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KyleHyde

[FM18] Mordovian Youth

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Posted (edited)

Hello everyone. I'll be documenting my Mordovia Saransk youth challenge save, using it also as a tactical experimentation playground but still keeping a rigid set of rules and goals for the challenge.

A bit of a background. I've been in the series since around CM3 or CM2 when Adrian Mihalcea was the best signing in the game. I've always been quite successful throughout the series. However, when the game developed into more complex variables i've grown frustrated with my lack of understanding of the match engine mechanics. I have some footballing background, having played it in youth levels and i have my own vision on what kind of football i like.

The youth challenge requirements are mostly the following: Use only players available at start and/or academy products, no signings/loans, no download tactics, no external programs, etc. 

Anyways, English is not my first or second language, so my apologies in advance.

 

 

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Mordovia Saransk

(Russian 3rd division)

 

BACKGROUND

FC Mordovia Saransk is a Russian association football club from Saransk, Republic of Mordovia. In its current state it was formed in 2005, through the merge of Biokhimik-Mordovia and Lisma-Mordovia.

The club was founded in 1961. In 2010, the club won promotion to the Russian First Division. On 8 May 2012 Mordovia beat Shinnik Yaroslavl 2–0 at home. This result meant that with a round to spare the team won promotion to the Russian Premier League for the 2012–13 season for the first time in its history. It was relegated back to the second tier after one season, and then returned to the Premier League for the 2014–15 season, taking 8th spot. After the next 2015–16 season, it was once again relegated. At the end of the 2016–17 season they were relegated for the second year in a row, to the third-tier Russian Professional Football League.      wikipedia

HONOURS

PFL Cup: 2009
Russian National Football League (2): 2011–12, 2013–14

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Why Mordovia you ask? I wanted to manage in Russia this time and, of the teams promoted to the 2nd division, these seemed the most appealing. Big stadium, top corporate facilities, nice kit. On the flip side, the training and youth facilities/recruitment were absolutely terrible which makes the challenge even more... challenging. This gonna be a long time. Hopefully i can avoid the boot in time to build something good.

The Squad

 

Maxim Astafjev - 36 year old, close to retiring date.

He has very good mental attributes and with 13 at vision and technique, I will be hoping he will be a key assist provider.

 

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Ruslan Mukhametshin - 37 years old, has half a season left before retiring too.

Very strong mental attributes and will be another major supplier although he likes to keep it simple. 

 

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Alan Bagaev - 27, our key man in defence.

Often rash but he will be a key player for us, no doubt about it.

 

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Mikhail Markin - 26, our main source of goals.

Annoying PPM but we will have to adjust to it.

 

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Vladslav Adaev - 22, our source of pace, the one who will stretch the opposition.

Still lots to develop but he's one of the best we've got.

 

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Vasily Cherov - 22, a solid RB but with his finishing skills i will be training him to be a forward.

We are ok in the fullbacks department.

 

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Ruslan Navletov - 24, he is a solid anchorman.

Good aerial prowess.

 

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And both fullbacks. If they stay injury free i won't worry too much in that department.

A bit error prone but we couldn't ask much more at this level.

 

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Season 1 Objectives

- Win promotion

- Improve facilities

- Introduce newgens to the senior squad

- Develop a personal style for the club in general.

 

Notes

After the first general assessment this will be very difficult. All senior players have lazy personalities and since i'm not allowed to make any signing, i will have to assemble a professional staff team hoping they have greater influence on youngsters personality. The terrible training facilities also make attribute development very hard but for now, i will keep things simple and focus on winning matches. 

Edited by KyleHyde
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Good luck with this! :thup:

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Posted (edited)

Thanks @Sheriff7:thup:

 

 

 

 

19 May. – Still recovering from the hungover. The party lasted until morning i must say. Everyone around the club is buzzing with the promotion.

We started the league very well with a 1-0 win against the champions Spartak M-2 and netted 6 wins in 9 games. But since then and until the end of the year, in 16 games we only won 5 and then we had the winter break. I was still trying to figure out how to get the best of the players. A 4-1-4-1 was not causing too much issues against the opposition, i had no pace to explore the counter, nor strong dribblers to hold possession in attack whilst the slow support arrived. Tested an offensive 4-2-3-1 and even 3 at the back but things weren’t working.

The winter was tough, i missed Daghestan and our nice food. Saransk can get very lonely and ugly at times. But luckily i was too focused on the club so i came to the hotel just to sleep a few hours.

We had a pleasant training camp in Turkey for the winter break. I studied Bobby Robson’s 4-4-2 system again and while we didn’t have the players to pull that kind of football, i realized some of the basic principles were to my liking and could be implemented. Such as the number 10. Usually in the forward position that links up with the midfield but gets inside the box. A destroyer defensive midfielder too, that would help building from the back, paired with a strong box to box that roams all over the pitch, dribbles and does key passes, besides winning the ball back. And of course the wing play was always important. A more classical winger to stretch play and give the side some acceleration power, and a more tactical astute in the other flank, working on half spaces and supplying key passes.

Mentality wise i tried a defensive structure system but we got overwhelmed easily so we went with a counter mentality. Calm build up but quick transitions when the chance appeared. I found that it gave a sweet balance in transitions. In terms of shape we went with flexible. Sometimes with a little tweaks. Such as being more disciplined to keep shape against strong pairs of strikers or going fluid to become more compact. The midfielder holder was tweaked depending on the match. But i found out that since we were playing in a lower mentality, it wouldn’t hurt to try him as a CM support duty but with the hold position PI, just so he could line better with the box to box and also provide assists. Against sides that sit deep he made all the difference.

The box to box played beautifully after the tactical switch, making to 2nd place in the assist ranks. We most often played as a CM-A unless the opposition gave too much space in the flanks. In that case i’d use two attacking wingers and make him more cautious. Like the match against Armavir. They were very good with a 4-4-2 deep. Vaganov, our box to box, kept running against their two defensive midfielders so i changed him to a deep lying playmaker and he started dictating the game and pulling all the strings. After all they gave him the space for that so why not take more time to think your game?

After the winter game we went unbeaten until the end of season. The 4-4-2 still has issues but its simple nature made tweaks easier to understand. In the last match of the season we got 40 thousand on the stands. It was beautiful and we celebrated with a 3-0 win against Baltika. They could never get out of their box with their defensive 4-1-4-1. Great performance.

It must also be said that this was Maxim’s and Ruslan’s last professioanal game as they will retire this month. I think it is fantastic to go when you’re on a high. Our striker partnership was the 37 year old Ruslan’s Mukhametshin with a 15 year old kid from the academy. Ruslan was already 22 when Dmitry was born.

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Maxim, 36, was crucial in the right wing. No pace at this time of his career but the mental attributes were still there as his 4 player of the match shows. Lebedev started the season injured but since he came back the right back slot was his. Solid defensively and smart going forward. Some brilliant crosses and thankfully he still has a couple seasons with us before calling it a day.

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Edited by KyleHyde
adding line

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Good luck with Mordovia :thup: 

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Posted (edited)

Mordovia Saransk - Season 2 review

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After winning promotion in the first season with a 2nd place, just behind Spartak Moscow M-2, we were in for a beating against the Russian big boys. Very much like the first season, we struggled a bit during winter until the break, when we changed our tactical approach and turned things around. This time we barely made it with the relegation playoff but we came victorious in the end.

We went from being destroyed from every team in the division to becoming very difficult for any opponent to face. We gave up our approach of playing it tidy and simple to instead make use of our little strengths and thus, employing a high tempo, long ball football. Relying on our strength and resilience.

Finally, at our second season, we got a couple academy products into our first team. With the majority of our best players retiring due to old age, next season will be just as challenging, being forced to rely on 15 and 16 year olds. Our brightest talent has to be Vasiljev. Our Attacking center midfielder. He is still only 15 but jumped straight into the first team due to our main AMCs being 33 and older. He still has a long way to go, especially in the game intelligence department but no doubt he will be part of my plans next season. Umaev is the most promising striker but still not ready to take the starting slot. He is not developing very fast however, next season, we might have to start him due to our best striker Markin leaving. 

Shestakov is another promising attacker, mostly played as a right midfielder. He has good physical prowess which fits our style of play. Kiselev is a CB and got some minutes at the first team already. Still lot of work to do and due to our terrible facilities and the lack of tutors, the progress is not very fast.

 

Season  |  League      | Pos.  |   Cup   |     CL      |     EL      |     Top scorer          |  Top assists         |    Top rating           | 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |  FNL         |  2    |   1st r |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Markin (15)          |    Vaganov (13)      |   Lebedev (7,23)        | 
2019/20 |  Prem'erLiga |  13   |   1st r |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Markin (21)          |    Cherov (8)        |   Cherov (7,01)         | 
  

Season  |  Finances    |  Coaching  |  Recruitment       | Training Fac. | Youth Fac.       |  Stadium
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |   OK         |  Poor      |  Poor              | Poor          | Below Average    |  44,149 
2019/20 |   Secure     |  Average   |  Above Average     | Basic         | Adequate         |  44,149

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by KyleHyde

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Posted (edited)

Thanks @john1 :thup:

 

Mordovia Saransk - Season 3 review

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Upon barely avoiding relegation in previous season we wanted to aim a little higher this time, although the board expectations remained the same - to fight relegation bravely. After a terrible start we managed the occasional 3 points which kept us away from the bottom of the table. Eventually, as per usual, we found the best form after the winter break, with only 2 defeats in 10 games, which made us finish in a comfortable 9th position. 

For the cup, we fought Orenburg again. Beating them 3-2 in extra time only to be eliminated by Zenit next round by 1-3 at home.

Sadly, we lost our main striker, Markin, who rejected a new contract. We stayed without club throughout the season and eventually retired at the age of 26... Sad story.  For next season we will lose another couple veterans from the first team, but it will be interesting to see how we manage being forced to included youngsters in the lineup. The expectations are the same, although i plan to do even better while improving the conditions.

One thing I'm certain. If i left the club now, they would be already too good for the 2nd divisions, in terms of infrastructure.

Season  |  League      | Pos.  |   Cup   |     CL      |     EL      |     Top scorer          |  Top assists         |    Top rating           | Notes
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |  FNL         |  2    |   1st r |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Markin (15)          |    Vaganov (13)      |   Lebedev (7,23)        | Improvement since changing to 442
2019/20 |  Prem'erLiga |  13   |   1st r |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Markin (21)          |    Cherov (8)        |   Cherov (7,01)         | Survived through relegation playoffs 
2020/21 |  Prem'erLiga |  9    |   2nd r |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Cherov (10)          |    Adaev (9)         |   Adaev (7,32)          | 
 
Season  |  Finances    |  Coaching  |  Recruitment       | Training Fac. | Youth Fac.       |  Stadium
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |   OK         |  Poor      |  Poor              | Poor          | Below Average    |  44,149 
2019/20 |   Secure     |  Average   |  Above Average     | Basic         | Adequate         |  44,149
2020/21 |   Secure     |  Average   |  Established       | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by KyleHyde

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Posted (edited)

 

Mordovia Saransk - Season 4 review

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We started the season well despite the defeat against Spartak and stuck around the top 6 while also defeating our pet peaves Orenburg once again. Always a tough opponent for some reason. Was still tweaking our more progressive version of 442 but we were looking solid.

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It was clear by then that Adaev was having a stormer, aided by the improvement in midfield by our new main striker Nikika Krylov and the holding midfield Yuri Ivanov. They came from last year's intake but needed a small maturation period in the u19s before jumping to the first team. We kept our amazing run, losing only to Lokomotiv Moscow until the winter break. 

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Historically, we do impressive later seasons after the break. If it was anything to go by, we would be fighting in the top5, depending on how other teams fared. If they were having poor seasons perhaps we could even achieve something special. We were tipped for automatic relegation by the bookers.

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After a comfy break we kept cutting teams like butter. With emerging talents like our wingers Popov and Frolov. And attacking quartet with deadly pace and acceleration, made any team scared of facing us. We could score anywhere and our morale was sky high.

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Without realizing, we were in the title race with a bunch of 16 year olds. We had a very difficult set of games though, with only Tom being the match we were expected to win. And even them had the same season expectations as we did at the start.

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Sadly, the boys didn't fare well with the pression and perhaps my too offensive tactics were to blame. I'm not one for excuses but we were terribly unlucky, at least, for the first 3-4 games where we were the much more dangerous side. The 0-3 against Krasnodar we had more shots on target, much more CCCs but still lost due to GK and defenders error. Some of them were very comical and i can only explain it by the youngsters not dealing well with pressure. All in all it was a big pleasure to be in this fight. 

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This is how it panned out. Completely unexpected, even to myself. We were ripping teams up throughout most of the season. They couldn't deal with our pace and physicality.

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Direct entry to the Europa League group stage. A nice financial boost (not that i can buy any players with it but still nice for club growth and more upgrades).

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Our u19s won their group once again. Excellent work by the u19 manager despite me stealing the best players for the first team every year. But it's comforting that our system of play is being well executed across the club.

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Still a long way to go in national reputation and in sponsorship but we'll get there. We also increased the facilities and coaching as well as the number of personnel. 

Overall it was a terrific season that saw us with a slightly less mechanical approach. We went to a fluid shape and became more of a solid unit. After all it started to make more sense to me than a specialized system where i needed a particular type of player otherwise i'd need to adjust every time a player was injured or having a bad game. Instead we relied on a fluid system in which players focus more on overall movement and strategy and it worked great so far, even if we had sometimes too much creative freedom for their respective maturity. Next season we will look to make our tactic a little more solid in the back and our striker partnership more effective.

 

Season  |  League      | Pos.  |   Cup   |     CL      |     EL      |     Top scorer          |  Top assists         |    Top rating           | Notes
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |  FNL         |  2    |   1st r |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Markin (15)          |    Vaganov (13)      |   Lebedev (7,23)        | Improvement since changing to 442
2019/20 |  Prem'erLiga |  13   |   1st r |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Markin (21)          |    Cherov (8)        |   Cherov (7,01)         | Survived through relegation playoffs 
2020/21 |  Prem'erLiga |  9    |   2nd r |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Cherov (10)          |    Adaev (9)         |   Adaev (7,32)          | 
2021/22 |  Prem'erLiga |  4    |   semi  |   n/a       |     n/a     |    Umaev (10)           |    Adaev (14)        |   Adaev (7,35)          | New fluid system

Season  |  Finances    |  Coaching  |  Recruitment       | Training Fac. | Youth Fac.       |  Stadium
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |   OK         |  Poor      |  Poor              | Poor          | Below Average    |  44,149 
2019/20 |   Secure     |  Average   |  Above Average     | Basic         | Adequate         |  44,149
2020/21 |   Secure     |  Average   |  Established       | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149
2021/22 |   Secure     |  Excellent |  Well Established  | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149

 

 

 

 

Edited by KyleHyde

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Key players

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Best player of the season, with highest average rating, man of the match (6) and assists (14). While he isn't a regen he was formed in Mordovia and never played in any other club. He feels the club and has excellent ability on the left wing.

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Cherov is the captain. Strong and versatile, i trained him as striker but this season, with promising strikers emerging and our lack of defenders saw him return to his natural spot, in which he did very well. He still played some games up front, scoring 6 goals.

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Frolov and Popov form our mighty wings. Even if Frolov doesn't get start often due to Adaev, he will eventually make that place his. Both have frightning acceleration and thrive on the space (no they aren't related to Gagarin).

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Both Shestakov and Vasiljev saw plenty of game time this season but their development disappointed me. I don't have suitable tutors to better their personality so all i can do is better training conditions and game time. They had it and they still are a far cry from their potential. Shestakov played the false 9 role and he didn't do very well. I will try something different next season but i want to give him another chance, and it will be upfront where i'll play him. Vasiljev still has a lot to do with his passing and movement. I was hoping he would be an integral part of our future but i'm more reserved about that now.

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Yuri Ivanov is a beautiful prospect. Gave us the solidity we needed in the midfield. Only 16 but already one of the best players in the lineup. 16 also means still a bit error prone but it's just natural and something we have to live with.

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One of the biggest change this season was moving away from the low block to a mid-higher block and it was thanks to this guy. A perfect partner to our more aerial beast Bagaev, Kiselev with his impressive physicality allowed us to play much more adventurously. As of late i had to resend him to the u21 team because his agent demands a 400k min release clause. Let's see how this goes, i was hoping i could lower his market value so the contract talk became more flexible.

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Finally, ladies and gents, Nikita Krylov. Couldn't ask for a better name, it's just so bad ass. Check out his attributes. He's had a season of growth in the main team and his improvement is fantastic. No idea about his professionalism but my guess is it shouldn't be too bad. I've mainly used him as false 9 although he's a natural Advanced Forward. His vast asset of skills allows him to do a bit of everything. Next season i would like to see him become more effective which should happen as he matures. I wouldn't say he's our key player, no. We still did well when he was off or injured but i believe he is our brightest talent. 

 

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Posted (edited)

Season 5 Preview

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I like the low expectations, especially with very young teams more focused on youth development because they don't deal as well with pressure. Europa league expectation is not hard to achieve, since we are automatically into the group stage. It will be the first time in Mordovia's history so we will take it as another experience to grow. For the Prem'er Liga, both the bookers and the board don't expect us to do more than fight for automatic relegation and see last season as total fluke. In reality i'm sure teams will be much more cautious against us so it will make things more difficult but i'll be fighting for the Europa League again (don't tell anyone).

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Ural is always a tough side. Managed by Paulo Sousa and play with a very annoying 4231. In theory, we'll have space in the flanks, let's see if we can use it though!

Edited by KyleHyde

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September 2022 update

 

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Surreal start of the season with only 1 draw so far.  For some reason we have been super effective. Next game is away to Krasnodar where we always have issues and then it's against Koln, Mordovia's debut in continental competitions! Hope we can learn a lot and avoid heavy defeats but the individual difference might be too high.

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just caught up. Great work there :thup:

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Posted (edited)

Tactical Analysis for Season 5 - part 1

Positions and defensive shape of the 4411

Defensive-Shape-formation-tactics.png

Defensively with are able to create a tight barrier of two banks of 4, with the two strikers always harassing defenders. We press high and are very resilient. It's more suited to players attributes, since all players except the two wingers are very strong physically. Low block proved very ineffective for us, due to the poor concentration attributes of my defence. We changed to a high line so my players can all fight for the ball, well up the pitch, and still recover in time. Much stronger opponents deserve a little more reservation from our part but we are still adventurous.

Attacking transition

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GK-S Has terrible handling but rushes out very well. We throws the ball to wing backs or sometimes kick it long.

WB-S They give the width of the system by staying wide.

DC-D Defensive line reasonably high, due to both CB's being very good athletically and sub-optimal when defending too deep.

IW-A Two daggers that cut inside at high speed with dribble more instructions that create overloads in central area and also explore the half space between between opposition defenders.

BWM-S The engine of the team, good physical attributes that allows him to cover the field and be very effective at duels, thanks to his high tackling. Comfortable with the ball too.

DLP-S The strings puller, an also physically developed player but more capable of setting the play, giving balance to an otherwise chaotic style. 

AM-S A needle player, stays between the lines and tries final ball flicks due to their technical quality. Usually this guy is also strong in the physical duels causing an headache to any team.

DLF-A Also helps in the defensive process but it's with his acceleration and flair that he often tricks the defenders catching balls over the top or arriving first to an early cross. Not an advanced forward for now, because I want him helping the overload between opposition defence and midfield, opening space wide for the Inverter Wingers and Wingback's.

Notes:

Overall we are playing like a big team, still a lot to improve, especially with final ball creation that sometimes lacks. Our number 10's although good technically, still have some crucial gaps in their skills that make that position rather frail. Like having very low teamwork or poor vision. Low mental attributes are very common with youngsters. Overall i'm satisfied that we have a clear tactical style developed, which in turn, makes me focus developing complete players rather than specialists that fit a specific tactical role.

Although my role description might have been of specialist functions, i think the shape in FM terms dictates more how the transition works. The more fluid you go the more compact it will be. Which means not only the closeness of each player but also the overall mentality and off the ball average movement. So with this i have my team playing like an unit. With fairly conservative roles in terms of creative freedom. Maybe next season the players are developed enough to have more tactical liberty.

 

 

Edited by KyleHyde

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This is going well, quick progress through the seasons. The system seems well balanced as well. Keep pushing. :thup:

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October 2022 update

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A bad month in the league, offset by our debut in international competitions with two wins in two matches. Koln were surprisingly cautious and we were by far the better team. Also a fantastic win against Baltika in the cup. A traditionally difficult opponent that regularly packs 35k in the stands. Speaking of each, we broke our match day revenue record against Koln, with 40k at our stadium reaching 250k in gate receipts. The rotation and heavy schedule saw us lose too many points in the league. We should be winning against Akhmat but we played with 10 most of the match.

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Still a good position but we have had the easiest set of fixtures so far. The really challenge starts next month with Zenit, Dynamo, Lokomotiv and PSV in between.

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First ever senior international for our club. Too bad he is not interested in renewing contract with us.

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Posted (edited)

November 2022 update

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Another busy month where we kept our poor league form but hopefully about to turn things around after an important victory over Dynamo. An epic win against PSV who paid us too much respect.

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Spartak and Zenit already too far ahead the rest.

Edited by KyleHyde

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On 17/05/2018 at 11:15, KyleHyde said:

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First ever senior international for our club. Too bad he is not interested in renewing contract with us.

Did your 16/17 yo get called up for the national squad? :eek:

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5 minutes ago, rodesire said:

Did your 16/17 yo get called up for the national squad? :eek:

Yes, I posted his current attributes earlier. Still 16 and not yet very effective. 6 goals from 18 games so far.

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Posted (edited)

December 2022 update

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A decent month with a disappointing defeat against managerless Lokomotiv, although it was 3 days after another epic away win against PSV. Europa league has been a walk in the park so far!

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We keep on the run for the 3rd place, with one game in hand over Krasnodar. 6th place and below seems far from us already. But can't leave our guard down.

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Not a bad debut season in Europe. We got Stoke next. They have a CB worth 40M and they are way better than PSV but who knows?

Edited by KyleHyde

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Posted (edited)

January 2023 update

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December went on swiftly as we got the two wins in the league right before the deserved Winter break. Got a draw with APOEL who is very defensive but we still topped our group. We weren't expecting it to be so easy.

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For the league we won a couple points from Zenit in the 2nd place and got further away from Dynamo and the rest. Easy fixtures though and still before finishing the Winter break, we will have to fight in the EL with Stoke. Added a few friendlies to get our boys sharp.

Edited by KyleHyde

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February 2023 update

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January saw no games and the players had holidays. We resumed activity after a few friendlies, straight into the Euro League playoffs. We started well against Stoke with an early lead but eventually lost 2-1 to a clearly stronger team.

However, with the desire and the power of over 40,000 fans in our home stadium, we completely devastated the English with a 3-1 win that could have been higher. Next round is Shakhtar, hopefully teams will keep being complacent and underestimating us. If only it was this easy in the league...

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March 2023 update

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Very busy month where we advanced in the Cup but got knocked out the Europa League. We were much better than Shakhtar in the first game at home and should have won for a bigger margin but the lack of experience was crucial. On the 2nd hand we just couldn't deal with that highly technical attack. Beat our attendance record at home too.

For the league we won against Rostov but lost twice and drew once in 4 games which is not so good. Disappointed to lose against a 7th place CSKA and we can barely keep away from Krasnodar in the 4th position. Rubin (3rd) is still within reach though. 

Spartak seems to be cruising to the title once again.

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3 clubs qualify for CL from your league? It seems you are going to have a big fight for CL ticket, at least you haven't European games now and your squad will be more fresh for the rest league games.. :thup:

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Sheriff7 said:

3 clubs qualify for CL from your league? It seems you are going to have a big fight for CL ticket, at least you haven't European games now and your squad will be more fresh for the rest league games.. :thup:

No, just the first 2. The 3rd goes directly into EL group stages. 

 

April 2023 update

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Mancini and his lack of class before our Cup semi final.

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Hehe, Karma huh.

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Sure thing buddy, except that you only scored 2 flukes after the 88th minute.

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About this game. Well, I had to change things as our form was going downwards so I went to the u19s to see if I could use any youngster. One of the two most promising players from the intake is Rogachev, a pure number 10, so I decided to tweak the 442 and accommodate an Enganche. The 15 year old did alright on his debut, i think:

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Was a bit surprised to find this gem in the u19s but he's still learning to stop using short simple passes only and still a lot of work to do but damn, those attributes, he's already the best attacking mid in the club.

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The rest of the games went alright, although there's only 2 games to go now and Rubin has a fairly easy visit to Ufa and a potential tricky game against Krylja. We play against Kuban and Dynamo but we'll honestly save the best players for the final cup game against Spartak. It would make a sensational achievement but they only lost once this season.

Edited by KyleHyde

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Posted (edited)

End of Season 5 review

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Lost in the penalties. What can i say? the boys were devastated but still got a miracle against Dynamo when not even myself believed. Zakirov scored on the 94th minute and got us a deserved 3rd place.

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Spartak were too strong once again. Zenit has an equally strong squad but Mancini is inept.

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Frolov topped the average rating chart but got injured in the latter and crucial part of the season. We still had Adaev the home boy who had the most asssists, but we missed Frolov's mercurial pace. Nikita got 16 goals which is great for a 17 year old but with only 48 total goals scored, it's something we have to address for next season.

On a side note there's this:

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So perhaps with 1 more year of football, these youngsters won't squander so many chances.

Nikita has a bunch of big clubs after him, he will probably become our first transfer since my tenure.

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I'll have to use a new striker and restart the whole process once again...

For next season, we need to increase our source of goals and create a more stable system against bigger teams. And hopefully our first trophy. I must admit though that this Cup final was very disappointing and will use summer holidays to reevaluate everything. Players, staff, system.

On a side note, i was happy to see Yenisey avoid relegation after being promoted last season. I've become a fan of them since we met on the 2nd division, because of their attractive style of play.

 

Season  |  League      | Pos.  |   Cup   |     CL      |     EL      |     Top scorer          |  Top assists         |    Top rating           | Notes
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |  FNL         |  2    |   1st r |   n/a       |      n/a      |    Markin (15)          |    Vaganov (13)     |   Lebedev (7,23)       | Improvement since changing to 442
2019/20 |  Prem'erLiga |  13   |   1st r |   n/a       |      n/a      |    Markin (21)          |    Cherov (8)       |   Cherov (7,01)        | Survived through relegation playoffs 
2020/21 |  Prem'erLiga |  9    |   2nd r |   n/a       |      n/a      |    Cherov (10)          |    Adaev (9)        |   Adaev (7,32)         | 
2021/22 |  Prem'erLiga |  4    |   semi  |   n/a       |      n/a      |    Umaev (10)           |    Adaev (14)       |   Adaev (7,35)         | New fluid system
2022/23 |  Prem'erLiga |  3    |   final |   n/a       | 2nd round KOs |    Nikita (16)          |    Adaev (12)       |   Frolov (7,37)        | 

Season  |  Finances    |  Coaching  |  Recruitment       | Training Fac. | Youth Fac.       |  Stadium
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |   OK         |  Poor      |  Poor              | Poor          | Below Average    |  44,149 
2019/20 |   Secure     |  Average   |  Above Average     | Basic         | Adequate         |  44,149
2020/21 |   Secure     |  Average   |  Established       | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149
2021/22 |   Secure     |  Excellent |  Well Established  | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149
2022/23 |   Secure     |  Excellent |  Well Established  | Average       | Great            |  44,149

 

Edited by KyleHyde

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Damnit, so close to a cup win and to CL qualification. Will make it all the much sweeter when you do get there.

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On 23/05/2018 at 23:13, kidthekid said:

amazing progress so far. 

Thanks but we're into the 6th season and no team trophies so far though.

 

On 28/05/2018 at 12:15, noikeee said:

Damnit, so close to a cup win and to CL qualification. Will make it all the much sweeter when you do get there.

Ye it would but I'm afraid we will take a step back next in terms of quality since our two best players enter the last year of contract.

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Season 6 preview

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At least we are not relegation candidates anymore!

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Season 6 Winter break review

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Solid start of the season where we moved away from the 442 into a 3-4-2-1 Wide and mostly, a 4-2-3-1. This way we can make use of our solid options for the CB position and use Nikita Krylov as IF.

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The defeats came from the crazy schedule of playing in Europe and the national Cup competitions. We went out of the Cup in the 2nd round against Akhmat which isn't so bad because we don't have the squad to challenge on 3 fronts. Otherwise our league form would suffer even more dips. At the end of the season 1 or 2 extra defeats can make all the difference as we saw previously.

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Europa league Groups were a piece of cake once again. Most teams showed some complacency against us but we know it won't be like this next against Espanyol from Barcelona. Still a great performance conceding only 2 goals. We had to play a 17 year old Keeper in the latest games since Shebanov started having more injuries and his attributes are getting a bit too low.

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Here he is. Pavel Rodin, has a Professional personality so he's worthy keeper just because of that! Improving a lot since he's having games too but not sure he'll ever become more than average, with some serious issues in his game like 4 at anticipation.

 

We might really have a shot this year in the league. Spartak lost two of their best players but are still very strong. Let's see if who they bring in now that they are loaded and how their league form suffers. Another interesting fact is that there's 5 (!) Russian teams in the Europa league knockouts. Could be the biggest year for Russian football since that fabulous Zenit team with Arshavin and Pogrebnyak. 

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We are also about the lose Krylov (our best player and already a starter for Russian national team with 3 goals in 6 games) and our midfield anchor Yuri Ivanov, since they are on the last year of contracts and should be able to sign for free in the next month. I've been rejecting any bids coming for them as i prefer to lose the players at the end of season for free if it means i can play them till then.

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2024 Youth Intake

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We could use a more promising GK indeed but it wasn't a pressing matter. I'd have preferred a high potential CB and a left winger but we had 2 right wingers so i guess i could try training one to cut inside on the left! Overall a decent intake, not great like in some previous years but well.

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Mironov is a smart and realist team player. Often called the working class but they go underrated and are instrumental for any successful team. I love him already and although he has a long way to go he has no real weaknesses in his game. Can see him replacing Ivanov as the defensive anchor next season since he will most likely leave.

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Dmitry Sychev is a low determination right winger. Has good potential and as it is usual from our academy, great acceleration and pace. Happy that he has work rate so our flanks don't become a defensive liability. I don't pay much attention to stars since me and my coaches have poor judging PA but he can become decent hopefully if i can get him tutelage.

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Roman Gromov, on the other hand, is an enthusiastic winger, although, knowing our team personality, his determination attribute is sure to go much lower in the following months, sadly. I'll be keeping an eye on him for the near future as he is already physically developed and i will be counting on him to take next season's vacant inside forward role, since Krylov won't be here (sniff).

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Finally, the GK. He shows great promise, more than any we have on the club but we were just transitioning the old but loyal Shebanov to the 17y old Pavel Rodin (posted earlier) who is developing fine and he already have a 16y old Golovin who is professional and also has 5 star potential. So i'd prefered another position really but oh well.

 

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Recently concluded more facilities upgrades! We've come a long way.

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And this is our first wonderkid produced. On his second season for the main team. Lucky we got him tied for 2 more years although he has a min release clause of 27M.

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Posted (edited)

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We drew 2-2 away to a very experienced and attacking Espanyol side. Our two first team GK's injured before the game so I had to use our own 15 Lev Yashin and he did well. We managed to hold the 2-2 but they were more dangerous until the 2nd half when we fixed some tactical issues and become much more dangerous on the counter.

At home we won 3-0 but they started much better. 10 mins in and we had yet to pass the halfway line and they were already with 3 shots on target. 

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This was the tactic used against their 442 but it's still not as strong as our 4231. In this second match they were overwhelming us in our own box so, knowing they had experienced but slower attackers i decided to push much higher up, close down much more and pass into the space. We dominated them and scored 3 goals. There's still more to develop in this tactic, such as exchanging the midfielder spots since there's more space in the channel on the winger side but we'll see in the next matches.

For now, we got Leicester City up against. They are better than last year's Stoke whom we scrapped past but on a normal day they will beat us without much problems. Their pacy attack is not the most hard working so we will have some space to explore. Let's see how it pans out. 

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4 Russian teams still present, can't see much future for Rubin but Zenit and Spartak have a chance.

Edited by KyleHyde

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Posted (edited)

March 2024 update

Crazy month, with the Leicester tie and games against CSKA and Rubin. As expected, Spartak having a huge drop in form following their transfer activity gave us some leeway. Still we survived with a masterclass against CSKA and an unfair draw against Rubin Kazan. For some reason my players always get extremely nervous against them. Must be our boogie team.

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Very emotional tie against Leicester. After conceding the 1-1 on the 94th minute i had little hopes for the 2nd hand. They employed a 352 instead of their usual 4231 which made things slightly easier. Frolov was sensational on the left wing and was the man of the tie, as he was against Espanyol. Next we have another English team for the quarter finals, Tottenham. 

Spartak also made it through but Zenit and Rubin are out.

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Slowly forming the spine of the national team.

 

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Wish i could renew but the club will never come against players wanting to leave.

 

Edited by KyleHyde

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ooh, great result against Leicester.

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20 hours ago, ClemB said:

Excellent thread :thup:

 

14 hours ago, kidthekid said:

ooh, great result against Leicester.

Thanks mates. It has been a very fun save.

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tohUYf5.png

5 games to go, the title challenge heats up! We have a tough set of fixtures but it can be decided against Spartak at home. They were too strong for us last season. How will the boys deal with the pressure?

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Posted (edited)

April 2024 update

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We got out the EL and we never had a chance. After what i saw away from home and being lucky to only lose 0-2 i decided to rotate the squad to play full strength against Yenisey 2 days later. After all, Spurs have a super team. Just take a look at their star player:

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At this stage every game is a final. Team talks and media handling need a lot of micro-managing to strike the right balance of low pressure and motivation. So far we are doing fine since focusing only on the league. 

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Spartak keeps winning but CSKA and Zenit stumbled. I'm guessing it will be a two team race between us and the reigning Champions. Hopefully we can remain on top until we face each other on the second last game. It will be never wrecking for sure.

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Last but not least. Our best player is gone for the away fixture against Dynamo, which we must get at least a draw. Hopefully he recovers in time for the biggest match in our history but I'm not thinking about that yet.

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Popov will take his spot but also called the 16 year old Gromov from this year's intake.

Edited by KyleHyde

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3QYf5rn.png

Terrible match. Dynamo played a defensive 4-5-1 and counter mentality despite being the stronger team! We had some luck but the set pieces routine i tweaked last week really paid off.  

 

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Already a very successful season but we want more. 2 finals to go!

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Posted (edited)

Season 6 title match

- and so it begings... the match of our lives!

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Klovin, the left wingback, is a key player for us. Hopefully the 23 motivated players make up for this one.

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Would be a boost if Quincy Promes missed out.

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He's keeping it cool. I didn't mind putting some passion into my pre-match talk. Also, where is my mustache? 

Now onto the game. Over 40,000 fans in the stadium saw the first half go quickly without much to talk home about. Decided to start our strongest eleven but also played Navletov. The only one non regen. I thought it would be important to have someone composed and experienced at the back, even if he was too slow for our high line.

No chances for either side where the nervousness was obvious. Spartak seemed cooler with their body language. After all they have been here before whilst this was the biggest match of the history for anyone connected with Mordovia.

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At half time i told the lads they did well but have been unlucky. The reaction was great and they seemed to relax a bit. It seemed the game has finally opened, after i asked the team to play slightly wider to take advantage of their offensive fullbacks and so on the 53th this happened:

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I clinched my fist and shouted yes! But couldn't shake the nervousness yet. Still a long time to play.

Time passed, we attacked more but Spartak was still being dangerous. On the 80th minute i made 3 subs. One due to fatigue and the other 2 to bring in two very experienced players to see out the game. Adaev, who has been our best player all these years and now phased out of squad due to unprofessional behavior, was given play time. I don't hold grudges, even if defends nothing, i won't forget his contribution all this time so he played 15mins of the most important game in our history.

Spartak went gung ho around the 85th min when we were already on contain but on the 91th minute we finally sealed the deal this way:

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Chistyakov bagged his brace after another great team effort. 

FT:

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Yes! we finally did it. Thankfully we held onto our players in January whilst Spartak had to sell two of their best. But that doesn't taint our wonderful season. We have been the best defense, the best attack and all the while playing some nice football. 

Now it's time to celebrate and then prepare the last match against Akhmat.

Edited by KyleHyde

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What a win! What a season, very well played! :applause: 

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Posted (edited)

Season 6 review

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I'd say the main difference this season was that our back line mostly played with strong and talented youngsters. Bagaev and co, were phased out and our team became much more solid. Chistyakov was sensational breaking the club record of goals with 22 and 16 in the league, while still on a youth contract and high school!

Have to say that match of the season was obviously the 2-0 against Spartak but the 5-0 away to CSKA is up there too.

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I knew he would leave, but for the 2nd placed team? at least he would go to a big club abroad... He could have become a legend here, play on the Champions league next season. I guess money talks (he's on +400k /m). Yuri Ivanov, our midfield anchor and wonderkid also left on a free for PSG reserves... 

We lost two of our pillars and we will be naturally weaker in the near future but the club will go on. This was just the beginning of our domination.

 

 

 

Season  |  League      | Pos.  |   Cup   |     CL      |     EL      |     Top scorer          |  Top assists         |    Top rating           | Notes
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |  FNL         |  2    |   1st r |   n/a       |      n/a      |    Markin (15)          |    Vaganov (13)     |   Lebedev (7,23)       | Improvement since changing to 442
2019/20 |  Prem'erLiga |  13   |   1st r |   n/a       |      n/a      |    Markin (21)          |    Cherov (8)       |   Cherov (7,01)        | Survived through relegation playoffs 
2020/21 |  Prem'erLiga |  9    |   2nd r |   n/a       |      n/a      |    Cherov (10)          |    Adaev (9)        |   Adaev (7,32)         | 
2021/22 |  Prem'erLiga |  4    |   semi  |   n/a       |      n/a      |    Umaev (10)           |    Adaev (14)       |   Adaev (7,35)         | New fluid system
2022/23 |  Prem'erLiga |  3    |   final |   n/a       | 2nd round KOs |    Nikita (16)          |    Adaev (12)       |   Frolov (7,37)        | 
2023/24 |  Prem'erLiga |  1    |   2nd r |   n/a       | Quarter Final |    Chistyakov (22)      |    Nikita (10)      |   Nikita (7,55)        | Champions!



Season  |  Finances    |  Coaching    |  Recruitment       | Training Fac. | Youth Fac.       |  Stadium
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |   OK         |  Poor        |  Poor              | Poor          | Below Average    |  44,149 
2019/20 |   Secure     |  Average     |  Above Average     | Basic         | Adequate         |  44,149
2020/21 |   Secure     |  Average     |  Established       | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149
2021/22 |   Secure     |  Excellent   |  Well Established  | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149
2022/23 |   Secure     |  Excellent   |  Well Established  | Average       | Great            |  44,149
2023/24 |   Secure     |  Exceptional |  Extensive         | Good          | Excellent        |  44,149

 

Edited by KyleHyde

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Posted (edited)

Season 7 preview

Although still upset with the departure of Ivanov and especially Nikita Krylov to our rivals Spartak, it's with great pleasure and surprise that i announce i've been contacted by the Russian FA.

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Job accepted. 

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They got trashed by France in this summer's Euro. The challenge is to make Russia relevant in the world nation football. Nations cup in the near future but my plan is to win the World Cup in two years. Provided i still have the job. There's a lot of young talent to work on that's for sure.

 

Mordovia started the season in the most spectacular manner, winning the Supercup 4-3 over Ural. Must be said that most of the squad was out for the Olympics, so it was a great result.

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Edited by KyleHyde

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Congratulations on the Russian title, it's been coming for a while and it's well deserved.

Some great kids that you're having now, the wonderkid DM and the new intake keeper, wow!

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12 hours ago, noikeee said:

Congratulations on the Russian title, it's been coming for a while and it's well deserved.

Some great kids that you're having now, the wonderkid DM and the new intake keeper, wow!

Cheers mate. Knyazev the DM has been my favourite in this save but he's already unhappy because he wants to move to a bigger club, still 2 years on his contract but the low morale sucks. The keeper is impressively solid, we look a different team now thanks to him, the whole defence makes less mistakes due to his confidence and good communication. Hope he gets a few extra inches though.

Sadly, our team is weaker this year with the departure of Krylov and Ivanov. We'll need one season so the replacements get to their level and I don't think we will be able to retain the title so it's a long journey ahead.

Also, viva o Porto caralho!

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Posted (edited)

Season 7 review

It's been probably the less enjoyable season in the save. Losing Krylov and Ivanov and then on winter break to lose our only suitable left back Klovin to Monaco.

We started the season very strong but the january transfer period was too rough on us and we never settled on a system that worked, having lost a bunch of key players. Still, with a much more cautious approach we still managed to grind out wins or draws, which saw us end the league with only 2 defeats, thanks to our maturing CBs and GK. 

We renewed the title thanks to a poor Spartak Moscow display but we were bad in the second part of the year. 

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Lucky vital wins against Spartak and Zenit and then we just went on damage control for the remaining of the league. 

 

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Spartak managed to grab the 2nd place again despite trailing behind Krasnodar most of the season.

 

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CL groups were surprisingly easy with great wins over Sporting and Basel but lost twice to a fantastic Dortmund team and then got outclassed against Barcelona. The grap between mid and top clubs is stupidly high at this time. 

 

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Gromov was the player of the season. 12 assists, 9 goals in 29 games. He didn't reach Nikita Krylov's levels but he will turn into another fine but different player.

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The good news is that i finally managed to avoid the loss of another key player. Chistyakov scored 26 goals in 36 games (overall) and what seemed to become another Krylov's case of leaving on a free, he decided to come back and accept negotiating a new deal. I was very pleased although it took a huge pay raise to keep him. 

It happened right after his debut for the national team, with an hatrick against Romania in the WC qualifiers.

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Rogachev, the player I had big hopes on, accepted a move to RB Leipzig after the Germans met his 20.5M release clause. 

His natural replacement, Maxim, is already 18 and has been developing fine but it's no where near the level Rogachev was at.

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Now in pre-season, I'll decide wether we stay with the 4231 that brought us the first title and, ultimately what steadied the ship in this year's campaign or we change things around for good and since pre-season. 

It wasn't an enjoyable ride this time. Changed things too often and lacked a plan. Constant stop gaps etc. Had little time irl to post updates here too. I'll do things differently this time. 

 

The WC qualifier period started decently for Russia. After a disappointing but unfair draw against underdogs Albania we beat a very, very impressive Romanian side. With the debut of Mordovia's striker Chistyakov making an imediate impact with an hattrick.

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Season  |  League      | Pos.  |   Cup   |     CL      |     EL      |     Top scorer          |  Top assists         |    Top rating           | Notes
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |  FNL         |  2    |   1st r |        n/a        |      n/a      |    Markin (15)          |    Vaganov (13)     |   Lebedev (7,23)       | Improvement since changing to 442
2019/20 |  Prem'erLiga |  13   |   1st r |        n/a        |      n/a      |    Markin (21)          |    Cherov (8)       |   Cherov (7,01)        | Survived through relegation playoffs 
2020/21 |  Prem'erLiga |  9    |   2nd r |        n/a        |      n/a      |    Cherov (10)          |    Adaev (9)        |   Adaev (7,32)         | 
2021/22 |  Prem'erLiga |  4    |   semi  |        n/a        |      n/a      |    Umaev (10)           |    Adaev (14)       |   Adaev (7,35)         | New fluid system
2022/23 |  Prem'erLiga |  3    |   final |        n/a        | 2nd round KOs |    Nikita (16)          |    Adaev (12)       |   Frolov (7,37)        | 
2023/24 |  Prem'erLiga |  1    |   2nd r |        n/a        | Quarter Final |    Chistyakov (22)      |    Nikita (10)      |   Nikita (7,55)        | Champions!
2024/25 |  Prem'erLiga |  1    |   2nd r |   1st round KOs   |      n/a      |    Chistyakov (17)      |    Gromov (12)      |   Gromov (7,56)        | Champions but lost many key players.



Season  |  Finances    |  Coaching    |  Recruitment       | Training Fac. | Youth Fac.       |  Stadium
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2018/19 |   OK         |  Poor        |  Poor              | Poor          | Below Average    |  44,149 
2019/20 |   Secure     |  Average     |  Above Average     | Basic         | Adequate         |  44,149
2020/21 |   Secure     |  Average     |  Established       | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149
2021/22 |   Secure     |  Excellent   |  Well Established  | Adequate      | Good             |  44,149
2022/23 |   Secure     |  Excellent   |  Well Established  | Average       | Great            |  44,149
2023/24 |   Secure     |  Exceptional |  Extensive         | Good          | Excellent        |  44,149
2024/25 |   Secure     |  Exceptional |  Extensive         | Great         | Superb           |  44,149

 

Edited by KyleHyde

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Season 8 - Winter break

We went back to our high octane modern 442 (just like most teams in our division) with a renewed team. Some of our key players left for bigger clubs so this was going to be a transitional season where we would try to fight for the title while building the foundations for a bright future.

We won the supercup 2-1 to just arrived new Spartak manager Paulo Fonseca. Had a bunch of draws and most of them were lapses of concentration in the end of the matches often losing 2 goal leads. It's when we went back to the simplicity of 442 along a more defensive version as well as the overload version, which, saved our asses a few times already. Such as against a much stronger Arsenal. We were losing 1-2 at home, we went full gung ho and won 3-2 in a crazy game. I've been loving our direct and aggressive style of football this season, with a weaker team.

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Zero defeats so far in the league but too many draws. Most of them from letting our lead scrap away in the final minutes against 3 striker overload tactics. We got better in that regard by adding a more defensive plan. But the 442 still has room to grow although it's spectacular when it kicks in.

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Quite happy with the standings so far. We have the chance to finally go 1st after lurking around the top6 most of the season but considering our squad changes I can't complain.

We are giving utmost importance to development this year. Focus on individual training and match time so our most promising players get to a high level in the shortest amount of time possible.

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Gromov and Chistyakov have been the absolute stand outs this season and our two best players. In the midfield we have very young but promising players but not yet at level we've had the year before. Also Kalyashin, the only non regen player is having the best season of his career at the age of 30. Not the first choice even after the departure of our LB but he's coming along more now and have been very very solid in a more conservative left back role.

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Gromov has been great with 12 goals and 6 assists as right winger.

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Chistyakov our main strker is on 17 goals and 11 assists in 22 games. Hope we can hang on to him although he wants to move to a bigger club.

Luckily we've managed to renew with all the defenders in the backline and, especially, our GK who's already starting for Russian NT.

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Speaking of the NT, we managed a 2nd place in WC qualifiers behind the number 1 in world ranking Italy.

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Looks like a fairly accessible group but with the super powerful Italy once again. Honestly we were way behind them in terms of potential when we played. Hopefully some youngsters can develop a bit further in time for the WC but i don't have high hopes.

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