Jump to content
Sports Interactive Community
ManUtd1

[FM 20] The Nearly Men, Vol. IV: I Am Not A Demon. I Am A Lizard. A Shark. A Heat-Seeking Panther. I Want To Be Bob Denver On Acid Playing The Accordion.

Recommended Posts

December 2034.

An immense year that we end in style. I'm off to the club's holiday party at a hip new club in the Kosančićev Venac neighborhood - a change from the usual venue, as the Vatican reserved the Itchy Kitty for the first in what it claims will be annual re-enactment of Zlatan mending the Great Schism.

As I meander through Dedinje, my thoughts turn to our accomplishments this year. At Partizan, we've established ourselves as the domestic force in Serbia and an emergent continental force, notwithstanding our extreme youth. Our rise in Europe confirmed by a creditable 4-3 loss in Lyon to a strong French side, and a massive 3-1 win over reigning Premier League champions United in Belgrade, meaning we're through to the knockout rounds. We're no easy meat, something I'm sure that Murat Musaev's City will keep in mind as we prepare for our knockout round tie. These results and a World Cup title have a way of lending you managerial credibility.

So much so that Stana's father called me 'son,' the other day. Although I'm relatively certain that was the black-label Serbian rum talking. But even if so, he's coming around.

She even acknowledged as much this morning, although she was clearly trying to change the subject from my questions about that new tattoo on her lower back. Three interlocking diamonds? I mean, ok...but...why?

I can't see why a simple question about the significance of that symbol touched a nerve, but it clearly did.

page break

We're absolutely rampant in Belgrade. Domestically, we're undefeated in the Super Liga with 57 goals for and only 2 against.

Advancing through the Champions League knockout rounds meets my biggest goal for the year. Getting past City could prove difficult, but you never know. Things really are coming together.

a4a5238304ff0d89ae854b74fea97f39.png

5386b94c719e32dac3a49edfc8e4e0be.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This thread is essentially the only thing in the universe making me want to play FM20 at all. The regens look so good compared to the previous versions, man. Inverted wingers that can finish, centerbacks that can pass the ball... is this real life?

You seem very happy with the tactical side of things which is at odds with my experience. Is it maybe because you don't use advanced wingers or strikers at all? My experience of FM20 is I couldn't get players to create absolutely anything through the middle, because everyone just immediately looks for the long ball onto the winger or the striker and disregards everything else, which was just absurdly frustrating. And even if they somehow looked into the short pass through the middle... most of the time the player (a AMC, or deep striker) picks it up with the back to goal and immediately passes back. Made me want to drop the laptop out of the window.

giphy.gif

Fantastic work so far, I mean kicking off things by winning the Champions League with a Greek side is just ridiculous, then piling up successes ever since. Your threads have stood out for the batshit insane narrative, but the fact you keep on reinventing strikerless to dominate every single version of FM is just something else. You're not just one of the better writers but one of the better players in this forum IMO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

giphy.gif

At something of a loss for words, here, brother.  

I'm definitely enjoying 20 more than words can say.  It is up there with 01/02, 07 and 17 as one of my all-time favorites.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

January 2035.

St. Sava's Day at the Itchy Kitty, a night one should never miss.

I manage to make my way home thanks to Car-Go, to a darkened house. Stana is gone for a long weekend in Greece "on "business," so I've got the house to myself tonight.

I stop in the entryway, looking at the statues of the woman and bearded man I found over the holidays...what was it? Eight years ago now? Even longer since I've seen her -- since Selene disappeared without so much as a goodbye.

In some respects, my time in Athens...with her... In some respects, it feels like it was only yesterday. In others, another lifetime. I can still see her smile, in my mind's eye. Still feel her touch. Hear her laugh. Truly, I miss her in the way one misses an old lover, one you think about occasionally, wondering...what if? What if things had been different, somehow?

I sigh and pick up the statute of the woman, studying its face. Truly, the resemblance to Selene's face is uncanny. I replace the statue with a hint of sadness, picking up its male twin...the visage instantly recognizable, a dead-ringer for the large statue that is still being excavated on the outskirts of Athens. They say it will take decades to fully unveil the statute itself, and the structure they'd found beneath it.

As always, the bearded man feels unnaturally heavy. Warm to the touch.

I put the statue of the bearded man back in its place, recognizing the bittersweet taste of nostalgia in my mouth, and turn towards a framed photograph of Stana and I, taken last summer in Japan, minutes after securing the World Cup title with the Dutch.

I don't know if I've been as happy as I was on that night.

A soft laugh from behind me, followed by a barbed voice, instantly recognizable even after all these years.

"You are changed from when I last saw you. Stronger. Harder."

I spin around to see her standing by the front door. Tall, pale skin...dark hair and eyes, one eyebrow arched as she glances between me and the photograph.

"Selene...?! Where did you come from? How did you get here? I thought..."

Word fail me. She is still the most beautiful woman I've ever seen. Stana, merely pretty beside her.

She frowns.

"I go where I wish to be. You...you have been marked. But no matter. You were mine, and you are mine. Any other is no more than a caretaker whose time will pass. I will lay claim to what is mine, when I choose."

I shake my head slowly, confused. Marked? What does she mean by that?

"Selene," I say gently, fumbling for the words to express the thoughts racing through my head, "we...we had pleasant days together. Days that I'll never forget, but that was the end of it. You left. It took time, but I moved on. I wish you nothing but the best, but...are you staying here in Belgrade? Let's get coffee tomorrow, catch up."

Selene just smiles wryly, a laugh coming from deep within her throat.

"You have been marked. This...place. I had estates here, once. The land has changed so much that nothing is as it was."

She trails off, those dark eyes looking right through me.

I can feel my pulse quickening. This is wrong. I know it. It has to end. As much as it hurts to see her, this cannot happen.

"I can't... Selene, you shouldn't be here. This isn't right... This... This can't..."

Another deep laugh.

"Selene is only a name I use sometimes."

My throat is dry. I cannot find the words...all the heartache over the years...I know in my heart that if she asked, I'd forgive her.

But she doesn't ask.

"Another time, Nico. Just know that I am always with you. And... when the time comes, I will claim what is mine."

She slips out the door with a knowing look, neither waiting nor asking for a response.

And like that, she is gone. Again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

February 2035.

Well, that wasn't good enough

Granted, City only had one real chance (which they buried) after we foolishly lost possession in the build-up.

But we couldn't progress into the final third to save our souls.

We will need to be much better on the return leg.

d3cb5395a36a9f6b055b5bfd333a27de.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

March 2035.

Not an altogether unexpected result in Manchester. That doesn't mean I'm not frustrated, though. We never got out of first gear. 2-nil, and we're on our way home.

The Super Liga title is all but won. Our goal difference tells the story - +66, with only 5 goals against after 27 matches, many of which have been played by our 2nd XI. The Kup Srbije still up for grabs, but the reality is that this squad has to start emphasizing the Champions League.

We're 2 years away from truly challenging, by my assessment.

The big post will be the season review, as we look toward the 2035 Cup of Nations and the 2035/36 Champions League campaign.

08f568e2d54eba51a3c8ca3c58493dc5.png
c51dedc9922f820c1b61243752b9b5ad.png
Edited by ManUtd1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 19/01/2020 at 18:00, ManUtd1 said:

Fellas, the tactical madness is finally here.

A full-blown breakdown of Partizan's tactics (now being used with the Ivory Coast) is up, a collaboration with @Guimy: Live Every Week Like It's Shark Week.

#NeedsMoarSharkmouth

It's been fun collaborating, brother :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No Matter How Full The River, It Still Wants To Grow

PicsArt_01-17-12.18.57.jpg?w=900&ssl=1

FK Partizan / Ivory Coast - Season Review 2034/35

I’ll readily admit one thing.

I should have told Stana about Selene the moment she returned.  Not that she’d have been pleased, but the reality was that I had not done anything wrong.  I had nothing to hide. 

But now I find myself waiting for the other shoe to drop. 

For my omission to be somehow discovered.

And I find myself thinking of Selene.  Remembering our time together. 

Of course, by not telling Stana, it now looks like I do have something to hide.

Maybe I do.

The reality is that seeing Selene again – only for a few moments, more cryptic than anything else – has rekindled a flame that I thought was long since extinguished.

separator

A big year for Nicolaj Bur.

Obviously, the highlights on the field were: (1) winning the World Cup with the Dutch; (2) immediately securing the Ivory Coast job; (3) reaching the Champions League knockout stage and acquitting ourselves well, for the most part when facing some of Europe’s elite; and (4) continuing our utter dominance in Serbia, securing the Super Liga title with 35 wins from 37 matches, a record 107 points, with a +87 goal difference and only 8 goals conceded. 

This is still an absurdly young squad, in our first year playing with the “final” PM Haaienbek tactics.  We’re only going to improve from here, and generally have enough financial muscle to keep ahold of the players we want to keep (one immediate task this summer will be contract renewals).

I don’t see a need for big changes with the squad, so there will only be modest tweaks (Ismaili is on his way out, to make room for Didier Kone, a young Ivorian forward). My impression continues to be that 2035/36 is a year when we'll be capable of making a run in the Champions League, provided that some luck falls our way, and a legitimate contender in 2036/37.

Goals for 2035/36:  Make a run at Tunisia 2035. Defend our Super Liga title. Make a run in the Champions League.

Squad | League Overview | Transfers

Finances | Income | Expenditure

Fixtures 1 | Fixtures 2 | Fixtures 3

png-page-divider-letterpress-dividers-52

European Review

In the Champions League, Pep Guardiola's Monaco beat Javi Gracia's Atalanta, 1-nil (aet), on a 111th-minute banger from non other than Erling Haaland.

In the name of Taylor Swift, I tell you what...that lad must follow one hell of a skin care routine, for a man of 35... Doesn't look a day over 19 if you ask me... I'm just sayin'...

bf5562344a83c97780f0d9a39eef34fb.png

Kidding aside, though, this is a big year. Monaco are Nearly Men no longer thanks to Sir Pep the Bald, First of His Name, while Atalanta join the list of eligible teams! Woohoo! The updated tracker is below.

Champions League Overview | CL Knockout Rounds

In the Europa League, Marcelo Gallardo's Liverpool beat Stanislav Genchev's Chelsea, 1-nil.

55d1664c2a3242deed33dfc2dbbad51d.png

Europa League Overview | EL Knockout Rounds

In the Europa Conference League, Marco Rose's Valencia beat David Bingham's IFK Norrkoping, 2-nil.

2391db9e0beab85aa9bd3b20af75293e.png

Europa Conf. League Overview | ECL Knockout Rounds

In the active leagues, after a brilliant 2033/34 where was saw some "elite" clubs get knocked down a peg or two...we reverted back to normal. Ugh.

Marcelo Gallardo's Liverpool reclaimed the Premier League title. Cristiano Ronaldo's Juventus won their 14th straight Serie A title, their 23rd in 24 years. Antonio Conte's Barcelona reclaimed the La Liga title, after Genchev left Athletic for Chelsea. Julian Nagelsmann's Gladbach defended their Bundesliga title yet again (their 5th in 6 years). Paulo Fonseca's PS-****ing-G reclaimed the Ligue 1 title. Marko Arnautovic's Gent knocked off Club Brugge in Belgium. Thomas Tuchel's Panathinaikos won their 11th straight title. Finally, David Bingham's IFK Norrkoping won the 2034 Allsvenskan title.

separator

Save/Challenge Overview

04136d1e84bdd06f0d7425cfe0d0ebd3.png

4903c9f589d427df1c36f4f35a5503e6.png

png-page-divider-letterpress-dividers-527.png

Cross-posted at From the Cheap Seats.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great progress, I am very happy to see that Atalanta is now eligible. It should make for some good shenanigans since I don't think it has ever happen in the previous iterations of this challenge. Not that they are lacking usually...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, zethani said:

Great progress, I am very happy to see that Atalanta is now eligible. It should make for some good shenanigans since I don't think it has ever happen in the previous iterations of this challenge. Not that they are lacking usually...

Thanks for taking the time to comment, man!

I'm really pleased that they're eligible, as I don't believe I've ever managed them. Any time there's a "new" club like that, I find it exciting... And someone really needs to end Juventus' reign of terror in Italy...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tunisia 2035 is here!

The Ivory Coast are off, fingers crossed we can bring home our first trophy.  

Follow along in the FtCS Tunisia 2035 open thread, which kicks off with a full blown squad review!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 21/01/2020 at 08:32, ManUtd1 said:

January 2035.

St. Sava's Day at the Itchy Kitty, a night one should never miss.

 

I manage to make my way home thanks to Car-Go, to a darkened house. Stana is gone for a long weekend in Greece "on "business," so I've got the house to myself tonight.

 

I stop in the entryway, looking at the statues of the woman and bearded man I found over the holidays...what was it? Eight years ago now? Even longer since I've seen her -- since Selene disappeared without so much as a goodbye.

 

In some respects, my time in Athens...with her... In some respects, it feels like it was only yesterday. In others, another lifetime. I can still see her smile, in my mind's eye. Still feel her touch. Hear her laugh. Truly, I miss her in the way one misses an old lover, one you think about occasionally, wondering...what if? What if things had been different, somehow?

 

I sigh and pick up the statute of the woman, studying its face. Truly, the resemblance to Selene's face is uncanny. I replace the statue with a hint of sadness, picking up its male twin...the visage instantly recognizable, a dead-ringer for the large statue that is still being excavated on the outskirts of Athens. They say it will take decades to fully unveil the statute itself, and the structure they'd found beneath it.

 

As always, the bearded man feels unnaturally heavy. Warm to the touch.

 

I put the statue of the bearded man back in its place, recognizing the bittersweet taste of nostalgia in my mouth, and turn towards a framed photograph of Stana and I, taken last summer in Japan, minutes after securing the World Cup title with the Dutch.

 

I don't know if I've been as happy as I was on that night.

 

A soft laugh from behind me, followed by a barbed voice, instantly recognizable even after all these years.

 

"You are changed from when I last saw you. Stronger. Harder."

 

I spin around to see her standing by the front door. Tall, pale skin...dark hair and eyes, one eyebrow arched as she glances between me and the photograph.

 

"Selene...?! Where did you come from? How did you get here? I thought..."

 

Word fail me. She is still the most beautiful woman I've ever seen. Stana, merely pretty beside her.

 

She frowns.

 

"I go where I wish to be. You...you have been marked. But no matter. You were mine, and you are mine. Any other is no more than a caretaker whose time will pass. I will lay claim to what is mine, when I choose."

 

I shake my head slowly, confused. Marked? What does she mean by that?

 

"Selene," I say gently, fumbling for the words to express the thoughts racing through my head, "we...we had pleasant days together. Days that I'll never forget, but that was the end of it. You left. It took time, but I moved on. I wish you nothing but the best, but...are you staying here in Belgrade? Let's get coffee tomorrow, catch up."

 

Selene just smiles wryly, a laugh coming from deep within her throat.

 

"You have been marked. This...place. I had estates here, once. The land has changed so much that nothing is as it was."

 

She trails off, those dark eyes looking right through me.

 

I can feel my pulse quickening. This is wrong. I know it. It has to end. As much as it hurts to see her, this cannot happen.

 

"I can't... Selene, you shouldn't be here. This isn't right... This... This can't..."

 

Another deep laugh.

 

"Selene is only a name I use sometimes."

 

My throat is dry. I cannot find the words...all the heartache over the years...I know in my heart that if she asked, I'd forgive her.

 

But she doesn't ask.

 

"Another time, Nico. Just know that I am always with you. And... when the time comes, I will claim what is mine."

 

She slips out the door with a knowing look, neither waiting nor asking for a response.

 

And like that, she is gone. Again.

 

FM2020 into an EUIV Transylvania Save when? Vampires to dominate Europe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 minutes ago, wynter said:

FM2020 into an EUIV Transylvania Save when? Vampires to dominate Europe

When the FM20 EUIV save converter comes out, I'll never see daylight again...

Re Selene...you'll just have to read and find out...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Africa Cup of Nations - Group Stage, Matchday 2 (pre-match build-up).

Orlande came back to the hotel late, having been AWOL for several hour after our draw against Senegal on matchday 1.

I tasked Zlatan with setting him straight. No more of this.

"I don't care how you do it. But this ends, here and now."

Zlatan nods, deadly serious. "The Zlatan will take care of it, Boss."

From that point on, I didn't hear an ounce of trouble out of Orlande. For days, he and Zlatan were joined at the hip, even if I could detect a wild look in Orlande's eyes whenever Zlatan spoke to him...all was well. And Orlande finished off our final training session on a high, the best I've seen him yet.

In the build-up to the Liberia match, I was pleased to learn that Orlande had joined Zlatan during his late-night trip to "assess" the state of the pitch. We're at a point where we all know Zlatan is up to something. I just don't want to know what it is, as I'm certain it is likely to cause an international incident if it ever got out.

15 minutes before kickoff, though, I can tell that something is awry. Zlatan and Orlande are in the back of the locker room, engaged in an animated discussion with hushed voices.

Enough is enough. Time for me to put my foot down.

"Hey, knock that **** off, lads. It's almost time to get out there."

Neither Zlatan nor Orlande will meet my eye. Peeking out from beneath a few boxes, I spy one of Zlatan's glass jars.

"What's going on back here? Are you... Are you finally ready to put all of this nonsense behind you, son?"

Orlande mumbles something incoherent. Zlatan interjects.

"You will speak when spoken to, Orlande, or the Zlatan will have no choice but to explain."

Orlande tries again, still mumbling but coherent. "I just wanted a drink, Boss...water."

Zlatan erupts.

"Was the Zlatan not clear? Water is for the after game. Before the game, only drink from the Zlatan's Golden Fountain."

Orlande looks to me, pleading. "But I don't want to drink from the Golden Fountain, Boss."

He seems to think that I know what he's talking about. Truth be told, I haven't the foggiest idea.

I look at Zlatan. He just arches his eyebrow, nodding to me, looking for support.

I look down at the glass jar, and back to Zlatan. Zlatan nods, eager to see that I've made the connection. The horrible, horrible connection.

"Zlatan...the Golden Fountain...is that what you've been sneaking into stadiums... All of the asparagus? I... This can't..."

"Yes, Boss. The Zlatan is very particular about the color of the Golden Fountain. Ivorian shaman explain to the Zlatan, the colors. If the Golden Fountain is proper butterscotch color, and the Zlatan anoints the goalposts with Fountain the night before the game, we have good luck and many sexy times because the Gods know that the Zlatan is lion. But if the Zlatan does not get the color right, if color more 'dijon' or 'Tuscan sun,' then is very bad luck, the Fountain. No sexy times."

In all fairness, that....answers a lot of questions. But not the biggest one.

"I don't... I don't want to hear about your superstitions, Zlatan. Did you make him drink...from the Golden Fountain? Yes or no."

"No, Boss. The Orlande was a cheeky little bugger and grabbed the Zlatan's waterbottle yesterday, which the Zlatan was using to collect the Fountaining during training, and...well, you saw how the Orlande played at the end of the training. Much lion. Very Zlatan."

Zlatan does have a point. Orlande was on another level yesterday.

"So, naturally..."

I don't finish the thought, as I can see Zlatan nodding enthusiastically.

Orlande burps, a fetid stench wafting from his mouth.

I can smell the asparagus as if I'd eaten it myself.

"It is ok, gaffer," Orlande says, sounding stronger than he had a few moments earlier. "I can play today."

png-page-divider-letterpress-dividers-527.png

The Group Stage continues over in the FtCS Tunisia 2035 open thread!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

mmmmm we could all do with a little golden fountain in our lives! 

Just caught up, having been sidelined by illness.

though on the plus side my dad really enjoyed his Chinese holiday!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Mandy42 said:

mmmmm we could all do with a little golden fountain in our lives! 

Just caught up, having been sidelined by illness.

though on the plus side my dad really enjoyed his Chinese holiday!

Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the Golden Fountain is quite possibly the worst Harry Potter fanfic ever. Which also makes it the best.

Those are the rules.

Glad you're feeling better! Welcome back :D

Edited by ManUtd1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, ManUtd1 said:

Tunisia 2035 is here!

The Ivory Coast are off, fingers crossed we can bring home our first trophy.  

Follow along in the FtCS Tunisia 2035 open thread, which kicks off with a full blown squad review!

 

In case you've been waiting for the tournament to finish, it has concluded. Full details in the link above, as we get ready for the 2035/36 campaign to kick off in earnest!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

October 2035.

Time flies when you're having fun...or when you're busy doing 20 things at once and don't get around to posting the next Open Thread.

Here we are. I'm not saying it is anyone's fault.

But it is 110%Zlatan's fault. No, I can't prove it. But let's be honest. It's his fault.

As I noted in the Cup of Nations Open Thread, the Super Liga campaign kicked off less than 24 hours after the final in Tunisia, followed by an immediate jaunt to Sweden for a Champions League qualifier. No rest for the wicked...

Suffice to say that our form thus far has been underwhelming. Domestically, we've faced teams who are stacking 10 men behind the ball at all times, with a cautious/defensive mentality. The Swedes adopted the same approach. Fair play, as our finishing has been woeful. We dominate matches, but have struggled to break through in the final third. Our finishing has also been horrid. When you look at the chances created, we should be smashing teams...but we're in a funk of some kind.

It is like someone flipped the switch to "Heskey" mode in mid-July.

heskey.gif
One cannot express in words the existential pain that comes with opening the Belgrade campus of the Emile Heskey School of Finishing. Only mime will suffice.

Mind you, we're still top of the Super Liga after 12 matches, with only 4 goals conceded. The problem being that we've only scored 19, and have drawn 4 matches along the way.

We also took a shock kicking in Sweden, losing the first leg of the Champions League qualifier, 2-nil. We managed to turn that one around back in Belgrade, but our Champions League qualification form remained patchy, as we needed penalties to advance past AZ.

In the Group Stage, our run of mixed form has continued. We curb-stomped Osijek in every catgory save goals-scored, a 1-0 win far more laborious than we'd ever like. A creditable 3-2 loss away to Sevilla followed, but that was just a false dawn.

On matchday 3, though, was the big one -- hosting Julian Nagelsmann's Gladbach in Belgrade. This would be the first time that I would face my former side, who have won 5 of the last 6 Bundesliga titles. I also had some extra motivation since our PM Haaienbek tactic is inspired by Nagelsmann's tactics at Leipzig and Hoffenheim. A 5th minute red card for ze Germans had me dreaming, especially when Godwin scored moments later. But we then proceeded to step on our ****s for 80 minutes, conceding a late equalizer to Zappasodi.

In the end, a 1-1 draw at home, against 10-man Gladbach, cannot be seen as anything other than a missed opportunity. They're a world-class side. If we were going to take 3 points off of them, this year, this was the chance.

giphy.gif
I don't care what you like, Emmanuel. You will keep wearing the Cone of Shame until your finishing improves.

There are 3 matches left to play, but we need results to go our way if we want to be playing Champions League football after the winter break. Perhaps we would be better served by a lengthy run in the Europa League, but as last year and this year are (generally) showing, we aren't that far off from being able to compete with Europe's best.

1e7e2292d7d16398a6a6d8ed52e76eac.png

The 22-man squad is in great shape. I spent the summer renewing contracts and rejecting transfer bids, so little has changed in terms of personnel (save for the long-awaited arrivals of Zoob and Didier Kone, both of whom are in the 2nd XI). Our wage budget has more than doubled to $316k/week, but that's more a function of how low our wages have been.

Should I really be complaining, though? At the end of the day, we're top of the league with a shout to progress in Europe:

5570c86d2fe1eaf4ac436d2de7bf05a3.png

Finally, a word about the Ivorians...we haven't played a competitive match since the AFCON final, but have steamrolled our way through 4 friendlies. World Cup qualifying kicks off in November, though, with a 2-legged tie against Somalia.

beb8deeb821cf194147bec43bf3e1fe5.png
Edited by ManUtd1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Uhh...is there something you need to share with us, Ousmane?

fe4272f427692d2b545c51bec3e6a69b.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

November 2035.

Now that is more like it, lads. The question now is whether Gladbach can give us a little help on matchday 5, which would leave us in position to overtake Sevilla on the final matchday, in Belgrade...assuming, of course, that we take care of business against the Croatians.

98182d0e0e9946e2ae3a7c1119ca6ddf.jpg

fe66710455dc0797b419a610445561aa.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

always a scary game when your goalkeeper comes up as best performer!

Great result though, keeps you in the hunt!

Now that i'm semi back and feeling slightly better than half dead, I will share a revelation with you.

Lying a few nights ago on what at the time I presumed was my death bed, a woman came to me, kneeling at my bed side she read in hushed tones from the book of Zlatan. She cried out in pain and rended her garments as she did so, her voice was filled with such melancholy that for a moment I was revived from my slumber. Only then did I realise it was Serbian Alex Morgan, she finished reading the passage and quietly closed the tome before setting it on my bedside table. She brought her forehead to mine, the cool smoothness of her skin in stark contrast to the burning power of my fever. Her voice still breaking with emotion she whispered,

"If you are to have any hope of mending what little remains of the tatters the lion has left of my heart, then you must go strikerless and never look back." With that she was gone.

I awoke some time later, the bed was a battlefield of flung pillows and rucked up sheets, I have no shame in admitting I was moist. I most certainly hallucinated the whole thing at the height of my fever, however I am no fool, the moment I get out of Zimbabwe I will be a converted disciple of the strikerless system (just in case!)  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, Mandy42 said:

always a scary game when your goalkeeper comes up as best performer!

Great result though, keeps you in the hunt!

Now that i'm semi back and feeling slightly better than half dead, I will share a revelation with you.

Lying a few nights ago on what at the time I presumed was my death bed, a woman came to me, kneeling at my bed side she read in hushed tones from the book of Zlatan. She cried out in pain and rended her garments as she did so, her voice was filled with such melancholy that for a moment I was revived from my slumber. Only then did I realise it was Serbian Alex Morgan, she finished reading the passage and quietly closed the tome before setting it on my bedside table. She brought her forehead to mine, the cool smoothness of her skin in stark contrast to the burning power of my fever. Her voice still breaking with emotion she whispered,

"If you are to have any hope of mending what little remains of the tatters the lion has left of my heart, then you must go strikerless and never look back." With that she was gone.

I awoke some time later, the bed was a battlefield of flung pillows and rucked up sheets, I have no shame in admitting I was moist. I most certainly hallucinated the whole thing at the height of my fever, however I am no fool, the moment I get out of Zimbabwe I will be a converted disciple of the strikerless system (just in case!)  

giphy.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

November 2035.

The Ivory Coast finish the year in style, smashing Somalia 10-nil in Mogadishu, before a 5-nil win back in Abidjan.

Nothing less than we deserved over the course of 180 minutes.

A brutal draw, though, as we're grouped with Ghana in the Third Round. The top team in each group will advance to the World Cup. From among the second place teams, the top 2 advance straight to the World Cup, whereas the third and fourth place teams will face another round of playoffs.

daa63eb0b91fe685755fd942e84e36f6.png

The next round of World Cup qualifiers will kick off in October 2036, after the conclusion the 2037 Cup of Nations qualifiers (which should be a rather straightforward series of matches).

Edited by ManUtd1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nicolaj Bur's "known for" panel as of November 2035:

479cc5ced61c056f1eb3d3c6c2cc69e9.png

It's ok, @Miles Jacobson, you can just say "stands in a parking lot staring at U18s through binoculars while drooling profusely" next time...  

I'm clearly on several "lists."  Beyond the VIP list at the Itchy Kitty in Belgrade, of course.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, ManUtd1 said:

Nicolaj Bur's "known for" panel as of November 2035:

479cc5ced61c056f1eb3d3c6c2cc69e9.png

It's ok, @Miles Jacobson, you can just say "stands in a parking lot staring at U18s through binoculars while drooling profusely" next time...  

I'm clearly on several "lists."  Beyond the VIP list at the Itchy Kitty in Belgrade, of course.

has shares in Worthers original! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

November 2035.

We seem to have found our shooting boots, and run rampant on our visit to Croatia.

2215b7a910304227471ce043f924ec74.jpg

So much for Gladbach doing us any favors...an utter capitulation in Spain. We're level with Gladbach after 5 matches, with Sevilla having won the Group. We'll face the Spaniards in Belgrade, needing a miracle as Gladbach host Osijek. It isn't going to happen.

This is where our failure to win on matchday 2 -- after Gladbach were reduced to 10 men -- comes back to haunt us.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

December 2035.

A massive win over Sevilla, but ze Germans take care of business, too.

24c024c476fcf0836be3ae127d3405e8.jpg

We drop to the Europa League, but have to be proud of how we've stood up to: (1) the behemoth that is Gladbach; and (2) Sevilla, who won the 2028 Champions League and continue to be a force in Spain.

I keep coming back to it...but the draw on matchday 2 in Belgrade...if only we'd won. We would have topped the Group. That's how thin the margins were.

7b1446975f3d148a07ca76759ef3a89a.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

December 2035.

We'll face Bordeaux in the Europa League 1st Knockout Round.

8b4fbae7f946c60c79d8ffe3b4eb49cf.png

This is not the easiest draw we could have received, but it isn't the worst either:

b4f48759214881241066c2d0e615fb8d.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, kidthekid said:

Tough one man.

We're getting there, slowly but surely...  A good run in the Europa League would leave me satisfied, in terms of improving our coefficient and (hopefully) moving up to a 2nd seed, and eventually push Serbia's coefficient high enough so that we earn a 1st seed automatically.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

January 2036.

The winter break is always lovely in Belgrade. Opportunities to rest, rejuvenate for the stretch run, scout young players...and spend some downtime with Stana.

It has been more than a year since Selene appeared -- and then disappeared -- so suddenly.

For a time, I was waiting for the other shoe to drop, for her to appear out of the blue at an inconvenient moment, when my failure to tell Stana would come back to bite me. But the other shoe has not dropped. And for all the times I thought I saw her out of the corner of my eye, our paths haven't crossed.

Until tonight. Stana and I were out for a nice dinner, and there she was. Unmistakable. Sitting 2 tables over, alone. Watching us, a wry smile on her face as our eyes met. A soft chuckle and a knowing wink.

That sinking feeling in my gut returns... This cannot end well.

png-page-divider-letterpress-dividers-52

When in Serbia, the winter break always is a good time to reflect. The squad is generally in great shape, and there isn't much we could do to improve it (at least in the near term), without spending money I'm not willing to spend.

Domestically, we're unbeaten for more than 2.5 years -- our last loss in the Super Liga or Kup Srbije was in July 2033, against Vojvodina, a run of 114 games (93 in the Super Lige, 21 in the Kup). Although our attack is off the boil somewhat (42 league goals, 1 behind Cukaricki), our defense remains ridiculously solid (only 4 goals against in 21 league matches).

c6a87a801045a824b660f20e08d08213.png

c30ec1e31662f5cd0b4ff869ce468308.png

We just need to take our domestic dominance to the next level by being more ruthless in front of goal, and crack Europe.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A good defence is key to succeed in Europe, so you're building a nice foundation for years to come.

Cheers,
Bitner 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Bitner said:

A good defence is key to succeed in Europe, so you're building a nice foundation for years to come.
 

I couldn't agree more, but...man.  We need to be scoring more.  The Heskey-ification of the side is worrying.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

March 2036.

A massive win over the Basques in the 1st leg, 3-0 in Belgrade. We were less impressive in the 2nd leg, losing 2-1, but we're through. We'll face Timothy Derijck's Olympiacos in the quarterfinals.

We're in the midst of a frustrating run of form, though, with a loss away to Cu**aricki and draw against Vojvodina. It's not the end of the world, but we need to improve.

09c50be1ac917deaa316f6f73b854d1d.png

af73fdfff0f5e8ecd14c3176505c23bc.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

April 2036.

Thankfully, Partizan's wobble in form has passed. It required an extra shipment of aspargus for Zlatan, but we're back in scoring form again as we hit the business side of the season.

A solid 1-1 draw in Athens meant that we could play our game back in Belgrade, which saw us run away with a 4-0 win to ensure passage through to the semifinals. Unai Emery and Milan await, although their current form is less than impressive.

African Cup of Nations qualifying has been smooth, thanks to a 12-nil win over Malawi and a 5-nil win away to Kenya. We're very much on course to qualify, with only Sudan in the way...so to speak.

fdee95a7b89babd20cd73c51b7da6637.png
1974852327af430d345b1a5373fda662.png
png-page-divider-letterpress-dividers-52

We're starting to tinker again, tactically. Once this season is over, I'm going to start working on a new tactical concept that Guido and I are discussing -- using the PM Haaienbek tactic for the most part, but kicking off initial developmental stages of a new strikerless setup.

I should also note that I am no longer playing on the "public beta." My only critique is the Emile Heskey syndrome I joked about above -- our shots on target and goals scored numbers dropping off precipitously (to be fair, the AI seemed to suffer the same problem, as our defense was unrealistically ridiculous). I couldn't see any reason for this in our in-game gameplay (e.g., poor shot selection or few good chances being created). It turns out that others have noticed similar issues, such that the issue is "under review" according to the subforum for identifying/addressing possible bugs in the public beta. The moment I changed back to the non-beta ME...those metrics reverted back to "normal."

Edited by ManUtd1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

May 2036.

We've recovered our stride. The 4-1 annihilation of Unai Emery's Milan was a comprehensive display of what we're capable of. He left with his head bowed, to our supporters' songs about his status as an Arsenal legend. Our dominance continued in the 2nd leg, where we twisted the knife, securing a 2-2 draw.

We're through to the final in Vienna, to face Georg Margreitter's Schalke, who defeated Baptiste Santamaria's Lille in the other semifinal, 2-1 (aggregate).

The Super Liga title is ours. Can we take the next step?

Partizan's only European trophy is the 1978 Mitropa Cup, which some say does not count... But that debate is for another time. Another era. This is our moment. 90 minutes from glory.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

PSA: We'll be going live at FtCS for the Europa League final, in approximately 45 minutes.

Link coming ASAP.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
49 minutes ago, ManUtd1 said:

Partizan's only European trophy is the 1978 Mitropa Cup, which some say does not count... But that debate is for another time. Another era. This is our moment. 90 minutes from glory.

 

I technecially count that as an European trophy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, HawkAussie said:

I technecially count that as an European trophy

I appreciate the support, brother

giphy.gif 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

tweaking your tactics! for crying out loud i've only just poached the last one! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, rodesire said:

It's been a great run a what a final game!

Thanks, man! Definitely frustrated at the result against ze Germans, but we getting so much closer to where we want to be.

3 hours ago, Mandy42 said:

tweaking your tactics! for crying out loud i've only just poached the last one! 

The Emile Heskey-ification of my attack was a major motivator, which is less of one now that I've switched back to the official, non-beta ME. Nevertheless, it's a fun idea, so... 

tenor.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Greatest Glory In Living Lies Not In Never Falling, But In Rising Every Time We Fall

PicsArt_01-17-12.18.57.jpg?w=900&ssl=1

FK Partizan / Ivory Coast - Season Review 2035/36

Four days later, and I'm still angry. But wallowing in anger and regret would be the biggest mistake we could make right now.

A wise man once told me that it is easy to believe in something when you win all the time...the losses are what define a man's faith.

We go again, lads.

separator

Sure, I'm still frustrated at the loss. But the reality is that this year demonstrated how close Partizan are to cracking the Champions League. Sevilla, Gladbach, Athletic, Milan, Schalke...while Athletic and Milan are on a bit of a wobble, these are generally "big" European sides at the moment. We have every reason for optimism.

I say that not just because of the results, but because I've been looking at the squad this morning, trying to see what weaknesses we have to address in the transfer market. And we don't really have any, for the purposes of our tactical setup and our "club DNA" principles. We aren't going to find anyone in the transfer market -- at a price we're willing to pay -- who can step right into this squad.

I am eyeing some youth prospects, of course. But I'm only considering two moves, that would affect the first team in the immediate future.

First, I'm weighing up promoting academy prospect Branko Platisa into the 2nd XI, and allowing Moussa Gueye to move on. When he arrived, Gueye was in competition Gentian Begaj. At the time, Begaj looked better, but Gueye seemed to have more potential -- so they split time, roughly 50/50. Since then, Begaj has maintained his advantage in terms of actual, visible skill, and has eclipsed Gueye in terms of the coaches' assessment of potential. Platisa is good enough to compete with this team, so if a decent offer comes in for Gueye (on loan or transfer), he's probably off.

Second, Sasa Radunovic has held down a position in our 2nd XI for the last 3 years. At 21, he has some room to grow but doesn't seem like he'll ever be a 1st XI player. He had been agitating for a new contract, though, seeking wages way above what I'd consider paying him. He's content for the moment. I also don't have a ready-made replacement, although I could turn to Stefan Lazarevic, another 21 year-old who is roughly equivalent in terms of ability, on 1/10th the wage, and has spent the last few seasons on loan (Milomir Drazic is another option that would serve for the 2nd XI in domestic competitions, but of the 3 he's the least capable). If Sasa throws his toys out of the pram or a decent offer comes in, he's probably off, with either Lazarevic or Drazic promoted...we've also got Zvonko Bukvic and Nikola Kaiyrakov who could fill in, in a pinch, but I don't think either one of them is a long-term first-team squad member.

But let's be honest. I'm quibbling over who is going to play in my 2nd XI, here -- who is going to be the 6th CB in my squad.

I remain convince that we're capable of making a run in the Champions League, and could contend for the title with a little luck. We have more than enough financial muscle to hold on to players, and no one is out of contract in the near future. So, the path forward is clear. Keep the squad together, work towards the Champions League title.

I plan on a full-blown squad review when the summer 2036 transfer window closes, so keep your eye out for the open thread.

Goals for 2036/37:  At this point, our focus has to be on competing for the Champions League title.

Squad | League Overview | Transfers

Finances | Income | Expenditure

Fixtures 1 | Fixtures 2 | Fixtures 3

png-page-divider-letterpress-dividers-52

European Review

In the Champions League, Thomas Tuchel's Panathinaikos beat Cristiano Ronaldo's Juventus, 3-1 (aet). That's the second time in three years that urCristiano's men have fallen short in the final...they need more intravenous injections of essential oils, obviously.

e37931e011ef94d6f0e93c45fe792350.png

Champions League Overview | CL Knockout Rounds

The Europa League is rather thoroughly covered above, with ze Germans beating Nicolaj Bur's Partizan, 1-nil.

e9f77d2da7d5952676275a99a8a2b21a.png

Europa League Overview | EL Knockout Rounds

In the Europa Conference League, Remy Riou's Roma spanked Nico Elvedi's KV Mechelen, 6-nil.

e9dfa38469e27a04d04aad62a57511cc.png

Europa Conf. League Overview | ECL Knockout Rounds

In the active leagues, Edson Seidou's Manchester United claimed the Premier League title. Cristiano Ronaldo's Juventus won their 15th straight Serie A title, their 24th in 25 years. Antonio Conte's Barcelona defended their La Liga title. Julian Nagelsmann's Gladbach defended their Bundesliga title yet again (their 6th in 7 years). Cristian Zapata's Lyon claimed the Ligue 1 title. Pontus Jansson's Anderlecht claimed the title in Belgium on the "seeding" tiebreaker. Thomas Tuchel's Panathinaikos won their 12th straight SuperLeague title. Finally, Mihajlo Jurasovic's Hammarby won the 2035 Allsvenskan title, their 4th in 6 years.

(Honestly, I'm thrilled that Panathinaikos and Gladbach have maintained their dominance both domestically and in Europe. Clubs from smaller nations tend to fall off over time (especially since Greece never broke into the "top" leagues), and I wasn't at Gladbach long enough to truly set up a dynasty -- Bayern's fall from grace has allowed them to fill the void).

separator

Save/Challenge Overview

d0154af473bad5255c21b41bd589095d.png

4903c9f589d427df1c36f4f35a5503e6.png

png-page-divider-letterpress-dividers-527.png

Cross-posted at From the Cheap Seats.

Edited by ManUtd1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Euro 2036 Review.

Scotland/Wales 2036 is in the books, with Nuno Espirito Santos' Spain claiming the title after a 3-nil victory over Aykut Demir's Turkey.

Some beautiful upsets along the way, as Silas' Portugal finish 4th in Group C (is it time for urCristiano to claim his rightful place as their manager, and lead them to glory?!). Simone Inzhagi's Netherlands and Aaron Hunt's Germany were eliminated in the Second Round, followed by Gennaro Gattuso's Italy, Gunter Schepen's Belgium and Ole Gunnar Solksjaer's England in the quarterfinals.

a15410ba86bb6adb814ccb9437d64e3c.png 7056ee5bd6db1cc2eed3282d57cf67be.png

UEFA-European-Football-Championship_-Stages.png?fit=1024%2C576&ssl=1 Spain-v-Turkey_-Review.png?fit=1024%2C576&ssl=1 UEFA-European-Football-Championship_-Profile.png?fit=1024%2C576&ssl=1

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After the 2034 release of the critically-acclaimed "Two Men, One Cup: A Football Love Story," Ed Woodward's post-Manchester United career as a children's television producer has only gone from strength to strength: 

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 39f90ba9602bcc258f98d3216362b16f.png

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...