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FM16 - The Sky Bet Football League thread

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Thankyou! I originally didn't think McNulty had what it takes but he proved me wrong!

Very, very good player. Scored heaps for me when I was United.

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2015/2016 Season - League One - Barnsley

League Table

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End of Season Awards

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Hourihane rightfully won the award, if there was such a thing he would of been my managers player of the year as well. He was brilliantly consistent all season, always reliable and fit for every game and got good ratings nearly every game even when the rest of the team were underperforming.

George Smith was brilliant all season too for an 18 year old. Played 55 games in all competitions with an average rating of 7.14 which shows his consistency well past his young age. He has improved a lot throughout the season and will be my first choice in the Championship too.

Winnalls goal of the season was a brilliant moment and critical to our season, we were 2-1 down in an important league game and he smashed it in from 25 yards with about 3 minutes remaining.

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Winnall finished the season as the top scorer with 17 goals with Marley Watkins in a close second with 15 despite both of them not playing much in the second half of the season because of better options and consistency problems. Ryan Williams got 13 goals and Hourihane a handy 10 goals so the whole team shared the load which is what I prefer really as that way one injury can't cause problems.

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As I mentioned in my last post I won the JPT so we managed to get a domestic double which is a great start to life in my hometown. Hopefully of many more trophies to come. We were also in the top two 99% of the season so we did deserve to go up even if I do say so myself. We went on a run of 1 win in 9 in March which nearly cost me the league title as Wigan went 7 points ahead of us at one point as we just couldn't score as every team were parking the bus. I somehow managed to change a few things and we then went on a 9 match win streak which clinched us the title as Wigan dropped plenty of points as did everyone else all season long.

Got my new initial budgets for the Championship which were more than I thought I would get. Probably not spend it all but it's nice that there is some left over.

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Only agreed one first team transfer so far which was Ryan Tunnicliffe for 65k. I could of waited until he had no club but I didn't want to risk competition and he can play in a lot of roles in my midfield. Going to need workmanlike players for the new season. I'm sure i've missed something off this update and if I have someone let me know if anyone does read this.

On the back of my comments of how good Conor was all season he rightfully got the player of the year.

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I also got the manager of the year which is nice.

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The wheels are starting to fall off at Notts County... :(

We've only managed 3 wins in our last 11 league games, and we've now slipped down to 4th and a whole 13 points off Portsmouth at the top. Just been called in for a board meeting and they want me to get 10 points from my next 5 games, otherwise I'm gone!

Leyton Orient (5th - home)

Plymouth (15th - away)

Dag & Red (16th - home)

Bristol Rovers (13th - home)

Yeovil (10th - away)

That's 3 wins and a draw, if I can't manage to get that from this bunch then I deserve to get sacked to be honest! :D:(

Leyton Orient - lost - 0-1

Plymouth - drew - 1-1

Dag & Red - won - 2-0

Bristol Rovers - drew - 0-0

SACKED.

:(

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After trying for a while and not being able to get into a good game I've just taken over the reigns at Home Park, home of Plymouth Argyle. Will post a detailed update this evening on how pre-season goes, will bring in a lot of my own staff but with no budget to play with there will not be a lot of changes on the playing front, although it is a young exciting squad I am looking forward to trying work with towards a top 7 finish.

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@lewsi999 Great stuff, can't do much more than that. Very pleased to see Hourihane doing so well.

@Gizmo Ouch, that's tough. What position were you in at the time, and how many games did you have left? What's the plan now - try again or find a new home? Hopefully you'll stay within the thread mate.

@Jackson Good luck with Argyle, I'm not sure you will need to change that squad much anyway to be honest. Last time I looked most of the staff had Argyle connections, although that might have changed this season with the new manager in. Personally I think it's always nice to keep those links going when possible.

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In the first season I managed to get Tottenham as my parent club and I got Kyle Walker-Peters (No relation I don't think) and Joshua Onomah. I've renewed both of those two loans for this coming year and managed to pull of my signing of the season already in this man.....

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Didn't realise Tottenham had even bought him until just now. Looking forward to seeing his pace and trickery.

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So after taking over at Plymouth, I brought in a few of my own staff. Shaun Derry as a coach, Joe Woozley as a fitness coach and Tom Donati, left his role as manager of Cambridges reserves to be my no.2.

Transfer wise I had a good dive in the loan market with Harry Cornick, Callum McFadzean, Steven Hewitt all joined on deals to the end of the season. Goalkeeper Ian Mcloughlin and Hayden Mullins came in on free transfers and Rhys Marshall from Glenavon my only cash signing, a mere £12k for a very talented versatile defender. Lee Cox departed to Port Vale in a deal worth 50k which was the only player who left the club. Good young signings their to match a nice young squad, with Mullins providing a bit of experience and cover in a few positions.

We had a decent pre-season, taking on a few non league teams in England, a couple in Northern Ireland a nice earner at home to Arsenal.

Playing in a 4-2-3-1 formation, our hopes will be built round Reuben Reid getting goals in what will be an attacking team with a bit of a good strong spine to the team.

5 games in to the league, 2 wins and 3 draws which I am reasonably happy about, although two draws could have been avoided if not for late goals. We beat Pompey 2-0 at home in a really complete performance. Reuben Reid, Carl McHugh, Rhys Marshall, Gregg Wylde and Peter Hartley all doing very well in these games. I am out of the Johnstone Paint Trophy and Capitol One Cup but not at all worried, league is our bread and butter.

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Excellent stuff Jackson, I hope you have a great time at Home Park. Out of curiosity, what made you pick Rhys Marshall? I snapped him up at Mansfield and like to get that type of player (who has real life potential). I hope Reuben Reid works out well, you probably have similar hopes and expectations of him as I did for Matt Green - if he doesn't get injured like my talisman did, he should be a real bonus!

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Excellent stuff Jackson, I hope you have a great time at Home Park. Out of curiosity, what made you pick Rhys Marshall? I snapped him up at Mansfield and like to get that type of player (who has real life potential). I hope Reuben Reid works out well, you probably have similar hopes and expectations of him as I did for Matt Green - if he doesn't get injured like my talisman did, he should be a real bonus!

I'm from Northern Ireland and he's a player like you say with real life potential and one who could genuinely make the step across the water. Another reason was I was short for right back, and for 12k it seemed a no brainer!

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I'm from Northern Ireland and he's a player like you say with real life potential and one who could genuinely make the step across the water. Another reason was I was short for right back, and for 12k it seemed a no brainer!

Ah, great stuff. I agree at that price you can't lose out and it's good to pick up players like him. I was pleased to sign Gormley on FM15 for only £45k, and have plans to nab Ben Kennedy when I get to a club that can afford him. Had him briefly at Luton last time out but his ratings hadn't caught up with his spurt of form at that point. I know where to ask if I want an opinion on any of your other young players now :lol:

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What a way to start life in the Championship. Probably one of two of the hardest games all year along with Southampton away.

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Second Season 2016/2017 - Pre-Season update

I was given 6m to strengthen for the assault on the Championship play-offs (My very high, probably unrealistic target for this season) and made a number of signings, no real stars as I am trying to give my existing squad a good go and hope their togetherness from last season helps win games as a few are good enough for this level. I did manage to strike a deal to buy back Oakwell which was a big target of mine as I hate not owning it but their was a downside to that. I now have a 40m debt and have to pay 450k per month but for me it was worth it as I hardly ever spend big.

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Both my training facilties and my youth facilities are being upgraded and both are nearing completion.

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As I said before my transfers were mainly for depth and some good young prospects. (Gray to Keane go straight into the first 11).

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Shane Bentley and Grant Rowe at the top are two regens who have good potential. They are being tutored and have been put on specific training schedules to boost their lower attributes.

Michee Efete is a fantastic back-up, has potential and can play everywhere across the back and has good pace. Only thing he lacks is height and jumping which means if he were to play CB i'd have him on the cover.

Ryan Tunnicliffe you know all about. He's back-up at the moment but has got a bit more potential left in him to make him a good back-up in the premiership. If it doesn't work out then i'll make a profit on him.

Harry Toffolo is a young LB with potential and back-up to George Smith, again as above i'll make a profit on him if he doesn't progress like I hope.

Tafari Moore was released by Arsenal and my scouts only had good things to say about him, didn't want high wages and is on a hot prospect contract and cost nothing so a no-brainer.

Kyle Walker-Peters is my first choice RB and i'd recommend him to anyone, he's as good going forwrd at this level than i've ever had. He's like a younger Clyne down the right. Just drives past everyone and if he makes a mistake in defence he has a lot of pace like his namesake. Trying my best to keep loaning him until he's close to the end of his contract.

Isaac Hayden is back up at the minute too for two reasons. I'm giving my League One team a chance as usually I make wholesale changes, he'll play 25+ games easily and i'm hoping to loan him until his contract runs out because barring a massive capitulation at Arsenal he's not gonna get near their first team.

Cedric Hountondji is a very tall africa CB. He is solid and can tackle, mark, head and has a decent turn of speed (13 acc & 12 pace). His only low attribute is his anticipation and he lacks ball skills a little at the moment but I don't want him for that, when he plays I want him to just bully the striker. He is 6ft 5, only 22 years of age, a regular for his national team (Benin) and is only on 1.5k a week. Bargain!

Jordan Williams is another in the Isaac Hayden category. I 'doubt' he'll get near Klopp's squad and is incredibly versatile, natural at RB, CB, DM and CM. He's only 20 year old and has a 'professional' personality which is fantastic for a tutor when he get's older.

Demarai Gray speaks for himself. Doubt I will be able to get him permanently because he has a lot of potential and is very good as he is but I will try to if Tottenham keep consistently getting European football and buying big names, they might let me do a deal fingers crossed.

Will Keane looks very good. All his scout reports said good things, and the thing I like most about him is that he has a fairly strong weak foot which is very important for me in a lone striker because he has to be able to go both ways and finish from all angles. Thinking of making him learn a few PPM's because he is going to be very important this year and is my highest earner on 10k but I know if I can make him realise his potential i'm going to have a 10m pound English homegrown striker on my hands. At the minute his only bad points is his strength (10) and his dribbling (10) so those two are what i'm going to be focusing on all season as everything else he needs is 13+.

Emmanuel Riviere is a try before you buy signing as he is older than my other signings at 26 and is pretty much a complete package for this level. His history says he made just 1 sub appearance at Newcastle and moved to Malmo and made just 4 starts and scored 2 which has made his stats drop a little but I think he can be good. He has fantastic physicals which will help on the counter attack.

I still have just over 3m to use if needs be but i'm not going to spend it for the sake of it. If I can have a good first half of the season my rep might increase enough to get some pretty good players on frees before the next season. Or alternatively I may try and snap up some young english regens from further down the leagues.

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Will do a proper write-up in a bit but I've just finished the first season in the Championship with Posh and we came third which means we've made the playoffs. Could have had an automatic promotion spot but a few silly losses cost us that.

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Managed to add another trophy to the list.

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I resigned afterwards as there were no more games for 4 years until the next olympics.

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peterborough-utd119-34869.png



PETERBOROUGH UNITED - END OF SEASON 2016/17

Our first season in the Championship. The aim was to avoid relegation. The final result was a place in the play-offs! Absolutely amazed with the way the team performed. As you can see from the league table, no team scored more goals than us. Unfortunately, not many teams conceded more than us also. Unfortunately, some very silly defensive errors cost us not only an automatic promotion spot, but also the Play-Off Semi-Final against Sheffield Wednesday.

Having said that, there were some absolutely huge positives to come out of the season. Jon Taylor continued to impress, winning both the Fans' Player of the Season and the league's Player of the Season awards. Daniel Bentley became our undoubted number one. If it wasn't for our leaky defense, he certainly would've kept a lot more clean sheets. Tommy Rowe and Chris Cohen offered some great versatility. Jason Cummings and Conor Washington continued their fantastic partnership up top, scoring a combined 48 league goals in the season. Jermaine Anderson came on leaps and bounds and is now one of the first names on the teamsheet.

League Table - Transfers - Jon Taylor - Jason Cummings - Conor Washington - Jermaine Anderson - Sam McQueen

I'm currently three games into the new season and have taken maximum points without conceding against Hull, Nottingham Forest and Bristol City. Have made some absolutely amazing signings so far - Tyias Browning and Liam Shephard have joined on free transfers, Clinton N'Jie joined on loan for the season and Patrick Bamford joined for £3.5m.

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Probably a stupid questions chaps but would like to share a few screenshots in relation to my Plymouth career .. Anyone give me an idiots guide on how to get them on this thread? I've got them saved in my pictures on laptop ..but can't see an option to insert a picture in post .. only through a link ??

Thanks (sorry if wrong place to post):thup:

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You have to upload them to an image hosting website mate and then copy the link it gives you onto here. Personally I use Gyazo it's the easiest thing to do ever. Takes literally about 10 seconds from taking the screenshot and putting it on here. Download it and then on the bottom of your windows bar with your programs there will be these two icons.

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The left one is for a video (a gif sort of speak) and the right one is for pics, you click it and it makes a + sign with the mouse cursor. You just click where you want to start the picture and drag the mouse, it will make a rectangle, let go when you have what you want and it automatically opens your internet browser and shows you the picture. Right click on the pic and click view image and then copy and paste the link in your browser into here. Simple.

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So 15 games into my league campaign and I can't really complain at all. I've found a tactic that suits the team well, a couple of options for every position and whilst I have quite a settled 11, anyone who has came off the bench or a start has came in and done very well. Existing loan player Hiram Boateng (from Palace) has been super in the box to box role in midfield. Rhys Marshall has been outstanding, shocking me how well he is playing. Playing Callum McFadzean at left back and I'm getting the benefits of having two attacking minding full backs, some of our football has been a joy. Graham Carey and Gregg Wylde have been immense on the wings and Reuben Reid upfront is a monster. My only slight worry is we have had a few draws where we should have won, but also in saying that a few real gutsy draws coming through late goals away from home.

League table - https://gyazo.com/cb7ffda78eaa5c69e63e6712f9a146c2

Results - https://gyazo.com/5918ccc103e68be9cf805a3bae529fdc

The board seem happy with me offering me a new deal after 13 games :D - https://gyazo.com/ff7901ff4d059af8b0ab87017af0560d

As I mentioned I'm playing in a 4-2-3-1, this is the team I've mostly been going with - https://gyazo.com/9e8ba215eb92b9be00e7e4da8c017be5

Encouraging first few months at Home Park, delighted how solid we have been at the back but still sticking to my principles of attacking football. Also a few young talents in the squad I am excited about. Really enjoying life here so far and will update again around the new year.

**EDIT**

Also just got this beauty in on on 3 month loan too give Reuben Reid a bit of competition and a add a bit of depth to the squad for a few months.

https://gyazo.com/167325e371a49eca8ee686c44e172e15

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@Gizmo Ouch, that's tough. What position were you in at the time, and how many games did you have left? What's the plan now - try again or find a new home? Hopefully you'll stay within the thread mate.

I was sacked when we were in 5th position with 11 games to go. Very disappointed, but wanted to continue with my career, so started applying for other vacant managerial jobs. It didn't take long before I was approached and offered the job at Morecambe, who were 23rd, with 10 games to go, so I thought why not, I'll give it a good go!

My reign at Morecambe started disastrously, to say the least - we'd lost our first 6 games, scoring just 1 goal in the process, including a 3-0 spanking against Barnet, who were 22nd, great. We have 4 games left, and we have to pretty much win them all - Stevange (home), Exeter (away), Accrington (away), York (home).

I changed my tactics to 4-4-2, tried to get my players to play as a solid team and be difficult to beat. Unbelievably, we go on to win our next 3 games 2-1, 2-1, 3-2, meaning that we're going in to the final day of the season, level on points with Barnet, but with a much worse GD. We have play-off chasing York at home, they have already-relegated Crawley away... Gulp.

After 50 minutes, we're 0-2 down, I'm panicking massively, so throw everything in to it, throwing everyone forward in a desperate attempt that we can snatch something from this game. Crawley were doing us a favour by actually beating Barnet 1-0, now we need to do our bit, all we need is a point! We pull a goal back after 70 minutes, come on! Keep going! By this time it's an absolute onslaught by us, we've thrown everyone up there, York are clinging on for their lives until the 91st(!!) minute we score and equaliser, I couldn't believe it, we've done it! WE ARE STAYING UP!! :D:D

Check out the league graph - also worth noting Notts County's fall too :)

I love this game :)

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I am thinking about starting save with sky beat league 1 (or 2) team but I just can´t decide which one to choose. I am interested in building team around youth and it would be cool if team was one of the fallen giants. Could you give me any idea which team to choose? Thanks and sorry my language skills. :p

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Good stuff shakey, I don't think I welcomed you before either. Gizmo, that's a great story - almost unbelievable but well done. Must be so much more satisfying than storming through the leagues too!

I'm not sure who would be a good suggestion for you Mikkooooo (I think I'm spelling that right). The fallen giant bit could apply to Sheffield United or Portsmouth, and possibly even Coventry. In terms of youth, apart from small clubs that have never been giants like Crewe and Colchester, it is tricky. But I think you could also get that from Coventry, so perhaps they might be your best option? I'm sure other names might be recommended too, and good luck with whoever you pick.

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Anyone have any idea why I have grown a mustache?

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I didn't have one when I started. My only suggestion is that it's November which means Movember? No idea. Would like him to shave it off so I stop looking like an evil dictator.

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Forgot to mention that I also signed one of my real-life favourite FL players - Joe Garner! He's absolutely shot of confidence at the moment but I'm sure once I get him confident again I'll have one of the best attacking forces in the league with Cummings, Washington, Bamford, N'Jie and Garner.

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@lewis, yep it's Movember - and will disappear at the end of the month!

@Maxey, a very strong attacking set there! I'd say five of that class is one too many - tough decisions ahead for you ;)

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Indeed it probably is a tad excessive! I have been using N'Jie on the right side of midfield as well to make sure they're all happy. If there are any upsets in regards to playing time, N'Jie probably will be the first to go - unless I get promoted it's unlikely we'll be able to keep him longer than a season.

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Decided to run a second save of Sheffield United this year. I dabbled in them on FM14 and enjoyed it but only got about half way into one season. Looking forward to sinking my teeth into them this time around.

1 signing so far, Jason Cummings for 450k. Couldn't resist, hear his name all over these forums! :lol:

Haven't even played 1 pre season game yet but will try and update as much as i can.

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Pleased to meet you, PleasedToMichu! Welcome and I hope you enjoy your time with Sheffield United. Cummings is a good first signing. Maybe Maxey could have loaned him to you and saved you £500k though ;)

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Got to the halfway point of the second season and my first in the Championship and i'm pleased with how it has gone.

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This is where I want to be as things stand. I went a bit overboard on loan signings as there was too much quality and as we can only have 5 in the match day squad, one or two miss out each game. I've decided to keep them around as they are 'free' players essentially. No wages and no monthly fee so if they can't play for the first team that particular week they can go and help the young lads in the reserves win some games and get good ratings.

I don't have my eye on anyone in January and I doubt I will buy anyone unless I sell a few which is more than likely with a few of the original squad becoming surplus up to now. Watkins and Wabara being the main two.

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Just brought in my new central midfielder and at only 18 and capable of regularly playing Championship football from the get go I have very high hopes for him. Can play in every single CM and DM role too except maybe a ball winner.

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Only cost 600k which is a bargain.

EDIT : Said I weren't going to buy anyone but I have my second signing on the 3rd day of the window. To be fair I have been after him since the summer but they wanted 6m. Got him now for 2m as Bolton are struggling in League 1.

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Thanks mate, just won a big game in the promotion battle. They battered me 4-0 at their place as well. An even more interesting thing to me was that I have been swapping and changing between a back 4 and a back 3 but with my back 3 I have very skilful wingers which aren't disciplined defensively and it was a bit of a liability with no full back behind them so I used a 4-4-2 which is a formation I never EVER use and it gave me quite a comfortable victory against probably the best team squad wise in the league barring Southampton that are doing a Chelsea (despite having a world class team for the division) are somehow down in 13th.

Think with Demarai Gray on one wing and George Williams on the other and Lingard to come off the bench, the 4-4-2 might work very well.

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finally got around to starting my Birmingham so wish me luck.The squad looks ok with a bit a of quality here and there but I felt we needed a larger squad to cope with the championship and the cup games here are my deals.

transfers out

Shinnie Fulham 500k

Eardley Wigan loan

Spector Sheff Wed 700k

Toral Arsenal loan return

transfers in

Rossbach Odd 20k

Towell Dundalk 130k

Cummings Hibs 300k

Nattestad Free

J.Valencia free

H.Martinez Free

Aarons Newcastle loan

Gauld Sporting Loan

Loftus Cheek Chelsea loan

Hopefully we should finish in the top half of the table with any luck, I am looking forward to see how our academy players progess as we have some useful players like R.Brown,Arthur,Mbende

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Going into my last 4 games in the Championship, things are looking tight.

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All season we have been pretty good against the better teams and dropped some stupid points against lower teams although saying that, this is the Championship and anyone can beat anyone so it's the same for all teams. We just played Nottingham Forest and lost 2-0 at their ground and dominated them from start to finish, the difference in budgets was massive as Assombalonga scored two brilliant individual efforts where he's clearly a class above. It's my defence that is the problem which is usually the opposite for me historically on FM.

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GET IN THERE!!!! We needed to win our last game as it was in our hands and we threw away 3 leads to Ipswich as we drew 3-3 I just couldn't keep the lead. That result had me waiting on Brentfords match against Cardiff that has just come through as a 1-1 which means we are up. So happy with this season. Zach Clough and Riviere up front have been fantastic in this 4-4-2. Riviere is the top of minutes per goal and he was only a try before you buy signing so the 900k fee I have agreed at the end of his loan is going to be an absolute bargain.

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Wow that is very tight, being promoted on GD - well done lewis :thup:

Thanks Gizmo, have you started another game yet after your Notts County one? Haven't seen you here much since that's all mate.

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Well done lewis, impressive stuff. Welcome back kroshot. And yes, come on Gizmo...:lol:

I'm edging towards the end of the first season with Mansfield. Results have been much better since the last update, but I think we are still too far away from a play-off challenge.

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Thanks Gizmo, have you started another game yet after your Notts County one? Haven't seen you here much since that's all mate.

Yeah I took over Morecombe after County sacked me! Kept them up at the end of the first season, just in pre-season of the second season now - will do a proper update soon, been really busy and haven't had too much time to play :( Christmas holidays are coming up though... :):)

And yes, come on Gizmo...:lol:

I know I know, will try and update you all over the next few days!

I still enjoy reading all of your updates though guys - keep it up!

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A little update from the end of my Championship season, my star player who I can't get back this season, Demarai Gray swept up on the awards front and even got the Championship player of the year at the young age of just 20.

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As I said before he took home all the club awards at the end of season.

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An honourable mention must go to Emmanuel Riviere who was absolutely unbelievable in front of goal for us all season. He got 27 goals in 33(3) games and for the first 12-13 games he was back up to Will Keane who didn't do as well as expected as we started with a 1 striker formation until Zach Clough came in and his goals just kept coming so it's a "what if" in regards to if I would have played him all season.

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2017/2018 | Pre-Season | Premier League

After promotion the board gave me a budget of 9m to keep the club away from relegation. As that isn't much my task this year is to simply just stay up, not too bothered about cups although I will be trying my best with my best teams trying to take advantage of the top teams resting players. Back went my star man Demarai Gray who Tottenham said they were going to play him in the first team thanks to how much he developed when he was at Oakwell, he now has Barnsley as a favoured team so if Tottenham upset him and he ends up wanting away he will be my #1 target. My other star man on the other wing George Williams went back to Fulham and he's also someone I really want back here. He also has Barnsley as his favoured team and me as his favourite personnel so i'm keeping an eye on him too.

Transfers in

Thomas Delaney - What a fantastic player and at only 2m was an absolute bargain. He's going to be responsible for the screening of the back with his perfect PPM's and his impressive personality he is already tutoring a highly thought of youngster at the club. With a leadership stat of 15 I may make him captain straight away as whenever he is fit he's going to play. With 14+ in every single attribute that is needed for a defensive midfielder he could probably play at a better club than us. I'm not complaning. Can also play CB if needed.

Iver Fossum - This young lad was attracting the interest of Atletico Madrid, Paris St. Germain, Chelsea and Borussia Dortmund until I stole the march on them all with a quick bid of 2.2m and the promise of first team football to whisk him to South Yorkshire. He is very energetic with 18 for teamwork, work rate and stamina this lad will run all day which is what will be needed this season. His two PPM's of 'Gets into opposition area and Gets forward whenever possible will be very important in our counter attacking system as we will need box to box guys to try and nick some smash and grab performances.

Ryan Christie - Another central midfielder, Ryan has the added bonus of being able to play RM, LM and filling in at ST if needed. He has the attributes for all those positions and his only weakness may be his work rate of 11 but i'm hoping I can improve that for him. He is on a low wage of 7k and only cost 1.5m so for someone who is already good enough for this league I think it's a very good signing.

Isaac Hayden - I rate him in real life so when I got the opportunity to loan him on this years game as he has been massively upgraded I took it with both hands. Unfortunately he only played twice and as I wasn't playing towards his wages I kept him around and kept him fit with matches for the reserve teams. I had 5 first team loans in the squad last season so that's the only reason he missed out. Arsenal let me make his loan permanent for just 725k which for a versatile young englishman with potential left to fill, low wages and a good personality is yet another no-brainer for me. He will probably start as back-up and I see him filling in at CB and DM this season.

Jordan Williams - Another player I had around last season and he impressed me as he has well rounded attributes and he is natural in 4 positions (DR, DC, DM and CM which is vital for me. Like the other transfers he is a good personality to have around (professional) and still has potential to get even better. At 1.3m and no cons on his scout report I couldn't turn him down. He is stronger than James Bree at RB and in tougher matches he will play as he can do a bit of everything.

Tyrone Mings - Not quite sure what's happened to this guy. I know he starts the game with a very serious injury but he seems to have declined a lot. I know how good he is at the start of the game before the injury takes hold and he's good enough for the Premiership there and then so i'm hoping Barnsley can be his long term home and I can get his career back on track. Bournemouth went down so I thought I may of had some resistance but they transfer listed him for just 275k which I couldn't believe so I got that deal done quick before they realised what a mistake they had made.

Dan Burn - I was dubious about this fella to begin with as he only seemed to be good enough for the Championship. I then had a closer look myself and realised that a big, tall, commanding centre half was exactly what I needed, especially with the added reliance on set pieces this season both attacking and defending and very strong mental stats I overlooked his lack of pace and agility as for 90% of matches this season we will be playing deep which won't be much trouble to him. My top coach says he is a good player for most Premier League clubs so the 600k I paid for him seems like peanuts.

I still have a few more players to bring in and I have only played one pre-season friendly at the moment so still plenty of time as I like to my transfers in early and then look to add a bit of quality with loans. I will update as and when I manage to bring in some more guys. The only notable outgoing so far is Sam Winnall for 300k to newly promoted Championship team Walsall.

*You can click on the player names for their profile.

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Some very interesting signings there lewis, keeping it very British too. Good luck!

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So, I finally completed season 1 with Mansfield Town, and it ended with a lot more drama than I expected. Until the end of the winter transfer window we were languishing in the bottom third of League 2, not being able to put any run of consistent form together. However, I knew that the problem area of my team was the defence, and I was confident my business done in that window would help me improve.

What I didn't expect was that, despite injuries to most of our key attacking players at various times, our improvement would see an unlikely surge up the table, peaking with our first entry in to the play-off spots after the 43rd match of the regular season. We sealed this position in the final match, and finished in 5th - our highest position during the entire campaign being reached just when it mattered.

Central defender Oliver Lancashire (£36k from Rochdale) and Icelandic goalkeeper Haraldur Bjornsson (free) were crucial in this, and really transformed the club. Young Glenavon defender Rhys Marshall also became a regular at right-back, and although he is work in progress, he also helped the balance of the team. Another new signing in January, central midfielder Garry Buckley, also played a major role in the improvement.

Results here show an amazing run, and a win at Exeter (2nd at the time and subsequently promoted) and draw at Leyton Orient (3rd at the time) were just a couple of examples of how far we had come. In fact, a loss at Carlisle (2nd when we played them) was the only major blip during the run-in. Unfortunately, having already missed Adi Yusuff for some time, we lost Jozsef Piller to injury just as my Tanzanian forward was returning. Crucially, Matt Green (who had found form after a 10-hour goal drought) was then ruled out for three months with a hamstring injury in the late April win over Barnet, forcing me in to giving the struggling loanee Omar Bogle another chance at the death.

To my surprise, he finally broker his duck in the final league game, and then added another in the first-leg of the play-off semi final at Wycombe, before we closed the game out in the return to book a Wembley clash with Carlisle in the final. Already without Green, I was crushed to see that my Icelandic goalkeeper, who had made so many amazing saves to lift us up the table, would miss the match after being called in to the Iceland European Championship finals squad. My initial pleasure that a player from League 2 had been selected was instantly overturned by this scheduling, and having sent my young back-up Jonathan Mitchell home to Derby when he complained a few months earlier, I suddenly had to pluck unwanted veteran Scott Shearer out of the wilderness for the most important game of our season. He hadn't played since January and had been in the reserve squad ever since Bjornsson arrived, so I wasn't best pleased.

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As you can see, we were really unlucky in the final despite the key absences of our best 'keeper and striker. We were on top, and given a glorious chance to seal promotion when awarded a penalty after 58 minutes. Unfortunately, Bogle was denied when his effort was saved, and then we were rocked by a two goals in a minute as the game edged towards extra time. I can't deny that Carlisle deserved promotion over the course of the season, but did feel very hard done by over the absence of my top player for scheduling reasons. The penalty saved, and retaliation from the Cumbrians was a really disappointing kick in the teeth for my boys though. Here is the summary of the final, the performance graph showing how our season improved, and the final league table.

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I'm really pleased with how we did in the end, and satisfied that my signings had really made a difference as we progressed. Green, Yusuff and Chris Clements were probably the pick of the original players, although Matty Blair (especially when used as a makeshift striker at the end of the season), Reggie Lambe and Krystian Pearce were all decent. I also gave plenty of chances to our younger players, who all performed credibly. Of the new boys, I would say Piller, Lancashire and Bjornsson were the most impressive. Here are the squad statistics, not including Mitchell (who played 10 games before his loan was terminated), plus Adam Chapman, Craig Westcarr and Nicky Hunt who moved on in the winter window but had hardly been used.

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Brilliant form at the end of the season Joga, unlucky in the Carlisle game, hopefully next season. Do you think you have a shot at promotion?

I've added a few more players since last night, a few loans to try and add some depth for the Premiership.

Melker Hallberg - Loan from Udinese and a back-up as he can play a lot of positions, well rounded and has good potential.

Jores Okore - Ready built Premier League centre half. Tempted to put him straight in ahead of Mawson next to Burn but i'm hesitant to change the whole XI as one it's not fair and two it might come back to bite me.

Emmanuel Riviere - 1/2 of the star double act with Demarai Gray last season, comes in on loan again, I needed to strengthen the defence and midfield so ran out of cash so another loan with a 900k future fee is a win-win.

Tom Walker - Had a bad season last season for Bolton in League One ratings wise but has impressive stats for a 21 year old. He's a bit of an all rounder and only wanted a hot prospect contract on 6k a week. Might end up being loaned out for the first half of the season to see if he can cut it there.

Julian Green - The flying winger from Bayern Munich can't get into their star studded side and was sat in their B team so I took a chance on him and every scout report I got was nothing but positive. He's quick, direct and full of running, something i'm going to need on the counter attack. He's capable of playing on both wings and all my coaches say he is currently good enough to play in Premier League so he may be first choice.

Sheyi Ojo - Comes in from Liverpool and is someone who i'm trying to get in permanently if the board give me funds in January. Has a lot of potential but is already Premier League quality now and is big, strong, technical and quick. I've had a crazy idea with him as well that if I can improve his finishing he would make a brilliant deep lying forward.

Richairo Zivkovic - Another loan with a 7.5m future fee. I don't have that at the moment so if he can impress and I get given some money mid-season I may look to make that permanent as he has undoubted potential. Ajax let him go on loan because he had a bad injury last season so i'm hoping to revive his career. Him and Clough will be first choice and they may force me to play with 2 up front more than I thought I would be.

About to play my first game against Tottenham at home. Will prbably need a bit of luck if i'm to come away with anything. Gonna go and have a look at their team now to see if I can spot any weaknesses.

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