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Theodlard

[FM17] Keymer & Hassocks

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Season 6 in Southern Combination Football League Premier Division has come to a close.  Over the course of the season lost two of my best players to cruciate ligament injuries (10-12 months) after the AML went down never could find an offensive rhythm and ended up with way too many draws.  I'm pretty sure I can continue on this mid-table routine indefinitely.   This is season 25 of the save, if nothing changes in the next 5 seasons I'll call it a career and retire.

Best youth prospect I've had in a long time.  

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Pretty bland last half of the season.  No terrible losses, but no nice run of results.  

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My predictions at the mid-point were dead on.  No one could catch Ore Athletic and East Court loaded up with talent and finished strong.  My team was not far off 5th and if we would have had our AML it would have been attainable.  Selsey is a very likable team, glad to see them doing well, they have a payroll very similar to mine and continue to out perform some of the rich teams.

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Mid-point of season 7

Nothing much exciting to report.  Getting a few decent youth in the system, poor start to the season and as usual too many draws.

Picked 6th, note that Selsey continues to get no love from the media.

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Decent FA Cup, the rest very uninspiring.

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Poor form at start of season, had to make some tactical changes to duties to shore up defense.  Had some injuries to the midfield thrown in but nothing too severe.  Looking much better as of late.  

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Pretty wide open league.  Selsey could pull off a major upset and win the thing but I don't think it is a given like some other years at this point.  Brighton & Sussex have the money to go through, East Court always comes on strong.  I would not write off any of the top 10 of making a run to the title this year.  

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Season 7 in Southern Combination Football League Premier Division has come to a close.  Made a commitment to stick to a new tactical decision and I felt good about the results.  I went a totally defensive mentality for every match from the midpoint of the season forward.  Even though the point total was similar (1st half 29, 2nd half 30) it just felt better to not give up a goal every game on the counter attack.  I will work on some PI tweaks to help the offense pick up some steam but I'm positive going into the next season.

Youth intake was decent, some hope for a future player out of the mix

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Good run of results in the mid season, 17 unbeaten.  Once again too many draws, some were gut wrenching in their timing.

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Really missed an opportunity this season.  No run away team.  East Court had a chance but could not win enough at the end to make a run.  Really nice to see Selsey get the promotion.  It will be interesting to see how they do next year.  East Row is coming up next season and have the potential to do some damage.

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So where did all those Southern Combination Premier League Champions end up?  Here is a quick update on their progression

Ore Athletic - Isthmian First Division South champ

Bosham - Isthmian First Division playoff final (loss)

Cuckfield - Isthmian Premier League semi-final (loss)

Catsfield - National League South champ

Mile Oak - relegated out of SCPL previous season

Chichester - finished 10th in SCPL

Catsfield will be a fun watch next year in National Conference to see how they will do.  They played the loan market well and still have some money.  Rare to see one of these lower league teams keep a run going for this long.

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Season 8 Preview

Newly promoted Northiam 75 has a payroll of $1 million and are fully professional.  Should be fun playing them.

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Mid point of my 29th season at the helm of Keymer & Hassocks.  Without a promotion season 30 will be my last.  (If you are counting, my previous post had a season counting error.)  

Pretty typical season.  Lost my two central defenders at the same time for a spell and their replacements are not good.  Forced a mentality shift from all defensive, which I knew would not last forever anyway.  Would be nice to end this save with another cup win.  We'll see how it goes.

Have had worse cup performances and still a shot at the FA Vase.  That 3rd round win was a thriller.  Down 2 goals in the 2nd half, plus 2 missed PK's and still managed to find a way.  

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Turned last seasons draws into losses, can't remember the last time I gave up 5 goals twice in a season.

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As good as the top teams are, the bottom teams are pretty poor.  This could be my saving grace this season as our form is less than stellar.  Would hate to get fired this close to retirement.

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Season 8 in Southern Combination Football League Premier Division has come to a close.  One more season to go, we'll see if I can finish on an upbeat note, or I could get fired if the trend continues.  Board seems content to wallow in mid-table mediocrity.  Slowly chipping away at my wage budget with no desire to invest anything in the club.  This is my first long term save with zero improvements to the club infrastructure.  

Youth intake has one nice regen.

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If this was not my poorest half of any season it sure felt like it.  Could never get in any rhythm, ability to score goals consistently continues to be the biggest challenge.  The combination of average tactical expertise on my part and consistency issues with my strikers is difficult to overcome against the bigger teams.  The perfect example are the two games in relatively close proximity with Northiam 75.  The first game they sat back and killed me on the counter (4-1) the second game they used the same approach which I compensated for by playing more defensive and eliminated their counter attack.  Both goals are scored on set pieces, one a defensive blunder one a excellent header.

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Top-heavy table this year.  Final day saw three teams with a shot at the title.  Four teams with over 80 pts, no one else really close.  Another money-rich team is coming up, will be interesting to see how long they hold out.

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And how good is our section of the pyramid right now?  Back to back FA Vase wins, first wins from this League or feeders since I've been competing for the FA Vase.

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And in other news...

Selsey will be joining us again after finishing last after their win last season.  Catsfield finished mid-table in National Conference.  Bosham and Ore Athletic both promoted with ease.  Cuckfield stalled in Isthmian Premier League, just out of play-offs.

 

Edited by Theodlard

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Final season about to start.  Since a mid-table mediocre finish is slated once again, since the top of the table is crazy competitive, since I want to take a risk and see what happens, I am going to go with a very aggressive change in tactics.  I am pretty sure this is doomed for failure but it is the only thing that I can think of to give it a go at promotion.  What's the worst that can happen?  Fired?  Relegated?

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Experimenting in my final season could end poorly.  My aggressive pressing style imploded very quickly, tweaks led nowhere and we started the season on an impressive streak of almost no points.  Reverted to my old system and at least won a few games.  Board has been very patient but they are starting to grumble a bit, the players likewise are discontented.  Relegation is a real possibility as is a sacking.  Only pride keeps me going.  The 2nd half can't be worse than the 1st half.

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In a way I am glad you have failed so far. Not that I personally want you to. It does show the game is working, & you cannot magically go all attacking a suddenly win all & become successful. It seems what you were doing before worked well, but other sides just had more resources than you, which if you look at in real life is true.

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35 minutes ago, YOUNGSTEVE said:

In a way I am glad you have failed so far. Not that I personally want you to. It does show the game is working, & you cannot magically go all attacking a suddenly win all & become successful. It seems what you were doing before worked well, but other sides just had more resources than you, which if you look at in real life is true.

Since my investment in the long term success of the club is coming to a close I actually agree.  It would make life easier if there was some magic tactic that fixed all the problems but I have not found it nor do I hope that it exists.  What I am looking forward to is letting this save go on holiday for three or four years once I've retired and see what happens to the club.  I'd like to think that my management and tactical decisions have done better than the AI would have.  They'll probably get promoted as soon as I quit that save.  :) 

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17 minutes ago, Theodlard said:

Since my investment in the long term success of the club is coming to a close I actually agree.  It would make life easier if there was some magic tactic that fixed all the problems but I have not found it nor do I hope that it exists.  What I am looking forward to is letting this save go on holiday for three or four years once I've retired and see what happens to the club.  I'd like to think that my management and tactical decisions have done better than the AI would have.  They'll probably get promoted as soon as I quit that save.  :) 

I think you have done very well, & got the side up as high as it can with the resources you had. Yes, a new AI manager might do better, but expect that will be more to do if they have a sugar daddy or not. The only unrealistic part seems to be clubs seem to regularly get massive cash boosts, which seems to make the leagues unbalanced. All in all it was a good read, & enjoyed reading about your exploits. As long as you found it great playing the game, that is all that really matters.

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40 minutes ago, thisisdcgAGAIN said:

I loved this, will you be attempting it with Fairwarp on FM2018? 

Thanks!  Really enjoyed it as well.  The LLM aspect is really enjoyable for me.  I've not got FM18 yet, I still have another 17 save to do, but looking forward to reading all about those Fairwarp saves.  Will post my final season report shortly.

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The final season of my run at Keymer & Hassocks manager has come to a close.  It was a good season to end on and left me with no regrets about calling it a day on this save.  Going into the final game I needed three points to assure survival, or I needed help.  We allowed an opening goal in under two minutes.  Shortly afterwards a set piece put us down 2-0.  A young promising MF then got sent off for a bad tackle.  Another set-piece, another goal.  The final goal to secure our defeat for the day was an own goal.  My stalwart keeper who has been with us for all of our attempts at promotion out of this division, dropped the ball  on a routine shot, turned to pick it up and booted it into the net.  0-4 to end the day and my time with Keymer & Hassocks.  Horsham needed a win to jump over us but even though we deserved to get relegated after that fiasco of a game, they too managed to loose, allowing us to stay up although we tried mightily to mess it up.

Here are the final grim reports from an ugly season.

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Catsfield crashed out of National Conference, a good 8 pts clear of safety.   Cuckfield surged and won the Isthmian Premier League play-off, beating Bosham in the process.  That puts 3 of these teams in National South.  Ore Athletic missed out on the play-offs and last seasons winner Brighton was promoted.

I resigned at the end of the season and was thanked profusely for my many seasons of service, hope the next bloke takes them to the Premier League!

I will holiday this save for a few years and see what happens to Keymer & Hassocks as well as these few teams.  Thanks for reading!  I've got another LLM idea so another long-term FM17 career will most likely be in the works fairly soon.

 

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That's really a great run of LL football! I started the same, same club, same goals. Managed to get promoted the first two seasons easily. But the game is SO SO SO SLOW!!! Was it like that for you?! It needs one minute for one day, it's very frustrating. I'm waiting to get promoted so i can disable the previous league I've played in, but I'm not really sure will it be fine later on in the game or I've made a mistake when starting with large database? If there's a magic trick to speed up game processing  I would be so happy to know. 

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Small database and auto-continue are the biggest time-savers I've found.  I typically only load english sides as playable, should run through the early leagues fairly quickly.

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Just updating another FM17 Keymer & Hassocks save, yes I like to be tortured.  With a refined tactical system and lots of patience I have managed to rise to the 8th tier.  Had a few rough seasons in the Mid-Sussex premier league but for the most part it has been a fairly smooth run.  Unlike the previous save I have not run into many teams that have had massive resource advantages.  The current season does have one full-time team but with a play-off spot available that makes it doable.  Last year I managed the play-offs and lost in the finals, and was without a key player for four months.  Hoping to get promoted this go around.

Did this save as youth academy only, allow my GM to make most contract decisions but had to help out during a recent takeover as he was not signing anyone to a contract.  Finances stable, had one really good FA Cup run to the 1st Round, two other years made it to 4th qualifying.  Had two turkish players earn U21 caps and were staples in the side for a long time, one still comes off the bench to score goals for me.  I'll probably update this at seasons end until I run a good solid FM19 save.

 

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Season Recap 2037/2038

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Excellent end to a really solid season.  Team came together nicely and when my leading scorer went down for a month his replacement came in a grabbed 8 goals to keep us moving forward.  Was picked second in the league pre-season so not really a surprise to finish as champs.  Core players are young and improving so hoping for another promotion next year to get me into Conference football.

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Season Recap 2038/2039

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Was very happy with another solid season.  Team did not always look as good as I like but defense was solid.  Had some injuries to work through and the board sold our best goal scorer, Gary Stephens, at the start of the season.  The 12.5k we got for him did not make our finances that much better but we managed to overcome his 70 goals and win another promotion.  Another 1st Round FA Cup run but no big club to make it pay well.  Should be interesting to see how we fare in the Southern Conference.  Our run-in's with those league team have usually been close affairs.  A top -half finish would be acceptable but we'll see what the board has to say.

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And a new stadium!  We will play the next season in Whitehawk's staduim in Brighton.  

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Season Recap 2039/2040

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Had a wonderful start to the season and a nice finish but the middle was pretty horrible.  Close games but just no ability to score consistently.  Tweaks to tactics never seemed to fix much.  Was not eliminated from the playoff race until the final day.  Two draws at the end did not help but would have still came up short.  A good basis to build on for the next season. 

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Phillips as my midfielder and Batchelor as my DM are the core of consistency on the team.  Thought we were not going to be able to sign Phillips for another year but he finally gave in and got a big raise.  The board chair decided that an offer for Batchelor was too good and they sold him for less than $7k.  Which made no difference to our negative $400,000 bottom line.  His back up is serviceable but not really comparable.  

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In the spirit of Tottenham's real life issues, FM is being as realistic as possible.  Another few months in a home away from home.

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Mid-season Report 2040/2041

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Very happy with the progress of the season.  Won some tight games that would have been draws last year.  Team is playing much better even with a tremendous amount of injuries at the start of the season.  Nothing major, but at one point had five starters sidelined.  Depth showed and the team held it together.  Hoping for a playoff spot at worst from where we've started.

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Excellent FA Cup run, which will most likely be coming to a close in this round.  Would have rather had a premier league team but I've already beat one league two team but Wimbledon is playing well right now, will be a hard ask.

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And from the world of "I told you so" the board thinks it was a bad deal, which is what I said when they sold him.  

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Season Recap 2040/2041

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Really happy with the season as a whole.  The ending was a little anti-climatic.  As soon as we clinched the play-off spot we fell to pieces.  An untimely minor injury kept one of my strikers out of the play-off game.  Had a great FA Cup run, got a great platform to build on for next season.

 

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Edited by Theodlard
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Mid-season Report 2041/2042

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Poor start to the season but then form came around.  Have managed to keep my quality players around for this season at least but the debt is mounting so getting promoted this year would be a nice thing.  So far no one is running away with the league, play-offs seem like a doable goal again.  Poor FA Cup and Trophy runs did not help the finances any.

 

 

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Season Recap 2041/2042

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Not the 2nd half of the season that I had hoped for.  Played just well enough to keep playoff hopes alive but came up short on the final day.  Needed to beat the second team on the table, who had nothing to play for, and came up lacking.  We scored a lot of goals but our defense was poor, not really even close to the top 5 when looking at goals allowed.  Switched GK mid season to try and develop a high PA player, we'll see if my long term plan works.  Finances remain poor, over $700k in the red but a local investor is looking to take over and has suggested he will wipe our debt.  I won't hold my breath.  Payroll for next season was cut but still managed to re-sign all my starters.  Board found League One Shrewsbury as an affiliate, debating on whether a few loaned players violates my youth only policy.  If a good goalkeepers comes through it will be tempting.

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Mid-Season Report 2042/2043

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Not a good season.  Finally had to make a switch in goal which helped somewhat, not much chance at playoffs at this point but it looks like we've turned things around enough to stay out of a relegation battle.  Takeover at the end of last season gave us nice influx of cash, albeit with more debt.

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Season Recap 2042/2043

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Had a nice end to a season that started poorly.  Was not eliminated from play-off contention until the final day, although it was a long shot even without the final day defeat.  We are still sorely lacking in goal but with some tactical tuning and some in form strikers we managed to make the season look respectable.  Hoping for more of the same next season.

 

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Hi Theodlard, this has been a great story to read! I've also just started a career with K&H on FM17 and would love to know how you cleared that massive Southern Combination hurdle. I'm still slogging my way through the Mid Sussex leagues so I've still got that league to come (gulp).

If youre still playing this career I'd also love to see how far you've come since the last post, have you reached the Football League yet?

 

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