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Llew_Arshavin23

FM16: Poles in a Pod - Karol Linetty & Bartosz Kapustka

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With Polish football making somewhat of a resurgence of late, I thought I'd profile a couple of players who don't receive enough attention from the Football Manager community as maybe they should do...

KAROL LINETTY



KKS Lech Poznań and Poland

Karol%20Linetty%20-%20Lech%20amp%20Poland_zpscpavtwkv.jpg

NAME: Karol Linetty

AGE: 21-years-old; 2nd February, 1995

POSITION: Central Midfield

PREFERRED FOOT: Right

CLUB: KKS Lech Poznań

NATIONALITY: Polish

VALUE: €1.9 million; contract until 30.6.2018

AVAILABLE AT: €4.5 million, as of Summer 2016

WAGES: €17,000-a-week

Karol Linetty, even at the age of twenty-one, is already a midfielder who has achieved plenty in a fledgling career. Linetty has amassed over 100 appearances for Lech Poznań - his childhood club and one which has risen to real prominence since the eighties - and, in due course, earned himself a further seven caps for the senior Polish national side. In just his second full season at Lech, he helped the club win it's first Ekstraklasa title in five seasons. A move to one of Europe's grander leagues looks to be on the agenda this coming summer.

I have, on the off chance, watched Linetty on a couple of occasions and he's best described as a box-to-box midfielder; one full of energy and drive from a relatively diminutive stature. His physique brings with it a nice balance and poise which complements his accomplished technical ability. His touch and range of passing is good, while he's also fairly adept in the tackle. This well-rounded skillset enables him to be effective in transitional phases.

7.%20Karol%20Linetty%20-%20Lech%20Poznan_zpsuwpxqxfu.png

Having guided Hertha BSC to Bundesliga safety after taking over in March, the summer transfer window enabled me to mould the system and squad into something closer to what I would ideally like - Karol Linetty was my number one priority going into the pre-season rebuild.

He enjoyed a fine season in Ekstraklasa and appeared in every game of Poland's Euro 2016 campaign; I quickly moved to seal a €4.9 million transfer soon after their elimination. It took a bit of time to negotiate Lech down to a price I was willing to pay, but it was relatively easy in hindsight.

One of my big attractions to Linetty is, essentially, he is a blank canvas - you can mould him into any type of midfielder you like. I bought him with the intention of developing him as a #6, a controlling type who sits at the base of a midfield three, but you could just as easily continue developing him as an all-action shuttler, or, with some work, change him into an energetic ball-winner. His abilities as a player offer numerous options and a level of tactical versatility which few others can.


BARTOSZ KAPUSTKA



KS Cracovia and Poland

Bartosz%20Kapustka%20-%20Cracovia%20amp%20Poland_zpslrpenion.jpg

NAME: Bartosz Kapustka

AGE: 19-years-old; 23rd December, 1996

POSITION: Central Midfield

PREFERRED FOOT: Right

CLUB: KS Cracovia

NATIONALITY: Polish

VALUE: €1.1 million; contract until 30.6.2018

AVAILABLE AT: €2.4 million, as of Summer 2016

WAGES: €8,000-a-week

Bartosz Kapustka's rise to prominence has been nothing short of fantastic, nor beautiful. Making his debut late on into the 2013-2014 Ekstraklasa season, he has since established himself as one of Cracovia's most important players and one of Poland's most gifted, most promising.

Having racked up almost half a century of appearance for his club, he also made the sizeable international leap straight from Under-18 level to senior level at the beginning of this season - bypassing three other youth levels. He scored on his debut, against Gibraltar, and later double his national team tally against Norway. He now has four senior caps and is a certain of a place in Poland's Euro 2016 squad. Cracovia will hope his performances, however brief, will inflate the fee clubs like Borussia Dortmund or Juventus will have to pay for him later this summer.

My knowledge of him as real-life player is limited to YouTube, something I normally hate, but his talents are obvious: silky close control, a lovely ability to glide beyond opposition with a fluid turn or touch, picking when and where to play passes at exactly the optimal moment and an eye for goal.

67.%20Bartosz%20Kapustka_zpstt1yxbrn.png

His Football Manager self didn't quite match the rise of real-life, but he had a promising season for a Cracovia side which struggled toward the bottom of Poland's premier division. He did make his Polish under-21 debut, though, and my scouts, who watched him for over two months, reported back with glowing assessments. Following the sale of Vladimir Darida, I moved for Kapustka and managed to complete a deal which could rise to around €3.1 million.

Like Linetty, Kapustka is both versatile and very much at the mercy of my decision-making. With no Preferred Moves and a good base of attributes, you can develop him into a player very much of your making. I see him as an advanced midfielder, one capable of scoring and assisting goals in equal measure, but there is scope to make him into a playmaker who sits deeper in midfield, pulling strings from a more reserved role.

I plan on using Kapustka extensively in his first Bundesliga season as I believe he can adapt quickly to a style of football which isn't so different from Poland. I'm looking forward to seeing how he develops.


Do you have any experiences with either Linetty, Kapustka or both? If so, please share them! If not, start having experiences with them! I intend on updating this thread with a few tales of how both Linetty and Kapustka do over the weeks, months and years to come.



If there's anything else you'd like me to add or share, please just ask.

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Good stuff Llew,

Never heard of Kapustka before truth be told, will certainly give him a look...

Linetty, i've seen turn out pretty great, usually ends up at a French or Italian top level side on my games...

Great shouts.

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cracking post mate.

Thanks - I enjoyed writing it!

Good stuff Llew,

Never heard of Kapustka before truth be told, will certainly give him a look...

Linetty, i've seen turn out pretty great, usually ends up at a French or Italian top level side on my games...

Great shouts.

Thanks.

Kapustka is very highly-rated in real life, will certainly go to the Euros, and looks very good on Football Manager. My Head of Youth Development rates him highly to boot. As for Linetty, he's someone I always look out for but this is the first time I've managed him. A month into the Bundesliga season and he's performed very well. I'll hopefully update this thread with how both develop over the coming season.

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As promised, I'm bringing you a brief update on the progress of my two Poles, Karol Linetty and Bartozs Kapustka. It has been a season of ups and downs for my Hertha BSC side, but my summer signings from the Ekstraklasa have been generally very good.

KAROL LINETTY | APPS: 15; GOALS: 0; ASSISTS: 1; PASSES COMPLETED (KEY): 758 (39); PASS ACCURACY: 85%; TACKLES: 29; INTERCEPTIONS: 55; AVERAGE RATING: 7.16 average rating

6.%20Karol%20Linetty%20-%20Hertha%20BSC%20February%202017_zpssunzpjqv.png

Karol Linetty has made a positive impact since moving to the Bundesliga, from Lech Poznań, in the summer. He's primarily played slightly further up the field from where I eventually see him settling down. With club captain Fabian Lustenberger protecting the back four, I deploy the twenty-two year-old as a type of controller-cum-hustler; someone who can be robust in the challenge, is allowed to push forward, but also must be very responsible in possession. It is a role he's performed very well. His performance in our early season 3-2 win over VfL Wolfsburg, in that role, saw him win a well-deserved Man of the Match award.

Injuries, though, have hampered his promising debut Bundesliga season. As Firehouse states, he is prone to injury - something which my scouts picked up on prior to signing him. He's missed five weeks collectively, three weeks due to a back strain and two weeks due to a chest injury. I'm hoping this is something he can overcome as he nears his physical potential.


BARTOSZ KAPUSTKA | APPS: 12; GOALS: 0; ASSISTS: 1; PASSES COMPLETED (KEY): 359 (20); PASS ACCURACY: 83%; DRIBBLES: 13; SHOTS 13; SHOT ACCURACY: 31%; AVERAGE RATING: 6.84 average rating

11.%20Bartosz%20Kapustka%20-%20Hertha%20BSC%20February%202017_zpsstl9dqlc.png

The Hinrunde (first-half of the season) was very much an adaptation period for Kapustka. He's played a fair few minutes, but many half of those have been as a substitute. I've used him primarily in wider areas, as I think he provides a nice technical, playmaking ability as opposed to the high energy, fast-paced style of Genki Haraguchi or Roy Beerens. It isn't a position he's entirely comfortable in and I think that's contributed to his inability to fully find his feet. Saying that, his development has been impressive and bodes well for the future.

Frustratingly, Kapustka has fallen foul of injuries too. A twisted ankle - picked up on his Polish senior debut, no less - kept him out for a month during a busy pre-winter break period.


Again, if there's anything more you'd like me to disclose, just ask! I hope these updates are worthwhile.

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He gets injured relatively often.

Both cool talents - today together with Piotr Zielinski they were the midfield backbone of my Polish 2016 European champions team unbeaten while going through Italy 1-0, Sweden 2-0 and Belgium 4-2 in groups, Denmark 2-2 in Ro16 (penalties), France 2-2 in Ro8 (penalties), Portugal 3-1 in semis and Germany 1-0 in the final. Still can't believe we won all matches against such strong opposition with such a lacking team despite tiredness, injury problems and the obvious lineup quality gap.

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