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Overwhelming.....  the amount of progress and posts in this thread to catch up on since I last viewed it, and also trying to retrace my saves steps to report on here soon! :)

I was off work during Christmas, so that meant some FM time, but only in very short bursts.  As such I played a game or two here and there and didn't want to waste the chances to play and do posts instead :D  I'm almost 2 seasons on from my last reporting (season 5 is in the bag, working through March of season 6 currently).

I'll put a catch up post together once I have finished this season.

Shoutout to @XaW for keeping me FM focused with his spreadsheet tomfoolery :lol:

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6 hours ago, Braumiller said:

Shoutout to @XaW for keeping me FM focused with his spreadsheet tomfoolery :lol:

This thread is like Hotel California, you can checkout, but you can never leave... ;)

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South Shields FC

New challenge October update

After winning the Croatian Premier League with NK Zadar and realising the CL would be too tough a challenge I started the challenge in England. I picked South Shields, which I have to say is a really good team for Vanarama National League South! In our starting eleven we have several players with 4 stars or better. Except our goalkeeper. He is one star and so bad its just laughable. We are lucky not to concede many chances, because he cant save anything to save his life. 1vs1 a problem in the ME? Not against us. 

But regardless of this we have started the season in a fantastic fashion. We lost our first game of the season in the 20th round. Hopefully we can carry on and push for direct promotion. Our coaching staff and youth recruitment is poor, so if we can beat York in our upcoming FA Cup 4th Qual. round we can hopefully see some income. 

I have to say its really strange that the oppositon teams rarely rest players. Its not uncommon that we face teams that start the game with several players on 75% condition... 

 

Screenshots attached of the league table, our top two performers and our shocking goalkeeper! 

 

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Edited by thomas_e
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1 hour ago, thomas_e said:

Except our goalkeeper. He is one star and so bad its just laughable. We are lucky not to concede many chances, because he cant save anything to save his life. 1vs1 a problem in the ME?  

 ...

our shocking goalkeeper! 

 

    

    

 

Is Skirpan your only goalie? Does he have any potential? 

Not that that will ever make up for the fact that he's too small.

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12 minutes ago, vikeologist said:

Is Skirpan your only goalie? Does he have any potential? 

Not that that will ever make up for the fact that he's too small.

I have a 17 year old, who is even worse, and he's potential is not bigger than Skirpans current ability... I just have to keep my fingers crossed for a good GK in the youth intake. 

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South Shield FC

Youth Intake Preview 2020-2021

 

We have two areas of the team where we are either lacking quality or lacking quantity: We have the worst goalkeeper in the league, and from what I'm seeing, its by a wide margin. We have good quality wingers and a good left full back, but no backup whatsoever. The youth intake seems to cover the wide areas of the pitch, but no goalkeeper in sight. 

 

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So due to real life stuff over the holiday period I'd not touched my Palermo save for over 2 weeks, loaded up the game last night and actually started a new save as I didn't feel the draw to return to Palermo, after a couple hours I got bored and fired up Palermo and straight away remembered why I was enjoying the save. Got some spare time now and I'm back. Can't escape this challenge :D 

 

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2052/53 Annecy FC season review - French Ligue 1

 

I had a feeling that posting a mid season update would jinx things....... again.

After my update, we got knocked out of the cup in the 9th round (the round we entered), Bernard and Makengo both broke a leg, Pham Ba got a virus and thigh strain, Barcelona thrashed us in the 1st Champions Cup knockout stage and our league form went downhill.

 

The League

Marseille ran away with the league in the 2nd half of the season. After that it was pretty close from 2nd to 8th. We manage to scrape into 6th place and the second Euro Cup spot.

Bryan Pham Ba was top scorer with 24 goals. Benjamin Bernard came 2nd with 23 goals. He was in a hot streak of form in the 2nd half of the season and if he didn't break his leg in April, would almost certainly have become top scorer.

 

The Players

Even though Bryan Pham Ba scored the most goals in the league, Benjamin Bernard YP45a was our highest scorer overall with 27. He was also our player of the season and I believe this is the first season since being a first team regular that he wasn't caught out at a nightclub. Perhaps he's grown up a bit. I turned down a 45m gbp bid for him without even negotiating.

Gabay Callamand YP50a is the latest player to become a regular fixture in the first team after successful loan spells with SM Caen and JA Drancy. He is very versatile, able to play as a midfielder, DM, centreback or right back.

 

Former Player Watch

Gregoire Robert YP33a has made a great career for himself. Initially sold to Lens for a bargain  475k without playing a single game for us, he was sold on to to Dortmund 4yrs later for 3m. After 70 games in 3 seasons in the Budesliga, Liverpool paid an astounding 108m pounds to take him to England.

His honours at Liverpool over the next 11 seasons included a Euro Cup, European Super Cup and Club World Cup. He was named in the World Team of the year in 2040, 2041 and 2043.

Robert moved to Juventus in the twilight of his career for 19.25m to play out two seasons.

Internationally he made 142 caps and scored 20 goals for France. He won a European Championship, European International League and European U21 championship as well as getting runner up medals in a World Cup, Olympics, European Championship, two European International Leagues and a Euro U19 championship.

 

Transfers

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In our first Europa conference league groupstage game .. we were so close ! 3 IR fans were present :)

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I wrote that i'm the first and only team from iceland that gets into a group stage.Not true !

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Fjölnir also reached the groupsstage (but one week after i've achieved this it.)


 

 

Edited by OlivierL
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Dulwich Hamlet 2019/20 End of Season

Well, we did indeed make the play-offs and we did indeed drop too many points to threaten champions Welling, but it looked like we were mounting a title challenge for a long time. A carroussel of attacking injuries, where one player would drop out as soon as another became fit, ended up costing us. Muhammadu Faal suffered a broken lower leg and that pretty much ended our title hopes; we looked a distinctly mediocre side without his physical presence up front, and our form reflected this. 

League Table

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We dropped off towards the end, only winning two of our last nine league games, we had been in second place for quite a while before that. Welling were very solid and didn't drop many points at all. Our late-season decline meant we didn't avoid a first round tie. Like last year, we faced Hampton & Richmond, but we were not able to brush them aside this time. A goalless 90 minutes led to extra time, where Thomas Moss gave us the lead on 94 minutes. A 104th minute equaliser from Owen James meant the match was decided on penalties, where we lost 8-7, youngster Brian Hewitt, on off the bench, missing the decisive kick. 

Hayes & Yeading ended up securing back-to-back promotions, whilst Chelmsford get relegated for the second time in two seasons. Chesham go right back down, Farnborough secured a miracle survival with an 89th minute equaliser against Weston-super-mare on the last day of the season, condemning Whitehawk to relegation. 

Fixtures

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A pretty weak end of season showing. Muhammadu Faal broke his leg in the 1-3 win at Bromley, and the effect it had on our form is plain to see. We looked dire and our lack of physicality upfront definitely played a major part in it. Faal also doesn't want to renew his contract, so it looks like we will need to completely rethink our approach next season. The Eastbourne defeat was a freak result after we had comfortably dispatched Havant & W and Welling. 

Injuries

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We had six attacking first-teamers available to us in Koroma, Moss, Faal, Clunis, Allassani and Dumaka. As you can see, they spent a lot of time on the sideline collectively. Nearly all of the injuries were suffered in matches; we might have been a bit unlucky, but I might consider stepping back from our physical play a little bit. 

Squad and Stats

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Emmanuel Gahadzikwa put in some very good performances in the second half of the season, which is very promising for the future. Thomas Moss ends up top scorer with 16 goals, 9 of which came in the FA Cup. Dumebi Dumaka and Muhammadu Faal scored all their goals in the league. Tanny Abrahams gave a bucketload of assists, which almost made up for his extremely wasteful shooting from distance. Preston Edwards, who kept us in a few games we definitely should have lost, was the only ever-present player. Sanchez Ming ended up getting dropped from the side through the emergence of Joe Williams as a first-team defender. Reise Allassani had another strop on, reconsidered once again and extended his contract for another year. I'm expecting him to change his mind once again in September.
 

Youth Intake

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Yet another 'golden generation' according to Blissett, but the stand-out player is Barry Turner who would probably have been good enough to feature in the last few games of the season, but I wanted to take my time to see how I could fit him in the side. The other player I might see making appearances in the short-term is Alex Hill. That Barbadian right-back will hopefully become a viable option at right-back so Quade Taylor can move back to the centre of defence. 

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Finances and Facilities

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We made a 450K profit last season, so more than enough in the kitty for an upgrade to the youth facilities, which will also move us up a youth level. Hopefully our U18 players will actually play some 'competitive' football then, rather than a weekly friendly. 

Conclusion

A bit of a slog at the end of the season doesn't bode well for next year. I'll keep asking Faal if he wants to stay, but if he leaves we'll need to rethink our approach completely. There's hope though, Barry Turner should be a star player for us if we use him right. I'll have a bit of a tinker to see if we can build a tactic around an AMC playmaker. Next season will be very hit and miss, I think, as we try to turn players like Courtney and Gahadzikwa into actual first-teamers. My prediction is that we'll languish in mid-table unlike these first two seasons. Let's hope the board don't get too demanding. 

Edited by PJHoutman88
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Challenge (domestic) completed  ! full update after my Europe conference league campaign is finished.

 

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great moment !

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Edited by OlivierL
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2 minutes ago, OlivierL said:

Challenge (domestic) completed  ! full update after my Europe conference league campaign is finished.

Congratulations @OlivierL Good luck in the Champions Cup.

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South Shields

Youth Intake 2021

Our first youth intake! No full backs which is a dissapointment and some of the personalities werent impressive either. But we got a goalkeeper, he has potential, and he will go straight into the first team. Eddie Sheridan also looks good, but we have to do something about his terrible personality. 

 

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Vikeologist's Palermo 2030/31 Youth Intake Report

Image result for palermo fc

I was promised a golden generation, but it looks as though there’s only 2 good players. Normally I wouldn’t even give a youth contract to players without 3 star potential, but I need to have some players for my youth squad. I might treat it as an experiment. If any of my players tagged just YP11 even play in Serie C it will be a miracle, and none of them even have good personalities. If they don’t improve in a year I’ll cut the lot of them loose.

However, the 2 good players just might be very good indeed, especially the top one.

Mattias Camillucci YP11a – A left back, and frankly it’s a weak element of my first team. My left backs have just never developed or even played very well. Mattias isn’t good enough for the first team yet, but if I have nothing to play for at the end of the season, I may definitely throw him in. Also, he has a resilient personality, so hopefully I can refine that fairly quickly. Probably put him straight into the first team squad to work on that personality.

Santo Noto YP11b – A defensive midfielder. My 10a player was also a defensive midfielder, and I haven’t completely given up on him, but as with Camillucci, I’ll promote him to the first team squad straight away, to improve on his temperamental personality.

Let’s go back in time 4 years to see how my YP7 did. Before looking, I’m going to guess that not many of them turned out to be starters.

Aurelio Ortolano YP7a – My top 2 YP6 players are my starters in defence, and Ortolano has never threatened to displace either of them. He’s a reasonable backup. My HoYD thought he was the best prospect. My assistant manager didn’t. My assistant manager was right, which is worrying since my HoYD is supposed to be the best at recognising ability and potential.

Giulio Asero YP7b – A left back. One of the ones who’s disappointed as related above. Maybe if I’d given him more chances… At least one manager has bemoaned the lack of good players in recent intakes, but perhaps it’s because after a while we give new intakes less chances. I just don’t think he’s much better than my starter though.

Alessandro Zini YP7c – A winger I sold for £600k to Udinese for whom he hasn’t played a game.

Vanni Lugli YP7d – A striker that I was a bit excited about because he was so tall, and he’s racked up a fair few appearances as a sub, but was overtaken by a far more promising striker in my YP8 intake. He is actually fairly good, and has a good strike rate, but he’s 4th in my depth chart and I play 2 strikers so the fates are against him. Actually for the entire 4 seasons, I’ve thought his surname was Luigi, which shows the lack of attention I’ve given him. He only has 2 years left on his contract, and won't sign a new one, so I don’t think he’s taken the neglect well. I may have to engineer a way to give him more games.

I actually tagged all the way down to 7i, but none of them have turned out to be any good, although some of them are still with us, albeit out on loan.

All in all, a bad intake, but as discussed, that may be partly because of lack of opportunity. Maybe a wasted intake.

 

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50 minutes ago, yipster1986 said:

Does anybody have a clue when the reset date is in Belgium?

You can find out the actual reset date by subtracting the lowest division and seeing what date that would come into effect. (And then adding that division back, because you'll need it). June 29 according to a poster who started in Belgium.

As for the earlier date when the previously unplayable teams will be selected if you want a choice, I can't help you.

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Weston-super-Mare: 2022/23 season review

Third season complete, which saw us consistently stuck in mid-table from start to finish. However, we did achieve a joint best finish of 16th place.

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Youth intake seemed to bring a couple of good prospects with the highlight being this gentleman...

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Had good news as the board granted an improvement to the youth facilities but then withdrew the plans as I didn't have the funds at the end of the season. A terrible FA Cup showing meant a lack of prize money which was the main blame. Yet to sell a player for proper money (not compo)...

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A further improvement to junior coaching and youth recruitment :cool:

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So I've decided to give this one a go in Italy. Maybe because of this challenge I'll try and get to understand tactics a lot better since I can't sign players and have to create something with the players at my disposal

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We're predicted 17th so it's going to be a hassle. Also quite a lot of players who's contract needs to be renewed, hopefully they're willing else I'm in trouble before the season starts :rolleyes:

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South Shields

Season Summary 2020-2021

My first season with South Shields and we won the league! We started the season really well, winning our first 6 games, and we didn't lose until mid-October. After this loss we never picked up a great run of form again, but performed good enough to seal promotion four games before the end of the season. Guiseley, our main competitor for the title, had a terrible run of form at the end of the season, winning only 5 of their 12 last games. I think our season can be summarised like this: 

- Having the worst goalkeeper in the league by far

- Being the best team on offensive set pieces! We scored on 17 corners and 9 indirect free kicks! 

- Jason Gilchrist, our lone striker, scored 28 league goals

- Nathan Lowe is probably the best central midfielder in the league

I tried replacing our goalkeeper Bradley Skripan with 17 year old youth intake player Kevin Wales-Betts. Wales-Betts saved a penalty and kept a clean sheet his first game, but after this his performances were mostly poor. His potential has also been downgraded from 5 to 4 stars after only a couple of months in the club, but I think we will have to stick with him next year as well. 

We will probably be losing our best player on paper, Sanmi Odelusi, as his contract expires. He has really good stats, but he is on £2,7K a week and he even wants more... A 6,89 rating from an inside forward position and only 9 goals and 8 assists isn't enough if you demand to be paid more than twice the rest of the team. Sad to see a quality player leave though! 

Just as concerning is the fact we will lose two back up players on CB and RB. This is the only real back up we have on those positions, but they won't sign contracts if they cant combine it with a sporting director role... yeah, like thats gonna happen...

We beat VNL team York in the 4th Qual. round in the FA Cup. Drawing 0-0 at home, but a great 3-2 win away saw us through. We then faces League One side Mansfield. We drew 2-2 at home and then we lost 2-1 away. 

I got my first coaching badge and we got upgrades to Junior Coaching and Youth Recruitment. 

Goals for next season: Make a desperate attempt to survive in the Vanarama National League

 

Season Summary

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Key Players

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Top talents 20 yrs or younger

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Season	|	League                      |   Position    |    FA Cup     |       League Cup            |   Notes
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2020/21	|	Vanarama Nat. League South  |	  1st       |  1st round    |       2nd Round (FA Trophy) |   Promotion! 

 

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On 14/01/2020 at 21:22, OlivierL said:

In our first Europa conference league groupstage game .. we were so close ! 3 IR fans were present :)

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UPDATE , we lost at home against Academica , we lost in the last minute at AEK but after that we won our home games against Ferencvaros and AEK. If i win in Academica , we are qualified for the next round. 

We are still playing in december , so the players won't get much holiday this season.. most of the time they have holiday from mid september till january :):) 

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Vikeologist's Palermo 2030/31 End of Season Report

Image result for palermo fc

We finished in the same league position (5th), with the same number of points. At least our goal difference was (significantly) better. A bit disappointing to be back in the Europa League, but at least i can give some of my backups a run out in the group stage.

We reached the semi-final of the Europa League where we were knocked out by AC Milan, who also eliminated us from the Copa Italia at the Q/F stage.

I made some changes to my starters this year. I dropped my goalie of the last 7 seasons, Davide Reda. His replacement wasn’t immediately better but edged ahead by the end of the season. He’s 23 so maybe I left it too late.

UPDATE: After the season, Reda (and not my starter Roberto Pastore YP5b who's supposedly better) becomes my first ever player to be called up to the full Italy national side.

I also dropped my starting striker of the last 7 seasons, and club record goal scorer, Alessio Fantini. I definitely should have done this before, because as with the goalie situation, I have more promising long term options. Fantini has 83 goals in 285 league appearances. He’s still supposed to be my 2nd best striker, and he’s OK, but really he’s 4th on my depth chart now.

Left back is a weakness, and I’ve already given quite a few matches to my latest youth intake starlet. If he can improve, I should have a pretty good side, but I don’t have a lot of depth, because predictably, some players who haven’t played as much haven’t realised their potential.

Top Goalscorer –Corrado Varsallona YP8a- 33

Scoring goals has been a long term problem with my side because of Fantini not producing, but a big improvement here with my ‘gaygen’ smashing the club’s single season record. One of the problems with a Varsallona-Fantini partnership is that they’re both exclusively left footed, and it really helps to pair Carrado with a right footer. I have 2 promising strikers. Neither of them actually scored as regularly as Fantini this season, but hopefully that will improve next season.

I must admit though that he only scored slightly more goals in the league than last season. Playing in the Europa League pumps up everybody's goal tally.

Highest Average Rating (minimum 10 matches played) – Luciano Campi YP5g – 7.52

His third year in a row. He’s now the highest paid player at the club at £105k a week, but then again that wouldn’t put him in the top 15 earners at champs Inter. He is tied up for a long time and os going nowhere.

Having done Most Gay Player and Most Psycho Player the last 2 seasons, I can’t think of a special award this year. If anybody has a suggestion…

Man of The Match – Luciano Campi - 8

Most Valuable Players– Luciano Campi YP5g / Corrado Varsallona YP8a – Yet again, I’m not choosing between my 2 favourite children.

Season	Division		Position	Notes										
20/21	C/C			8th		Eliminated in 2nd round of promotion playoffs.
21/22	C/C			8th		Eliminated in 3rd round of playoffs
22/23	C/C			2nd		Eliminated in Quarterfinals of playoffs.
23/24	C/C			1st		Won league and Super C Cup easily.
24/25	B			4th		Lost in playoffs S/F
25/26	B			2nd		W7 D1 of last 8 matches. Automatic promotion.
26/27	A			13th		Flirted with relegation, but it never got inside our pants.
27/28	A			16th		Went backwards.
28/29	A			10th		Changed formation. Missed out on European qualification on last day.
29/30	A			5th		Dropped out of Champions League qualifying spot at the end, but still qualified for Europe for first time.
30/31	A			5th		Same position, same points. Reached S/F of Europa League

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Dulwich Hamlet 2020/21 Mid-Season

We've been dire, both offensively and defensively. Conceding a lot more goals than last season while we have not been able to adequately replace Faal upfront. I predicted we would languish in mid-table, but on current form we might start getting embroiled in a relegation battle. I'm laying out a 4-4-2 narrow diamond as we speak, dropping our current 4-1-2-3. 

 League Table

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Ten points off sixth place while relegation is only four points away. I think we're probably too good to get relegated, but we need to buck our ideas up quick in order not to get into a nervy position. I highly doubt we'll reach play-offs this year, so we might as well treat it as a development year. Fortunately, the board are fine as long as we avoid relegation. 

Fixtures

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Only six points from the last nine games shows how poor we have been. I've probably been tinkering with tactics a bit too much and I'm going to take some time tonight to set up properly and stick to a tactic for 10 games in a row.

To make matters worse, we went out in the FA Cup to 8th tier Barnstaple. I have to take the full blame for that, I was overconfident and played nearly a full youth team, which went about as well as you would expect. 

The FA Trophy went a bit better. We beat Tilbury 1-0 and then beat Vanarama National side Hayes & Yeading in a replay, even though we had player with 10 men since the 30th minute. Mohamed Mohamed was the match winner in the replay, coming off the bench in the 87th minute to score with his first touch of the game.   

Squad

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David Courtney and Nathan Green have been switching in and out at left-back, with neither of them playing anywhere near an acceptable level. Nathan Ferguson and Nyren Clunis have been the best players for our side, while our top scorer Omar Koroma scored six goals in the first four games and dropped off after that. We'll need to get goals from somewhere soon if we want to finish the season in a comfortable manner. 

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XaW - Caersws - 2022/23

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Table | Squad | Transfers | Finances

We finished best of the rest last season, so the goal was to fight for a potential to finish in the top half of the regular season. Unfortunately, we didn't any had to fight with the rest of the ramble to avoid relegation. The season started ok, but we struggled to get any kind of momentum going at any point, and that showed in our points total. When I'm analysing the season, I noticed our biggest issue were the away matches. At home we did quite well and ended with 8 wins, 2 draws and 6 losses throughout the season. Away however, we only won 2, drew 6 and lost 8. Now, I would accept a poorer return away, but we still struggle more on the road than I had hoped. Still, we are performing better than expected and we were favourites to be relegated before the season. In the end we finished in a very decent 8th place. 1 spot and 5 points less than last year.

In the Welsh Cup we beat Haverfordwest and Corwen before losing to Cefn Druids in the quarter final. In the Welsh League Cup we lost to Carmarthen Town in the 2nd round.

Another good intake, but it's still kind of hard to evaluate how good it is when everyone is a 5 star prospect. The two I rate the highest are Gareth Evans 23e and Josh Griffiths 23g.

The leading players this season have been Matthew Oliver 22aSean Lewis 21a and Alex Hughes 22b.

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1 minute ago, vikeologist said:

What were your capacity / attendances before?

Capacity, just over 2k, average attendance 244. So a smaller stadium for whatever reason...

In other news, Swindon, stop!

LMY1b8g.png

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5 minutes ago, XaW said:

Capacity, just over 2k, average attendance 244. So a smaller stadium for whatever reason...

In other news, Swindon, stop!

LMY1b8g.png

 

Was the other stadium owned by someone else? The council or another club perhaps?
This will be your own stadium.

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3 minutes ago, Fastbasher said:

Was the other stadium owned by someone else? The council or another club perhaps?
This will be your own stadium.

Nope, we owned it. As you can see from the other screenshot, we got £350k for selling our old stadium...

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1 minute ago, XaW said:

Nope, we owned it. As you can see from the other screenshot, we got £350k for selling our old stadium...

That is a bit strange then. Hopefully it has a lot of capacity for expansion.

At least you get a decent sponsor for it immediately.

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1 minute ago, Fastbasher said:

That is a bit strange then. Hopefully it has a lot of capacity for expansion.

At least you get a decent sponsor for it immediately.

Yeah, hoping I can expand it if/when I get in a bigger crowd.

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IR Reykjavik - Season 6 -  2025 - review

Table- squad (no stats - 7th season already running) - Finances - Transfers - Youth intake

Great performance in Iceland and in Europe . And i was able to extend my star striker again (see older post) with the help of the board AND received a lot of money after reaching the groupstage of the EL2.

Pepsideild:

My feeling from last season was right, we were able to fight for the title . A few good (first team) players from last intake in combination with a few older players was the right mix.

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Champions ! we lost in our final games against KR but we were very luck that Stjarnan did the same thing , one week later.
Fixtures

Europa Conference league :

The second time we reached the Conference league but the first team we were able to get into group stage.. I've received + 2 milj , and much more after winning a few games .. this was great news for our balance.

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The last two group games started in the 7th season , if i won away against Academica, i would qualify for the next round.

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We had a good lead but.. too bad !

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The first five seasons were finished at the end of september and the season restarted +- january. So they had 3 months holiday.. now they'll have almost none :) 

Bikarkeppni Karla:

No win this time, but a good pre season cup.

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Deildabikar :

No cup win this time .

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Frabaer Bikar (supercup) :

Now we have won everything in Iceland.

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Best playersPall Porsteinsson - Ivan Oli Santos - Bjarki Baldursson (24A)

Next season :

We keep all our players and upgrade two players from the last intake into the first team : Halldor Baldursson and Sindri Sigurdsson and i hope we can challenge again for the title and survive a few round in the champions league qualification(or Europa League qualifications)..

I hope we can upgrade our youth facilities. Junior coaching and Youth recruitment are on high (icelandic) level , but the YT facilities are also important .

I also hope i'll get a few more great youth intake players, last two seasons i've got 5/6 lads that went straight into the first team.

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Edited by OlivierL
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19 minutes ago, thomas_e said:

Have anyone here changed to public beta? I fear the risk of an error occuring that might destroy the save game...

I did in my final game of season 6 . 0-2 winning in academica (and qualified with this score for the next round in EL2) but conceded two quick goals after the break. Didn't see any issues yet.

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8 minutes ago, OlivierL said:

I did in my final game of season 6 . 0-2 winning in academica (and qualified with this score for the next round in EL2) but conceded two quick goals after the break. Didn't see any issues yet.

Thats good. I was more worried about the fact they said you have to make a backup save in case an error occurs in the next few days that can corrupt your save game. 

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1 minute ago, thomas_e said:

@OlivierL, to be fair I just saw Neil Brock write that it was extremely unlikely that a save would be corrupted during public beta. Probably no need to worry at all! 

great ! thanks for the good news.

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IR board keep refusing to invest in youth and training facilities but... they did this :

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And training facilties downgraded to adequate .

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31 minutes ago, XaW said:

Looks like our board think alike @OlivierL... :idiot:

I don't know how much it will cost but i'll be quite happy with it :) what's crazy is that they don't want to upgrade youth (and senior) training facilities .. I know that's something expensive but now our senior training facilities are downgraded.

We have (had) the money for it after our EL2 adventure .

My wage budget is now 175k/month and it was 57k before. I'm 'only 'using 72k.

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TABLE  //  TRANSFERS  //  SQUAD STATS

Chronological Diary
June - After requesting it at the end of last season, the board have formed a Reserve team to go along with our Senior and u19s
July - Completed my Continental C coaching licence
July - PSV have been chasing Edwin Mommers (04A) all summer, 2.3m offer accepted by board over my head but I managed to talk them out of it.  PSV return with a 2.6m offer which I reject.  They return again and offer the 3m (1.2m, rising to 3m) which the board again take matters into their own hands and accept!  I cannot protest this time and I lose my best prospect for less than I would have sold him for
August - AZ offer 1.2m for Kevin Boer (04B) and the board accept again.  I protest, they relent and reject the offer.... (I am officially skittish at every news item at this point....)
September - Transfer deadline day and Vitesse offer 500k (rising to 975k) for Dirk Sluyk (04G).  Guess what, the board accept and I cannot protest (this was literally a couple of days after protesting Kevin Boer (04B), presuming they only allow those interactions periodically)
December - A defeat in the league in the final game before our mid-winter break snaps a fantastic 13 game unbeaten run.  The run started with 5 straight draws, then 7 straight wins.  Propelled us up to 6th spot and only 5 points off top.
January - Jovi van der Maarel (01B) has 3 contracts offered him (he wants to move to a bigger club and will not talk to me about a new one).  Thankfully he turns them all down.
January - Jovi van der Maarel (01B) has 2 additional contracts offered, he accepts from Eredivisie Willem II and will join in the summer :(
January - PSV Eindhoven offer 1.1m (rising to 2.2m) for Bjorn Roelofsen (04C) after he made a very quick rise into our starting XI.  I negotiate and they renogotiate to 2.6m straight up and the 50% of next fee I had made mandatory.  Thought about it for (quite ) a while, but took a risk and rejected
February - We went unbeaten in February and climb to 4th (3rd when you ignore Ajax Reserves).  2 points off the 2nd automatic promotion spot and now firmly in the playoff places
April - A good looking youth intake.  5 tagged.
April - Penultimate league game and a win secures promotion....  We go 1-0 up early and dominate.  Nerves set in and we cannot put the game away.  A late red card for RKC Waalwijk helps and we see out the game 1-0.  Promotion!
May - A last day 1-1 draw sees us finish 3rd in the league, but with Ajax Reserves occupying 2nd place, the 2nd automatic promotion spot is ours.  Next year is expected to be a tough one, but league prize money in the 3.8m to 8.7m range will be fantastic


Youth Intake (screenshot)
Nothing was going to match last years intake, but this is another tasty batch of potential.  The facility updates are definitely noticeable.
Bas Smit (05A) - A raw, ball winning midfielder.  Will be retrained to be a natural MC, but I am hoping he will be a great compliment eventually next to a playmaker in the middle of the park.
Joel Mulder (05B) - An interesting one.  Love his personality, he just doesn't quite fit into the tactic currently.  Going to retrain to ML, but I will keep an eye on development and a potential switch to retrain at FC if finishing, composure and off the ball look to be improving naturally.
Peter van Kempen (05C) - Great versatility, which is a plus for him as central defender is a well covered position currently.  Will retrain for DR, but he lacks the attributes for a long term option there.  A good squad player.
Remco Troost (05D) - Right sided player, who I wish was a little more defensive minded and I could retrain into an attack minded full back.  Right side of midfield it is, will see if he produces in the u19s
Maarten van der Spek (05E) - See 05D!  Good personality and pace, so he could progress.


Overview
A fantastic season and our 442 approach worked a treat.  Just 29 goals conceded in 38 league games is great, but can have no hope of being recreated next year when in with the big boys.
The loss of Edwin Mommers (04A) didn't hurt this season, but with his potential we will feel his loss going forward.  The money was nice, but in the grand scheme of things not vital. 

Challenge History

Season League Position Highest Average Top Goalscorer Top Assists Top POTMs
01 Eerste 18 / 20 Stef Brummel - 6.89 Ahmed El Azzouti - 9
Danny van den Meirsacker
Many - 3 Ahmed El Azzouti - 2
02 Eerste 12 / 20 Eef van Riel - 6.88 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 8 Mike van der Laar - 4 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 4
03 Eerste 10 / 20 Mike van de Lar - 7.03 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 8 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 6 5 players - 2
04 Eerste 07 / 20 Jordy van den Hooff (00A) - 7.04 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 22 Matthijs Janssen (01A) - 10 Jordy van den Hooff (00A) - 4
05 Eerste 03 / 20 Eric Stegeman (02A) - 7.15 Eric Stegeman (02A) - 19 Robbert van Rooijen (03A) - 10 Eric Stegeman (02A) - 10

Facilities

  Training Youth Training Academy Coaching Youth Recruitment
Start Poor Poor Fairly Basic Basic
End of Season 01 Poor Poor Average Fairly Basic
End of Season 02 Basic Basic Good Adequate
End of Season 03 Below Average Below Average Excellent Good
End of Season 04 Adequate Adequate Exceptional Exceptional
End of Season 05 Adequate Adequate Exceptional Exceptional
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TABLE  //  TRANSFERS  //  SQUAD STATS

Chronological Diary

December - We beat 2nd tier FC Den Bosch 4-0 in the cup to progress into the 3rd round for the first time in my tenure (we beat non league Scheveningen earlier in the season in round 1)
December - We enter the winter break in 4th!  Were are either winning or losing, rarely drawing.  But the wins are keeping us much higher than expected!
January - Ajax come in with a 3m offer for Bjorn Roelofsen (04C) who has made the switch to right back permanently (although he is defensively deficient....).  Juventus have started sniffing around as well!  I decide to bite the bullet and play ball.  After 4 or 5 back and forths, Ajax semi withdraw but allow me to set a price and they will consider.  8.75m and 50% of next transfer.  2 days later they come back with that exact offer!  I accept and our first big money deal is done.  The fans are not happy at losing someone of his calibre and the board actually complain that the money is too low, but they like the clause (the same board who sold two players last year for relative peanuts!!!).
January - Cup 3rd round in first game since sale.  We lose 0-1 to ADO Den Haag.  6 days later, same opponents in the league.  We lose again.  And a 3rd loss in a row next weekend.  Uh-oh.
February - The board agree to Training, Youth Training and Data Analysis facility upgrades now we are financially improving.
February - Sees 2 wins and 2 losses to semi stabilize, although it is one of the losses that I see as the turning point.  We got spanked at our place 1-5 by Ajax in September as expected.  In the return game here we stunned them by leading 1-0 until the last kick of the 1st half where they equalized.  They go up 2-1 in the 58th minute, but we smash and grab 2 goals in the next 3 minutes to lead again.  They equalize for 3-3 but we immediately counter and go 4-3 up!  88th minute heartbreak as their bombardment of goal finally sees an equalizer.  And then a 90+5 minute heartbreaker to beat us 4-5 in the Eredivisie game of the season.  I sympathize with the team and congratulate them on the performance and they soared!
March - 3 wins and a draw see us reach 5th spot and into the European playoff spots!
April - Nerves!  This young squad visibly wobble, losing 3 out of 4.  The solitary win was a last minute winner in a 1-0 win at home against relegated Willem II....
May - Last game of the season and we are 1-1 against high flying Vitesse when they get a red card.  We take advantage and run out 4-1 winners.
May - League prize money of 6.99m, when added to the transfer sale money in January has our bank balance at around 14m!
May - European Play-offs!  Due to AZ winning the cup and finishing 3rd in the league, the playoffs were between 5th and 8th.  Two legged semi finals, winners meeting in a two legged final.  Winner goes into Euro Cup II next year.
May - The board reject my request to build a new stadium (we sell out our 8,000 ground every game this year).  They do then agree to expand the current stadium, currently planned to increase capacity to 10,940 for around 4m.  Would have preferred more, but......
May - Semi final against 6th place NAC.  An absolute dream start, in the game where I officially fell in love with this squad!  Steggers (Eric Stegeman (02A)) put us 2-0 up within 11 minutes.  Everything fell our way, and two OGs in the next 7 minutes put us 4-0 up with less than 20 minutes on the clock.  They pulled one back, but we continued playing fantastic football and won 6-1!  2nd leg was a formality. Steggers scoring again and Mart Molenaar (03D) netting, after replacing the out of form Jeroen Bosch (00B)
May - Final time and it is against PSV Eindhoevn who finished 8th.  First leg at their place and the newly formed strike partnership of Stegeman and Molenaar both score in a 2-1 win!  Just a positive result away from Europe....  2nd leg three days later and an unchanged lineup for the 4th game in a row.  We take a 2-1 lead on the stroke of halftime, 4-2 on aggregate.  The 2nd half is nervy, but a pair of Molenaar breakaway goals gives us a flattering 4-2 (6-3 agg) win and entry into the Euro Cup II in the 3rd Qual Round!


Youth Intake (screenshot)

Alex Lopes (06A) - A mentally strong kid, with a fantastic personality and can play with either foot.  While not fully suited to it, will retrain to hopefully be a natural left back as I currently am very weak there.
Mitchell Ditewig (06B) - On the surface a run-of-the-mill central midfielder.  Hopefully his potential translate into good progression in the youth set-up.
Wouter Kramer (06C) - Defensive midfielder, decent personality.  Again, if he progresses in the u19s then he might be good.
Enrico Verwey (06D) - An odd one....  Cannot finish, cannot cross, cannot tackle.  So that rules him out of his three disparate positions.  Poor personality.  I will need a LOT of convincing from this kid!
Luis Carlos Bosnie (06E) - Will need retraining (I do not play AMC currently) and not sure where to retrain.  Another that will need to do a lot of convincing to get long term chances
Paul Zonneveld (06F) - Another central midfielder.  Looks ok.
Guus Sanders (06G) - A youth prospect up front.  Should get plenty of chances in the u19s to find the back of the net and make an impression


Overview

Well.  That was a very unexpected and fun season!  The bank balance looks great, although that will surely drop fast during the close season as we have Training, Youth Training and Stadium Expansion projects due to be finalized.
The first XI is looking good now, all youth promotions except the GK (who is our captain and chief problem solver), but the depth is lacking.  This is partly due to me, playing a settled team whenever possible (& not having fixture congestion issues) and partly due to not having the kind of players I would give a ton of chances to.  I need to change this moving forward as I need to develop a squad and not a team, plus I am hoping for more midweek games in the Euro Cup II.
The true star of the season was Eric Stegeman (02A) with an incredible 31 goals, but the below the radar star was easily Peter Manuel (03C) in the middle of the park.  Averaging 7.60, he rarely disappointed and chipped in with 9 assists.  He is also the only member of the starting XI with an undesirable personality, maybe I shouldn't fixate on them so much! lol
Hopefully this past seasons success will help raise our low club reputation.
The one downside to the season was losing Jordy van den Hooff (00A) to a broken leg for 6-7 months (still 3 months to go).  It left us light in central midfield, but thankfully other injuries didn't strike and our 1 game a week schedule didn't stretch us too thin.


Challenge History

Season League Position Highest Average Top Goalscorer Top Assists Top POTMs
01 Eerste 18 / 20 Stef Brummel - 6.89 Ahmed El Azzouti - 9
Danny van den Meirsacker
Many - 3 Ahmed El Azzouti - 2
02 Eerste 12 / 20 Eef van Riel - 6.88 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 8 Mike van der Laar - 4 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 4
03 Eerste 10 / 20 Mike van de Lar - 7.03 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 8 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 6 5 players - 2
04 Eerste 07 / 20 Jordy van den Hooff (00A) - 7.04 Jeroen Bosch (00C) - 22 Matthijs Janssen (01A) - 10 Jordy van den Hooff (00A) - 4
05 Eerste 03 / 20 Eric Stegeman (02A) - 7.15 Eric Stegeman (02A) - 19 Robbert van Rooijen (03A) - 10 Eric Stegeman (02A) - 10
06 Eredivisie 07 / 18 Peter Manuel (03C) - 7.60 Eric Stegeman (02A) - 31 Robbert van Rooijen (03A) - 10 Eric Stegeman (02A) - 9

Facilities

  Stadium Capacity Training Youth Training Academy Coaching Youth Recruitment
Start 8,000 Poor Poor Fairly Basic Basic
End of Season 01 8,000 Poor Poor Average Fairly Basic
End of Season 02 8,000 Basic Basic Good Adequate
End of Season 03 8,000 Below Average Below Average Excellent Good
End of Season 04 8,000 Adequate Adequate Exceptional Exceptional
End of Season 05 8,000 Adequate Adequate Exceptional Exceptional
End of Season 06 8,000 Adequate Adequate Exceptional Exceptional
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What's the point?

Another questionable stadium decision.

image.thumb.png.22610307e9b01f2cd8bde439bb002ae3.png

The same stadium has been fine in this league for many seasons now.

Edited by Fastbasher
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2 minutes ago, Fastbasher said:

What's the point?

Another questionable stadium decision.

image.thumb.png.22610307e9b01f2cd8bde439bb002ae3.png

The same stadium has been fine in this league for many seasons now.

Enlarged by 245 seats? :lol:

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3 minutes ago, andbec said:

I've realised, Witton Albion has no U18 team. Will that affect youth intakes or will they go into U23?

I _think_ so, at least as long as you have ANY youth recruitment at least.

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Belfast Celtic FC (N. Ireland)
Season 5 - 2024/25

Improvement. This year we took part in the promotion group in the league and finished in 5th place. We would have finished in 4th if we had not decided to go on collective holiday with three matches still to play.
But I cannot complain. A better and more comfortable season. After my joy, in the previous post, regarding our two first league matches, and the amount of chances we created, we went through a bad period. It coincided with our best player, Aaron Hunter, leaving us for Larne. In this period, we missed penalties, got a red card, and furthermore, we actually received two red cards in a match twice in this period. I started to fear for relegation, but we steadied the ship and got through it.

League (Results 1, Results 2, Cups, League Chart) - We stuttered in the beginning after losing Aaron Hunter after two matches. We received £13.7k in compensation, which resulted in him being our record sale. It is nice, but we lost a good player, and the transfer fee can only help to even out our losses. But we received an ok transfer fee, and he was too good to play in this league, so all in all it is ok. 
We recovered and improved, and in the end we had a strong season taking part in the promotion group and thereby finishing in our highest position ever, free of relegation. That was nice.
In the Irish Cup, we went to the 6th round, where we lost to a very strong Larne side. A strong run in the cup that matters (I say when we flopped spectacularly in the other cup tournaments :)).

Team - Our golden generation from last year went straight into the first team this year. Because they are by far both the best and most promising players in our team.
In midfield, Steve O'Sullivan had a very strong season as a ball winning midfielder, and beside him Adrian Byrne, more offensive, also improved the midfield with vision, pace, flair and technique.
A massively improved midfield. And Paul McGovern increases the competion. On right wing, Alan McNeill had another strong season. But I strugled to find a replacement on left wing for Aaron Hunter. I am currently playing with one of my many attackers which is not ideal.
In our attack, it was another matter. On paper Neil Willis looked very promising, but he ended up scoring only two goals. But he is young and can improve. My other main striker Glenn Teer from the first youth intake was our top scorer with only 8 goals. Our legendary striker Darren Stuart sadly did not have the required quality anymore and did not play. But we did miss his goals. Luckily, as we improved in the league many other players each chipped in with some goals. So the goals are distributed better this season.

Facilities - I am still jumping up and down. After the season, I managed to pursuade the board to once again upgrade both Junior Coaching and Youth Recruitment. They are now both Exceptional, and have actually been upgraded each season. This is fantastic for future prospects of this challenge, and also why I am not completely gutted at losing Aaron Hunter. I am confident, that we will have some very exciting players come through our youth system in the coming years.
This setup should, given time, be more than enough to get us promoted and also take us to the top of Northern Irish football. Hopefully, I can maintain the facilities.

I read online, that the highest level of Youth Recruitment is Extensive. Has this been changed to Exceptional or am I still missing a level?

Finances - With the record transfer fee received for Aron Hunter and regular cash injections, we have managed to avoid a big and growing loss this season. Finances are relatively ok.

Youth Intake - What an intake! The intake facilities upgrades are really showing their worth now. This is what makes this challenge so exciting. Jimmy Keogh 1Jimmy Keogh 2 was from day one our best striker and has scored 5 goals in 5 matches. Kieran Brown also looks like he could be better than our other strikers in a couple of seasons. We have received a lot of strikers in our intakes, so I have to go through them now and move some of the less promising on.
Marty Finlay went straight into our defense and Elliot Magee should furthermore also provide increased quality in the defense in the coming years.
I can't wait for march 2026 to arrive :)

Edit: Almost forgot. No incoming transfers.

Goal for next season: I cannot decide. A promotion would mean, that we might be able to hold on to more of our most promising players. On the other hand, our young squad would benefit from another comfortable season at this level. But I don't think a promotion is all that realistic. A comfortable mid-finish it is.

 

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Edited by andershs
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I'm not certain @andbec, but I would assume an U18 team will be created at the next youth intake. If you're unsure, you could always just simulate a season until the next youth intake and see what happens, then revert to your old save and actually play the season through.

Edited by PJHoutman88
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