stevemc

FM17: Sheffield United - Be A Blade

181 posts in this topic

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Welcome to the Sheffield United Football Club thread

Club Details

Nickname: The Blades

Founded: 1889

Owner: Abdullah bin Musa'ed bin Abdulaziz Al Saud & Kevin McCabe (50%/50%)

Current Manager: Chris Wilder

League: EFL League One (England)

Captain: Billy Sharp

Vice-Captain: Chris Basham

Squad Personality: Fairly Determined

Rivals: Sheffield Wednesday, Leeds United and West Ham (historical)

Legends: Tony Currie, Jimmy Hagan

Favoured Personel: Chris Morgan

Club Record Signing: £4m for James Beattie

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Ground: Bramall Lane

Capacity: 32,609 (all seater)

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Corporate Facilities: Average

Training Facilities: Excellent

Youth Facilities: Good

Youth Level: 2

Junior Coaching: Average

Youth Recruitment: Above Average

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Finances: Okay (Value £21m)

Transfer Budget: £300,000 (can be adjusted to £583,868)

Clauses: You can cash in on Kyle Walker's sell on clause to up your starting budget to £3.8m

Wage Budget: £112,907 p/w

Media Prediction: 4th

 

Sheffield United Football Club is a professional association football club based in the city SheffieldSouth Yorkshire, England. The team competes in League One, the third tier of English football. The football club was formed in 1889 as an offshoot of Sheffield United Cricket Club, and are nicknamed The Blades due to Sheffield's history of steel production. The club have played their home games at Bramall Lane since their formation in 1889. Bramall Lane is currently an all-seater ground with a capacity of 32,609. Sheffield United won the original First Division in 1898 and the FA Cup in 189919021915 and 1925. They were beaten finalists in the FA Cup in 1901 and 1936, and reached the semi-finals in 1961199319982003 and 2014. They reached the semi-finals of the League Cup in 2003 and 2015For most of the club's history they have played in red and white striped shirts with black shorts. Their closest rivals are Sheffield Wednesday, with whom they contest the Steel City Derby.

Edited by stevemc

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Club History

Brief History

Sheffield United formed on 22 March 1889 at the Adelphi HotelSheffield (now the site of the Crucible Theatre) by the President of the Cricket Club Sir Charles Clegg. The Wednesday had moved from Bramall Lane to their own ground at Olive Grove, and the tenants of Bramall Lane needed to create a new team to generate income. Sir Charles Clegg was incidentally also the president of The Wednesday. Undoubtedly United's heyday was the 30-year period from 1895–1925, when they were champions of England in 1897–98 and runners up in 1896–97 and 1899–00, and FA Cup winners in 189919021915 and 1925, finishing runners up in 1901, and also eleven years after their cup final win in 1936. United have not won a trophy since 1925, bar those associated with promotion from lower-leagues, their best performances in the cup competitions being several semi-final appearances in the FA Cup and Football League Cup.

Their darkest days came between 1975 and 1981. After finishing sixth in the First Division at the end of the 1974–75 season, they were relegated to the Second Division the following season and three years after that setback they fell into the Third Division. They reached an absolute low in 1981 when they were relegated to the Fourth Division, but were champions in their first season in the league's basement division and two years afterwards they won promotion to the Second Division.

They did fall back into the Third Division in 1988, but new manager Dave Bassett masterminded a quick revival which launched the Blades towards one of the most successful eras in their history. Successive promotions in the aftermath of the 1988 relegation saw them return to the First Division in 1990 after a 14-year exile. They survived at this level for four seasons (being founder members of the new FA Premier League in 1992 after peaking with a ninth-place finish in the last season of the old First Division) and reached an FA Cup semi-final in the 1992–93 season before being relegated in 1994.

They would remain outside the top flight for the next 12 years, although they did qualify for the play-offs under Bassett's successor Howard Kendall in 1997 and caretaker manager Steve Thompson in 1998. They were struggling at the wrong end of Division One when Neil Warnock was appointed manager in December 1999, and a financial crisis was preventing the club from being able to boost their squad, but in 2002–03 they enjoyed their most successful season for a decade, reaching the semi-finals of both domestic cups and also reaching the Division One play-off final, where they were beaten 3–0 by Wolverhampton Wanderers. Three years later, however, Warnock delivered a Premier League return as the Blades finished runners-up in the rebranded Football League Championship. They lasted just one season back amongst the elite, before being relegated from the Premier League amidst the controversy surrounding Carlos Tevez, the player who was controversially signed by West Ham United and whose performances played a big part in their remarkable escape from relegation. Neil Warnock resigned as manager after the Blades went down.

The club struggled to come to terms with life back in the Championship, with a spiralling wage bill not being matched by the quality of the players brought in, and a succession of managers within a short period of time. The Blades did reach the Championship playoff final in 2009 under Kevin Blackwell, but a period of decline then sit in. The 2010–11 season was a disaster, with the club employing three different managers in the space of a season, which ultimately ended in relegation to League One under Micky Adams, meaning they would play in the third tier of English football for the first time since 1989, and only five years after gaining promotion to the Premiership. In the 2011–12 season, the club finished third in League One, narrowly missing out on automatic promotion to rivals Sheffield Wednesday, and entered the playoffs. With victory over Stevenage in the semi-final, United missed out on an immediate return to the Championship after suffering a penalty shootout defeat to Huddersfield Town. The Blades again made it to the League One playoffs in 2012–13 after a fifth-place finish, but were knocked out by eventual promotion winners Yeovil Town on an 85th-minute goal in the second leg of the semifinals.

On 3 September 2013 it was confirmed that Saudi Prince Abdullah bin Musa'ed bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of the royal House of Saud had bought a 50% stake in United's parent company 'Blades Leisure Ltd' for the fee of £1 with the promise of providing "substantial new capital" with the aim of returning the Blades to the Premier League as "quickly as possible". In 2014, the Blades gained the nickname of "giant-killers", having reached the FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley, losing 5–3 to Hull City. In 2014–15, they reach the quarter-finals of the FA Cup and semi-finals of the Football League Cup, and despite being eliminated they remained in contention for promotion to the Championship.

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Name Origins & Nicknames

The club was formed by members of the Sheffield United Cricket Club, itself formed in 1854 and the first English sports club to use 'United' in its name. Sheffield United's predominant nickname is "The Blades", a reference to Sheffield's status as the major producer of cutlery in the United Kingdom. Because of this, the nickname would also be used in reference to rivals Sheffield Wednesday. Another nickname used was "The Cutlers". In the early days, the two teams would be differentiated by the grounds they played at, with United being referred to as "Laneites" (in reference to Bramall Lane), while Wednesday would be called "Groveites", as they played at Olive Grove. In 1907, Wednesday came to be referred to as "The Owls", in reference to their new ground in Owlerton, meaning that United could claim the "Blades" nickname for themselves. Within Sheffield fans of the club are also sometimes referred to as 'Unitedites'. When Sheffield United purchased Chinese club Chengdu Wuniu in 2006, they redesigned the club crest in the style of the Sheffield United badge and renamed the team "Chengdu Blades".

 

Kit Colours & Crest

Sheffield United have played in red and white stripes for most of their history, but began playing in white shirts and blue shorts. They briefly played in narrow red stripes for the 1890–91 season, before returning to all white the following year. The stripes returned in the 1892–93 season, with black shorts replacing the blue in 1904. The shirts remained largely unchanged until collars were first removed in 1955, replaced by V-necks until the 1966–67 season (when white socks were also used), and from here on the neck style varied.

The traditional red and white striped remained until the 1974–75 season, when elements of black were added, until the 1979–81 and 82 season kit. This was white with a red breast, and with thin stripes down either side, and was created to accommodate the logo of the club's principal sponsor, Cantor's, a local furniture shop. This was to be replaced by a striped kit, with the sponsor Bentley's (1981–82) and Renault (1982–83) written vertically down a white stripe over the left-hand side. Stripes continued while the 1995–96 season, albeit with various aids to accommodate the sponsors, including a yellow square for Laver from 1988–92 (the 1990–92 shirt also featured narrow black stripes through each white stripe) and a black hoop, also for Laver in the 1994–95 season. Then came the diamond kit, which was so badly received that the club reverted to stripes the following season. Since then, red and white stripes and black socks with varying trim have been the order of the day, with black shorts for all but the 2002–05 seasons, when white and then red were tried. The club also every few seasons opt to put thin black stripes between the red and white stripes. Sheffield United's home colours were the inspiration for the kit of Irish club, Derry City. In 1934, Derry City adopted the stripes, while Billy Gillespie was manager of the club, in recognition of Gillespie's achievements at Sheffield United.

The first time a crest appeared on the shirt was in the 1891–92 season, when a red crest appeared on the white shirt, but this disappeared the following season. United used the city of Sheffield's coat of arms from 1965–77, when a new crest was used, introduced by former manager Jimmy Sirrel, but designed apparently over 20 years previously by former player Jimmy Hagan. This consisted of two white crossed swords, or blades, the club's nickname, with a Yorkshire Rose above, on a black background. This is surrounded by a red ring with "Sheffield United F.C." written around the top and "1889", the year the club was founded, underneath. This had been altered very slightly a few times, with a simple black embroidered crest appearing on shirts from 1987–90, and an all-white crest on a red-edged black shield for the 1992–99 seasons, but reverted to its original form in 2000.

 

Ground

Sheffield United play at Bramall Lane, near the centre of Sheffield. Bramall Lane is the oldest major league ground anywhere in the world, having hosted its first game in 1862, a match between Hallam and Sheffield Club. Bramall Lane also hosted the world's first ever floodlit football match on 14 October 1878 with two teams picked from the Sheffield Football Association. The power for the lights was provided by two generators. The crowd was 20,000 and the score 2–0. It was originally a cricket ground and the first important match played here was between Yorkshire and Sussex in 1855. A cricket club was formed in 1854 named Sheffield United Cricket Club and Bramall Lane was leased to the club by the Duke of Norfolk. The ground was opened with a cricket match on 30 April 1855. Yorkshire County Cricket Club also formed here, and played most of their games in Sheffield at Bramall Lane until the last match on 7 August 1973 against their old rivals, Lancashire.

The ground has seen expansion in recent years, and by 2006, on completion of a 3,000 seat corner stand, was an all-seater stadium holding 32,609. In March 2009 the club were officially granted permission to expand the stadium once again, over two phases. The first phase would have seen the Kop being extended to increase the ground's capacity up to approximately 37,000. It would also have seen the removal of the main supporting pillars and a giant screen installed as part of the stand's roof. The second phase would have seen the Valad Stand (formerly Arnold Laver Stand) also extended, bringing the total capacity to a 40,000 all seater. The expansion would also have had a secondary focus of being available for selection for FIFA World Cup matches in 2018 or 2022, if England's bid were to be successful. However, on 16 December 2009 The Football Association announced that should England's 2018/2022 World Cup bid be successful then any games played in Sheffield would be staged at Sheffield Wednesday's Hillsborough Stadium. Following this Sheffield United's chief executive, Trevor Birch, made it known that all planned ground redevelopment had been put on hold until the club was able to regain and maintain Premiership status. With the club's relegation to League One in May 2011 any ground redevelopment would look unlikely in the near future.

 

Supporters

Sheffield United derive support from a broad cross-section of the city and its environs, with branches of the official supporters' club running from SwintonKiveton ParkRetford and Eckington. Further afield, supporters groups also exist in Essex, the Republic of Ireland, the Netherlands and Australia, amongst others. A 2013 study of posts on social networking site Twitter found that Blades fans have the most positive interactions with the official account of their club out of any in English football. Sheffield United were also found to have the most 'obsessed' fans in the 2006/07 Premier League, with supporters reportedly thinking about the team 110 times a day on average.

 

Rivalries

Sheffield United have numerous rivalries. The most notable rivalry is with their city neighbours Sheffield Wednesday, with whom they contest the Steel City derby (called so because of the steel industry the city of Sheffield is famous for). Both United and Wednesday fans typically refer to the other team and their fans as 'pigs’. Sheffield United's other rivals are mainly other teams from South Yorkshire, such as BarnsleyRotherham United and Doncaster Rovers, as well as Leeds United from West Yorkshire. West Ham United have also become fierce rivals due to the 'Tevez saga' and the following lawsuit charges. Sheffield United also have, along with many other sports teams across Yorkshire, a strong rivalry with Nottingham Forest. This can be attributed to the miners' strikes of the 1980s, where workers in the pits of Nottinghamshire did not join the strike (known locally as scabbing) while miners from Yorkshire did, thus creating the rivalry.

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Edited by stevemc

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Managerial History

The clubs most successful manager was John Nicholson who replaced Wostinholm in 1899 and who remained in the post until his death in 1932. Under Nicholson the Blades won the FA Cup four times and established themselves as one of the dominant forces in English football, although winning the Championship for a second time eluded them during that period. Since Nicholson's death the club have appointed a succession of managers who have enjoyed varying levels of success while the team has generally remained in the top two divisions of English football. The exception was a period of gradual decline during the late 1970s which ultimately saw United relegated to the fourth tier under Martin Peters in 1981. The club recovered and returned to the top flight in 1990 under Dave Bassett.

After a period of relative stability, a chaotic 2010–11 season saw the Blades go through three managers Kevin BlackwellGary Speed and Micky Adams as well as John Carver who took charge as acting manager for a number of games, the ultimate result of which saw the side relegated to League One. The majority of the club's managers have been English, the only exceptions being John HarrisIan PorterfieldBilly McEwan and David Weir (all from Scotland), Gary Speed (who was Welsh) and Danny Wilson who has represented Northern Ireland at international football. Wilson is also the only person to have been manager of both United and fierce cross-town rivals Sheffield Wednesday. Blades supporter, former ball boy and former player, Chris Wilder is the current manager.

 

Early Days

At its formation in 1889 United did not employ what would today be termed a manager, the side was coached by a trainer and a football committee selected the team and decided upon tactics (this was a continuation of the structure of Sheffield United Cricket Club from which the football team had been formed.) They did appoint Joseph Wostinholm to the position of club secretary and he was responsible for the day-to-day running of the club, matchday organisation and dealing with players and contracts. Wostinholm oversaw a period of rapid growth for the team, culminating in 1899 when United won their one and only First Division championship, after which he retired. Wostinholm was replaced by John Nicholson as secretary and he would remain in post for over 30 years until his death in 1932. Nicholson presided over the most successful period in the club's history as United became a leading force in English football, winning the FA Cup four times and regularly challenged at the top of the league but a second Division One title for the club eluded him.

 

A New Era

Following the death of John Nicholson (who died whilst travelling to an away match in Birmingham) the United board turned to Chesterfield manager Teddy Davison to become the club's first real manager. The team were in decline however and were soon relegated for the first time in their history. Davison gradually rebuilt the side with astute signings and young players and regained top flight status but the clubs post-war financial problems would hamper team building for years to come. Davison retired in 1952 and prompted the club to appoint Rotherham Unitedmanager Reg Freeman as his successor. Freeman stabilised the team but fell ill and died in 1955 after which United turned to the inexperienced Joe Mercer but he struggled to cope with a team in decline and departed for Aston Villa in 1958. United then appointed Chester manager John Harris who inherited a talented but under performing side which he transformed into a promotion team, returning to Division One in 1961. Harris built a side based on local players and stabilised them in the top flight but financial issues soon prompted the sale of key players and United were eventually relegated once more. Harris opted to 'move upstairs' to become 'General Manager' and handed the role of team manager to Arthur Rowley but he was sacked after one season following disappointing results. Harris returned as manager and guided the side to promotion once more but after a good start back in the top flight Harris' confidence faded and he stepped down in 1973 to 'move upstairs' for the second time.

 

Rapid Decline

Experienced Blackburn Rovers manager Ken Furphy was the man United turned to replace John Harris. He initially did well but the team was ageing and there was little money to replace players. After a good finish in his first season a disastrous string of results the following year led to Furphy being sacked in October 1975. Jimmy Sirrel was recruited from Notts County but he proved unpopular with both the players and fans and could not halt the decline, overseeing relegation and then being sacked in September 1977 with United at the bottom of Division Two. The ambitious and colourful Harry Haslam was handed the reigns and although many of his ideas were ahead of their time he built an ageing side based on 'star' players at the end of their career. Now in the Third Division performances deteriorated still further and Haslam stepped down due to illness in January 1981. World Cup winner and then United player Martin Peters was promoted to the position of manager but United were relegated to Division Four at the end of the season and Peters resigned.

 

Moving On Up

With a new ambitious board in place United recruited Ian Porterfield as manager in June 1981. He had an immediate impact, winning the Division Four championship in his first season and taking the club back into the second tier two years later on a meagre budget. Despite this many fans were unhappy with the style of football and odd team selections and Porterfield was sacked in 1986 following supporter protests. Coach Billy McEwan was promoted to the position of manager but failed to improve the standard of play and with attendances falling and the team in danger of relegation once more he was sacked in January 1988. United now turned to the colourful character of Dave Bassett who had most recently had a short, unsuccessful spell as manager of Watford. It was to prove an astute appointment as although he could not prevent relegation in his first season he built a solid, hard working team on a small budget and won back to back promotions, returning the club to the top flight and achieving regular mid-table finishes. With the formation of the Premier League United's old financial problems and willingness to sell star players without replacing them meant the side eventually succumbed to relegation and when an immediate return was not forthcoming Basset was sacked in December 1995.

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Comings & Goings...

The following years proved a turbulent time for United as they chased the ambition of Premiership football. Experienced Howard Kendall was recruited as manager and undertook a complete rebuilding of the side but left in June 1997 to take over at Everton. Player-coach Nigel Spackman was promoted to replace Kendall but after initial promise he quit after only eight months citing boardroom interference. This was to become a recurring theme and replacement Steve Bruce would leave after only one season citing the same reasons. Adrian Heath then proved a disastrous appointment and lasted only six months before being sacked with United looking more likely to be relegated than promoted. The Blades then turned to experienced lower league manager Neil Warnock who managed to stave off relegation and began to rebuild the side on a meagre budget. Warnock proved a divisive figure with fans, but after a number of mid-table finishes he achieved promotion back to the Premiership in 2006. The side were relegated the following season, prompting the board not to renew Warnock's contract.

Just like Adrian Heath, the appointment of Bryan Robson in 2007 proved an unpopular and unsuccessful one and he was sacked after less than a year following poor results and intense fan pressure. Former assistant manager Kevin Blackwell was appointed as Robson's replacement but despite reaching the play off finals in his first full season the team was obviously in decline and he was sacked after only two games of the 2010–11 season. Worse was to come however as player-coach Gary Speed was briefly promoted to manager but left after only a few months to take over the Welsh national sideMicky Adams then became the third full-time manager of the season, and oversaw a disastrous run of results which saw United relegated and Adams sacked after only six months in charge.

With United in the third tier once more, Danny Wilson was appointed as manager in June 2011, despite protests from United fans over his previous association with cross-town rivals Sheffield Wednesday. Wilson guided the club to the League One play off final in his first full season in charge, only to lose to Huddersfield Town. Despite the club challenging for promotion the following season, a poor run of results led to Wilson's departure in April 2013, being replaced by Chris Morgan until the end of the season.

After a long search for a new boss, former Scotland defender David Weir was appointed as Wilson's long-term replacement. Weir's tenure was short-lived however, as he was sacked in October of the same year, having won only one of 13 games in charge. After Chris Morgan had overseen the team for a brief time, Nigel Clough was appointed as Weir's permanent successor in October 2013. Clough guided the Blades to finish seventh in the table narrowly missing the play-offs after having been bottom of the table at the start of February and also led United to an FA Cup Semi Final against Hull City which the Blades lost 5–3 after twice taking the lead in the first half. The following season saw Clough guide the Blades to fifth place in the league, thus qualifying for the play-offs and also led them to a first League Cup Semi Final in 12 Years, with the Blades ultimately losing to Tottenham Hotspur 3–2 on aggregate. United failed to gain promotion through the play-offs after losing to Swindon Town 2–1 in the first leg and drawing 5–5 in the second leg (7–6 on aggregate). Following their failure to gain promotion, Clough was sacked on 25 May 2015 and on 2 June 2015, former Scunthorpe UnitedSouthampton and Reading boss Nigel Adkins was appointed as the new Blades manager. However his appointment only lasted one season as the Blades (who were in 2nd place after the first 5 matches) ultimately finished in 11th Place, Their lowest finish in the third tier since 1983. Adkins was duly sacked on 12 May 2016 and quickly replaced by Former Northampton Town manager and Former Blades player Chris Wilder.

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Edited by stevemc

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The Players

First Team Squad

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U-23's Squad

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U-18's Squad

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The Staff

Coaching Team

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Medical Team

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Scouting Team

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Under 18's Coaching Team

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Under 23's Coaching Team

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Edited by stevemc

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Why manage Sheffield United?

You have an owner that loves the club in Kevin McCabe and a Saudi Arabian Prince (bought 50% stake in 2013), who has previously promised to inject some cash into the club to help get them back into the Premier League.

They have struggled with decline since their exit from the Premier League in 2006/07, spending 4 seasons in the Championship and 5 seasons now in League One.

Can you buck the trend of 10 managers in 6 seasons and drive sustainability?

Can you return Sheffield United to the Premier League and add to their rich FA Cup history, or go a step further by gaining european football and surpass their golden era of 1895-1925 mainly under John Nicholson?

Many managers have tried and failed, and you now also have to satisfy the needs of the part-owner, a Saudi Arabian Prince no less.

Good luck and enjoy… :thup:

Edited by stevemc

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Targets for longevity:

:thup: Win the clubs first ever League One trophy.

:thup: Win the clubs first ever League Cup (EFL) trophy.

:thup: Return Sheffield United back to the Premier League.

:thup: Win the clubs first ever european (EFL) trophy.

:thup: Surpass rivals Sheffield Wednesday's current record of four league titles.

:thup: Break the club record fee for signing a player (currently £4m for James Beattie).

:thup: Break the club record received fee for selling a player (currently £8m for Kyle Walker & Kyle Naughton).

:thup: Reach the top of the Hall of Fame as manager of Sheffield United.

Edited by stevemc

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Aaah about time somebody did a Sheff. Utd thread!

Good work mate.

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Thank God someone replied, thought I'd built a thread that no one would be interested in. :D Seems rather unseasonally quiet on here.

I'll get round to starting a Sheffield United save this weekend, then hopefully this thread will pick up.

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Ahead of starting up my save, does anyone have any good transfers, loans or free transfers for League One, for the start of the game?

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Just got round to starting this save, they have some great players for League One it seems, but I really like the look of 18 year old Louis Reed;

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Just offered him a longer deal, hope he accepts as I'm thinking about building the team around him. Big clubs already sniffing around him.

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One thing I am struggling with is finding good scouts and coaches for this level, anyone got any recommendations? So far I've ended up putting adverts in the job centre.

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Noticed you can cash in on Kyle Walker's sell on clause for just over £4m. Anyone done this? Im thinking it would be good idea as would give good money to improve the squad.

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That's a great spot, I'll take a look at that, I reckon Sheffield United should have a enough to get out of League one, but that sell on clause might come in handy for the Championship.

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ive played 5 seasons now! got to prem but got relegated! now on my way back in playoffs in championship! UTB

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Nice work, you should post some screenshots in here of your transfers etc

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On 12/1/2016 at 13:32, fraz86 said:

Noticed you can cash in on Kyle Walker's sell on clause for just over £4m. Anyone done this? Im thinking it would be good idea as would give good money to improve the squad.

That makes them a must to try out as a save for me... think of how you could rebuild the club with that sort of injection of cash.. will give it a go now i think

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Just to confirm, you can cash in and it takes your transfer budget to £3.8m. Game changer.

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Good luck! I did my main game on FM16 as Sheff Utd and challenge you to match what I've accomplished as encouragement! Sadly, the sugardaddy you're hoping to inject money only gave me a few mil over my career, but at least it was enough to invest in a few promising, cheaper regens after first season. First he injected a few after the first season, then a few more after the second. It was pretty disappointing, especially when soon after that he proclaimed the team in good standing and that he'd back off from active support. Also no luck with clauses for me, didn't cash in on them at all, no buyout options either. Still, managed to win L1 first season, Championship second season, finished in a CL playoff spot (4th) third, in fourth I won PL and Cup + was runner up in CL, won Premier, Cup, CL in fifth. Attached screenshots of my Sheff Utd being the highest value in 2020, beginning of sixth season, screenshots of my top regens who lead the team to all this success. Detailed write up below describing these regens, sorry for the wall of text, but hope you find it interesting if you bring yourself to read it. I'd be honored.

FIRST SEASON

My first season I wanted to do a large revamp. Unfortunately, I realized with the low amount of money available and being unable to cash in on the low value of the squad and no rich teams willing to pay for these players right away that I either had to go regen or go through a painful road of overpriced leftovers. So I played with the squad I got with an extra free signing mid-season (Luke Moore to replace Billy Sharp I sold to Oldham for 110k - similar skill, much lower wages), but relatively quickly got affiliated with Man Utd which got me a few solid youths to bolster the team (Fosu-Mensah, Rashford, Varela, Johnstone). We had a slow start, mostly because in 16 Sheff Utd started with an injury plague from the real world, but quickly picked up and finished first with relative ease, edging out Oldham by double digits. As for the squad, I sold Howard mid-season to make room to develop for Long, who didn't perform any worse. Also Johnstone despite being much better didn't do better, so I stuck with Long in goal. I played 4-2-3-1 with the core of Basham in CD, Reed in MC, Baxter as AMC and the right side with Varela on FB and Adams as a winger). I can see that most of these names are gone now, but I bet right away on Reed, because of his potential to become a club legend or a high monetary reward after a season or two. He's less skilled than other options at the start, but I recommend not minding that and letting him develop in L1.

SECOND SEASON

Second season I managed to expand my scouting range and scouted heavily the top quality regen producers and some less obvious ones as well. Bought those I could afford and set sights on those I couldn't yet. I raided Ajax, taking their three top talents, all ended up being top shelf 4(5) star potential they haven't yet fully reached now by the end of fifth season. Among them Martijn Letschert, a physical striker with great finishing I decided to play as AF and Robbert Nederlof, a rock in the central midfield CMs who can do AP as well and who developed lightning fast. To add to that my biggest spend, DLF/AF Ruben Penida from Portugal (4.7m, crazy this early for a regen, but I could see his amazing potential from his report and, more importantly, awesome base stats), who ended up being my biggest attacking talent. From real players, (A)MR/L Tobias Svendsen for a mere 130k, an underappreciated wonderkid with a 3 star potential he reached incredibly fast, but the only one I could afford and would come, as well as GK Ben Garratt, a wonderkid from Crewe, who they for some reason let go on a free transfer (I paid 100k in advance to secure him, as I doubted he'd choose me from all the free market suitors). Also a few more experienced players - Junior Stanislas from Bournemouth at 220k who I deemed to be as a bargain, and the likes of Dan Burn, Kai Bulow or Borja Valle on free transfers. To make money for that on top of what my board gave me I got rid of expendable players who attracted money after doing well in winning L1. Matty Done, Brayford, Coutts, McNulty and a few others amounted to 3.5m. On top of that I sold my best academy regen prospect I got very lucky with for 2m to Leicester (ended up being 4 stars, but I used the money to buy Penida, so totally worth it). Having secured Penida and Letschert and after a look at the squad, I decided to switch from 4-2-3-1 to a straight up 4-4-2 with the former as a back up.

With the renewed Man Utd quality loans we went through a painful start to Championship dropping as low as mid table after 1/3 of the season, when I overhauled our tactics to play very high tempo, high pressing attacking game to utilize the likes of Che Adams who are very fast, but not much quality. First game of 8-1 against Oldham convinced me to stick to it and we flew up the table, securing the top spot at the end.  Thanks to his two heroic seasons, I managed to sell Che Adams (assist leader by a big margin and Championship player of the year, 5mil!) and a couple others to PL teams for ridiculous prices, considering their skills + one of my less promising, but more developed regens for 5.5m. Che was back to L1 within a year, after not playing in PL for QPR who bought him, and Wolves in Championship on loan. Though a big hero to my cause, I had to cash in on him while he was believed to be great to make squad room for promising regens. After five years on loan from QPR to L1 teams, he's now a Free Agent. :(

THIRD SEASON

Advancing to Premier League finally gave me the funds I wanted to build a squad. Of course, because I went from L1 to PL within a year, I was at a big disadvantage monetarily compared to other teams. Still, the injection of PL money gave me the chance to get the regens I wanted before and make the purchases I needed. First, (A)MC (any role, I decided on RP) Robert Guerin from Lyon, a boundless regen talent I'd wanted for a year, but couldn't quite afford. Unfortunately, he signed a new contract shortly before and his price skyrocketed from 10m to 30m. I wondered long whether to invest so much, but with my other prospects showing a lot of promise and thinking he'd be either off the table in a few years, snatched by a great team, or even more expensive, I decided to trust reports that showed him to be perfect and bought him. To bolster the team to be able to compete, I also bought a few great transfer-listed players on a bargain. Midfielder Sergi Samper from Barcelona (6m), wonderkid right winger Rodrigo Bentancur from Boca (5.5m), defender Jores Okore from Napoli (5.25m), leftback Emerson and rightback Patric from Santos and Lazio respectively, 1.2m each. To add to the squad I got Daley Sinkgraven (AML/C) from Ajax for 825k and loaned Federico Dimarco (backup leftback) from Inter. With what remained I bought a few more promising regens. In total I spent 70m, got back 14m + loan income from regens (8-9m) for a net spend of 48m. Pretty cheap for a full Premier League squad supplemented greatly by regens.

I had same issues with the beginning of the season in first year in Premier, as my regens weren't yet good enough to compete at this level, but a few developed a lot over the season and after hovering mid-table after half of the season I climbed to 4th at the very end thanks to a mix of bad form by the top teams, a pretty even point spread among the top half teams on top of my purchases performing amazingly and rapid regen development. I lost badly to all the giants, but managed to beat almost everyone else in the second half, securing the valuable CL playoff spot. As I was supposed to 'fight bravely to avoid relegation' and went far beyond that, the board allowed me to adjust the expectations a few times during the season. I believed in my team, so I increased them, which gave me additional funds. I spent it on more regens I figured I could develop to make money on over time, and kept the rest for when I found more promising ones.

FOURTH SEASON

With my regens developing well, I could finally commit to some of them fully. To make room, mid-season I notably sold my good servants Jose Baxter 275k -> Millwall, Junior Stanislas for 675k -> Middlesbrough (455k profit), Dan Burn -> Cardiff (600k) and pre-season purchase Daley Sinkgraven -> Bari for 6.25m (5.425m profit), who was initially injured for a few weeks and once I made due without him, I couldn't enough find room for him, but was glad for the good investment.

With great progress my regens made the season before, I was ready to end the transition period that allowed me to secure a great finishing position in my first season Premier and let my regens take over the team for good. To that end, I sold my experienced players: Jores Okore -> Porto for 13m (7.75m profit), Patric -> BMG for 8.5m (+7.3m), Emerson -> Schalke for 13m (+11.8m) and team youths Louis Reed -> Man Utd for 10m and George Long -> Birmingham for 500k, both of whom I deemed inferior to the talent I possessed. I also sold two more regens for 9m and earned ~18m from loans. Altogether very proud, all great returns way above real value.

Fourth season started well thanks to a difficult CL spot fight against Shakhtar which we luckily won on away goals. This was the pivotal season, as at this point my constant investment in facilities and faith in my regens culminated in a season where everything came into place enough to claw out a PL win and a Cup win thanks to not having to play against  the giants who fell to lesser teams elsewhere (Stoke, Swindon, QPR, Preston, West Brom and Norwich were the last six rounds we played). We again got destroyed by the top teams in the league, but consistency kept us in the running, together with a very even playing field which made 74 points uncommonly sufficient to clinch the title. On the CL front we drew a difficult, but even group with Borussia, Dynamo Kiev and Valencia. I expected to fight for the Europa spot, but after beating Dynamo 5-1 in the first match I believed that the team might be ready. My hopes went down after a 1-3 loss to Valencia, but a surprising 1-0 away win against Borussia, having been dominated and thanks to an own goal in 81 minute, put me in a very good position to challenge. We beat them again 3-1 in the next game, followed up by 2-0 against Dynamo and a lucky 1-1 draw against Valencia. I lost hope for the most part when we drew Barcelona—previous year's champions—and I almost abandoned all hope when we were 0-2 away at half time in the first match. But the 0-2 remained and when we went up 2-0 early in the second match thanks to Penida I was shocked. It looked like an extra time with Barca attacking relentlessly in the second half. An 83 minute 3-0 long range goal from Bentancur had me elated with joy; we came back and beat impossible odds to advance to the quarterfinal. The draw was lucky in the next round and OM didn't put up much of a fight in the first game (4-1) and a 1-0 rematch put us in the semis full of unlikely contestants. Sporting beat Real Madrid, Tottenham beat Man City and Leverkusen beat Bayern, leaving the four of us to fight for the title. We drew Tottenham and after the run we've had I thought we'd edge them out slightly. The first match was away at the New White Hart Lane and we were quickly up 1-0, confirming my beliefs. Oh, how wrong I was... Harry Kane scored a hattrick, but we briefly mounted a comeback, scoring the 2-3 goal, second from Letschert. Then they retook initiative, scoring two more, winning 5-2 and seemingly ending my great hopes. The only consolation was that the match was even and after what happened with Barcelona, I had a glimmer of hope for the home game. We started off dominating the early game, until Saldo Berahino scored a penalty at 20 minutes. That about sealed my fate in my mind. I didn't give up though and kept sending my players aggressive remarks from the side line, urging them to show some passion and demanding more. Bentancur scored one, Penida added another just by half time. Then Letschert's shots in 61' and 79' made the comeback real. We pulled off another incredible come back, getting to the final in a miracle fashion that I would have never expected before the season. I thought we were destined to win it all, but no such thing exists. Though Leverkusen was seemingly a lesser team than those we beat, they kept up well and the match ended 0-0, an almost impossible occurrence with our open, attacking football and the goalless draw of my season. The penalties were very anti-climactic, crazy really, as we missed four, they missed three and this is where the dream ended. It was an incredible season though and thanks to all these big games, my young team of an average age of 19 improved dramatically, overachieving on all fronts.

FIFTH SEASON

Season five was much less of an adventure. We sold Bentancur -> Schalke for 40m (34.5m profit), Samper -> for 12.5m (+6.5m, less than desired, but had to take it, as I had no minutes for him), Ben Garratt -> QPR for 3.9m (also felt underpriced, but got a regen named Ahmed Salem I needed to play as 1), and decided to spend some of our transfer budget on improvements, who would fit our young team and provide quality even when our top youngsters reached their potential. After deliberating, I passed on Isco, decided against Dybala (Letschert, Penida and a few promising regens I wanted to save playtime for) and Romagnoli. I did however want to buy Neymar and Pogba, both still young and at their peak. Neymar's wage demands matched those of the real world and went above and beyond what we could afford with a relatively small wage budget due to a regen-based team who I secured on low long-term contracts before they entered their prime. Pogba, however, asked for the very top of our range, 275k/week along with the highest earner clause. The cost of 105m was hard to swallow, but having decided that he's the only player I'd want to buy and with money left, I pulled the trigger. He'd play as a free roaming Box to Box, joining my prized genius Roaming Playmaker prospect Robert Guerin in central midfield. I also decided to train him up to Accomplished as right Wide Midfielder, as this was our weaker spot and I wanted to find playing time for our rock Nederlof and a few others. Among those others who joined us alongside Pogba was Martin Odegaard, whom we bought during the second half of the previous season off transfer list. Real Madrid did the unthinkable, listing him for 8.25m - impossible bargain at close to his full potential. He'd play mostly as right winger (a bit of a waste, but still very solid and our best at that position, while we were stacked in CM and still played 4-4-2), but also as AP in midfield and in more offensive lineups (rare 4-2-3-1 and very common 'suicide 4-4-2' also known as 4-2-4) as AMC and AMR, his natural positions. To be honest, with our team so well-developed after years of competing at the highest level, we were much improved this season.

We drew the first match of the season against Man City 1-1, followed up by a loss to Liverpool 1-2, to my disappointment, but after that went on an unbeaten 20 game run, winning 15 of them. In the meantime we also lost in the third round of the Capital Cup, again against Liverpool in a crazy 4-5 game, where we equalized in 91st minute, to lose in the 92nd. In CL we breezed through group stage, winning the first five games against Besiktas, Wolfsburg and Roma, finally narrowly losing in the last match against Wolfsburg while letting our B team have a go. In the knockout round, we beat Valencia 3-0 and 1-0. The next round once again put me against a Spanish favorite. First Barcelona last season, then Valencia this season, now Real Madrid. We won at home 2-0, courtesy of two goals by Letschert. However, I've grown wary of home advantage in CL and had doubts. In the rematch we went up 1-0 after a penalty from Odegaard at 32', giving us a great lead thanks to away goals. Quick come back at 36' and 40' from Kroos and Ronaldo gave me a scare, but it ended with a 1-2 and we were through. Semi final draw was harder this season with Man City as my opponent. The games were close, but 1-0 and 4-3 wins gave me a consecutive final and a chance for retribution. This time with a much stronger and more developed team, where we advanced on pure merit, not a lot of luck and scrap, like the season before. The final fixture against PSG seemed like another easier final, but I learned my lesson and did research, rested my players, kept them off the line up or down to limited time in the FA final against Chelsea seven days before (3-1, despite going down after 38 seconds; Penida, Letschert x2), spent extra time on match preparation, adjusted my tactics. It didn't help as much as I had hoped though and the match was difficult. Penida opened at 26', but Luis Henrique equalized in the 53rd minute. After right back Hugo Mallo got sent off in the 78th minute, I thought we'd be able to overpower them with our fast, attacking football. Unfortunately, though, they defended valiantly and despite going all in on attack in the second half of extra time, my nightmare came true and we were off to penalties again. This time my players didn't go crazy like the season before and scored. For a second it looked like Letschert's miss would cost me another final, but thankfully Ruben Neves and Marquinhos also missed and my wonderkid keeper Ahmed Salem helped me to our historic Champions League trophy.

And here we are today, after a season full of success. As you see in the screenshots, I also picked up Portugal for Euro 2020. I waited for an opening there for 3 seasons, as I wanted to take a team with a lot of potential that never wins trophies in real football. Well, by the time I took over, they finally did at Euro 2016... Well, plan stands, I want to win. Currently in the quarterfinal with Ruben Penida having a go at AF for a change. Managed to get Cristiano to unretire from international football too, so hoping for the best. Spain next...

 

I doubt you've read all this, but it's ok, because I just wanted to chronicle my incredible, highly unlikely success. I've grown attached to my players and despite winning pretty much everything, I'll continue for at least a season to see how high the potential of my young stars goes. Keep posting about your progress with Sheff Utd in FM17, I'll read it all. Got very sentimental about Sheff Utd after my time with them.

PS. Get rid of Billy Sharp. He's less like a person named Billy and more like IKEA furniture from the Billy line. Also, a Billy bookcase is sharper at the edges than he is in game. He seems to have trouble shooting any balls straight, except for those he shoots straight away from the goal.

sheff utd richest.png

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penida.png

Edited by ChlewnyKnur

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Oh btw. you can sell Louis Reed for significantly more after two seasons of development and good results. I only got 10m because I needed him the last year of contract and sold him during the winter break when most teams were not willing to give the full value due to the expiring contract. I reckon 16-20m is very doable for him at that time, maybe even more on FM17.

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Yeah I've warded off bids off up to £3m so far, no way he's going for that, but he's unhappy currently.

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19 hours ago, stevemc said:

Just to confirm, you can cash in and it takes your transfer budget to £3.8m. Game changer.

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Or increase the transfer budget percentage first and you get close to 4.5million to spend ;)

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Giving it a go..  and i'm surprised by some of the names that will come to us. ..

 

Here's my transfers so far:

 

d697b1482a28476eba996da830a1dc9c.png

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Pretty good names, should make a profit on them in the future! Probably pretty obvious, but something I do in lower leagues when I believe I'll be able to move up with teams is give as little money upfront as possible and put as much as possible in the 50 match clause and int clause (if they'll bite). Though the player will cost more this way most of the time, it allows to invest into more players on a limited budget and the net profit at the end is higher, when upgrading the squad a season or two later.

edit: Also, most of the time these aren't players I plan to build my team around for years, so often I'll sell them before they even trigger the clause.

Edited by ChlewnyKnur

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20 hours ago, ChlewnyKnur said:

Pretty good names, should make a profit on them in the future! Probably pretty obvious, but something I do in lower leagues when I believe I'll be able to move up with teams is give as little money upfront as possible and put as much as possible in the 50 match clause and int clause (if they'll bite). Though the player will cost more this way most of the time, it allows to invest into more players on a limited budget and the net profit at the end is higher, when upgrading the squad a season or two later.

edit: Also, most of the time these aren't players I plan to build my team around for years, so often I'll sell them before they even trigger the clause.

Funny... I do the opposite and try to to have as little clauses as possible when looking to improve a team

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I've made slow progress on my Sheffield United save, due to being so busy, but I should be able to start making some headway this week.

I'm in the middle of 10 pre-season fixtures, bedding in my 4-4-2 tactic, I've took the option of Kyle Walker's release clause so I have around £3.8m in the transfer kitty; so far I've only signed Jordan Spence (CB) and Marco Motta (RB) on free transfers. I'm looking into signing Matt Smith but wages may be a problem, and Jason Cummings to boost the striking department. Might save a bulk of the kitty for January, as there seems to be a lack of options currently. Also significantly adding to the backroom staff is taking time to find quality coaches and scouts, although Arthur Albiston looks a useful addition for this level.

Looking at building my team around the youngsters George Long, Jack O'Connell and Louis Reed.

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Found a couple of decent backroom staff additions last night, for the start of the game;

• Derek Langley - Scout

• Arthur Albiston - Coach

I'll produce a more detailed update post towards the end of the week.

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Sheffield United: 2016/17 - EFL League One (season 1)

Finally got my Sheffield United save moving, first thing to do was cash in on Kyle Walker's release clause, giving me a kitty of around £3.8m;

1z569ua.png

 

There's not too many options of available players that I wanted to spend cash on, so I'll be leaving the bulk of my £3.8m for January, so I brought in a few free transfers and renegotiated a number of first team contracts, although Louis Reed is causing a few issues because I wouldn't sell him to Newcastle United, hopefully once the window shuts he'll calm down, cause he's going no where :D

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Also significantly added to the backroom staff, which now makes us pretty much the best in every department for coaching and medical in League One, just struggling finding really good scouts:

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So the season started really well, with a nice away win at Bolton:

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Followed by another league win and a nice away EFL Cup win at Hartlepool, pitching us against rivals Leeds United in the second round at Bramall Lane - a good chance to get the fans on my side with an early win :D Disappointingly lost at home 1-0 to Rochdale after completely dominating the game, but now back on track with another 2 wins, the latest away at Millwall:

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I'd encourage anyone at this level to sign Marco Motta on a free transfer at the start of the game, although he's just picked up a 6 week injury for me, the guy is an animal from right back.

I may be tempted to add a striker to the squad before the window shuts, if not, I'll wait until January.

Edited by stevemc

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Thanks @@Welshace

I've gone with a standard 4-4-2, with two wide midfielders and attacking full backs with a DM to compensate. Wide midfielders worked great for me in my FM16 Portsmouth save so went with them again and seems to be working well. I will end up tweaking it as the games/seasons go by.

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First of all i want to thank you for an amazing intro and threadstart.

I've followed this thread for a short period of time. Also started a save with Sheffield United. Prob gonna be the biggest challange for me so far in FM history, i've played FM for a while. Played FM14 and 15 but not 16. The best journey i've done in FM history yet is taking Malmö FF to CL final, where i lost against Real Madrid. And this took some seasons to accomplish and maybe a bit of luck. I also won the PL with Derby County. Nothing special really but i wouldn't call myself a pro.

 

Anyway. I have around 6 games left of the season. Currently 2nd place behind MK Dons who has been absolute beasts this season, but i've actually caught up 2 them at the end of the season. They're playing bad and we are in a good form the last couple of games and could actually caught up 2 them with a bit of luck and win the leauge. Im gonna do a better summary of the season when it ends.

The tactic i currently use is; 4-2-3-1

 

But i've listen to some of your advice. I also signed Marco Motta, in the january window tho. But he's a really good signing. I've also signed Chuma from Sevilla, good talent, and also Carlos Badal from Valencia. Maybe a bit sneaky of me but i found them in my past save with Liverpool, turns up to be kinda good. 

Sadly Louis Reed left us. In the start of the season i turned down bids from likes of Sunderland and Newcastle. He demanded a new contract to stay, and had a buy out-clause that i couldn't change. And sadly in the january window Newcastle played a last bid on the deadline day that matched the buy out-clause, and Louis Reed in Newcastle was now a fact. I got Reece Oxford on loan tho till the end of the season 2 fill up the gap Reed left us. 

Edited by FMKalle

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Nice going @FMKalle :thup:

Will be good to get this thread moving, a Sheffield United save has so much potential in FM17.

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Sheffield United: 2016/17 - EFL League One (season 1) - mid-season

Last few days of the summer transfer window, I managed to pick up Jason Cummings, which has proved a massive signing:

fctjyf.png

Since moving to three up front, Cummings, Lavery and Sharp has been ripping teams apart.

Made it to the 3rd round of the EFL, beating rivals Leeds United before Stoke City put us out with an 88th minute winner:

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Also managed to keep Reed, and then get him signed up, without a release clause:

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Currently top, in January, 3 points clear with two games in hand, after a great win at then top, Charlton, with two late goals:

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We've also put ourselves into the 4th round of the FA Cup, with a nice away win at Championship Rotherham:

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We are also still in the Checkatrade Trophy, awaiting a quarter final match against Notts County.

Trying to use January to cut the wage budget, and I've also cashed in on another release clause. I've also picked up this striker (after a tip off from my brother) for £160K (he's worth £650K):

255koyf.png

 

Edited by stevemc

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Hi Everyone,

So I decided myself to start with Sheff United, cashing in on Kyle Walkers contract clause and doing some restructuring of the squad put my in a strong position for the start of the season.

Things could of got off to a better start .... taking 21 league games before my first defeat I was long gone and clear in the league at this point.

Also had a great run in the FA Cup to the last 16 (by great because of the teams i managed to beat). The stand out game was by far a 5-0 win away to Watford (Prem here i come?):cool:

Current in March, play-off place secure but unless we massively mess things up we should be crowned champions:

 

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I wouldnt of been where I am without these two though:

Screen Shot 2016-12-11 at 12.33.26.pngScreen Shot 2016-12-11 at 12.33.43.png

Things are looking up, Championship here I come.

Edited by 1987scott

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I'm into March now, sold a few players off to the MLS and got West Ham's Ashley Fletcher on loan until the end of the season. Booked my place in the Checkatrade trophy final too.

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4 hours ago, stevemc said:

I'm into March now, sold a few players off to the MLS and got West Ham's Ashley Fletcher on loan until the end of the season. Booked my place in the Checkatrade trophy final too.

All Blades fans will be hanging their head in the shame of loaning a player from them lot no matter how good he might be :D

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17 minutes ago, Cleon said:

All Blades fans will be hanging their head in the shame of loaning a player from them lot no matter how good he might be :D

Couldn't resist the 250K future fee clause :D

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Nice to see a Blades thread gaining some momentum!

Our good form recently has inspired me to take my beloved Blades back where we belong. :) 

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I'm getting FM17 for Christmas and as a lifelong blade the first team that I'll manage with be the red and white wizards of Sheffield.

Hopefully I can replicate Chris Wilder's real life achievements so far this season.

What I'll say to stevemc, about his goals set out at the start of the season, is that they are realistic (except for the European goal, that'd be a minor miracle irl). You've done a very good job so far and even though you've loaned in a West Ham player the fans would be loving you by now. I honestly don't think that people would care too much about the Fletcher deal as we got Lavery from that team on the outskirts of Barnsley this very season and we like him.

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Lavery is great on this game too, I had him in FM16 with Portsmouth and I liked him in that save, so stuck with him this time too. I might just buy Fletcher for the £250K, even if he's not great after the loan spell, as I'd imagine I could make money on him at that price.

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Brilliant thread so far.

I'm a long time lurker on these forums so seeing this about my boyhood club I couldn't help but get involved. 

As a season ticket holder I've been mightily impressed since the team of Wilder and Knill took over. Slowly restoring the passion in the club with tactics that are a breath of fresh air compared to the Adkins Era. I'm going to try and emulate the Wilder approach, favouring the high press, quick tempo 3412 formation. I should be able to post screens of how I'm going replicate this later. 

I'll start with my opinions on the squad. How I feel about them and my opinions on their usage in game.

Goalkeepers

Simon Moore

Currently Wilders No1 and totally deserves to be. Replacing a shaky George Long at the start of the season. His non stop communication which can be heard throughout Bramall Lane must surely Help Defenders. In terms of the game. Steady Goalkeeper who won't let you down. However in my opinion I think playing George Long would be a better choice. Especially if you can get the early promise he showed out of him. Simon Moore. Second Choice.

George Long

Not being able to access the game while typing this I can't see all his stats but if memory saves me right he has brilliant reflexes. Game time will only help him here. Potential to be a championship keeper I believe. George Long. First Choice.

Aaron Ramsdale

Recently made his full debut for us in the cups. A young England International. Has all the attributes to be a brilliant goalkeeper with bigger clubs reportedly sniffing around. Criminally underrated goalkeeper on FM so not totally sure what to do with him. You could either keep him as your number two to Long and move on Moore. Or simply let his contract expire at the end of the season. Aaron Ramsdale. Undecided.

Defenders

Keiron Freeman

Keiron doesn't look to great to be honest. Going into this before seeing his in games I would have assumed he'd be an easy choice for right back but now i'm not too sure. This is an area you might want to improve. Personally I'm going to see what I can get out of him before the return of Brayford at the end of the season.

Ethan Ebanks-Landell

Becoming a cult hero this year at Bramall Lane with his no nonsense aggressive style of defending. This guy will tackle anything that moves.  Should be your first choice CB at the side of Jack O'Connell. I will be playing him the right side of my three centre backs. I believe he could easily play in the championship so if he becomes available for a reasonable price. Go for it. 

Reece Brown

Signed on a short term deal purely for cover. Not seen anything of him personally. In regards to the game. I think he will be useful back up. I will probably let his contract run down. Totally your choice what to do here.

Danny Lafferty

Signed on a season long loan from Burnley. Steady full back. Nothing spectacular. I will try to train him LWB to suit the Wilder formation. I will probably rotate between him and Chris Hussey. Keep until the end of the season then asses. 

Jake Wright

Suprise of the year for me. Signed on a free due to Wilder thinking the dressing room was too quiet with not enough leadership. I can't speak highly enough of him, a calming influence in the team. My heart is telling me to play him in game but honestly I think he is probably best used as back up. Keep for the season then assess.

Jack O'Connell

Signed from Brentford at the start of the season. Showing glimpses of what I expected when he signed after a shaky start. Your first choice ball playing CB for me. Brilliant defensive stats and the rarity of a high passing stat for a league 1 defender. Still young. Keep him. Play him. Watch him grow into a high championship level defender. 

James Wilson

Not sure what to make of this signing. Capped by Wales I believe but found himself without a club. I assume he was signed for a back up role. This is what he should be used as. Steady back up but seems like he can be confrontational so good luck keeping him happy. He may have more opportunities with my 3 Centre back set up but personally I'd use him as back up.

Chris Hussey

An early signing by Mr Wilder. Apparently a deadball specialist with a wicked left foot. The less said about his defending the better. He had a shocker at the start of the year and found himself warming the bench. In game I will be rotating him with Lafferty, the wing back role should suit him more. I'll see how he gets on.

 

Overall you have two outstanding centre backs who are easily good enough to help mount a promotion charge. Steady back up. Would look to improve the fullback area if your budget allows

 

Midfielders

Chris Basham

He divides opinion at Bramall Lane. His energy around the pitch is brilliant. The sliding tackles he makes are second to none to. But for what he has in energy he certainly lacks in technical ability. Wayward passes and slow thinking are enough stop him playing at an higher level. Personally I like Bash. He's a brilliant player to have. I would train him to play CB as another option. I'm undecided. He could be brilliant as a midfield destroyer alongside Fleck. Its a good problem to have. Keep Bash, for me he's a starter. 

James Wallace

The enigma that is James Wallace. Oozes quality but unfortunately he's made of chocolate. Injuries have ruined his career at Sheffield United. He's not been involved in the first team under Wilder and I suspect he's free to go. On here however I find him quite a handy player to have. He offers vital back up with some decent looking attributes. He won't be needed to play week in week out which he basically cant do. He will be your last choice player in midfield but if the budget is tight, keep and release at the end of the season or sell as soon as possible. 

Louis Reed

The Crown Jewel of Sheffield United on this game. He Debuted at 16 and to be honest under Clough he didn't look out of place. Technically gifted with great passing and Vision. He's gone off the boil recently with some question his physicality. He's small, really small, which doesn't help in a mans league. Build your team around him. Seriously do it. Tie him down to a contract as soon as possible and he will flourish. Just watch the interest in him grow. Sell in a few seasons for big money if you wish to.

John Fleck

Quite simply. I want this guys babies. An unbelievable free signing. Class on the ball. Tough in the tackle. He plays with wing mirrors on. He has to be your number one midfielder here. Play him alongside Reed or rotate with Reed to not overexpose the youngster. Easily championship standard. He has to start.

Mark Duffy

Another early signing by Tufty. He's been playing the number 10 role this season and although sometimes inconsistent he can produce brilliance. He has quick feet and his movement is brilliant. I will be playing him behind my strikers but if you're using wingers he is your man in an area Sheffield United lack. Useful member of the squad. Depending on where you strengthen he's got to play.

Harry Chapman

On loan from Middlesbrough. He's a quick tricky winger with great potential. A very nice player to have. He will only get better with games. If you play wingers, use him. Like I said previously there's not much in the wing department in this squad. He might struggle for a place in my 3412/5212 but i'm keeping him.

Paul Coutts

What has this man become this season? Fellow Blades will be as confused as me with his brilliant form at the moment. He's forming a brilliant partnership with Fleck. I will be using him as back up. I see no other use for him unfortunately. Maybe look to move him on in January. It's your choice but to me he's back up.

Matty Done

I feel uncomfortable including him in the midfielders. To me he's a striker despite his versatility and this is where I will be playing him. His energy is unbelievable. I will be playing him in a kind of Lower League cut price Jamie Vardy role. He's handy as a winger if you want, but for me. Use him to boost your striking options. 

Stefan Scougall

I quite like Scougs but honestly I cant seem to fit him in. I will be looking for a better option for the number 10 role and don't think this lad will out any of my further back midfielders. Look to sell.

David Brooks

Another player to add to our midget list. Joking aside hes a decent young prospect. I don't see him breaking into your squad this year and if you rise quickly through the leagues this guy might get left behind. Loan him out and keep a track of his progress.

 

Overall its quite an healthy midfield. Your crown Jewel is there with some handy players such as Fleck and Basham. You might want to look into buying wingers if your system needs them. I will be looking for someone to play behind my front two to challenge Duffy. 

 

Strikers

Leon Clarke

Signed this season because Wilder likes to have different options at the top of the pitch. I don't see him starting for me, but he could be useful late on when chasing games with a route one style. I recommend using him as ack up and looking to offload him sooner rather than later due to his age. 

Caolen Lavery 

Signed from the wrong side of the city after a stall in the early promised he showed. Like Clarke he will be back up for me. Decent technical ability and a useful option to have as back up.

Billy Sharp

Mr Sheffield United Himself. Passionate. Talented. Finisher. He will be my main man this season. I think it would be foolish not use him. Easily capable of helping you get out of League 1. I will be playing him as an Advanced Forward and watch him bag the goals. Keep as captain unless you favour and are going to play Jake Wright.

 

Overall it's not a bad mix up top. Just a little light in terms of numbers. My plan is to use Done as a defensive forward and Sharp advanced forward. I would recommend signing Cummings from Hibernian. I picked him up for about 600k and is giving me a real headache in the team selection.

 

My save is finally up and running so will post how I'm getting on later. If anyone wants to see my interpretation of Wilders tactics then feel free to ask.

 

 

 

Edited by StereoMonkey91

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It would be ideal to try a midfield heavy formation in order to squeeze all those quality players in! 3-6-1 maybe? 😆

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Louis Reed developing very nicely :thup:

52hswp.png

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13 hours ago, stevemc said:

Louis Reed developing very nicely :thup:

 

Im gutted that i couldn't keep him. Sunderland and Newcastle was hunting him from the start of the game, and he demanded a new contract cuz i denied the offers. And as i said before he also demanded a buy-out-clause. I recommended that he should fire his agent, as he did. But he still demanded a clause, smart boy that bastard. Now he's in Newcastle, dosen't get much playtime. Sad.

 

I didn't do a summary of the first season (i finished 2nd, 1 point behind MK Dons...). I think i'll do it on the end of this 2nd season in the save (currently in Championship). 

Currently just one point behind the qualification spots. I've almost played the first half of the season. I've had some good home-matches, lost a few away-matches. Trying out a new tactic, focusing on counterplay at awaygames. So far one win and one draw in the last 2 away-matches. 

Would be nice 2 qualify for PL, but i think one more season in championship wouldn't be bad. As always when im playing FM im trying to buy good "youngsters" with good potential. So one more season for them 2 develop in Championship wouldn't be bad.

So far im really enjoying this save. And i recommend every1 thats want a challange to try Sheffield United out.

Edited by FMKalle

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I'm now really wanting to start a save with United but only if I can replicate Wilder's 3-4-1-2/5-2-1-2 or however you interprate it tactic.

Currently I see us playing something along the lines of.

(R-L)

Goalkeeper: Moore - Goalkeeper (Defend)

Centre Backs: Ethan Ebanks-Landell - Central Defender (Defend), Jack Wright - Central Defender (Cover), Jack O'Connell - Central Defender (Defend)

Wing Backs: Kieron Freeman - Wing Back - (Attack?), Daniel Lafferty - Wing Back (Support)

Central Midfielders: Paul Coutts - Deep Lying Playmaker (Defend, (Maybe Support)), John Fleck - Central Midfielder (Support) * This role I'm really unsure of.

Attacking Midfielder Central: Mark Duffy - Attacking Midfielder (Support) * Roam from position & more risky passes selected.

Strikers: Billy Sharp - Deep Lying Forward (Support) * again unsure of his role on FM, Matty Done - Advanced Forward *Maximum closing down set.

 

Team instructions perhaps something along the lines of. Retain Possession or short passing, Work ball into box, play out of defence, higher tempo (untick retain possession if I would use this) & high closing down.

 

Any thoughts folks?

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Hi Reedy,

Not far off of how I see it at all. Its difficult to interpret the midfield roles with both Coutts and Fleck used as deep lying play makers. This I believe is frowned upon in the tactics forum? I'm not sure. I've gone for Coutts DLP/Defend and Fleck DLP/Support. Often Fleck is pushed a little further forward. Something I will be keeping an eye out against Coventry tonight. Matty Done for me is a Defensive Forward support. He seems to be playing well for me 10 goals in 14.

I'm not sure how to post screenshots but for team instructions I have a high defensive line. Max Team pressing.  Get Stuck in and be more expressive. I'm uncomfortable with using work ball into the box because Wilder likes quick transitions. It's just when teams are sat on their own line at the Lane it dictates us playing this way.

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17 minutes ago, StereoMonkey91 said:

Hi Reedy,

Not far off of how I see it at all. Its difficult to interpret the midfield roles with both Coutts and Fleck used as deep lying play makers. This I believe is frowned upon in the tactics forum? I'm not sure. I've gone for Coutts DLP/Defend and Fleck DLP/Support. Often Fleck is pushed a little further forward. Something I will be keeping an eye out against Coventry tonight. Matty Done for me is a Defensive Forward support. He seems to be playing well for me 10 goals in 14.

I'm not sure how to post screenshots but for team instructions I have a high defensive line. Max Team pressing.  Get Stuck in and be more expressive. I'm uncomfortable with using work ball into the box because Wilder likes quick transitions. It's just when teams are sat on their own line at the Lane it dictates us playing this way.

Hey, I was thinking of using Fleck as dlp (s) too but for the resons you suggested i thought best against it. What role do you use Sharp as?

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2 minutes ago, Reedy_1988 said:

Hey, I was thinking of using Fleck as dlp (s) too but for the resons you suggested i thought best against it. What role do you use Sharp as?

Advanced forward for me. He leads the line and that's where you want him. He is struggling at the moment though for me. I'm trying to analyse the problems. It seems the lack of quality balls in from the full backs is affecting him. Going to try low crosses for a few games.

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