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Jogo Bonito

FM17 - French Football Thread

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I knew you were at Nantes, just wasn't sure if it was still the case - sorry if I worded the question badly :lol:

Yes, I recalled Blin from his loan in season 1 at the winter window, and he's now fighting it out for one of the two or three starting spots. I've got some decent options there despite having a regular squad of only 23/24 players.

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First season with Auxerre. I'm second place after 21 games. I want to build the team around the team's youngsters. I'm also playing for trying new and more random stuff. Trying 3 defenders and adapting players to new positions...I'm having fun!

My team for now is: Boucher; Digol, Sparagna,Fournier; Samba, Van Boto(Traoré); Mathis, Fomba(Konaté), Obraniak; Vincent and Courtet.

Digol is playing very well at the back, Samba is also pretty solid in the right and playing a lot better than Aguilar. Fomba is still trying to find his place with the team. I also love Florian Ayé, scoring some good goals but he is injured right now. Goujon, Kiliç and Michelet also getting playing time. 

Courtet is our best player...top scorer and assists.

There's also a few good young players but with really low determination, which is a bummer...including Van Boto.

Edited by JR_Junior

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17 hours ago, Fatkidscantjump said:

I really recommend FC Nantes for everyone who wants to start a save in Ligue 1.


For every french football fan Nantes is a legendary side, they even have their own specific type of play called "jeu a la Nantaise" which was pretty much a really fast, one touch paced counter attacking football, based on youth intakes. Legendary players such as Desailly, Deschamps, Makelele, and more recently Payet all emerged from Nantes. They have one of the best title records in France, but they always did poorly in Europe and their last title was 15 years ago and since then the club is slowly becoming worse and worse, with a controversial new president Waldemar Kita. They even went to Ligue 2 for 3 years around 2010.

They still have incredible support from fans. Honestly, Nantes fans are one of the best in France. Just look at this giant hug when Aristeguieta scored a last minute goal. And this was recently, when the club was not doing so well.

 

They also have very good installations, good youth recruitment, decent staff. Squad is not brilliant but it should do fine to end up mid table. With a few improvements it can grab an European ticket on the first 2 seasons.

This club deserve more and it's a great challenge for a FM save.

I`ve always liked Nantes, partly because Viorel Moldovan played there, and partly because of their fans. Shame they`ve been rather poor lately.

Started a new game with the Romanian national team, failed to qualify for the World Cup on goal difference (finished on level points with Poland, but they had a +8 G.D, I only had +4), and since there`s nothing to do until September when the next qualifying campaign starts, I accepted Bordeaux`s offer in December 2017. They were sitting in 16th place, just 2 points above 18th, but the squad is far better than that. First game in charge was a 7-1 trashing of Stade Reims away from home, and I thought "that`s it, we`re cruising from now on", but some unlucky defeats against St Etienne, AS Monaco and two goalless draws against Toulouse and Nantes at home with a 2-0 loss away to PSG between them and we were back in the relegation battle. Also beat some 4th tier teams in the 10th and 11th round of the French Cup and lost to Rennes on penalties in Coupe de la Ligue quarter finals. It`s been a pain in the butt so far, luckily I have an easier schedule towards the end of the season (I`m only playing two of the top 6 teams until the end of the season), so hopefully there`ll be some much needed improvement, as my job status is Insecure.

 

 

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@Jogo Bonito

I only bought the game last week and am avoiding 'spoilers' etc but wanted some advice.  I will post a SS of his development until that point to show how good he could potentially be in that role.  I recently started another game and got him very cheaply indeed, with some very underdeveloped stats, there must be some random values or some amazing progress made.

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Two months later and there`s been a massive turnaround of fortunes, we won 7 our of the next 8 league games (lost 4-1 away to Lyon, Fekir and Lacazette destroyed me), kept 5 consecutive clean sheets, including a 5-0 win at home against 3rd place Metz, and wins against Marseille and Lille, beat Angers 2-0 to qualify for a quarter final encounter with PSG in the Coupe de France and we`re now just 5 points off a European spot, with 8 games left to play (with a bit of luck, who knows?).

 

The young players at the club are excellent, Malcom and Ounas have been great, Vada is a decent playmaker, then there`s the defence which has really improved after a few tweaks here and there, with Hamary Traore, Clement Lenglet and James Kounde as the outstanding performers. Jeremy Toulalan is the only player in the starting eleven who`s older than 30, but he`s irreplaceable atm. Squad average age is only 25, but Plasil, Menez (who`s utterly useless, that`s when he`s fit, which happens about 3 days per month)  and Carasso are the only other player above 30 in the squad. The one thing that annoys me is the inconsistency of the strikers, one game they`re like Messi, scoring for fun (had Lukas Spalvis score 5 goals in one game, then he`s been rubbish for the next three games, Crivelli scored 2 hattricks, then seems to have forgotten how to play football, and then there`s Rolan, who`s been rather wasteful), but I`ll be looking to improve that.

However, the major downside to it is the club awful financial condition, 28M negative balance and we`re very likely to sell some of our key players.

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On 09/01/2017 at 23:36, Jogo Bonito said:

I knew you were at Nantes, just wasn't sure if it was still the case - sorry if I worded the question badly :lol:

Yes, I recalled Blin from his loan in season 1 at the winter window, and he's now fighting it out for one of the two or three starting spots. I've got some decent options there despite having a regular squad of only 23/24 players.

Aha no worries :)

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The second half of the season hasn't started too well. Dropped from 1st to 4th going into March. Courtet has forgotten where the goal is and Ayé just isn't quite good enough yet, so the goals have dried up. We're sorely lacking in pace throughout the squad, which means our counter attacks are being stopped easily, so I need to scour the free agents and try to a half decent winger in. Hibbert has been solid so far at least, and offers vital experience and leadership in my back line. He's so so so so so slow unfortunately though, which means I can't play too high a line 

 

The youth intake was very good however; it looks like I've got some pretty good youngsters, including one who would be ready to slot into my team if not for the age restrictions in the French leagues 

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Been playing a save with Lille. Just about finished the 1st season. Signed Neal Maupay(£1.6m), Lukman Haruna(free), Artur Jedrzecjczyk(£500k), Benjamin Corgnet(loan), and Wakaso(£600k) in the summer window, selling Soumaoro for £400k. Winter market moves were tough, with only one player joining, Emiliano Amor on loan. Tallo, Amadou and Benzia headed out on loan. 

Results 1 - Results 2

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We started magnificently, and it fell away as the season dragged on. We held 2nd for much of the season, but the form dropped and we just about managed to hold onto 3rd despite losing our last match. Still, 3rd place was more than what I was aiming for, so a step in the right direction. 

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Great showing in the Europa League, only losing out to the eventual winners Man United. Delighted with how well we got through the group, and our performances throughout.

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Some excellent performances. Eder and Maupay were good for us in front of goal, closely followed by Obbadi. Bauthéac assist leader, just ahead of Amalfitano and Obbadi. 

Best performers of the season were Mounir Obbadi and Sébastien Corchia. Obbadi defied his age (33) to become an indispensable player in midfield, only missing out when unavailable. Corchia was a dependable player on the right of defence, and has significant interest in him. 

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We have been taken over! 3rd time lucky, as we have now a consortium in charge.

Edited by Stu_UBJ

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My first season with Auxerre ended in double heartbreak. Finished 4th, but the top 3 were miles ahead for a long time after I'd been on such a poor run of form, then I lost in the French Cup final 2-0 to PSG, in a game I should probably have got something out of given the performance. 

 

The summer window was was mixed to say the least. Ajaccio gave me an offer I couldn't refuse for Gaetan Courtet, which leaves me without many goals up front, and Rémi Fournier left after I'd apparently broken a promise to him. In came Baptiste Aloé from Marseille, Jair from Levante, and then Chris O'grady, Stephen Hendrie and some winger from Rennes on free transfers. I also signed Ronny Rodelin for 600k from Caen, hell provide some quality out wide, which I was sorely missing last season. 

The start of the new season hasn't gone too well. A 0-0 draw away at Valenciennes, followed by a 0-1 defeat at the hands of Chamois Niortais, leaves me worried about the lack of goals. Does anyone have any striker recommendations for Ligue 2? Preferably young but it's not essential 

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1 hour ago, Lambo95 said:

My first season with Auxerre ended in double heartbreak. Finished 4th, but the top 3 were miles ahead for a long time after I'd been on such a poor run of form, then I lost in the French Cup final 2-0 to PSG, in a game I should probably have got something out of given the performance. 

 

The summer window was was mixed to say the least. Ajaccio gave me an offer I couldn't refuse for Gaetan Courtet, which leaves me without many goals up front, and Rémi Fournier left after I'd apparently broken a promise to him. In came Baptiste Aloé from Marseille, Jair from Levante, and then Chris O'grady, Stephen Hendrie and some winger from Rennes on free transfers. I also signed Ronny Rodelin for 600k from Caen, hell provide some quality out wide, which I was sorely missing last season. 

The start of the new season hasn't gone too well. A 0-0 draw away at Valenciennes, followed by a 0-1 defeat at the hands of Chamois Niortais, leaves me worried about the lack of goals. Does anyone have any striker recommendations for Ligue 2? Preferably young but it's not essential 


Might be worth going through all of the Ligue 1 squads to see who is transfer listed/loan listed, and make a move for them. WIth Auxerre you should have a decent enough rep to bring a good enough player in.

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Great to see so many enjoying spells with different clubs in France. It was good to read about how you're all getting on. 

@Lambo95 Great advice from Stu, probably your best chance of striking lucky, so to speak. In addition to that, have a look at the strikers named in my guide to Ligue 2 and National clubs and see if any of them have an expiring contract or if you can afford to buy.

From Africa, some more experienced names you could have a look at are Michael Uchebo (who may be unattached), Austin Amuto (perhaps on loan), Makhete Diop, Saber Khalifa or Patrick Friday Eze if you can afford the wages.

Worth checking out Kabongo Kasongo and Stanley Ohawuchi too, whilst in France I saw that Strasbourg have a teenager on a free called Naby Nouah Soumah, who I signed for Toulouse. Failing that, you should be able to loan Thierry Ambrose if you can't do better.

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5 hours ago, Lambo95 said:

My first season with Auxerre ended in double heartbreak. Finished 4th, but the top 3 were miles ahead for a long time after I'd been on such a poor run of form, then I lost in the French Cup final 2-0 to PSG, in a game I should probably have got something out of given the performance. 

 

The summer window was was mixed to say the least. Ajaccio gave me an offer I couldn't refuse for Gaetan Courtet, which leaves me without many goals up front, and Rémi Fournier left after I'd apparently broken a promise to him. In came Baptiste Aloé from Marseille, Jair from Levante, and then Chris O'grady, Stephen Hendrie and some winger from Rennes on free transfers. I also signed Ronny Rodelin for 600k from Caen, hell provide some quality out wide, which I was sorely missing last season. 

The start of the new season hasn't gone too well. A 0-0 draw away at Valenciennes, followed by a 0-1 defeat at the hands of Chamois Niortais, leaves me worried about the lack of goals. Does anyone have any striker recommendations for Ligue 2? Preferably young but it's not essential 

I've been playing as Auxerre too.  For two seasons now.  Strangely enough I put a good run together an ended up winning Ligue 2.  Then in my first season in Ligue 1 had a horrific start - 1 point in 10 games.  Changed my tactics and managed to get 17th spot and stay up for another year.  But to answer your question about a striker.  I found that the best striker at Auxerre was a youngster called Florian Aye (I think).  He really started banging the goals in for me.  I'd give him a go if you've still got him.  He came on leaps and bounds for me - problem was he did so well for me, he left to go to Lille.

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3 hours ago, mrw072 said:

I've been playing as Auxerre too.  For two seasons now.  Strangely enough I put a good run together an ended up winning Ligue 2.  Then in my first season in Ligue 1 had a horrific start - 1 point in 10 games.  Changed my tactics and managed to get 17th spot and stay up for another year.  But to answer your question about a striker.  I found that the best striker at Auxerre was a youngster called Florian Aye (I think).  He really started banging the goals in for me.  I'd give him a go if you've still got him.  He came on leaps and bounds for me - problem was he did so well for me, he left to go to Lille.

Yeah I do have him, but he's been pretty poor for me. Currently on a 15 game goalless run. 

 

 

Ill have a look at some of the other recommendations, thanks guys. 

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Finished third with Nantes then the following season I finished 10th after being 7th on the final day before the game, I promised the board I'd get a europa league place but then they gave me an ultimatum of 10 points from 5 games going into the next the next season. I got 8 points including two 0-0 draws with PSG and Monaco and was promptly sacked which I thought was sh*t really considering I'd dragged them from relegation candidates to champion's league place contenders bringing through loads of youth products (The next manager sold both of our best academy product strikers for £10m each when they should go for at least double that:mad:).

Applied for the Bordeaux job where they were spending double on the weekly wages that I was at Nantes, got an interview but didn't get which was a shame. I rejected St Etienne because I thought I'd get the Bordeaux job which was a shame because they're in a much better state than my current job...

 

...Marseille!

 

Who I saved from relegation and I'm hoping to save from financial ruin too.

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Lots of love for Auxerre! It actually pushed me back to Chamois Niortais who I had taken to the relegation zone with one win in my first 11 games in Ligue 2. Won a couple of games on re-launch and got a couple of draws despite losing my best striker and both 'keepers to injury. Ironically that struck just ahead of a 0-0 draw with Auxerre in which my debutant 3rd choice rookie saved a penalty and won man of the match. Desperately need my striker and one goalkeeper back fit ASAP as we edge towards mid-table.

 

@Fosse Very harsh treatment at Nantes! Unlucky with Bordeaux, but I can't believe you would have rejected the chance to take the ASSE job (personal bias from me there). It sounds like a really good challenge with Marseille though, and could be very rewarding.

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35 minutes ago, Jogo Bonito said:

Lots of love for Auxerre! It actually pushed me back to Chamois Niortais who I had taken to the relegation zone with one win in my first 11 games in Ligue 2. Won a couple of games on re-launch and got a couple of draws despite losing my best striker and both 'keepers to injury. Ironically that struck just ahead of a 0-0 draw with Auxerre in which my debutant 3rd choice rookie saved a penalty and won man of the match. Desperately need my striker and one goalkeeper back fit ASAP as we edge towards mid-table.

 

@Fosse Very harsh treatment at Nantes! Unlucky with Bordeaux, but I can't believe you would have rejected the chance to take the ASSE job (personal bias from me there). It sounds like a really good challenge with Marseille though, and could be very rewarding.

In hindsight I should have taken the St Etienne job but I fancied a Marseille save but didn't want to start one whilst I was already managing in France, If I just would have looked at the table I'd have needed up at the Geoffroy Guichard :lol:

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I'm about to start my 3rd season as Auxerre boss.  Strangely enough during the 2nd season St Etienne offered me an interview.  That seemed to go ok, then a week or so later they asked me before I take the job which coaches do I want to bring with me.  So I thought this is in the bag.  I'm enjoying my time at Auxerre, but I fancy the step up.  Anyway I was thinking about which players I should sign from Auxerre, for St Etienne when I got the news.........I'd been unsuccessful!  And the job had gone to a manager I seemed to be having a war of words with in the press..aaargghh!  Anyway, now St Etienne are my least favourite team in Ligue 1, and if I only beat one team this season I hope it's them lol.  So I think i'll stick where I am, for the time being anyway.  But Auxerre do have some great young players who are developing fantastically.  Some of my central midfielders can't be too far away from the national team I think.

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Finished my first season in charge on Bordeaux, and unfortunately we missed out on European football by a single point, but the board was happy with a mid-table finish anyway. 

Ligue%201_%20Overview%20Stages.png

 

One of those consecutive draws turned into a win and we would have finished above Monaco, but I am pleased with how the season went, only lost once in the last 15 league game, and against a much better team. We held our ground against PSG in the French Cup quarter final, but the stronger bench eventually made the difference, they had Di Maria, Diego Costa and Cavani coming in, I had Menez and Plasil. Last 5 games involved a lot of rotation, as I had all 3 starting midfielders injured  and also a few suspensions.

Girondins%20de%20Bordeaux_%20%20Senior%2

Given the position the club were in when I took over, I think I did a decent job out of it.

The club`s financial condition is still pretty bad though, -11M balance at the start of the season, so the transfers I`ve made were either free transfers or loans. Didn`t sell any of the important players, and  added Ali Adnan from Udinese for 1M (decent back-up for Contento), Morgan Amalfitano on a free transfer (backup for Vada) and loaned Kevin N`Doram from AS Monaco. Some Premier League and La Liga clubs are eyeing both my DC (Guilbert and Lenglet), but I`m not sure whether to sell or not, even if I feel I`ve got adequate cover, I`m looking to sell one of them for the right amount, and so far, the offers have been pretty low.

Edited by Marius_R

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@mrw072 Unlucky on the ASSE job, but glad you're enjoying the potential at Auxerre.

@Marius_R That's a very decent season with Bordeaux, shame that one point you needed for Europe. Ali Adnan is a good purchase and for a very reasonable fee, I hope he does well for you. How much did the club pay for Lenglet? I was looking at him for Toulouse but they were asking about £25m in season 1, and I only paid just over £1m for Malang Sarr.

I should be able to get some images and updates done from my first season at Toulouse soon.

 

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@Jogo Bonito Thanks, but I`m glad we didn`t qualify, I don`t have the squad to compete both domestically and in Europe, nor the funds to build one. Currently sitting in 3rd place after 13 games, but as soon as one or two of the regular starters are injured and suspended, it shows in the results. I`ve had 5 or 6 injured players at one point in the season, I managed just 2 wins in 6 games, and ended up having to play with a 17-year olf GK and a 16 year old ST (both are rated as 4.5 stars potential).  And yes, Ali Adnan is good value for money, but his defensive game is a complete mess. He has the 2nd number of assists in the team though. 

Lenglet was signed in June 2017 (before I joined) for 6,25M (+some appearance and international appearances bonuses) from a relegated Nancy. He is one of the best defenders in the league now, also made his France debut, and I`m glad I sold Federic Guilbert instead of him. 

The problem I have with managing in Ligue 1 is that PSG are so ridiculously good, it`s almost impossible to compete with them, and it`s going to take a massive effort to knock them off their perch. I`ll do it one day though, even if I have to stay at Bordeaux as long as Sir Alex did at United. :D

Edited by Marius_R

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@Marius_R Personally, I like challenges like that where you don't always have it easy and need to use some youngsters. Bordeaux are useful to me too, as the 'derby' with them and Toulouse always attracts a bumper crowd.  Of course, I agree about PSG too, they won Ligue 1 by a mile in my first season (as usual).

That was good deal your predecessor did with ASNL on Lenglet, although after buying Malang Sarr early on I didn't really need another left-sided centre-back to be first choice. I did sign a more than useful alternative before season 2 though, at a fraction of the cost, so now have a fairly well-balanced squad without me feeling that I'm blocking too many quality youngsters. 

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@Jogo Bonito My predecessor made some good deals tbf, together with Lenglet. he also signed Meunier and Hamary Traore quite cheaply. Also didn`t sell any of the key players, but after our recent run (currently 2nd in Ligue 1, miles behind PSG though),  PSG is now interested in both Malcom and Ounas. I`ll probably have to sell Malcom, he has just 18 months left of his contract and isn`t interested in entering negotations, I just hope I can milk out as much money as possible from it or at least postpone it until next summer, and maybe Champions League football (if we make it) might make him change his mind. 

 

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Just a short update on my Stade Rennes career...

In short, the club has enough talent to make you challenge for a European place in the first season. However, given the lack of success of the club, you will have to start winning trophies in the short term to attract talent.

Finished runners up in the first season, way way behind PSG. PSG basically steamed-rolled anyone who came up against them while I struggled due to the lack of fire-power. Did manage to win the Coupe De Ligue Cup after beating PSG in the semi-finals though. As Rennes was not financially strong, I looked to my youth squad and loan market. This led to me finding a number of good players.

Loans:

CB: Lyanco  (Brazilian/Serbian, SPO) 

AM: Carlos Alena (Spanish, Barcelona)

Recommended players to poach from Rennes:

GK: Benoit Costil (30, French) - Will leave on a free transfer

DC: Edson Mexer (28, Mozambican) - Consistent and big game performer

DR: Roman Danze (30, French) - Consistent and big game performer

DL: Afonso Figueiredo (24, Portugese) - seems to perform better and better

MC: Benjamin Andre (26- French) - Consistent performer

AML/Inside forward: Paul-Georges Ntep  (24, French) - Your main threat up front

Young players to scout:

AM/ST: Wesley Said (20, French) - Seems like a good prospect, false nine, inside forward

CM/AM: Nicolas Janvier (!8, French) - Playmaker

AM: Maxime Picouleau

GK: Theo Louis

ST: Arnaud Tattevin (17, French) - Staff says will be one of the best players 

 

However, in the off season, I think I over-spent on my in-comings. This is partly due to spotting some bargains and also to address the lack of fire-power in my side.

In came in Casimir Ninga (DLF, DF), Bruno Petkovic (CF/DLF/AM/IF/AML/AMR) and Walter Gonzalez (CF/AF) for immediate fire power up front. I loaned Kennedy from Chelsea as my primary right-sided winger after I sold Grosicki.

I also signed a number of  promising 19-20 year olds from other clubs as I did not have the cash to splash on the well known ones like Issia Diop, Marlang Sarr and the like. This is making me worried if I can give them and the youth above enough game time to develop their game.

Worryingly, my original 4-2-3-1 tactic does not seem to get the best out of my strikers. Also, it results in fewer chances created. Hence, I have switched to a 4-1-2-1-2 instead. This, however, has made Ntep and Kennedy a bit irrelevant. I will have to monitor the status of this as I move along.

S2 summer Rennes.JPG

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Hope I'm not too late to the party. I started managing OGC Nice, simply because Balotelli is their star striker. I can CONFIRM this.

With a ultra fast paced counter attacking style of play, Balotelli scored FOUR goals on our opening match against Stade Rennais, he was absolutely mental! Also leaving him lurk edge of the box on corners and giving him the ball is almost a guaranteed goal everytime.. He currently has 8 goals in 3 games.  

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@therealpete Welcome and good luck with Nice, it's a brilliant club to manage - in a lovely location and with so many good players.

@inthisspace You're doing well with Rennes, keep up the good work.

@Marius_R It will be a shame if you have to lose either Malcom or Ounas, hopefully it won't come to that.

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I really want to start a save with RC Lens sometime in the nearest future. Mostly because I followed their Champions League run back in 98/99, and because of their fantastically awesome home kit!

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10 hours ago, Jogo Bonito said:

 

@Marius_R It will be a shame if you have to lose either Malcom or Ounas, hopefully it won't come to that.

They`re both happy now,  they wanted to leave to play Champions League football, I promised them that and they`re good for now.  I was 3rd in the league, 7 pts ahead of 4th place Tours (yeah, WTF!?)  when making that promise though.

Aaaaand......the beast has been beaten! 

Bordeaux%20v%20PSG_%20Overview%20Overvie

They`re still 10 points clear at the top, 69-12 goal difference after 24 games. The other teams are useless when facing them.

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I would also like to vouch for league2 side, FC Sochaux-Montbéliard (Montbe). I feel like the summary of this club deserves a little bit more (Not discrediting Jogo by anymeans, his threads are brilliant and have been following him since FM15).

 

They're only of two clubs in L2 that have secured finances, you have many roster decisions to make when taking over in the early summer. Getting rid of low talent to bolster your roster if you'd like, I managed to sell off Thuram to Southampton ($4M) & Onguene to AS Monaco ($4M). This saw my balance spike way up to almost $20 and freed up a few hundred thousand in budget. 

I'm 7 games in now and I'm currently at the top of the table with a 1 point lead over Stade de Reims who I just beat last game 3-2. I brought in an attacking mid fielder (Pelkas) from PAOK to have a creative pivot on the field and a young german center defender (Kraus) from Heidenheim to shore up the defence. Something to also keep in mind about anyone who wants to manage this club long term, the stadium is currently under rent for $441k p/a (sorry you'l have to adjust the currency for whatever you use). It does seat 20k, and I haven't come close to filling 75% of it, but just something to think on if you make it back to league 1.

 

Cheers!

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@therealpete Good to read about your time with Sochaux, and great to have your input on their financial position. I agree with you that they do have some excellent players, in fact I signed their keeper at Toulouse. With their history, they're definitely one of the best picks in Ligue 2. Please keep us posted :thup:

Now that I have decent internet again, this weekend I hope to finally have time to do an update on my Toulouse career. 

 

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2 hours ago, Jogo Bonito said:

@therealpete Good to read about your time with Sochaux, and great to have your input on their financial position. I agree with you that they do have some excellent players, in fact I signed their keeper at Toulouse. With their history, they're definitely one of the best picks in Ligue 2. Please keep us posted :thup:

Now that I have decent internet again, this weekend I hope to finally have time to do an update on my Toulouse career. 

Cheers mate. Can't wait to read your Toulouse update!

 

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Update on my Bordeaux career...

As you can see, 2nd in the league (miles behind PSG though, once again they were too good) and Champions League football (and much needed money). If I`d have finished 3rd, the chances of making it to the group stage were very slim, as due to my poor coefficient, a clash vs Deportivo, Chelsea, Roma or Leverkusen would`ve awaited me via th "Best placed" route .

Ligue%201_%20Overview%20Profile.png

Got knocked-out on penalties by Bastia in the Coupe de la Ligue 3rd round, and lost 1-0 to Lens in the Coupe de France quarter finals (PSG won every single competition *sigh*). HIghlights of the season include a 2-0 win against PSG, 7-0 vs Gazelec Ajaccio, 4-1 away against Monaco, a crazy 5-3 against Montpellier and an injury time winner against Nice. Lost at home to an already relegated Lille though, and couldn`t beat Stade Reims or Bastia neither home or away (Bastia have become a bit of a pain in the butt, played 5 times against them in all competition and never won against them).

I was saying in a previous post about my 17-year old GK and ST, here they are:

Vincent Fabre  (played 18 games, and kept 11 clean sheets, conceded only 10 goals, avg rating 7.02*)

Vincent%20Fabre_%20Overview%20Profile-2.

Fethi Hamrouni  (played 18 games - 5 as a sub, scored 7, including goals against PSG, Lyon, Marseille and Toulouse, avg rating 6.88*)

Fethi%20Hamrouni_%20Overview%20Profile.p

And the player of the season, Malcom (43 games, 2 as sub, 12 goals, 11 assists, 7.39 avg rating*)

Malcom_%20Overview%20Profile.png

*stats include all competitions

I sold Frederic Guilbert (DRC) to AC Milan for 9.5M + bonuses (potential value of transfer 13.75M) at the start of the season, and Diego Rolan to Sampdoria (6M+bonuses, potential value 8.5M, all sums are in Euros) in January, and signed Larry Azouni (MC from Nimes, box-to-box midfielder, 3.5M+bonuses - 5M potential value). Geoffrey Kondogbia is now transfer listed by Inter, got an 8M offer accepted, but his wage demands were ridiculous, 7.5M per year plus a 15% yearly wage rise, most I could offer was 4.5M per year).

The only signing I`ve made so far is Thievy Bifouma from Bastia on a free transfer (I went all Bayern on them, if you can`t beat them, steal their best players) as a back-up for Malcom. I`m still in early June, there`ll still be some deals made, I need a good backup AMR and another ST, and I need a solid starting defensive midfielder, Toulalan is beginning to show his age, and Monaco won`t sell Kevin N`Doram (who I`ve had on loan and was quite good).

 

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@Marius_R Another great league campaign, finishing 2nd again is impressive. PSG are so frustrating, but to beat all the others is not easy at all. Like you, I've not done great in Cup competitions in France either, and also struggle against the worse teams in Ligue 1. Ending on a positive, I'm pleased that Malcom is doing the business still, and look forward to seeing how your squad shapes up for the next season.

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@Jogo Bonito Well, for the next season (2019/2020) I got a hefty 47M transfer budget to play with. Signed Faouzi Ghoulam (17M, Manchester United) as I was a bit short of quality for the DL position, Jack Wilshere (10M, Chelsea, he`s a player I`ve always had a soft sport for in FM, from an older Arsenal save on FM14, and he`s definitely an upgrade on Vada as Adv Playmaker), Kevin N`Doram (6.5M, AS Monaco) and Grzegorz Krychowiak (8M, PSG) as replacements for Toulalan, all these players were transfer listed. I also went for Marco Benassi from Torino, but he chose Atletico Madrid instead, and Kondogbia chose Ajax over me (WTF!?). Julian Weigl was also transfer listed by Manchester City, but the asking price was too much, they were asking 40M, there`s no way I was going to spend most of my budget on a single player. I still need an AMR (Kennedy is transfer listed by Chelsea, but I have to sell one non-EU player before I can grab him) and a ST (Vincent Janssen is also transfer listed by Tottenham, and is available for only 6M). I sold some  backup and youth players players for a combined 13M, so there`s still some money left. There` s also a board takeover on the horizon, I just hope it doesn`t happen until the transfer deadline, because the transfer embargo would screw me big time.

As for Malcom...the bastard said he wanted Champions League football, gave him that, now he won`t sign a new contract because he wants to win the Ligue 1 and feels he can`t achieve this with Bordeax. Well, good luck getting signed by PSG and then getting into the PSG squad ahead of Di Maria and Goncalo Guedes, because that`s about the only chance of winning the Ligue 1 he has for the next 2-3 years. The major issue here is he only has one year left of his contract, so I`m forced to sell and get some money for him or I`ll end up losing him for free. Benfica, Sporting and Schalke are all interested, but none made an offer yet. 

Edited by Marius_R

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I started a save with Rennes yesterday and can say managing in France is fun, albeit the lack of money to do anything is a bit annoying.

Revamped the whole staff and got rid of some who were getting paid too much given what they're bringing, got three players from Serbia- one from Crvena Zvezda and two from Partizan one which one is on a loan with option to buy for 300K euros- not to mention I've signed Diego Poyet and Martin Caceres on free transfers and Axel Tuanzebe on loan from Man Utd (good back up for less than 1.5K euros/w) after cleaning up the reserves of youth that don't have a lot of potential, exiled first teamers and Sylvain Armand who's on a lot for a backup. I've renewed Ntep's contract which has pushed his price up quite a bit, hopefully he'll put in good performances which will further increase his price so I can sell him (the sell-on clause put by Auxerre is a bit of a pain in the bottom) as I have signed a 21-year old Serbian left winger who has 4-star potential for less than 700K. Will look to sign Lovre Kalinic on a free if Costil doesn't renew his contract.

Using a possession-based 4-3-3 which has seen me being 7th after 9 game, won 6 games, drew three and lost two (one of which was against Dijon of all teams). Sio has been the stand-out player, with Ntep putting some good shifts.

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On 1/22/2017 at 17:51, inthisspace said:

-snip-

You're giving me hope about reconstructing the team, but I'd keep Sio unless a huge offer was presented, 8 goals in 9 games speak volumes,  he only needs two more goals to equal his best (senior team) season's goalscoring tally.

 

PS: Is it just me or is Gelson Fernandes a yellow card magnet?

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1 hour ago, El Murciélago said:

You're giving me hope about reconstructing the team, but I'd keep Sio unless a huge offer was presented, 8 goals in 9 games speak volumes,  he only needs two more goals to equal his best (senior team) season's goalscoring tally.

 

PS: Is it just me or is Gelson Fernandes a yellow card magnet?

Great that you managed to get Sio scoring!  He was bad in my game, missing many opportunities. Then he received a bad injury and was out for an extended period. By then,  Said and Eramus had took over his place in the squad. 

Yep,  Fernandes is a bit of a card magnet. But so are Andre and Chantome in my game.  Could be due to me placing them on hard tackling. 

Keep up the good work! 

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Lille might be a good shout for the winter update for those who want to try a different save

Irl: New owner with money, new sports director (Luis Campos ex Monaco), and they are currently signing top youngsters (ex Gerson from As Roma)

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Just got past deadline day and it`s been insane, Malcom eventually went to Shalke on deadline day from 39M now + 13M when he reaches 50 league games and another 13M when he reaches 10 league goals, for a potential total of 65M. Meanwhile, Vincent Janssen chose QPR instead of joining me, Kennedy chose Lyon, and Denis Suarez signed for Porto. Instead, I signed Yann M`Vila for 10M from Betis, Marlos Moreno from Man City for 4.4M and Falcao on a free transfer, plus Rafik Zekhnini from Leicester on loan. 

With 3 defeats in 5 games, PSG went in all guns blazing and signed Gabriel Barbosa, Isco and Alex Grimaldo  on deadline day for a combined total of 137M, so it`s only a matter of time before the title chase is over, there`s no way any team in the league can keep up with them in the long run. They also signed Antony Martial for 98M.

Got handed a group of death in the Champions League, with Bayern, Manchester City and Benfica, so our European adventure will be short lived. At least there`ll be some good money coming from match tickets revenue. 

Lost the Supercup to PSG (2-1), but won 4 and drew once in the first 5  league games, but our performances haven`t been convincing(understandable, given I`ve signed 10 or 11 new players), I`m sure once the tactic familiarity is close to normalx our game will improve.

I`ll keep updating as the game progresses, but tbf, I`ve lost a bit of motivation seeing PSG throwing that much money around and building a monster team.  

Edited by Marius_R

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I've started my 3rd season with Auxerre now - the first season I managed to win a surprise Ligue 2 championship.  Then in my first season in Ligue 1 struggled massively to start with.  But with a change of tactic managed to reach safety on the last day and finish 17th.  So this season I decided to try and continue my form from the second half of last season by just making a few subtle changes to my team.  Nothing too dramatic.  I brought in a couple of young players I had on loan permanently.  And searched for experienced bargains.  So in came Morgan Amalfitano and Yoann Gouffran amongst a few others.  And it's really paying off as they are helping my younger players develop.  At the moment (after 20 games) i'm in 3rd place - joint with Monaco.  But a long way behind PSG who are unbeaten.  I seem to be very difficult to beat and have had a lot of clean sheets.  So European qualification is hopefully going to be a very real possibility this season.

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Starting a French save after reading everything in here. Not 100% sure who to go with... So many appealing options

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Started a Lyon save with the game loaded up in May 2017, allowing for different signings to be made than the usual  and players able to be sold instantly, with no clubs having signed anyone for 12 months. PSG won Ligue 1 the previous season.

tfrs.png

As you can see I'm going for a French core, with 11 of the 12 permanent signings French. Here's my strongest team at the moment:squad.JPG

I've also got Cabaye and Germain signing on frees at the end of the season and will go in for Ben Arfa once his PSG contract has expired, as his wage demands at the moment are ludicrous.

Got knocked out of the League Cup fairly early and got through my hard group of Bayern, Chelsea and CSKA in the Champs League only to get knocked out in the Second Round by Benfica after a poor second leg. We do however have a French Cup Semi Final to play and need to get 4 points in the last 4 games to secure Ligue 1 - we're currently 9 points clear of PSG :)

Update:

I won Ligue 1 by 9 points and beat Marseille 3-1 in the French Cup. Very consistent performance from most players, with Dembele, Niang, Knockaert, Fekir and Lacazette all being deadly with a great input from M'Villa, Clichy, Corchia and Mbiwa.

Been given a £20m transfer budget but as I'm trying to only sign French players, there aren't any decent LBs available for me to sign to challenge Clichy. I have however sold Ferri and replaced him with Sanson for a similar fee.

Edited by Lawly Boi

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Toulouse FC Review 2016/2017

Image result for toulouse fc season review

I'm picking up from where I left off, in 3rd place at the end of October. I can't help feeling that the tactics and formation I plumped for at the start of the season had a huge element of luck. I'm really not used to settling in quickly to a new club like this, but the hard-working wide midfielders in my 442 seemed to make us hard to beat, and defensively we were solid. And I had a forward who was lethal and rarely missed chances. More of him to follow...

Toulouse Football Club_  Senior Fixtures.png

Toulouse Football Club_  Senior Fixtures-2.png

Ligue 1_ Overview Stages.png

As you can see, we finished a fine first season in 3rd place, an amazing success for a club like Toulouse. PSG were on another planet of course, but that was no surprise. Champions League football next season for Toulouse does not fool me. There is no expectation to achieve anything, but the financial boost, on top of the massive improvement to the balance sheet due to my cautious moves in the market, would provide a stable platform for future progress. Our graph below shows that we pretty much held a constant position throughout the campaign, but I wouldn't say it was ever easy. There are some very competitive teams in France.

Le Grand Fromage_  Home-2.png

Toulouse Football Club_ Players Players.png

Toulouse Football Club_ Players Players-2.png

Here is a summary of the squad at the end of the season. There were some sales, but I really didn't do much in the way of new players. Casimir Ninga and Malang Sarr were regulars and performed superbly. Habib Diallo was a bench option and back-up, Nicolas Benezet came in towards the end of the season for a small fee when other choices could not be attracted, and youngster Mario Mandrault was acquired on loan with a small optional fee clause built in. The main sale was Danish striker Martin Braithwaite, but unfortunately he just didn't take the opportunities I gave him. Despite wanting him to succeed here, the offer I got was far too good to refuse in view of his limited productivity.

58939770e1fc1_ToulouseFootballClub_TransferHistory.thumb.png.560c89809d8ee6ded23516fd17311438.png

Le Grand Fromage_  Inbox.png

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Le Grand Fromage_  Inbox-8.png

As you can see, I had a happy board (although unbelievably one summary suggests £1.5m for Malang Sarr was a poor financial deal for the club), and we were widely lauded by the media for over-achieving. The performances in both domestic cup competitions were awful, but that was something I didn't lose any sleep over. I kept the squad small, and the fixture congestion may have caused more problems than I needed.

58937f48136a3_CasimirNinga_OverviewAttributes.thumb.png.5e617c66e9b44ba097c0d831c4d4ee41.png

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Did I mention Ninga yet? Signed for £1.5m (rising to £1.6m) at the start of the season, my striker was on fire. You can see how he did, and the awards that rightly came his way. In fairness, it wasn't him on his own that got us to these heights, but with a solid team behind him he provided the sparkle that made a world of difference. To top it all off, I was delighted to be announced as Manager of the Season. It was definitely a very rewarding and enjoyable first season at Toulouse, and look out for more to come...

 

* I'm happy to see careers continuing, new careers starting, and other potential new managers considering France. It's always great to welcome new contributors, and always enjoyable to read everyone else's updates. Keep up the good work, fellow French fans! 

 

Edited by Jogo Bonito

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 2019-2020 Midway Season Update

Ligue 1: Things are going a lot better than expected, currently sitting 1st in the league and undefeated (scored in injury time against Nancy and PSG to salvage a draw), but PSG are ridiculously good and it`s just a matter of time before they move on top, they have 13 wins and 2 draws in the last 15 games and we have to play against them at their place, and even if we don`t lose,  nobody else in the league can keep up with them. 

Ligue%201_%20Overview%20Profile-2.png

Champions League Group Stage

As I said in a previous post, we got handed a tough Champions League group, with Benfica, Bayern Munich and Manchester City, but somehow, we managed to finish the group in 2nd place.

Group table

UEFA%20Champions%20League_%20Overview%20

Fixtures

Girondins%20de%20Bordeaux_%20%20Senior%2

We were incredibly unlucky in our first game against Bayern, we lead 1-0 and 2-1, but late in injury time Coman took advantage of a GK mistake and scored, then we got a good hiding from Benfica at their place, a lucky draw  and an unlucky defeat against Manchester City (Jack Wilshere missed a penalty in the 88th minute in the defeat against City, thanks a lot, Jack) and then followed a complete fluke win against Bayern (scored early on after a corner kick and then scored one late in injury time to seal a historic win) and it call came down to the Benfica game. We were in 3rd place before the last game, with City in 2nd and Bayern in 4th. Bayern won 1-0 at the Ettihad and Kevin N`Doram scored the only goal in the 6th minute and once Andre Horta was sent off after 35 minutes, I knew there`s no way we`d lose it. Falcao was the outstanding performer of our European campaign, with 3 goals and 1 assist in 5 games. In case you`re wondering, it`s West Ham (2nd in the Premier League atm) next in the 1st Knockout Round.

Domestic Cups

For the 3rd year in a row we lost on penalties in the Coupe de la Ligue, this time against Marseille, and we just started our Coupe de France campaign with a 4-0 win away against a Championnat National team. 

Players

Adam Ounas (AMR - Inside Forward  - Support duty) is the team`s driving force following the departure of Malcom, and with 8 goals, he`s also the teams goalscorer. 

Radamel Falcao, a bit of a panic buy, turned out to be great value for money and with 7 goals and 4 assists, is the most prolific striker in the team. His performances earned him a one-year extension to his contract.

Jack Wilshere and Yann M`Vila form a solid midfield duo, and so far, both have stayed injury free, something I can`t say about Krychowiak, who suffered a broken foot against Bayern and is out for between 5 and 6 months, luckily Kevin N`Doram is doing a great job as defensive midfielder. As for the defence, I have the best defence in the league, I conceded only 8 goals in 20 games. 

And lastly, my transfer targets for the summer are Marko Grujic, who is having his contract expire in the summer, and Danilo Cataldi and Federico Bernardeschi are transfer listed and available for around 8-10M, but once again I`m under a transfer embargo because of a board takeover (which will most likely fail, like the last 3 attempts).

 

Edited by Marius_R

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Tried an Angers save and finished mid table after season one.  Goals were hard to come by.  Was able to lure Petkovic in as my starting CF in a 4-1-4-1 system  and he netted 30 goals in a full season playing CF(S) he was simply a one man wrecking crew. We made Europe on the last day and now I have less than 2M to improve the squad for Europe while still expected to finish top 10.

Tough blue collar that scrapes out wins satisfying and stressful at the same time.

This could get ugly. On a good note we are building a new 25K seat stadium. Hope i live to see opening day.  

Cheers

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Petkovic plays for Tours in my save and last season (2018-2019) he was the top goalscorer, with 28 goals in 34 games, in a league that has Cavani, Diego Costa, Hakan Calhanoglu (yes, he plays in the ST position for Marseille) and Lacazette. Tried to sing him for my Bordeaux side this summer, but Tours didn`t want to hear about it, so I signed Falcao on a free transfer on deadline day instead. Now they`re (Tours) sitting in 18th place, sacked their manager, and Petkovic is unhappy and transfer listed. Karma is a wonderful thing at times. :D

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I've been my annual game as Le Havre, it look me 6 seasons to beat the big money spenders and take the title..

Ligue1_2122_resized.thumb.png.205c52d00602aeced98d5122ebe46f9c.png

My policy is to only look to bring in players under 27 years old so I have young average age, Ozdemir, Mendy and Moukoudi remain from my first season.

Squad.thumb.PNG.241b46ff6b40530bacfafa98da7add2f.PNG

Odegaard was signed on a free, Mayoral has been my best signing 101 goals in 3 seasons (72 league goals) and only cost 1.3m from Real Madrid. Ruiz was another free transfer.

And how about this for a result

58a0659f49091_Havre5vs0Barca.thumb.PNG.871cc76f241381430cd25f9183da1a43.PNG 58a06740ca41b_Barcaformation.thumb.PNG.d2ae47fad54b883b36fedfb8fd5c0c81.PNG

 

 

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Season 2019-2020 Update

Ligue%201_%20Overview%20Profile-3.png

This season brought one of the most intense title races I`ve been involved in recently, and unfortunately, we were on the losing side on it this time.  As you can see, we lost the league title on goal difference, but to make matters even worse, we were on level points before the last matchday, and this is what happened: 

Toulouse%20v%20Bordeaux_%20Overview%20Ov      Rennes%20v%20PSG_%20Overview%20Overview.

 

 

Both me and PSG lost. A draw against Toulouse and the league would`ve been ours, and to make matters even worse, Toulouse are our fierce rivals, they must`ve had a huge party afterwards. I honestly say I was gutted not being able to score the equaliser and losing the league title, but I guess it just wasn`t meant to be our year. Valentin Vada had a golden chance to send us 5 points clear of PSG at the time (Matchday 32), but blew it, although it`s unfair to put the blame solely on him, I had a few awful performances at home against teams we should`ve beaten, including 0-0 draws against Stade Reims, Metz and Nancy. On the other hand, PSG had a 32 games unbeaten run in the league, that`s crazy.

PSG%20v%20Bordeaux_%20Overview%20Overvie

 

Overall though, I`m pleased we put up a fight against PSG, and given the injury crisis we`ve had from January until April, we overachieved, at one point I had Krychowiak, M`VIla, Toulalan, Sertic on long-term injuries (1-2 months, and Krychowiak was out for 6 months with a broken foot), and to make matters worse, Wilshere was suspended for the above PSG game. If it wasn`t for all those injuries at the same time, I think I might`ve won at least one of those games we finished 0-0, but with cup games aswell, there was barely any rotation for almost a month.  

In the Champions League we did alright, finished to group in 2nd place and then got a good beating from West Ham in the 1st Knockout Round (won 2-1 at home, but lost 4-0 away, Payet scoring all four goals), and as for the domestic cups, we got knocked out on penalties (again) in both the Coupe de la Ligue (4th round) and Coupe de France (semifinals) by Marseille. We`re worse than England when it comes to penalties, I`ve never won a shootout since I took over, and there`s been quite a few, it`s the 3rd year in a row we`re knocked-out on penalties in the Coupe de la Ligue.

Squad overview

Girondins%20de%20Bordeaux_%20Players%20P

Falcao was my top goalscorer, I`d have picked him signing of the season (Ghoulam was picked instead), despite being a panic buy, he turned out to be one of our best performers. Adam Ounas and Rafik Zekhnini were also outstanding performers, and somehow Jack Wilshere stayed injury-free for the whole season. 

Overall I`m pleased with how the season went, despite losing the Marseille in the Coupe de France semifinals took away the chance of winning a trophy (Lorient was the opponent in the final), we`re still a small fish in a big pond in the Champions League and there`s no way we can compete with the top European teams yet, and probably this was the best chance to win the league, because I doubt PSG will have such a poor season (by their standards) in years to come, given the team they`ve assembled.

EDIT:  

Marius%20Rutza_%20%20Inbox-2.png

 

After a disappointing season which saw them finish in 5th place, Inter have sacked Leonardo Jardim and I went for it. I was in the process of a board takeover, which finally ended, but the new board said there`ll be no further investments, and just 3 days before I got the Inter job, PSG signed Icardi for 130M from Inter, coupled with the fact that the new board decided to go over my head and accept an offer for Vincent Fabre (my GK), I`ve decided to take the Inter job, thus ending my 2 and a half year adventure in the Ligue 1. 

Edited by Marius_R

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