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dafuge's FM20 challenge

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XaW - Stratford Town - 2024/25

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Table | Squad | Transfers | Finances

Two seasons close to promotion, so the goal was to push into it this season. We still are very inconsistent, probably due to all the youngsters playing, so we are losing matches we should win. The season started very good and we only two of our first 15 league games. Going into the midway of the season we had some runs of poor form and dropped quite a bit down the table. However, we had a bit of an upswing towards the end of the season, and actually managed to finish on 7th, and inside the playoff spots! It cut close and it went down to the final day again, but this time we didn't waste it and won the final match away to Southport. In the playoff 1st round we got an away match versus FC United. Unfortunately, they got the better of us and knocked us out. We are improving though, so I still have hope!

In the FA Cup we had a bit of a run after the draws were very kind to us. We beat Barwell, Lowestoft Town, Solihull Moors, Gloucester City and Curzon Ashton before losing to Newcastle in the 3rd round. Unfortunately, draws like this doesn't give as much as they used to, as we only netted about £200k. In the FA Trophy we lost against King's Lynn Town in the 3rd qualifying round.

We had a really good youth intake with Nathan Keehan 25b and Keith Jepson 25f as the brightest talents.

The leading players this season have been Nabil ShariffJames Hancocks and Steve Ross.

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On 11/11/2019 at 22:35, OlivierL said:

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Poole Town Football Club - The start 24/6/2020

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I'm going to try this challenge after doing a few youth challenges. I hope i can continue this save from the beta to full game .

I'm going to start with Poole Town . I hope we can work together with our neighbours Bournemouth .. and one day become bigger :)

i'll have to sign almost a complete new squad . The chairman was already talking about selling the club in the near future (club vision).

Club profile- Current squad - Club vision - Finances

Wish me luck ! PS : can i show and post the images about the table - fixtures - transfers - squad etc directly or should i use links ?

Good luck buddy! I know you put in a lot of effort!

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Anyone had troubles getting players on trial ? my board is cancelling almost every trial bid.. :( maybe i tried to sign to many at once ?

Edited by OlivierL

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Would setting the training intensity to double help player development at all if your club is still semi-pro?

Also, as soon as I pick up a half decent player on a free, it seems their attributes decrease.  Is there anything I can do to prevent this?

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I am going to start over next week when the full game is released as have come across a few bugs that irritate.  Also, I finished my first season twelve points clear and only three league defeats, so I am finding it slightly easier than FM19.

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St. Ives 2023/24 Season Review

League Table    Playoffs    Season Review    Squad    Transfers    Finances

More of the same, pretty much. We stayed in the playoff spots all season and — once again — got knocked out at the end. I should probably be more disappointed than I am, but all I got is a feeling of assurance that we can indeed hang up here and should indeed be able to keep challenging for promotion. 'Just need that extra bit of luck.

Surprisingly had our first retirement already: Conway in goal. He's been declining ever since I took over and I guess decided to finally call it after losing his spot to Austin. Seems early at just 33, but his downward trend has been steady and undeniable. Austin has been quite prone to mistakes so far, costing us a few goals already from wayward punches and mistimed aerial challenges, so I hope this isn't about to turn into a problem position.

Oh, and there seems to be some takeover rumors going around. I quite like the current board so personally I could do without the potential, um, manager replacement.

Terrible youth intake. I'm not seeing very many squad changes in our near future.

Aim for next season: Promotion! ...while I still have the senior players for it...

Season    League              Finish   Notes
2023/24   Vanarama North      5th      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2022/23   Vanarama North      4th      Lost in Playoff 1st Rnd
2021/22   Vanarama North      9th      -
2020/21   Vanarama North      15th     -

 

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Really want to give this a go with Banbury Utd! Do I just keep reloading the holiday save until they come up or does anyone have a save with them I can use?!?

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4 hours ago, theleebarnes said:

Really want to give this a go with Banbury Utd! Do I just keep reloading the holiday save until they come up or does anyone have a save with them I can use?!?

Second time of asking!

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Merthyr Town.

First time of asking we get promoted.   Fidel O'Rourke again providing most of the goals like in my fm2019 save with Matlock.

I seem to have got the worst Brexit with all EU citizens needing a work permit and only found out after signing some free'ed premier league EU citizens who were then denied work permits!

Youth intake was poor but i did discover that i have an u19 team in the welsh development league.

I did my usual of raiding Queen's park and picked up anyone who looked like they might have potential.

FA cup was good for us,  we had Taunton, Margate, Barnet, Haringey, Chelmsford and then we luckily got Fulham who we managed to draw 3-3 with at home but lost 5-2 away.  That brought in a lot of money for us.

We lost the FA Trophy to Ebbsfleet in the final but won the league on goal difference against Bromley who then failed to win the playoffs.  We both finished on 101 points.

Our u19's won the welsh development league and have thus qualified for the Uefa Youth League!

You can watch me play on Twitch and see my boring archives on youtube.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkNmw0HLopiQa5AGT5D9WpA/

 

 

 

Edited by MadMcMan

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St. Ives 2024/25 Season Review

League Table    Playoffs    Season Review    Squad    Transfers    Finances

Well, we officially suck at playoffs.

Still struggling to defend well — moreso on the latest beta update — but we make do by scoring more than nearly everyone else. Hey, the board asked for entertaining football; as far as I'm concerned I'm following instructions! Clifton gets most of the credit this time around, netting 27 goals and earning himself the league Top Goalscorer award.

Not much is happening with the squad. Duncliffe has improved nicely down in the U18s and is no doubt getting more game time next season, and I'm trying to give Seal minutes as a simple anchor man. Other than them, it's the same old gang from last season.

The board's gotten more aggressive about cash injections, contributing £45K every so often to keep us from dropping too far under -£100K. I do appreciate the debt management, but this way we're never in the black and thus I can never request anything, including more coaching courses. Not ideal.

Aim for next season: Promotion? Please?

Season    League              Finish   Notes
2024/25   Vanarama North      2nd      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2023/24   Vanarama North      5th      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2022/23   Vanarama North      4th      Lost in Playoff 1st Rnd
2021/22   Vanarama North      9th      -
2020/21   Vanarama North      15th     -

 

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Couldn't get into this one.

 

 

Edited by XuluBak

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Season 1 - Hornchurch

Finished 12th in VNS. 

Late season scoring draught dropped us from playoff contention, but overall we survived with a sub-par squad. With no money (even with a takeover at the end of the season), we will need to struggle on next season as our entire payroll is at 5k a week, so our ability to draw players is pretty limited. We did manage to get a late season hook-up with Bradford City and are hoping to get at least a couple of fruitful loans to help support our 2nd season. 

Sorry, no pics- don't have time to sort out the image posting at present.

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got this very vague message from the board after the end of the season. I dont think ive seen this before

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An ok season, we started poorly but had an ok run thoughout. Fell apart in the cups this season though sadly and we are leaking money really badly now.

Will be looking to see if a playoff run next year is possible to get into the big leagues

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FC United 2020/21 Season Review

Profile|Table|Transfers|Finances|Squad 1 2

 

Vanarama National League North: We started the season expected to finish just above the relegation zone, so all things considered, we had a great season. However, I can't help but to be a little bit disappointed. Our end of season form was phenomenal, with only Gateshead having better form over the last 23 games of the season. In fact our form was so good, at won point we won 9 league games in a row. It seems out early season form, which actually wasn't terrible just not consistent, was our downfall as we ended up 3rd, just four points behind champions Hereford.

I had hoped we would be able to carry our form into the playoffs but a 90th minute winner from Boston took the wind out of our sails and doomed us to another season of northern football! The team did brilliantly but missing out by 4 points hurts

The Emirates FA Cup: We weren't expected to go far in the FA Cup (and we didn't), but making it to the 1st round proper was enough for me.  

The Buildbase FA Trophy: This one hurt. When we drew Merthyr in the 3rd qualifying round, I was confident of securing the victory and going on a little run, but my boys had other plans. A 2-2 draw at our place meant we had to fill our already busy diaries with a replay. The always helpful Merthyr decided to lend us a hand and reduce of fixture list by scoring in the 88th and 90th to snatch the 2-0 win and send us packing

 

Top Goalscorer: Tom Heardman really pulled his weight this season and helped carry us to heights we had previously only dreamed about! A free transfer from Farsley, the lanky Newcastle reject scored 29 goals in 49 games as the focal point on my attack

Most Assists: Joe West, booted out of the Sheffield Wednesday squad and in need of some love, found himself holding down the left back position in my starting 11 for the duration of the season. He repaid me by assisting in 18 goals!

Honourable Mentions: D'Mani Mellor - stolen from under the noses of local rivals Man Utd (after they released him on a free...), the wide man scored 19 goals and had 7 assists to his name when Hereford decided they wanted in on the action and offered him a contract that tickled his fancy. With six games to go, he left us high and dry

 

Next Season Plan: After the let down that was the playoffs, I want to go on and secure promotion next season. I think that is absolutely doable if we can keep the core of this team

 

Season     League                   Position    Notes and Achievements
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2020/21    National League North    3rd         Lost in the Playoff Semi Final

 

Edited by Danny_H22

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XaW - Stratford Town - 2025/26

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Table | Squad | Transfers | Finances

Playoff last season, so of course the goal was set high. And the season started good when we only lost 1 of our first 8 matches. We looked good for the fight for the playoff spots. The early part of the season continued quite good and we picked up points as we headed towards Christmas. But at around that part, we really started to struggle. In fact, this went straight down the drain. In a very busy January we only won two matches and we started dropping down the table. From there on we really had issues and from February we only won 2 matches until the end of the season. Of course, we continued to fall down the table the rest of the season and in the end we finished in a very disappointing 15th place.

In the FA Cup we beat Atherton Colleries, Basford and Halifax Town before losing to Hartlepool in the 1st round. In the FA Trophy we beat Leamington and Harrogate Town before losing to FC United on pens after a replay in the 2nd round.

We had a very good youth intake with Tom Jordan 26d and Mark Hill 26a as the brightest talents.

The leading players this season have been Liam Burke 25a, Charley O'Keefe and Chris Wreh.

Once again, I have this random higher level of academy coaching and youth recruitment... no idea why...

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I got fired from my first attempt at this with Truro and after the new ME was released I wanted to have another go. This time I've gone with Scarborough Athletic.

I played through my first season before posting as I usually crash and burn early so I didn't want to commit to anything. Luckily this time I managed to make it through the first year and comfortably avoided relegation in 15th place, 15 points above the drop zone. I had a good start to the season, then went into a huge lull when I lost my two most influential players to long term injuries, only to recover later on when they returned. A bit of a rollercoaster, but relegation was never really threatened. There were plenty of transfers made, I even paid money for someone! There were plenty of duds, but a few studs as well. Pearson up front was fantastic, Annan on the wing was great when he didn't have injured knee ligaments and Raw was great through the centre in the second half of the season.

The board seemed pretty happy with everything. We made it to the first round of the FA Cup, but ran into Salford who were just too good. We earned a nice bit of prize money from it though. The FA Trophy was a write off, losing to Gateshead in extra time in the 3rd qualifying round.

The squad is going to change a fair bit for next season as I've got too many players who just aren't performing, so hopefully I can get some decent signings in for next year and push on up the table.

The club now wants me to become an established VNN team in the next 2 years instead of just avoiding relegation

End of season awards | Season Review

Edited by Britrock

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Hello everyone. I actually made an account on this forum just for this challenge, (well, also to fix the typo where players have 'ben' strong in training). I've always had a bad habit of replaying matches, so I'm giving this challenge a go with autosave after matches so I can actually figure out what makes this game take instead of taking some guesses and getting lucky.  Very excited to see how angry this makes me. =)

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XaW - Stratford Town - 2026/27

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Table | Squad | Transfers | Finances

This has been a season of ups and downs. At the start of the season we did well, got a lot of points and things were looking well. Then we did very poor, losing and losing. I went a bit too reactive and changed tactics back and forth without much success. So at a certain point, I went back to my tried and true 4-5-1 and after a few poor results we started to get points again. And at a point actually went three matches in a row without conceding. This, of course, helped us climb up the table, and at one point we had an outside shot at the playoff spots. In the end we fell a bit short of it, but we made a very good effort.

We also had a board takeover this season to a fans trust, and they do love the club! They started with the normal bank loan to sort out the debt, but then they started to push money into the club. More and more, and towards the end we had more than half a million pounds in the bank. So I asked for improvements, and they actually accepted. In addition, they have agreed to improve the facilities to move us up a youth level! The final amazing thing they did happened just after the season ended when they implemented the "develop players through the youth system" vision for the foreseeable future! I really like these guys! Oh and they finally sent me to get my first licence! Lovely indeed.

In the FA Cup we got some lucky draws and beat Tamworth, Gateshead, Halifax Town, Barrow and Dulwich Hamlet before our run was firmly stopped by West Ham in the 3rd round. Unfortunately, we drew them home, so we didn't get that much money from it. In the FA Trophy we beat Stalybridge Celtic before losing to Basford in the 1st round.

We had a good youth intake where Aaron Quick 27a and Harvey Cartwright 27b are the most talented.

The leading players this season have been Liam Burke 25aNathan Keehan 25b and Stefan Robinson 21d.

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Season One, 2020/2021 Vanarama National League South - 18th

 

Very confusing season. We started by winning our first game away 4-0 and I thought we might have a decent team. By matchweek 9 we were 22nd. After climbing back to 14th, we again fell to 22nd and the board threatened to sack me if we didn't get 9 points from 5 games. At the time, with our form it seemed inevitable that we would fall short. Instead we won the next two, followed by a draw and another win again climbing back to 14th. From there form plummeted again and we finished 18th.

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Goal difference alone would put us 13th and I think we were better than 18th best across the whole season. Squad stats for season one. No surprise that my best player was the 4.5* CA CM who was on my team when I got there, but he spent all year on a month to month as his initial contract expired and he won't even negotiate with me. I signed a few attacking players who looked good but my leading scorer ended up being a player who was here when I got here that has 4 finishing. Go figure. I'm hoping the board gives me a higher wage budget so I can attract some of the talent whose contracts are running out, as right now I am right up against my allowed wage budget of 7.5k p/w. First academy class was terrible, none look like they will ever be good enough to play for the first team. Thanks to multiple cash injections from the board we are only 50k in the negatives. Season 1 transfers.

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FC United 2021/22 Season Review

Profile|Table|Transfers|Finances|Squad 1 2

 

Vanarama National League North: If finishing four points off of top spot didn't hurt me, then finishing one point off top spot after drawing the final game of the season did! Luckily for us, our season form continued into the playoffs and wins over Gateshead (3-1) and Buxton (2-1) saw us gain promotion on the second attempt! 

One loss in the first 23 league games really put us in position for that top spot - a position we flirted with all season. Unfortunately, 2 wins from our last 9 games (6 draws!) just wasn't title winning form and we had to make do with a playoff spot. All in all, a great season but missing out by a point really stings.

The Emirates FA Cup: Our only goal for the FA Cup is to have fun! Well fun is exactly what we had as we romped our way to a 4th round tie against Premiership side Cardiff! We were really made to earn our spot, beating Bolton 2-0 in the 2nd round and Reading 1-0 in the 3rd, but in the end the class difference was evident as Cardiff ran riot on the way to a 5-1 win at Broadhurst Park. 

The Buildbase FA Trophy: With the form we were in this season, we were should have performed much better in the FA Trophy. Playing in front of the home fans made no difference as Halifax embarrassed us 4-2 and sent us packing in the 1st round.

 

Top Goalscorer: Tom Heardman - for the second time in as many years, Heardman was our star player and we have a lot to thank him for. 31 goals beats his tally from last season and won him award after award

Most Assists:  Joe West 16 assists in 44 games and the left back was once again the man with the plan when it came to winning us games. He spent the season on a non-contract and I was convinced that I would lose him at some point. Luckily we didn't and he helped carry us to a playoff win.

Honourable Mentions:  Matty Lund - signed on a free from Scunthorpe to offer some experience to the midfield, Lund chipped in with 5 goals and 9 assists on his way to a 7.14 rating over 56 games. 

Kain Reed had a great season out on the right, scoring 11 and assisting the same.

The surprise package of the season was Michael Lee - the FC United youth prospect had big boots to fill when he had to fill in for Heardman after a injury. He filled them and then some, scoring 7 in his first three and forcing me to change my tactics to a 2 man forward partnership. A brilliant decision by me, if I do say so myself, as the breakthrough prospect smashed in 18 goals in 20 starts and averaged a rating of 7.52. Something tells me that I might struggle to keep hold of this one

 

Next Season Plan: I think we should be aiming for a top half spot next season. Our finances are a thing of beauty so I am expecting a comparatively large transfer budget. 

 

Season     League                   Position    Notes and Achievements
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2020/21    National League North    3rd         Lost in the Playoff Semi Final
2021/22    National League North    2nd         Playoff winner

 

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I'm learning real quickly that despite playing 1000 hours of FM19 I know absolutely nothing about this game.  At least I'm only 6 points away from 17th, despite only picking up a single draw in 7 games.  I've completely lost sight of what's good and what's RNG luck, and have lost all faith in my own ability. Great challenge :)

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XaW - Stratford Town - 2027/28

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Table | Squad | Transfers | Finances

A good end to last season were not followed at the start of the new one. We only won 2 of the first 13 matches and found ourselves just above the relegation zone at that point. However, I learned from last season and kept the same tactic, but gave some other players the chance and it payed of. We started picking up points, and while we drew quite a lot, it's still better than losing. Our main problem is controlling games when we are in the lead, we gave away a lot of possible wins from strong positions and missing a lot of good chances to get a bigger lead. As the season went on though we continued the climb and headed into the playoff zone at a point. Going into the final match of the season we were a single point shy of the playoffs spots. Unfortunately, we lost in a very poor game away to Cambridge City. So, once again we finished in 8th.

In the FA Cup we got beat Goole and Gainsborough Trinity before losing to Hereford in the 4th qualification round. In the FA Trophy we lost to Hemel Hempstead Town in the 3rd qualification round.

We had a solid youth intake with Darren Waters-Reece 28c and Craig Morgan 28b as the ones to watch out for.

The leading players this season have been Nathan Keehan 25bLiam Burke 25a and James Hancocks.

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Sweet hell did that feel good. Upwards and onwards for Matlock.  Doubt I'll do any promotions but I feel like I can avoid a relegation battle.

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I have decided to have a go this year. 

Here presenting the new Manager of Bognor Regis Town FC

I Don't play particularly quickly, so no updates for a while.

Let's hope I can survive at least a season! 

 

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St. Ives 2025/26 Season Review

League Table    Playoffs    Season Review    Squad    Transfers    Finances

I'm never getting out of this league.

Clifton had another storming season and it's a good thing he did, because I dropped the 2nd ST to AMC and while Harrison did well from there, he doesn't score nearly as much as Forde used to. Baker picked up some of the slack but I think it's back to two strikers next season. If I can keep Baker on this form and get another 20+ goals striker in the side, we could do some serious damage.

And we need to, because boy are we still leaking. I've never had a defensive line with such poor ratings. Heck, this is what happens when a quick striker with good technique gets to play with them. That is, unless we're kicking their shins out. Granted that right there is the league top goalscorer with 39 goals to his name, but still. I crave stability, and so far I'm getting no closer to finding it.

Aim for next season: I don't want to say it anymore.

Season    League              Finish   Notes
2025/26   Vanarama North      2nd      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2024/25   Vanarama North      2nd      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2023/24   Vanarama North      5th      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2022/23   Vanarama North      4th      Lost in Playoff 1st Rnd
2021/22   Vanarama North      9th      -
2020/21   Vanarama North      15th     -

 

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1 hour ago, Scab said:

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St. Ives 2025/26 Season Review

League Table    Playoffs    Season Review    Squad    Transfers    Finances

I'm never getting out of this league.

Clifton had another storming season and it's a good thing he did, because I dropped the 2nd ST to AMC and while Harrison did well from there, he doesn't score nearly as much as Forde used to. Baker picked up some of the slack but I think it's back to two strikers next season. If I can keep Baker on this form and get another 20+ goals striker in the side, we could do some serious damage.

And we need to, because boy are we still leaking. I've never had a defensive line with such poor ratings. Heck, this is what happens when a quick striker with good technique gets to play with them. That is, unless we're kicking their shins out. Granted that right there is the league top goalscorer with 39 goals to his name, but still. I crave stability, and so far I'm getting no closer to finding it.

Aim for next season: I don't want to say it anymore.


Season    League              Finish   Notes
2025/26   Vanarama North      2nd      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2024/25   Vanarama North      2nd      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2023/24   Vanarama North      5th      Lost in Playoff 2nd Rnd
2022/23   Vanarama North      4th      Lost in Playoff 1st Rnd
2021/22   Vanarama North      9th      -
2020/21   Vanarama North      15th     -

 

Tough luck mate, 4 play off seasons. Have you been able to attract better players with those strong seasons ?

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1 hour ago, Superowl90 said:

Tough luck mate, 4 play off seasons. Have you been able to attract better players with those strong seasons ?

Nah. Doing this in combination with the youth academy challenge prevents me from making transfers and the club can't afford to improve facilities.

We're cruising along on the starting squad + a few decent newgens for now. Fingers crossed we can somehow make a bit of money soon...

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That's some harsh playoff misfortune there, Scab. The football gods are testing you. I hope the next year brings you some better fortune!

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On 03/11/2019 at 12:45, anagain said:

A strong TM will be a very good asset at this level.

A strong TM and pacey forward. I will be going for the old fashioned twin turbo force of destruction.

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1 hour ago, Rashidi said:

A strong TM and pacey forward. I will be going for the old fashioned twin turbo force of destruction.

Have you chosen your club yet for this challenge @Rashidi?  I always watch your dafuge Challenge in its entirety.

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A humdinger of a club has come up after multiple reloads.

I am the new manager of Bamber Bridge!

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@dafuge seen this thread in the past, but never really given it a go, now might be the time.

Going to play as Tamworth (thanks @G_D_K for the save files) as their ground is literally a mile from my house.

If there isn't currently a parent club in place I might try and see if I can land Villa, as their training ground is also situated in Tamworth so would make good sense.

Tactics has never been my strong point so will try and keep it simple to start with and then develop it over time as we hopefully move through the leagues.

Will post my manager screenshot later.

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1 hour ago, Spike said:

@dafuge seen this thread in the past, but never really given it a go, now might be the time.

Going to play as Tamworth (thanks @G_D_K for the save files) as their ground is literally a mile from my house.

If there isn't currently a parent club in place I might try and see if I can land Villa, as their training ground is also situated in Tamworth so would make good sense.

Tactics has never been my strong point so will try and keep it simple to start with and then develop it over time as we hopefully move through the leagues.

Will post my manager screenshot later.

In my experience geography doesn't seem to come into play with parent clubs. As Scarborough I've been offered Colchester, Mansfield and Luton among others, even though Middlesbrough, Leeds, Huddersfield etc are all much closer.

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33 minutes ago, Britrock said:

In my experience geography doesn't seem to come into play with parent clubs. As Scarborough I've been offered Colchester, Mansfield and Luton among others, even though Middlesbrough, Leeds, Huddersfield etc are all much closer.

Yeah I kind of figured that from previous experience. 

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I'm going to restart this as I didn't really get into my intitial attempt on Beta release, I've checked the editor for the lowest reputation teams so will be trying to get one of the following:-

Blackfield & Langley 1050
Yate Town 1450
Hartley Wintney 1500
Wimborne Town 1500
Walton Casuals 1550
Potters Bar Town 1550
Horsham 1600
Bromsgrove 1500
AFC Rushden & Diamonds 1600
Peterborough Sports 1600
Alvechurch 1600
 

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Let's go!

1589925026_WarringtonTown_.thumb.png.de696bb9d1b1f16fa1c99a1487690df6.png

I haven't done this challenge since FM15 (with Dulwich Hamlet) so I'm glad to try this again. I will try to implement a hoofball style and see how far I can take it.

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I have started well and lie second after seventeen games, one point behind league leaders Stockport County, who we travel to next.  I have a strong group of fifteen or so players, with six youngsters with potential filling up the bench.  Have a few injuries and suspensions now though, so the next few weeks will be key.

I am struggling with my wage budget though and am overspending by just under £1,500 per week.

Come on Bamber Bridge!

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always meant to try this challenge but never got round to it,  so here goes with Stalybridge       

 

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