so far

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Like always i would like to go up as champions but i would settle for 2nd this season as the sooner i get out of this league the better. The playoffs are a minefield and i will try my hardest to keep out of that situation but if thats the way things go then so be it as the top 4 teams are so close to each other.

Well thats you upto date on a great week for me and Palermo.

More soon

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Fiorentina sack Gillespie

After last seasons 2nd place finish Fiorentina ruthlessly sacked manager Andy Gillespie. The board blamed his lack of set piece goals and the teams poor league position on the sacking. Gillespie has refused to speak to the media and remains a fans favourite at the club, with last seasons late challenge for the title Fiorentinas best finish in recent years.

Gillespies agent has said that he will be taking a few months off then will be looking for a job better suited to his style of football and hopefully with a club that matches his own ambitions as a manager.

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