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Busta - First well done, and second, as you suspected, the AFC Cup doesn't count towards the challenge, and there's nothing more to be achieved in Hong Kong, unless you wait however many years it would take for a Hong Kong side to enter the Champions League. (This wouldn't be a good idea, in my opinion).

The AFC thing is the international Asian Cup of Nations.

I thought you understood this, and were going for the AFC Cup as a reputation booster. which I think is not only a good, but also a necessary idea. earlier in the challenge somebody kicked arse in a similar small nation, and it didn't seem to result in decent job offers in larger nations, at which point he was sacked by his current employers for his lack of loyalty.

Hopefully the AFC Cup will earn you respect. I'd be surprised if it got you a job at Guangzhou / Jeonbuk / Seoul, but who knows? The results of your job search may be of immense interest to those who start the challenge in future. I think that winning the East Asia Nations Cup earned me some brownie points, which I threw away by signing too many players who ate too many brownies, some of which were special brownies from Amsterdam.

Supergord - Again, well done.

Don't you think Ajax can win the Champions League? If you're going to complete the challenge, you have to do it at some point. The CL is a bit of a lottery. having the group stage at the end makes it especially so, as (unless the game has a hidden seeding thing going on) you can be drawn against the strongest teams at any point. In my first few seasons, South Africa, and it's sides, seemed weak compared to other nations, but then Orlando Pirates developed into not only the best side in Africa, but one of the best sides in the world. This was unfortunate, because I was the manager of Kaiser Chiefs.

It can be tough when like you, (and me) the only thing left to win with your club is the continental Champions League. Once you go out of that, you're essentially just waiting for the next year. It is tempting to go elsewhere and win shiny new things. The league and cup won't be entirely boring though, because, if you don't win them, you might be sacked. (Probably not the FA Cup, but winning it can help shore you up).

Once you start doing better in the CL, you'll get more South African teams joining you. Hopefully last years champs have helped you out in the CL during what we will euphemistically call your gap year.

If I get sacked from Guangzhou (and I was 1 goal from going out at the group stage, which might well have resulted in my being sacked) then I'll probably go back to south Korea, but I have already won the league and cup there, so it will still be a potentially years or decades-long quest for the Champions League. I do feel the tempting call of Latin America, and given that I live in Asia in real life, I would at least like to live somewhere nice in the game. (On the bright side, at least I don't actually live in Guangzhou).

Oh well, this will be post 200, so no-one will ever read this anyway. I should have just congratulated you all in 200 and then done my Vico-babble in 201. Whoever thought we'd get to a page 3. Yay, us all.

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Oh, Arbee was #200.

Result.

:p Sorry

I have a short update.

After my season with Jomo in the premiership I resigned and struggled to get another position. I joined Swallows but quit after 2 weeks as I didn't really want to be there. I then took the job at the team bottom of the K League Classic Jeju. I managed to avoid relegation and finish 9th but most importantly I won the FA Cup granting me access to next seasons ACL!

The league season was random, hit and miss getting two wins losing two and was quite a challenge but I was unstoppable in the cup and beat Ulsan on penalties after a 1-1 draw. I'll be back at the end of next season with a proper season review of that one.

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Don't stop believing in Journey!

burtur's 2017/18 end of season report

FC_Metz_logo.svg.pngCosta%20Rica_zpswwvcicbc.png

FC Metz - Ligue 1 / Costa Rica - UNCAF

League Table | Positional Graph

FC Metz:

After my resignation at St. Raphaël I was hoping for a job at a decent club - a club that was at least a contender for European Qualification. There were several big job openings. PSG, Lyon, Toulouse and Lille all changed managers. I of course applied for all of them, along with a few decent jobs in Italy and was only considered to have an outside chance to land any of those jobs. As it turned out, I didn't even land an interview with any of them.

13 games in the manager of FC Metz left to take the reigns in Switzerland. FC Metz was flying in the league sitting in the 5th place at the time. I applied for the job even though I wasn't really excited for it. Weirdly, my former team was actually more reputable than FC Metz and I was really looking for a bigger job. However, the offered me the position. No transfer budget, a wage budget that was already used up by the former manager and a minimum expectation of a Europa League qualification. A tough ask with a team predicted to finish 14th by the media. I decided to take on the challenge.

As it turned out, the team was half decent, morale was high and the players instantly adapted to my tactics. In fact this season reminded me of the very first season with St. Raphaël. We were hard to beat and ground out wins with one goal margins. In the end we just managed to qualify for the Champions League after a really tight race with Bordeaux, Monaco and Rennais. A great achievement.

I was obviously ecstatic hoping for a decent transfer kitty to boost our chances next season. The squad needs some rebuilding, with a few key players over 35 years of age. That was not to be however as the board offered me the same wage budget and a transfer chest of 325k. Bitterly disappointing especially since the club made over 7m pounds during the season, I miss my old board :(.

I am still going to keep this position as we are after all in the Champions League and that can only help my profile. It will be no picnic though and my aim next season is to challenge for a Europa League spot.

Costa Rica:

I took the Costa Rica job with my eye on participating in the World Cup and trying for a win in Copa Centraamericana. I later found out that Copa Centraamericana is not a part of this challenge so this managerial stint is kind of redundant. As a result I don't spend much energy on Costa Rica. My ass.man picks the squad and takes control in friendlies. I just show up for the big games. I managed to steer the nation to the World Cup, without winning a game (Costa Rica was all but qualified when I took over) where we finished 3rd in a tough group with Germany, Columbia and Scotland. After the World Cup I was tempted to quit my post as in terms of this challenge managing Costa Rica isn't really "value adding". But with Copa Centroamericana to be held in the coming international breaks I decided to keep my job there and give that tournament a good go.

Roll on 2018/19.

Managerial career:

Season           Club                League        Pos       DC1         DC2      Continental        Other
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2014/15  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël  French National   3rd    7th round      n/a          n/a             n/a
2015/16  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël      Ligue 2       1st   11th round   3rd round       n/a             n/a
2016/17  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël      Ligue 1      14th   semi-final   semi-final      n/a             n/a
2017/18         FC Metz              Ligue 1       3rd   semi-final   3rd round       n/a             n/a 


Season            Nation             Achievements
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2017/18         Costa Rica           World Cup Group Stage
 

Landmarks

[b]France:[/b]
[i]Ligue 1[/i]
Third place (1)   2018 (FC Metz)
[i]Ligue 2[/i]
Winner (1)        2016 (EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël)
[i]French National[/i]
Third place (1)   2015 (EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël)
 

The journey so far:

Prologue

Season 2014/15

Season 2015/16

Season 2016/17

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Arbee - Congratulations on all your success. After having your first save buggered up (I presume this is the verb one uses when thwarted by bugs) I'm glad that you're having success again. I hope you're enjoying the challenge this time as well, and managing to check the Copa Libertadores only a couple of times a day.

Sorry you weren't happy at Swallows. As the club where I lost my challenge virginity (that's 2 sexual allusions. Perhaps I need to stop playing the game and find a girlfriend) they will always hold a special place in my heart.

I suspect that any South Korean side will always stand at least an outside chance in the Champions League, so good luck.

Burtur - I think you might be the the first to qualify for the (European) Champions League? I have the perception that Metz are quite a big club. Are they financially hard up in your game?

As regards the Copa Centroamerica, I think winning trophies that aren't part of the challenge can be great for reputation, so good luck.

I must admit, I don't much enjoy international management. I don't think I have plug and play tactics that result in instant success. Also I prefer to be able to concentrate on club management. At the end of the challenge, when presumably I'll have achieved all the club requirements but be desperately chasing the international ones, it might be more fun, though probably frustrating.

I too let my assistant manager pick my squads for the most part, though I need to intervene a bit to ensure he picks any wingers.

Next season is the African cup of Nations, and frankly, though there are lots of African countries roughly on a par, my Egypt should be the narrow favourites as it is taking place in Egypt. Also, the team plays very well. Any time we play a team anywhere near us in the world rankings (even though these are invariably friendlies) we win very comfortably. the trouble is that the world Cup is coming up, and the national board expect me to qualify for the 2nd round, even though we're in the same group as Brazil (ranked 4th) and Scotland (11th). Scotland may not sound like much of an obstacle, and indeed they don't seem to have any stars, but we played them in a friendly not long back (because I'm Scottish) and they (along with Spain) are the only teams Egypt has lost to under my command. So, I'm worried about being sacked.

it's also a huge pain that the World Cup overlaps with the domestic season, and so I'm going to lose my star striker for at least some games. Admittedly he's Costa Rican, so once the tournament actually starts, he won't be detained there long, but you have all the preliminary fixtures as well. Thank God China didn't qualify for the World Cup. I wouldn't have been able to put a team out.

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Sorry you weren't happy at Swallows. As the club where I lost my challenge virginity (that's 2 sexual allusions. Perhaps I need to stop playing the game and find a girlfriend)

Actually laughed out loud at this!

But yeah. I guess I am the first to qualify for the ECL. Although I'm not quite there as I must go through the playoffs first!

What about the World Cup, has anyone participated there?

But Metz are a decent club of course, they have never one the league though and only have 2 French Cups under their belts. In terms of stature though, PSG, Marseille, Lille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Monaco, Rennais, Saint-Etienne and Lyon are all considerably bigger.

But yeah, international management isn't really that good if you ask me and I hate that players just loose their fitness during the World Cup just because technically it is their "off season". I have also encountered some ridiculous bugs in past FM's. Once I was managing England and took them all the way to the World Cup final. By far my best goalkeeping choice was David James who at the time was 37 years old. He decided to retire from the game the day before the world cup final and I had to settle for my second choice keeper. Needless to say, we lost the game.

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Actually laughed out loud at this!

Me too haha

Burtur congrats on the CL qualification, impressive but a huge shame you got no money from the board. Hopefully just getting into the CL groups will give you a rep boost and get you a job elsewhere

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Well I started the new National league campaign in France and lost 4-0..yeahh I think I have underestimated this whole enterprise..

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Vikeologist's 2030 Egypt World Cup Report

My first World Cup went pretty much as expected. We lost (admittedly heavily) to Brazil, narrowly top Scotland and then beat Saudi Arabia in the final meaningless match. And as expected, Egypt then sacked me for the heinous crime of losing to 2 teams ranked in the top 10.

I might never win an international trophy in this challenge, but international management is definitely helping me stay out in front of

Vikeologist's Sacked Challenge, (get sacked by 50 clubs or nations) progress - 5.

As I mentioned, Egypt stand a really, really good chance of winning next year's African Cup of Nations. I am gutted.

I have applied for Brazil and Argentina (and been laughed at) so now my only hope is USA, with the Gold Cup coming up next year as well, though Mexico would doubtless be favourites for that. I probably won't get offered the job anyway.

Update - The Mexico job was vacant as well. I reminded them about my NACL win, but I think my words were drowned out by their laughter.

So, USA job offered and accepted. I'm not optimistic about success. In my save, USA isn't very good, and it's a considerable step down from Egypt in quality. On the other hand, maybe they have some hidden jewels or a group of starlets I can unearth. I certainly won't get far with the nonentities currently in the squad.

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Vikeologist: For me, international management has always been the most challenging. It is time-consuming to evaluate players for the squad, their fitness levels always seem to be rubbish and the expectations are usually unrealistic. Getting the sack at Egypt is a tough one but good luck with USA. You should at least stand a chance in the Gold Cup right? With Mexico the only real competition.

By the way...do we have a score table for the sacking challenge?

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Vikeologist: For me, international management has always been the most challenging. It is time-consuming to evaluate players for the squad, their fitness levels always seem to be rubbish and the expectations are usually unrealistic. Getting the sack at Egypt is a tough one but good luck with USA. You should at least stand a chance in the Gold Cup right? With Mexico the only real competition.

By the way...do we have a score table for the sacking challenge?

Unfortunately USA are currently nowhere near the second best side in north America, although they did (narrowly) qualify for the World Cup, (where they were thrashed thrice without scoring a goal). Still, the most valuable part-American player in the world (a Mexican) has accepted my premature international call up, so hopefully he'll turn out to be ok.

Plus, Mexico aren't all that.

I do have a grudge against Mexico, having been sacked there twice (well actually once, I quit Chivas). Mind you, it would be hard to find a job now that doesn't have some kind of grudge factor. My bitterness is spread over at least three continents.

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Don't stop believing in Journey!

burtur's end of an era report

Costa%20Rica_zpswwvcicbc.png

Costa Rica - UNCAF

After a decent outing at the 2018 World Cup, where the Costa Rica board was just happy we were competitive, I decided to keep my post there and have a good ol' go at the Copa Centroamericana (Central American Nations Cup) which was just around the corner.

The Copa Centroamericana is held over a whopping 10 day period where all the UNCAF nations (7 in total) participate. The format is pretty straightforward. The teams are divided into two groups and the winner of each group qualifies for the final. Costa Rica has been in every single final except once so we were overwhelming favorites.

We were drawn in the group consisting of four teams, along with Honduras, Belize and Panama. Realistically Honduras is the only other nation that could expect to win this tournament so our showdown in the group was really this tournaments final.

As it turned out, we played them first and managed a nerve racking 3-2 away win. We then humiliated Belize 10-0 before drawing Panama in a meaningless game. In the final we played El Salvador and turned out 2-0 winners in a very one-sided affair. Job done.

The win meant that we qualified for the Gold Cup due to be held the following summer. Costa Rica though only has an outside chance winning the Gold Cup, at best, so I was keen on stepping down on a high after my first ever participation in the Copa Centroamericana.

Managerial career:

Season           Club                League        Pos       DC1         DC2      Continental        Other
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2014/15  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël  French National   3rd    7th round      n/a          n/a             n/a
2015/16  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël      Ligue 2       1st   11th round   3rd round       n/a             n/a
2016/17  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël      Ligue 1      14th   semi-final   semi-final      n/a             n/a
2017/18         FC Metz              Ligue 1       3rd   semi-final   3rd round       n/a             n/a 


Season            Nation             Achievements
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2017/18         Costa Rica           World Cup Group Stage
2018/19         Costa Rica           Copa Centroamericana - Winners

Landmarks

[b]France:[/b]
[i]Ligue 1[/i]
Third place (1)   2018 (FC Metz)
[i]Ligue 2[/i]
Winner (1)        2016 (EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël)
[i]French National[/i]
Third place (1)   2015 (EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël)

[b]International:[/b]
[i]Copa Centroamericana[/i]
Winner (1)        2018 (Costa Rica)

The journey so far:

Prologue

Season 2014/15

Season 2015/16

Season 2016/17

Season 2017/18

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burtur - Another impressive season in France for you, that must be so bitter sweet, finishing so strong and having to work with scraps from your board.

vikeologist - You're right, the lure of silverware elsewhere is tempting me but I'm going to have to stay here until I win the ACL, which I can feel is going to be increasingly frustrating!

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Ajax CT & Jamaica Season Review 2018/2019

200px-Ajax_Cape_Town.svg.pngJamaica_FA.gif

Ajax CT

League Table - Champions

This was finally the season were I really felt like we were the top dogs of the league, forget about Orlando Pirates and Kaiser Chiefs, we were the side to beat if you wanted to win the league, we'd dominate sides from start to finish in a convincing manner that I hadn't seen in seasons past. We started slowly and had to play catch up a little, ended up on a 20 game unbeaten run to see out the season in top spot.

We defended our SA KO Cup crown from last year with a convincing 3-0 win against Orlando Pirates and rather frustratingly losing the SA Cup, on penalties, AGAIN, this time to Sundowns.

African Champions League, after our poor showing in the 16/17 season I was determined to make this a season priority, even bumping up the players win bonus to the highest possible, at the time of writing this the ACL is still on going, with the next round of fixtures due at the start of pre-season 19/20, after beating the Craig Bellamy Foundation Academy 13-0 on agg, Al-Merreikh 8-1 and finally Al-Ahly 9-3 my promises of cash money seemed to be paying off. We've now played 3 of the 6 games in the group stage and find ourselves in 2nd spot, winning once and drawing twice. Finding these teams more resolute than the previous, all three games so far have been close run games and we'll do well to qualify.

Jamaica

Won all 15 of my games with Jamaica so far, although it's absolutely nothing to brag about, since I only seem to be playing minnow after minnow, best result against a bigger nation being a 3-1 win against 70th in the world Peru. Highlight of the year was our Caribbean Championship win we ran a clinic on the opposition, scoring 36 goals, conceeding only 3 across our 8 games in the tournament, big times coming around the corner, tough Gold Cup group alongside USA, Trinidad & Tobago and Nicaragua and the first round of the World Cup Qualifiers (NAM) against Grenada

I'm now just crossing every finger and toe that the boys can pull of this ACL victory, I'll no doubt be back with a mini update before the end of next season.

[b]Management Career[/b] [b]- League[/b]
2014/15 - Jomo Cosmos - South African National First Division - Champions
2015/16 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - Champions
2016/17 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - 5th
2017/18 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - Champions
2018/19 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - Champions

[b]Management Career - Cup Wins[/b]
2017/18 - Ajax CT - South African Knockout Cup
2018/19 - Ajax CT - South African Knockout Cup
2018/19 - Jamaica - Caribbean Cup

[b]Challenge Landmarks[/b]
Top League Title - 1 - South African Premier Soccer League
Domestic Cup Wins - 1 - South African KO Cup

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Some dynasty you have built there Super Gord! Good luck with the African Champions League, by the way, besides the teams fro S. Africa...what are the big teams in that in the African Champions League?

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vikeologist I got the job at Suwon Bluewings, self-proclaimed title challenger but out of form. Didn't expect a club this big to come in for me so soon. Few games left and I still have a good shot at 3rd place. A few old players again, but all foreign players are out of contract soon, so I can get in some quality replacements. Too bad you lost the Egypt job, but I have to say I always like the USA NT. Somehow there are enough unknown young players available to at least challenge Mexico and/or up your reputation.

burtur Seems like the European route is treating you good. Should be no problem shifting to other continents in the future! I'm with you on international management, the challenging pressure to win, scouting out players is time consuming but it feels so good when you find that undiscovered talent.

Super_Gord As a Feyenoord fan I can't believe I'm saying this, but good luck getting Ajax that African CL win!

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Congrats to Butur and SuperGord on your international silverware. So it looks like at least three of us will have Gold Cup tales to tell, with USA, Jamaica and Costa Rica. (Burtur - Did you quit Costa Rica?)

Busta - Congrats on the Suwon job. maybe 3rd place would get you into the CL, so good luck.

SuperGord - Good luck in the Champions League. It always felt a bit weird to me that the climax of the CL and league are at different times. I found it very hard to pick myself up off the floor after going out of the CL each year, but maybe that's because I expected to win it much earlier, or came so close.

Like you, I'm still in the Cl, and maybe like you, not really expecting to win it yet, so I'm just enjoying league domination, (and frankly my league domination is ridiculous) and hoping for the best in the ACL.

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Don't stop believing in Journey!

burtur's 2018/19 end of season report

FC_Metz_logo.svg.png

FC Metz - Ligue 1

League Table | Positional Graph

The 2018/19 season turned out to be a great season for us in FC Metz. We managed to improve last seasons league finish by one spot and two points, and that with relative ease (see positional graph). I think if it wouldn't have been for 3 long term injuries to key players towards the end of the season I think we could have ended the season a lot closer to PSG but our squad is still thin and fragile so it was not to be.

In the Champions League we knocked out Zenit in the playoffs before drawing Chelsea, Dortmund and FC København. We were bottom seeds and did really well by progressing to the knockout stages where we (annoyingly) were blown away by Liverpool. But all in all a really good debut season in the ECL.

The league cup was a disappointment, we lost our only game there away to Troyes. In the FA cup however we had a glorious cup run and ending up as champions for the first time in 31 years. On the way we beat St. Etienne and Toulouse but the final could only be against one team. Bitter sweet feeling denying my former club their first major trophy, but I have a challenge to complete and there is no place for sentiment in that challenge.

I have to admit that the board did come along during the season. They added around 4m to the transfer budget and increased the wage budget somewhat. They have also agreed on upgrading training- and youth facilities. The club is debt-free and this genuinely seems a well run club. For next season the have offered me 11m pounds to play with in the market and increased the % of transfer revenue made available from 30% to 100%. So really, I can't complain.

I have also noticed that my personal stature in France is on the rise. Both St. Etienn and Rennais offered me job interviews without me asking. Jobs I would have taken a season ago but now I am holding out for either PSG or Monaco, I need me a sugar daddy.

Roll on next season.

Managerial career:

Season           Club                League        Pos       DC1         DC2      Continental        Other
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2014/15  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël  French National   3rd    7th round      n/a          n/a             n/a
2015/16  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël      Ligue 2       1st   11th round   3rd round       n/a             n/a
2016/17  EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël      Ligue 1      14th   semi-final   semi-final      n/a             n/a
2017/18         FC Metz              Ligue 1       3rd   semi-final   3rd round       n/a             n/a
2018/19         FC Metz              Ligue 1       2nd     winners    4th round  ECL 1st KO rnd       n/a 


Season           Nation              Achievements
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2017/18        Costa Rica            World Cup Group Stage
2018/19        Costa Rica            Copa Centroamericana - Winners
 

Landmarks

* Challenge eligible title

[b]France:[/b]
[u][i]Ligue 1[/i][/u]
Runner up (1)     2019 (FC Metz)
Third place (1)   2018 (FC Metz)
[u][i]Ligue 2[/i][/u]
Winner (1)        2016 (EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël)
[u][i]Championnat National[/i][/u]
Third place (1)   2015 (EFC Fréjus St. Raphaël)
[u][i]Coupe de France[/i][/u]
Winner* (1)       2019 (FC Metz)

[b]International:[/b]
[u][i]Copa Centroamericana[/i][/u]
Winner (1)        2018 (Costa Rica)
 

The journey so far:

Prologue

Season 2014/15

Season 2015/16

Season 2016/17

Season 2017/18

Season 2018/19 Part 1

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Vikeologist: Yes. Quit Costa Rica. Couldn't be bothered :p

Busta: That is kinda the plan, building up reputation in the best leagues and then just basically get the jobs I want after that :)

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burtur - Congrats on the domestic cup win and impressive 2nd place finish, nice to see you doing so well in a completely different direction to what most of us took, keep it up.

vikeologist - This ACL is going to drive me nuts I can just tell!

bustaraymes - Appreciate the well wishes, giving support to anything Ajax related must be tough!

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Mini Ajax CT & Jamaica 2019/2020 Season Review

200px-Ajax_Cape_Town.svg.pngJamaica_FA.gif

African Champions League

I feel like this competion is going to drive me insane, we finished top of Group A and qualified for the semi finals drawing Ghanaian side Asante Kokoto a beatable side, dodging the other more difficult semi finalist Etoile du Sahel, I must've upset someone in a previous life, just as things were looking rosy we were hit with the mother of all injury problems, both first choice strikers injured in training and out for months, two of my three first choice centre backs were out injured for both legs, a total nightmare, I managed to cobble together a dodgy looking team, blooding several youth team players who were in the squad to make up numbers. Well, we got tanked, eneded up losing 4-0 away from home and struggling to a 2-2 draw at home. Absolutely gutted!

Gold Cup

We had one hell of a Gold Cup performance, my Jamaican boys played out of their skin, topping Group A winning all three games and stuffing USA 4-2 in the progress, then going on to beat Honduras 1-0 in the Quarters and Trinidad & Togabo 4-2 in the semi's. Getting to the final we came up against tournament favourites Mexico, no one gave us a chance. We were leading 2-1 and looking good for our lead until it all went pear shaped, Rodolph Austin got his marching orders 40 minutes in and we fell to pieces, losing 5-2

Definately going to stick with Jamaica for the time being, just to see if we can qualify for the World Cup, international management is fun, but probably something I'll concentrate properly on a lot later down the line.

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Some awesome updates here!

Vikeologist - Good effort with Egypt, gotta be hard in the world cup with an African side but a bigger shame that they sacked you. Totally unrealistic, what did they expect?! I think you could do a good job with USA, the Gold Cup is well within reach and doing something special in the World Cup, maybe a QF/SF is attainable.

Burtur- - Congrats on the Copa Centroamericana, I think you've probably done as much as you realistically can expect there. Your achievements with Metz are fantastic, to get 2nd place is a great feat! PSG are always going to be tough to overcome so 2nd is impressive with the likes of Monaco, Marseille and Lyon in the division. I think getting out of that Champions League group was nothing short of amazing too! Chelsea and Dortmund is a TOUGH draw!

Super Gord - Congratulations on the South African Premiership win, It's a really hard division to win (If you remember I said you could do it with Ajax :p) Gutted about the injuries that seem to have cost you the ACL! You're doing really well with Jamaica too, winning some silverware is always nice and an impressive performance in the Gold Cup too.

I have an update coming later on today. It's good :D

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ArBee23 - 2018/19 Review

6564.png

Preview

After last seasons FA Cup win I wanted the league and Champions League, It was going to be tough as my squad wasn't fantastic but it was good enough with just a few additions.

League

I knew it would be a challenge with Seoul being the main threat to my title hopes. I had some great runs then I had some shocking runs where I was drawing and losing games but I did Jeju proud, Although not winning the league I finished 2nd losing the league on goal difference to Seoul! Now that's a heart wrenching way to miss out on a title! I was 3 points clear at the top with 7 games to go and my players seemed to lose focus resulting in a dismal end to the season where I had 1 loss and 4 draws and 2 wins. Terrible form. I was also asked to manage the K League Classic All Star Team against the K League Challenge All Star Team which I did and won the game comfortably.

League Table

FA Cup

The competition I won last year, I didn't disappoint this year too, I had a fairly easy run in with Suwon my hardest game. I managed to beat them and then beat Pohang in the final to retain the FA Cup.

Asian Champions League

Having qualified by winning last years FA Cup, being Korean my team are automatically one of the favourites for the tournament. My fixtures were more challenging than I envisaged but I still managed to win the Asian Champions league thanks to away goals against Al Sadd.

ACL Fixtures

Club World Championship

By winning the ACL you qualify for the CWC, 3 days after the league finishes! I was just happy to be there and I drew Monterrey in the Quarter Final which I duly lost 3-0. I then played in a 5th place playoff against Wydad Casablanca who I beat 4-0 to solidify my 5th place finish in the Club World Championship. I can't be too upset anything more would have been unrealistic.

Next Steps

Having won the ACL, I didn't see the point in hanging around so I quit Jeju and applied for the job at Santos in Brazil, expecting to still be laughed at despite my ACL win. So when THIS came back I was shocked. They approached me a few days later and I snatched their hand off!

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Hi, i've been following this thread for a while and i decided to accept the challenge. But i have a questions.

Can I use an add-on that allows me to add more leagues or that doesn't conform to the challenge rules?

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Well........it looks like it's all been happening!!

200+ posts, now into page 3 - the Ultimate Challenge goes from strength to strength!!

Not just that, but we've got Burtur and Vikeologist at World Cups.

And in our pursuit of world domination Arbee is King of Asia, Burtur is a European aristocrat and Supergord is showing the rest of us, just how Africa should be done!!

Luis99gr - it's not solely my decision, but in other challenges "add on's" are frowned upon - do you need more leagues?? You have the whole world to choose from :p

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Arbee: Congratz on a great season in Korea! And a job at Santos, that's awesome! I guess they saw your picture and couldn't resist :lol: I love the Brazilian league, crazy many games and a lot of good players. What is the state of the club when you took over?

Luis: Welcome to the forum and to the thread! If you mean you want to use a database that includes more leagues than the original release then I would say that is more than ok. But we have kinda decided that Vikeologist is our godfather and I guess you just have to wait for him to show up here and kiss his ring.

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AmaZulu End of Season 2018/19

Competitions

Transfers

Confidence

So, my first full season at AmaZulu wasn't a bad one - although you guys can rest easy, I'm not gonna steal your thunder by actually being good at this challenge!!!

Media prediction of 9th, saw me finish 5th and until the last two games of the season, 4th place was still up for grabs.

In my last season review, I stated that I wanted to get a better backroom team, which I managed to do. I think it makes a big difference, especially with an Assistant Manager who has good tactical knowledge - all of a sudden, the opposition instructions were much more comprehensive than before.

The cup competitions.......well, we'll say no more about those!!

Halfway through the season my players started to get a bit niggly, acouple of them had their heads turned by bigger clubs and to avoid unrest, I reluctantly agreed to sell my best striker, Dexter Masunda, to Supersport for £240k.

At least the fee was decent and I'd be able to replace him during the transfer window.

Oh no I won't

How many times does that seem to happen to everyone??!!

Anyway, it eventually got resolved, just before the end of the season and I've now got a new chairman. Upon first impressions, he seems okay - my old chairman wouldn't agree to any of my requests, whereas straight away, the new one has allowed me to take another coaching course which should help my reputation.

Another thing I've read you guys talking about which enhances reputation is International management - so I dipped my toes

However, that seemed stupid - the U23 team didn't have a game scheduled for almost 6 months, so I resigned after about a month, without doing anything.

The only good thing was it increased AmaZulu's world knowledge - to 6%

Lurking in the available jobs, was the Ivory Coast, so applied on the off chance..........and got it - they were even "flattered" by my interest. Why just the other day, Yaya said he wished I could manage his country and teach him and Kolo a thing or two!!!

So, next season - for AmaZulu, well, just try and improve on this one. Would be nice to have a cup run and try and break into the African Champions League.

The Ivory Coast, I'm gonna do what you guys do and let my assistant do most of the stuff. The thing I'm really hoping will happen is something Vikeologist mentioned in an earlier post - it may attract young internationals to sign for me

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And in our pursuit of world domination Arbee is King of Asia

Yesssssir!

Arbee: Congratz on a great season in Korea! And a job at Santos, that's awesome! I guess they saw your picture and couldn't resist :lol: I love the Brazilian league, crazy many games and a lot of good players. What is the state of the club when you took over?

The pic was at least 90% of the reason bud! They're in great shape. Millions in the bank only a 65k loan outstanding and I just sold a player for 18 Million giving me a £27 Million transfer kitty! Biggest I've had in any FM15 game so far!

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Luis99gr - I'm caught in two minds about your question.

Just giving my personal opinion. I don't see any problem with add-ons for this challenge. It would only be a problem for me if it made the challenge manifestly easier. I don't think adding Japan or a new African nation would do that. In fact adding any big leagues would make it harder. However we don't know what effect an add-on would have on reputation. maybe you would add the Japanese J League and it has an inflated reputation in the add-on. The same may be true of smaller nations.

What do you mean an add-on that doesn't conform to the challenge rules? The big no-no would be something that affected the manager reputation at any point during the game.

I don't know a lot about add-ons. I can see why they're banned in other challenges, but I don't know whether it would be a problem with this one. I'd just reiterate something that was decided early on in the thread that any new trophies (e.g. Oceania Cup or whatever it's called) aren't a necessary part of the challenge.

I think it's nice that our challenge attempts have things in common. You have to go through South Africa (if you can't beat Kaiser Chiefs, you have to join them). Nearly everybody will win the Asian CL with a Korean club. (Hopefully I can do it with a Chinese one).

However, it's also great to see people choosing completely different paths.

I don't think it's just up to me either, but since nobody has explicitly objected, I'd say it would be ok, but please do be clear at the start exactly what you've added.

Also, on the whole, I'd prefer for people not to add-on leagues.

On the subject of people choosing different paths, I think someone going the European route (I'd guess streety, but I can't find where they said it) intimated that they plan to build a big reputation in Europe, and then be able to pick and choose their jobs elsewhere in the world. I wonder to what extent reputations can go down as well as up. I know my reputation went down. at one point South Korea approached me to be the manager (I stupidly turned it down) and then a few seasons later laughed at me when I applied.

Of course most of you won't have that problem, because your teams tend to do the winning things thing (unlike mine in the intervening seasons). Still, I think you're only as good as your last Champions League win (and mine was a long, long time ago). I'm in the semis of the Asian CL though, so who knows.

It's very early in the morning and my eyes are too tired to be able to assemble detailed back-slapping, but congrats to everybody.

Arbee of course. I hope the Copa Lib is doing it's thing for you, although knowing you you'll probably win it first time anyway.

3L1G - Dexter Masunda was a key player for me in South Africa as well, at first at Swallows and then Kaiser Chiefs. And I have history with Ivory Coast as well of course, although maybe it's best to skirt over that.

Anyway, I'll come back when adequately caffeinated and give shout outs to all our many other uber-managers.

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Luis99gr - I'm caught in two minds about your question.

I don't think it's just up to me either, but since nobody has explicitly objected, I'd say it would be ok, but please do be clear at the start exactly what you've added.

Also, on the whole, I'd prefer for people not to add-on leagues.

That's kind of my take on it.

Far be it for me to "p!ss on anybody's chips", but I think if add on leagues were okay to be used, it would have been stated in the original post.

Vikeologist - I think as you state, Luis needs to be specific in what add on leagues he intends to add.

(Incidentally, just re-reading the original post, I wonder if Letsgetreadyto realises this monster (challenge) he has created!!)

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threelions1goal,Burtur,Vikeologist, i was thinking adding the J-League, Girabola (Angola), Botola (Morroco), Egiptian League and R.D. Congo. I'm adding more african leagues because it's different to just play in South Africa all the time.

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What if we said that leagues and cups from added-on leagues can't count towards the challenge?

I think if you were, for example, Canadian, and wanted to add that one league because you want to use your home team at some point, or manage the national team, I'd be a lot more ok with it. (I don't think Canada is playable in the game).

I think adding the 5 leagues you've mentioned changes the dynamics of the challenge quite a lot. The fact that you have to manage in South Africa, and the fact that there are only 3 (or 1) realistic leagues in Asia is part of the challenge. This is sort of why it's a challenge. We wrestled with the question of how on earth one can win the African Champions league without getting the Kaiser Chiefs job, (and then found out that almost everybody can do it by the sneaky tactic of being good at Football Manager).

Frankly the more I think about it, the less comfortable I'd be with someone doing the challenge with 5 added-on leagues. I'm just pointing this out to provoke debate from the regulars who haven't given their take on the question yet.

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vikeologist- So i might start with vanilla FM but if things change i might add those leagues. But from now on i will played with the leagues that the game has provided.

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Starting from the bottom

Luis99gr's challenge

So I started this challenge by loading all of Asia has to offer, in terms of leagues, so after a couple of days of sending CV's left, right and center. One club decided it was best to hire a 20 year old Portuguese manager who can't even speak English, and this club is Persela Lamongan from the ISL, Indoniesian Super League, a club that has expectations of not going down. But it's a good club to start because it has good room of improvement. So let's see where this goes.

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Luis: Indonesia! That is a first. Good luck over there!

3L1G: Solid season with Amazulu and the Ivory Coast job is a coup. You must be in with a shout of winning the African Cup of Nations with them right?

On the subject of board takeovers. For me it rarely happens during a transfer window and I have never got the sack as a result of it either.

Also, the U23 teams aren't they really just for the Olympics? I think that is the case at least for the European countries.

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It's mostly Olympics, but I think that Costa Rica and Mexico U23s sometimes compete in the Copa America. However I wouldn't have made Costa Rica U23s to be strong favourites to beat out Brazil and Argentina for the Copa America, so unless there were Olymp quals coming up, it probably wasn't going to be too productive.

However the fact that international jobs come up after tournaments or failure to qualify for them means that often you have a lengthy spell of international friendlies whoever you take over.

Incidentally, although this is the first journeyman challenge that has ever taken off on the forums as far as I know, there was a predecessor of sorts, The Tetradecagon Challenge which Claassan absolutely crushed.

Luis isn't the first to start in Indonesia. JohnnyAnger started there, won the league, cup and manager of the season in his first season. And then.... well you can dig out his posts on page 1 to see, but he gave up on the challenge it seems, or gave up on the forum. He shone bright and briefly.

Of the many things that made me VikeologistAnger about Ivory Coast was the fact that the entire national pool seemed to have about 3 surnames. (Diarra mostly). Still, the continuing legacy has been a free transfer I picked up, a left winger called Moussa Koné who I signed for A'erbin, and then immediately signed for Guangzhou. CSL player of the year 2028, and quite possibly 2030. he should have been player of the year last season as well. It says a lot about the relative strength of them that he's the best player in the league, and roughly the 5th best Ivorian left winger. Someone said the advantage is that you can pick up Ivorian internationals. Nope, but pretty much any Ivorian would be the star of my team in China. I guess that's why there's limits on foreign players. Otherwise there wouldn't be any Chinese players in the Superleague. There's a Chinese international in my squad who was born in Ivory Coast, and if Kone sticks around and decides to play for China, he'll be better than any of the players born in China.

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USA U23s are going to be in the Copa America (for the first time in about 12 years) so I've taken charge. Should be a piece of cake.

Actually, having had 4 friendlies with the senior team, in all of which we've done significantly better than one would expect from our world ranking, I am feeling decidedly more positive about our chances in the Gold Cup.

FLW

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I don't play in this challenge but i've been following all your saves, and I personally don't see a problem with adding them 5 leagues, DR Congo for example, has Kaiser Chief-esque clubs, like TP Mazembe, who i believe are a big club in Africa, winning the league with another team wouldn't be easy. In addition, if you dominated in Angola, it would still be extremely hard to win the champions league, as obviously the Angolan league is much weaker than the South African for example. The Egyptian and Moroccan leagues are higher standard then Angola, but they'd still be difficult to dominate domestically

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Adding new leagues would change the challenge by making it easier in Asia and Africa. Part of the difficulty of the challenge is the lack of jobs with big clubs in those continents.

In some ways the point of a shared challenge is that everybody is facing the same obstacles, to as great an extent as possible, and that the challenge is standardised.

Would it be easier to win the Champions League with a team from Japan or Egypt? It's impossible to know because it would depend on the effect the add-on had.

On the other hand, it would be a pity if we insisted on things that disincentivised (sic) participation. Does it matter if people add leagues, if they have fun, enjoy the challenge and participate in this thread?

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I agree that extra leagues shouldn't be added.

For those of us attempting the challenge, we have embraced it, in the format it was originally set up.

As I said yesterday - if extra leagues could be added, it would have been stated in the very first post, when Letsgetready set this challenge up.

As Vikeologist states, the dynamics of this challenge could well be changed later down the line - possibly in the same way that adding lower English leagues could effect Dafuges challenge.

Fairplay to Luis for asking the question, but I think it should be set in stone that no other leagues should be added - and again, credit to Luis who accepted the "decision" and has since started in an already playable league.

If the majority disagree, then I'll follow suit, but if everyone is happy to not add additional leagues, then that is how it should be - fair comment guys??!!

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Vikeologist's 2030 Guangzhou End of Season Report

th?id=HN.607989639572360432&pid=15.1&P=0

League - 26 wins, 4 draws, 0 losses. Champions by 20 points, and to be fair Shenua's 62 points would have been enough in a few past seasons to win the league, so congratulations to them for making it a challenge; for about the first 10 games.

Champions League - Champions

(I actually typed that we were champions before even playing the second leg of the final, because we were 4-0 up from the first leg. Then I thought, I probably should actually wait until we've played both legs, and now I have.

Champions!

Near the start of the season it didn't look too good for me. I only qualified from my Champions League group because all the other teams took points off each other, and I drew 2 of my first 3 league games. My board expected me to get to the semi-finals of the CL, and those 2 draws meant that it took a while for me to get to the top of the league table. I could have been sacked.

But I wasn't. We won about 11 league games, drew one and then won the next 12 or so. I retained the league with 5 games to go.

I still didn't think we'd win the Champions League though, especially as we were drawn in a much tougher half of the draw. In the Q/F we played Saitama, the previous season's beaten finalists. then in the semis we faced the best team in Asia, Jeonbuk.

Thankfully we caught them cold in the first leg and opened up a 3 goal lead. After that Jeonbuk just went on all-out attack. Our 5-2 lead from the first leg was soon wiped out and we were behind on away goals a couple of times. After extra time it was 7-7 on aggregate, but we managed to get through on penalties.

Suddenly I realised we could win the thing. seriously, all the good teams were in our half, and I didn't rate our final opponents Al-Ain, correctly as it turned out. We won the first leg at home 4-0, and it was every bit as comfortable as that sounds. This was fortunate as fixture congestion meant that we had 4 games in 8 days. We had won the league, but I wanted to go the season unbeaten.

In the second leg we went 2-0 up, meaning that they had to score 7 goals, so I just went into contain and soaked in the fact that we were about to be champions of Asia. they actually did pull back 4 goals, but 2 of those were late on, and I didn't care.

I expected to be at Guangzhou for a long time, or to be sacked for not meeting the boar's unrealistic expectations. I didn't think I'd win the CL at the first attempt (with Guangzhou).

Next is the World Club Championship. Of course we're unlikely to win it. One assumes that I'll win it first time with either the Copa Libertadores or European CL Champs, but who knows.

Because my ACL win was unexpected, don't have any European leagues loaded (which would have been a next option for me) so for the next 7-8 months I'll be seeing what I can get in Argentina or Brazil.

Season	Team			Position	Notes										Challenge Landmarks
14/15	Swallows(South Africa)	14th		Took over after 14 (of 30)games in 16th bottom position. Dodged relegation.
15/16	Swallows		12th		South African FA Cup winner. Continental qualification.				1 domestic cup
16/17	Swallows		3rd		Champions League qualification
17/18	Swallows		3rd	
18/19 	Swallows & Kaizer Chiefs2nd		Quit Swallows mid-season. Took over Kaiser Chiefs with 9 games of the season left
19/20	Kaizer Chiefs/ChU23	2nd		Won 2 domestic cups.
20/21	Kaizer Chiefs / China	2nd		Lost in Champions League Final on away goals
21/22	Kaizer Chiefs/China	1st		Lost in Champions league semi-final. Won 36 straight matches and East Asia Cup	1 domestic league
22/23	Kaizer Chiefs/ China	n/a		Won African Champions League. Humiliated nation of China.			African Champions League
2023	Seoul			1st		Won South Korean League								2nd domestic league
2024	Seoul / Brazil U23	3rd		Won FA Cup									2nd domestic cup
2025	Cruz Azul		9th		Won FA Cup (Opening Stage). Then I was sacked.					3rd domestic cup
2026	Chivas			2nd		Manager for one match. Lost title in extra time of 2nd leg of league final.
26/27	Chivas /Ivory Coast	6th/1st		Won NACL. Lost Closing stage final of Mexican 1st Div (again)			NACL
27	Chivas / Ivory Coast	5th		Lost in Opening Stage semi-final and resigned after CWC Q/F
28	Dalian / Ivory Coast	11th		Lost in FA Cup Final / Lost in 2029 ACON Q/F
29	Guangzhou / Egypt	1st		League / Cup double. Qualified for World Cup					4th cup, 3rd league
30	Guangzhou/Egypt/USA	1st		League / Champions League double						Asian Champions League

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Wow, unbeaten in the leage! Great job Vikeologist! Going unbeaten in a league is something I have never managed and I'm quite keen on replicating your achievement in this challenge.

What about the Gold Cup with 'Murika, is that just around the corner or?

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ArBee23 - New save, same trophy collecting prowess! Looked like you had a few squeeky bum games in your ACL run, congratulations!

threelions1goal - Great to see you still ticking over in Africa and congrats on the Ivory Coast job, think you can make things happen with Amazulu or are you gonna jump ship to one of the 'big two' if they become available?

Luis99gr - Welcome to the challenge, I'm not in either camp when it comes to adding additional leagues, but since the thread creator is MIA, I like to think that vikeologist is the unofficial 'officiator' of sorts, so I'm willing to accept his ruling on the matter, I'm just happy that people want to get involved!

vikeologist - You'll be finished in no time! You're really starting to knock this challenge outta the park, three Champions League titles under your belt and an invincible season aswell, awesome job!

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Ajax CT & Jamaica Season Review 2019/2020

200px-Ajax_Cape_Town.svg.pngJamaica_FA.gif

Ajax CT

League Table - Have a Guess

Back to back to back league wins now for me and Ajax CT, not a great deal to talk about this season, it was just another season were we never looked like not winning it. After losing the SA FA Cup on penalties the past 2 seasons we finally got that monkey off our backs with a 3-1 win v Amazulu at least it's another domestic cup win to add to the challenge list!

African Champions League, we're back again, after a poor defeat in the semi's last season I'm even more determined to get this won! Got through the first three rounds of qualifying without breaking a sweat, we drew fellow South Africans Sundowns, Nigerian side Kano Pillars and Cameroonian whipping boys Coton Sport, 3 games in and we're in 2nd spot and it's looking pretty tight! ACL Table

Jamaica

Just the little task of trying to qualify for the World Cup, we stuffed Grenada 6-0 over two legs, then Bermuda 8-1 in the next round to make it through to the group stages, looking at the draw it was and still is very winnable, managing to avoid the so called big boys USA and Mexico we were drawn alongside Curacao, Costa Rica and Canada. Despite beating Costa Rica 3-0 in the opening game we really let slip after that, away to Canada we were gubbed 3-0 (I blame the weather - too cold) beating Curacao 3-1 at home, then a poor defeat away at Costa Rica, qualification is still in our own hands, but 3 points behind 2nd spot we probably need 2 wins from the last 2 games to make it through World Cup Qual Group

So there we have it, winning the league aint no thang, I'm just praying we get this ACL title this time out, managing and dominating in Africa is pretty fun but I really want a new challenge soon!

[b]Management Career[/b] [b]- League[/b]
2014/15 - Jomo Cosmos - South African National First Division - Champions
2015/16 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - Champions
2016/17 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - 5th
2017/18 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - Champions
2018/19 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - Champions
2019/20 - Ajax CT - South African Premier Soccer League - Champions

[b]Management Career - Cup Wins[/b]
2017/18 - Ajax CT - South African Knockout Cup
2018/19 - Ajax CT - South African Knockout Cup
2018/19 - Jamaica - Caribbean Cup
2019/20 - Ajax CT - South African FA Cup

[b]Challenge Landmarks
[/b]Top League Title - 1 - South African Premier Soccer League
Domestic Cup Wins - 2 - South African KO Cup
                       South African FA Cup

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Ajax CT ACL Review 2020/2021

200px-Ajax_Cape_Town.svg.png

African Champions League Winners

Been waiting a few seasons for this and we've finally gone and done it! Qualified through my group in 2nd place behind Sundowns, got drawn against Asante Kotoko in the semi finals who knocked me out at the same stage last year, narrowly going through 3-2 on agg. It was us and Sundowns in the final, a tight 2-2 draw away from home, followed up with a tanking back at our gaff, we ran out 4-0 winners!

My time in Africa is now complete, everything is done, off to Asia!

[b]Challenge Landmarks[/b]
Top League Title - 1 - South African Premier Soccer League
Domestic Cup Wins - 2 - South African KO Cup 
                       South African FA Cup
Champions League - 1 - African Champions League

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Supergord - Great news. I can imagine how frustrating it would be once the league became boring.

So South Korea? China? Australia??

Are you going to hang around for the World Club Championship? It will be soon, and you need it for the challenge. You could be the first of us to win it, though I'm about to give it my best shot with Guangzhou.

Burtur

What about the Gold Cup with 'Murika, is that just around the corner or?
The Gold Cup us still a long way away. the really frustrating thig is that it's the same time as the Copa America, which I'll be managing the USA U23 in. Some of my best youngsters will have to be in the senior squad, and I won't be able to take advantage of any senior player quotas allowed for the U23 squad.

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So, everybody started winning stuff in the last day or so! Well done guys! Really impressive Vikeologist for going unbeaten and winning everything, especially the ACL with a Chinese team!

Super Gord Well done on the African CL buddy that's a big one out of the way and better jobs are now on the way surely!

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threelions1goal - Great to see you still ticking over in Africa and congrats on the Ivory Coast job, think you can make things happen with Amazulu or are you gonna jump ship to one of the 'big two' if they become available?

The Kaiser Chiefs job became available during the close season and I was soooooooo tempted to apply, but decided to try and get Amazulu somewhere (probably relegated.....lol)

Incidentally Super_Gord congratulations on Africa and all the success you've had there.......do you leave with a heavy heart, or are you looking forward to pastures new??

Vikeologist - wow!! That is some season in Asia, fairplay to ya!!

Reading your post about the Gold Cup and the Copa America being played at the same time really made me think about the depth of this challenge and the length of time it will take to complete - I mean, it's all very well even entering these competitions, but there's no guarantee they will be won at the first attempt. Frustrating yet rewarding too!!

Also (without checking every post) beteen us all, at club level, how many countries do you think we have managed in??

South Africa seems to be nearly all of us

China

France

Indonesia

South Korea

Mexico

Brazil

Any more??

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