Velez: Through The Years

Velez: Through The Years

Hello and welcome back dear reader. It’s been a while since I last posted. Aside from real life taking a driver’s seat, the free time I have has been dedicated more to playing the Velez save. Enjoying this save is a big understatement. Hence, I have decided to take you through what has happened over the past 9 seasons. Hopefully I would be able to give you a snapshot of the ups and downs of the club as well as my stint being the top dog of the club.

Trophy Cabinet

I took Velez for 2 main reasons. First is because I wanted this to be youth save. Velez had a good youth setup in place which was one of the things I wanted. Second is because the trophy cabinet was not exactly full. Yes, they’ve won stuff in the past but in recent times, not so much.

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Trophies at the Start of Game

The last time Velez won anything was 2013. It looked like a challenge that I was interested to take head-on.

After my first season, I immediately added a piece to the collection by winning the Copa Argentina. This was a trophy that the team has never won in its rich history. After this promising start was a series of heartbreaks. With a young and inexperienced squad in tow, I had struggled to deliver anything noteworthy until 2019. Yep, we won the RESERVES division/league or whatever you wanna call it. It was better than nothing. At this point, I had turned from feeling challenged to utterly frustrated. And then I settled on a system finally and things fell into place.

Year 2021 was when we first took the Copa Libertadores home. We were far from favorites. We were not even underdogs. We were supposed to be a competition filler from the Argentinian Primera who luckily ended up in a qualifying position. After early exits in 2018, 2019, and 2020, we beat Cruzeiro on aggregate. Velez was the South American champion after 27 long years.

In the same year, we missed out once again on the league  ending 6th. Yes, we con continental before winning national. If it’s any consolation, we were runners up to Barca in the Club World Cup that year.

The year 2023 was special. We won almost everything. Primera, Libertadores, and Supercopa. We placed third this time in the Club World Cup. But who cares! Velez was rocking.

Year 2024, we missed out on moving past my arch nemesis, Cruzeiro in the Libertadores. We won the Primera, Supercopa, Recopa, and Copa Argentina. Hopefully we have more of these types of seasons as I have already a set system in place and continuity established.

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Honours Won as of November 2024

 

Personal Achievements

Sticking to a club is tough for me. I’ve always gotten bored regardless if I was winning or losing. I think it is just my personality. The reason why I love this save so much is because I have not been bored at all! Honestly, I think this is my best save ever! So much so that I have reached this milestone.

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400 Games

Awesomesauce! I stayed and committed to something for once in my life! LOL. Next up is the powers to be deciding that I have done some good work. Hence the induction.

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Hall of Fame

Yep! Immortalized in the HoF is pretty neat. I don’t know what other accolades I can get but this is pretty satisfying. But my most important achievement has yet to materialize. Although, there are already plans. I have no idea how and when. But the what and where have been decided.

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Stadium Plans

Not sure how this works within the game but I really hope they name it after me!

Notable Products

As this was a youth save, early in the game, I disposed of quite a lot of deadwood. It was one of the reasons for my early struggles. Most of my first team members were kids, I brought in oldies but they never played more than 5 games I think. All they were there for was to do some tutoring. Most of the time, I would buy young – meaning within tutoring age. I only bought one guy to play who was older than tutoring age and he will have a special place in this post.

Fontana

Sold to Manchester United for a deal up to 40M, he was my most prized asset. I loved him so much that I made sure to include a 2 season loan back clause. He was awesome and tore defenses to shreds. Very very good assist guy for me.

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Fontana

Romero

One of the reasons why I hate Cruzeiro with a passion is that they stole Max Romero from me. He had a 10.5M release clause stuck by his dickhead agent and they activated it. Sucks he will not be able to end his career with Velez.

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Romero

Churin

He has been wanting to leave but he signed a 5 year contract with a 4 year extension so I will hold on to him until I can renew it or sell when I’ve sorted a replacement. For now, i will have a world class midfielder playing for my team.

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Churin

Fleming

Hailed as another greatest player of his generation, Fleming has recently been called up for international duty. He will probably be world class as well. He is tagged as injury prone but I will cash in on him when the time is right.

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Fleming

Hernandez

Multiple clubs has set up camp game after game to scout this guy. He provided cover in Fontana’s last year and has started ever since Fontana left. I think he has the potential to be better though. As with Churin he has a multi year extension locked in but I will cash in on him when the price is right.

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Hernandez

Labrin

The only guy I purchased above tutoring age. I believe he did not have any caps prior t joining my team. He got capped and was a decent player for Velez. He was my first international in my team so he has a special place. He also tutored numerous defenders whom I was able to sell. He was a class act. I let him go for free after his contract expired.

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Labrin

Current Results

I have been experimenting with a new system. I actually used this in last year’s version but on a different mentality. All throughout this save I have only played on one mentality and that is defensive. It has its own set of challenges but I use other means to adapt. Will I write about it? Probably not. Only reason being I just do a lot of testing and have very little tactical know-how in the game of football. I test and test until results show positive. And so far they have been a bit positive with this new system.

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All Competitions Results

As the manager I used an international footballer and maxed the training bits. I also used attribute masking. I scout players and use the ‘Scouted Player’s’ tab for more realism. I have not knowledge of using the editor. These results are a result of a lot of guess and test. I read, see what works for others and understand the basic concepts and apply. Test. Rehash. Rinse and repeat. All the testing are done because I want it to work on the defensive mentality.

Squad

In case you were wondering what types of players I have, then here is the squad and some of the things I look at. Thanks to Rashidi @bustthenet for sharing this method as I never had any blueprint when playing before. I signed the most expensive guy I can find.

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2024 Velez Squad

It is not perfect and some are there because I need back up or tutors. I try to maintain a ‘Highly Professional’ squad personality at all times. How important this is in driving results is something I am unsure of. I basically have each position and one back up. The reserves are for kids who don’t have a chance to make it to first team and for regaining match fitness. Any youth intake prospect is moved to reserves until end of that season and moved into the first team the following season as a back up. I might write a piece on that next time as I enjoy developing my kids.

Updates

I have tried recording videos and have posted my first YouTube video with voice. It sucks as it was not edited and I used my gym BT headseat as my mic. Really amateur. But we all have to start somewhere. I have also been posting the goals the team scored for most games and that can be found in the YouTube channel as well. I should appear as jedifootball in Youtube too. I have to sort that bit out. I will try to post a yearly blog on my Velez save if anyone is interested. You can always see my updates via Twitter @jedifootball and do lots of live tweets while playing. feel free to comment or provide feedback. Would love to hear from you! Happy new year! Shalom!

 

 

Velez Season 4

Velez Season 4

Hello my friends! By this time I hope you have been accustomed to my sporadic update schedule. As I mentioned in the previous post, I have taken over the youth team as well. I have slowed down the game play to ensure that I do not miss out on my developing prospects.

Opportunities

For those of you who have followed this post since season 1, you have already seen that I have done a fair job at managing this group. I was never threatened to be sacked and have been given a couple of renewals. This success has also brought about a couple of links to other clubs in the league. Although I have no intention of moving, I wanted to update y’all that there is indeed some interest. I have outright turned down job interviews and declared that there is no intent of moving.

Elimination Process

As you know, I have a penchant for rotating stupidly and maintaining small squad sizes. This combination has been lethal in ensuring some sort of negative outcome in game. Hence I wanted to outline what I will be doing differently this time.

First order of business is evaluating who gets to move to a professional contract. Initially my HoYD has been given the task of identifying whose contracts should be renewed. This seemed like a good idea at first given his JCA and JPA, but it really was not. I ended up with players whom I used to rotate but lacked the umph that the the First Team required. Starting from the youth, I will determine after a year who will get out of the YTH contract type. By age 18 I will ‘promote’ those who have been given professional contracts into the reserves. Now I know that there are instances when a regen enters the team at age 18 or 19. In lieu of this I will still have them see out a one year residency program within the Under 20s. After a year I will decide if the move up or see out their contract without renewal.

Once in the reserves, they will again serve another 1 year residency. After which, I will either trigger some sort of contract extension clause or just have them go on loan or get sold. I know this is not the most efficient or even cost effective way to manage talent. I just find it simpler as I don’t want to end up with a large reserve squad which would deny game time for the highly touted prospects.

During their time in the reserves, they may get a number of chances to break into the first team. An odd game or two perhaps. 20/21 will be my deciding age. Either they get sold or they move up to the first team.

Transfers

Summer window saw a lot of departures and only one incoming. I have stayed true to developing youth and giving them a chance. This may not have delivered a title but it has driven positive results both on and off the pitch.

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Velez Transfers Season 4

The outgoing transfers are more of cleaning up the stock room. More dead wood. If you notice Baez was sold. That is because I will not be able to develop him with another 5 star keeper in the pipeline.  More on that later. My only acquisition is a free transfer by the name of Marin. Good attitude and decent attributes gave me the luxury of selling Tripichio who had an attitude I did not prefer. Plus he was sold for good money anyways.

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Marin Season 4

Training

I have noticed very poor results with the previous training schedule that I had. I decided to move to Balanced with 10% match training. I set the intensity to low and gave each player role training. This still resulted in a medium load individually which works for me since I have games every other day at the start of the season. I may add additional attribute training once the congestion clears a bit.

Results

The first part of the season has been pretty fair. We had a thriller of a game with Independiente in the Copa Argentina. Despite losing, it was a really fun game to watch. We went into penalties and was even leading as of the 5th shot. We had the game in our hands. Grillo missed his shot resulting to a sudden death. We missed the next and they made theirs so game over.

I was victimized by Sarmiento. Small clubs are can hurt like a b!tch in Argentina. Lesson learned right there. Underestimated the opponents and got punished.

The thriller was the Boca game. I did a live tweet update on this game to test my new phone. It was an absolute classic! The game was well played. At first I thought we were a goner. Boca drew first blood and in the 10th. Carrizo scored from a throw. The defense seem a bit disorganized. Naturally that left the scorer with lots of time to tee up the shot. A minute after, Jorge Correa received a pass from Romero to feet. Turned. And scored! Game tied after one minute of falling behind. The lads looked like they were not about to lose this game.

After some back and forth between the teams. Scoring resumed in the 27th minute. Collido headed it from an overlapping fullback cross. He was in the middle of two defenders and it seemed like Montiel was unable to cope with the aerial duel. It did not take long before we drew even once again. Max Romero will not allow it. Mancuso recyled possession and switched it to Galdames on the right side. Galdames had Fontana bombing foward on the flank but decided for the pass to Romero who was in a cluster of defenders. Romero then made a short pass to Vargas, the AMC, in an even tighter spot. This led to him getting dispossessed. Fortunately Romero was within striking distance to hammer one through the net.

The first half ended with the teams tied at 2 apiece. Romero has 1 goal and 1 assist at this point. My change his role of AF to a CF-S seemed like a good choice. Looked much more involved in the build up.

The second half went by without much fanfare. It was almost boring. Grillo was tackled somewhere on the left wing around the 70th minute. He was writhing in pain but decided he wanted to continue. Delgadillo had stepped up to take the free kick and had lobbed it over the blob of players. Luckily this found an open Gonzalo Montiel around and about the far post area. Montiel confidently strokes it in and puts Velez up 3-2. Essentially this was redemption for his earlier boo boo by allowing Collido to score.

Boca pumped up the volume. Went to a 4312 attacking us left, right and center. They were obviously chasing the result. I switched my DLF to a DF-D. I also added pass to space and lowered the tempo. These changes frustrated the hell out of Boca. They were shooting from beyond the box. Long shot after long shot missed the target. They won several corners but we saw to that thanks to my solid corner routine. By the 75th minute I have exhausted my subs, bringing in Howlin, Zermatten and a certain Joaquin Alvarez. I have been training him to play as my BWM but he does not look anywhere close to being one.

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Joaquin Alvarez Season 4

It was his first game off the bench. He has been performing well for the reserves so I decided to give him a chance to play. And PLAY he DID. Romero found himself able to dribble into space. He decided dribbling to the corner area was wise. Romero turned and pulled off an impossible cross. He literally was facing the other way and turned to boot the cross. It whips through his marker, and two other defenders into open space. Alvarez who was surging into the box as the move was happening finds himself in space, ready to slot the ball in. The keeper dives but Alvarez strokes it into the net and scores. Velez up 4-2 and essentially game over.

With the win, we vault up to 4th place in the early stages of the tournament. Given that there is a lot of football to be played, I am just happy that we were able to bring down one of our rivals. This pleases the board as well as the fans.

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Table as of Sept 18, 2019

We seem to be in a pretty good place at the moment. I have switched to a narrow diamond formation. We have stuck with the defensive and structured mentality with only a couple of instructions added. I will see how well this plays out within the next couple of games. To date, I have not settled on a sure-fire system. All I know is we play defensive with a very tight structure to things.

I would like to give a shout out to such a very talented and helpful person. He has created kits for Velez. Go through his own content as well! His blog is Limited Fullback and you can tweet him @marcbowen17.

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New Kits Courtesy of Marc Bowen

Thank you for your time! I hope this was another good read for you. Hit me up at Twitter @jedifootball. Shalom!

Season 3 Recap: A Year of Ups and Downs

Season 3 Recap: A Year of Ups and Downs

Welcome back to the Defensive Arts Academy at Velez! I know I have not updated mid-season. I was really in the zone and had been enjoying the save. Don’t get me wrong, I have not been powering through, I have actually slowed down and even took over the Under 20’s to ensure that the kids develop and get ready for Reserves action.

Suicide Squad

I have gotten rid of a lot of deadwood and have basically maintained a relatively smaller squad size for the Under 20’s, Reserves and the First Team. I am still in the process of clearing the rest, most especially the youngsters that have zero chances of making it to the main group. As you will see, overall squad personality is a lot more positive now compared to when I joined. The goal is to get to Resolute and have the current generation of young first team players become the tutors in a season or two.

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First Team
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Reserves and Under 20’s

I’ve been working on getting the first team prospects better attitudes but I am just really short on tutors. As the core group matures, they will be able to carry the load of tutoring without the aid of any transfers.

Transfers

My aim was to be self-sustaining and eventually become a South American superpower. I also intend to help the Argentinian National Team indirectly by producing top talent and eventually moving them on to bigger clubs for potential call ups. With these in mind, I have minimized my transfers and poured the funds into developing facilities and hiring the best possible staff. Below are the transfers both in and out for the entire 3rd season.

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End of Season 3 Transfers

We have actually made a profit on the player sales and have brought in two players who can help us immediately on the pitch as well as off the pitch.

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Galdames End of Season 3
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Labrin End of Season 3

Youth Development

As discussed in my post about my first youth intake, I will focus on development of the kids and try so move as much into the Reserves and then eventually to the First Team. Let’s take a look at some of the prospects.

Fontana

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Fontana End of Season 3

This guy has been such a joy to field in. It seems like every game he plays comes with a new surprise every time. At 18 years old, he has pushed the former right back into becoming the rotation option. With tons of room to grow, I see him taking over the right back spot in season 4. Madrid, and other Euro big teams have been sniffing around. I had to activate his extension clause to kill any interest. The kid still has some ways to go on my team DNA requirements but I am confident that he will be able to make it.

Howlin

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Howlin End of Season 3

Love this guy just because of his name. Although he has a lot more to offer than that, like a 5 star potential! He is going to be either my DCR or can even move to the DM to give another dimension. His progress has been massive over the course of the season. I have given him a couple of starts and a ton of sub action. He even actually grew an inch over the course of the season! Looking forward to have this guy take over the DCR spot from his tutor, Labrin. He is already very close to the requirements that I have stated in the Academy Development Plan article.

Bochi

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Bochi End of Season 3

This kid has broken into the first team but has yet to actually start. I am really unsure as to where to deploy him in the field. He has played mainly as a DL for the Reserves but still needs to develop a lot for him to feature regularly. Perhaps season 4 will be his break out year. With his pace as his main asset, Bochi has decent attributes to become a class act left back. I will not loan him out though. He still needs tutoring from either Grillo or Cardozo.

If you notice some of the names missing, that means they have not made as much impact or have declined over the course of the season. I am definitely not eliminating them from the team, I will still give them the development opportunities like everyone else. But I will also have to balance the time for a couple of up and coming special recruits from the 2nd youth intake.

Finances

In the previous update, I was trying to figure out where I exactly was in terms of money and financial growth. The team is currently at around 110K p/w in terms of wages. Still below budget but I feel that this can still be trimmed by reducing a lot more dead weight. It has also increased due to a number of contract extensions by our initial core of players. The transfer kitty has barely been damaged so that will compensate for any wage increases we will have in the off season.

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Salary Structure End of Season 3

I have used the Key Player and First Team status very sparingly. I only offer that status unless I really need to. This allows me to tutor them further if needed to turn their personality into Resolute as much as possible. At the same time, this keeps the wage down, allowing me to extend contracts of the first team players who have teams sniffing around. This has worked well for me and has kept a fair bit of moaning about first team action to a minimum.

Results

This year was a consolidation phase for the team. I wanted to establish consistency and prove that last year was not a fluke. Ideally we would have wanted to progress in the Copa Libertadores, but I had to make sure I secured our place in the league. The squad being so young and thin, is not yet built to withstand competing on two fronts. We are a relatively young and inexperienced squad compared to the rest of the competition at only 22 years old on the average.

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League Table End of Season 3

We placed 5th but that was not the true reflection of the team’s performance for the season. We were in and out of the top 3 spots for months and months. The team was able to maintain the form until injuries struck and fatigue set in. Towards the tail end, we were bleeding goals and most of the lads were down to their last legs. Rosario was again crowned champion and we were absolutely outclassed in our last game with them. Which happened to be their title clinching game. Overall, I would need to prepare for a double faced competition next year. I would have to really manage the squad rotation and ensure that I spread out the games across the team a bit more evenly.

Hopefully we can again build on what we achieved in season 3 and carry that forward to season 4. I have identified a few pieces I will need in season 4 to help achieve this goal.

  1. Obtain a 3rd natural striker as a rotation option – I have a couple in the Under 20s
  2. Develop a back up DM for Mancuso – I have a left back in the reserves who fits the bill
  3. Figure out best role for for the STCR – I have noticed hit and miss with the current AF role
  4. Transition to Peralta as our #1 over the course of the season – Lacks positive attitude and will start weak Home games plus Cups
  5. Improve coaches to 4.5 – 5 star for both First and Youth teams

Overall these are my goals for season 4. Obviously we are tasked to mount another title challenge by the board but these small broken down goals should help me put things into perspective. Doing well in competitions is a byproduct of achieving these goals.

Thank you for your time! I will update once the transfer window shuts. Hit me up a at Twitter @jedifootball. Shalom!

Velez Season 2: End of Season

Velez Season 2: End of Season

Welcome back if you are a returnee to my site! If you are new then welcome to my wonderful world of FM with a bit of chaos mixed in. Thank you for taking time out of your busy lives to give my blog a go.

New Board

We have a new president! Julian Acevedo has formally stepped into the role with a couple of his associates installed as directors. To be honest, I did not anticipate what effect the elections would have on my campaign. Apparently they decided to remove all previous philosophies we had. They would solely base their judgement on league performance and transfers.

This also meant that I can have a go at another facilities upgrade request. Thankfully they obliged and we will have State.Of.The.Art training facilities by 4/11/2018! Timely since I had a number of youth prospects who look like future world beaters. This will only enhance their development and help realize our goal to be a South American giant.

Finances

I posted about this on the previous post. One of the aspects I failed to look into in previous FM saves was the $ or the money the club has and how we have that much and why. Yep that’s because I manage big teams and most of the time, they were in the black. Velez however has not been as lucky and I’m sure there are even more difficult financial situation in-game. Hence I now am trying to understand what all these screens mean. I can read yes, but I do not understand how they relate to each other and even some of the terms. My basic understanding is income less expenses equals profit or loss. Here is where the club is at right now.

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End of Season 2 Projections

Looking at my previous post, balance at the end of season 2 is higher at 13M compared to 6M. I think that is good. Next is turnover. How the hell do you compute for that? I mean in the FM scheme of things. No idea but it is higher than that of the previous post so I think that is good as well. Looks like the team will have a 1.08M profit compare to the projected 1.1M loss previously. Based on my understanding, I think we are in a better place. Hit me up in case you wish to help me understand how this thing works. Thanks in advance!

Transfers

Basically we just let go of more people and sold a couple who had pretty good offers on the table. This means that the player sold most likely will not feature in the first team for season 3. Only a couple of first team names were sold, Gianetti and Acuna specifically.

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End of Season 2 Transfers

Giannetti was sold primarily because of the very good offer Tigres sent me. He was actually featuring in the first time before his departure but that also meant less game time for a couple of higher quality young guns like Cardozo and Montiel (whom I bought for 3M). The same story for Acuna as he was moaning for game time while Tripichio was owning the right wing slot. Off he went for 1.5M possibly 2!

 

Coming Soon

Just like in the movies, a ‘coming soon’ tag means you will probably see this flick in the next couple of months. That is how I would describe the following players who I feel are ready for first team action in season 3.

Facundo Cardozo

He was moaning for game time and wanted to be shipped out on loan in season 1. I said yes but crossed my fingers behind my back. I had plans for him and knew that he will be featuring soon.  I have also retrained him to become defensive mid, a position that I recently added to my system. He is projected to be a key player with a 4.5 star rating. Probably he will end up as a 4 star guy by the time he maxes out the potential.

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Facundo Cardozo End of Season 2

Gian Mancuso

Another player moaning for game time. As with Cardozo I had plans and had to lie to them upfront to keep them with the first team. He has developed nicely so far and has turned out to be a rotational option. He was awesome in the Copa Argentina but was injured for a month. He can slot into either central mid or even in defensive mid.

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Gian Mancuso End of Season 2

Braian Cufre

This guy is probably as confused as the American people when Trump won the elections. He has been trained as a striker, play in central mid and backs up Delgadillo on the left wing. He is a solid all rounder and would hopefully develop into a versatile player for us. He is also projected to be one of the best players at the club by Moraes. He was injured for 3 weeks and had missed a month worth of potential game time. Bummer.

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Braian Cufre End of Season 2

End of Season Summary

The new board were pretty happy with our performance. Their only gripe was with the departure of Giannetti. They did not think that was good business despite him being as slow as donkey. What would next season’s expectations be? Without the ‘Giving Youth A Chance’ philosophy, I am a bit hesitant about what they might expect next. I may be over delivering but the squad is far from a finished product. God help us all.

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Board Happiness End of Season 2

The Main Protagonist

This player was the key to our success. He was my Main Man. A surprise really as I did not find him fitting into the team initially when I took over. He has been marvelous and has led the team to success. He slices through the defense like butter. He either creates or finishes the move himself. It’s a shame that he is injury prone and had missed more than a month in total. Nonetheless, credit is due to Jorge ‘Slice’ Correa.

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Slice Correa End of Season 2

The Revelation Turned Sensation

The season began without me employing anyone else in left wing. He has owned the position ever since I began really. Performances were so-so at best in the first season. Things started to pick up though in the second. His direct game has contributed to a lot of chances or chances to make chances. They young gun, Nicolas Delgadillo has been a crowd darling. He was a massive 60% vote for the fans player of the season. Oh and he is only 20 years old.

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Nicolas Delgalillo End of Season 2

The Final Tally

We placed 10th in season 1 and we looked to build on that. I anticipated continental competition but did not know it happens towards the tail end of the damn league. Learning experience right there. We still finished better than I expected. It would have been higher had I not literally fucked up the last game of the season. Shoot me now. Yep, we would have finished 3rd in the league had I not decided to bring in my prized 19 year old keeper towards the last 15 minutes of the match. Here is a short snap shot of the shit hitting the fan moment.

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Velez vs River Last Game of Season 2

As you can see we were clearly ahead until the 75th minute. I then thought it was perfect timing to blood the young GK who is being tailed by several clubs at the moment. The first goal was probably justified as they switched to attacking. It may have well been the fault of my the DCL who was tasked to mark the guy. Larrondo cut from the weak side and we had zero help side defense from the DCL. The second goal was…well the name of the said newgen 4.5 star prospect is Nicolas Baez.

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End of Season 2 Table

As you can see we ended up with 49 points. That last game would have catapulted us to third to end with 51. Still not a bad deal considering we wanted just top half. This continues to be a learning experience in terms of squad rotation and substitution patterns. I could not for the life of me figure those two pieces out.

Anyways, thank you for your time and effort to go through my musings. I’ll see you in the next update! Hit me up at Twitter @jedifootball Shalom!

Velez Season 2: Winter Update

Velez Season 2: Winter Update

Hello and welcome back. It is currently January 1st in game and we are at the winter transfer window. Let’s see what the Velez team has achieved so far!

Results

Picking up from a 10th place finish, we have switched to high gear and have shown the rest if the Primera what Velez stuff is made of. table-as-of-jan-1-s3

We are sitting at 3rd place closely behind Rosario. As you can see we have been drawing a lot. Most of this can be attributed to my rotation of players – something I need to work on.

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We started the pre-season with several impressive performances during the friendlies. Although not the best gauge of the team’s true form, I was happy with the movement and what I was seeing on the pitch. I took the team out for drinks after the 9-0 mauling of La Emilia.

We then proceeded with the next round of the Copa where we narrowly escaped via penalties. Pavone put us up in the 67th only to be equalized two minutes after. The game dragged on and we entered in to the shootout. The opponents missed several and we moved on to the next round.

River, NOB and Rosario all bowed down. Early domination in the first three games saw us atop of the Primera. We were then brought back to earth by a draw away at Lanus where we were already up 1-0 when Alejandro Silva placed the ball into the corner of the net in the 62nd. Still not a bad result considering we were the underdogs.

After winning the Copa Quarters over Belgrano, we met 4th place Banfield at home. An early 5th minute goal by Sarmiento, silenced whatever home crowd we had. Loan returnee, Perez Acuna, then struck from an odd angle to level the match 4 minutes after. Romero then slotted home from a Correa through ball. Silence with occasional cricket sounds followed. In the 67th, the most predictable thing happened. Banfield scored a goal from a free kick. End of story.

A draw against Belgrano, the team we beat a couple of weeks ago followed by two consecutive wins found us again atop the Primera. Pretty good results so far with the potential silverware haul from the Copa. But first we had to mange our way past Estudiantes LP.

David Barbona tried to extinguish our hope by scoring in the 9th minute. The lads soldiered on and found a break through in the 42nd. Golazoooo!!! Max Romero the wonderkid scores on a power finish. Tied at the half. Just after encouraging the lads at halftime, Azqui runs into space and receives the ball. He then drives forward with intent, beating his marker, and crosses just as he reached the byline. The ball finds a streaking Barbona from the weak side. The woodwork does us a solid by blocking the shot but it ricochets and ends up in the wanting boots of Ignacio Bailone. Ball swishes through and we find ourselves down once again.

I told the boys to push forward with all they got. And Max answers my call. Deep into opposition territory, Vargas loses the ball and the defender tries to clear. The ball had other plans as it found one of the behinds of the other team bouncing into space. Max pounces on the opportunity and boom. Gol, gol, golllll! Tied in the 76th minute.

Both teams were expecting to head into extras. We were playing it safe. Slow and patient probing. Assad finds Acuna in space. Acuna crosses. Vargas meets the ball with intent and boots it 2 feet from the goal. He scores the winner. Matias Vargas the 20 year old striker sends Velez into the Copa Argentina Final!!!!

After such a high, I rested some key players and decided to the some of the unfit players have a go. We ended up losing 1-0. Again I have rotation issues.

We meet a lowly Patronato team in the Copa final. Clean sheet recorded. It was the Estudiantes game that was the highlight of the competition. We take home the silverware. Yey!

Gody Cruz drew, followed by a 5-0 humiliation of Club Atletico Tigre. Vargas, Romero and Acuna all score a goal. 2 from Correa makes him man of the match!

Another 2 draws before the break land us in 3rd place. Yes I am aware it could have been better had I not screwed up my player rotation. But I truly am happy with the current results. Not bad at all!

Transfers

 Lots of players let go. We needed to trim each of the squads down to proper size. The board has yet to grant me more coaches to lighten the load. Wheeling, dealing and releasing, I managed to get it to average with all these departures. More to come!

 Montiel was my only incoming. At 20 years of age, he has tons of room to grow. He also has the agility and speed I want in my defenders. Took him for 3M but staggered. He will be my DCR for years to come!

Facilities and Finances

I am pleased with the development of the club overall. These are some of the facets of the club that I wish to set to max in order to aid my talent development.

facilities-s2

I have already managed to upgrade the training and youth facilities once. Junior coaching budget has been increased as well. Stadium expansion is out of the question at this point since the new board has only been elected and they have already mentioned that there will be no further investment. Any money I spend would need to be made through my dealings.

Finances s2.JPG

For the life of me, I cannot understand this screen. What I do know is I have not been going over my wage budget and have not spent my entire transfer budget. If any of you would want to help me out under stand this screen and why I am projected to have a loss at the end of the season, please comment and give me something to work with. Thanks!

That’s about it for this update. Thank you for your time and I hope you enjoyed reading! Hit me up at Twitter @jedifootball Shalom!

 

Velez S1 Update 2:

Welcome back to the Defensive Arts Academy post! As I have completed the first season, I still feel that I have been breezing through the game. Something I have to take note of for season two although not as fast a previous saves. I am starting to enjoy a slower pace as I get to enjoy the intricacies more and at the same time spot portions of the game that I wish to share.

Results

I mentioned in the previous post that the initial results were better than expected. They were, that was the truth. Until shit happened. And that is the truth as well. I tried watching games and it was pretty tough to see the team concede goal after goal. It was a learning process and an evolution of what Cleon had written before. In Cleon’s more ancient post found here, he had even encouraged people to find out other ways to utilize the defensive strategy/mentality. It just took more time for me to find that out due to my primitive understanding of how the ME works.

In other words, we were really bad before it got better. We were flirting with the relegation area at one point.

eos1-fixtures

You can see a lot of reds and a few green in between the end of the first transfer window up to at least the end of February. That was a pretty long stretch. Basically the aim of keeping clean sheets and minimizing chances was non-evident. Really, it wasn’t! After settling with roles, instructions and seeing what I wanted to see during matches, I was pretty solid from March onward Although we did not keep clean sheets in that unbeaten run, we got the results and vaulted up the table. Form peaked rather late but still proud of what we have achieved in the first season.

eos-table-s1

We had achieved the top half finish that the board wanted and qualified for the Copa Sudamericana! The final game of the season was something I was really proud off. We beat higher seeded Huracan to move forward to the next round of the Copa Argentina. Overall the board was happy and I was happy since the contract was extended. Next year will be better for sure.

Transfers

eos-s1-transfers

Not a lot of movement here. Honestly I have not paid much attention to scouting and finding players. I wanted to assess what I had and work with them to see what needs I will have for season two. Budget was also a bit tight as I prefer to invest in the facilities and youth recruitment. Being a long term save, this would have made more business sense at it would go a long way.

The game named Paulo Ferrari as the signing of the season. I would disagree as he was a complete waste of money and resources. He did not feature much. No he did not feature at all. I would say Thiago was the better piece of business. Came in for 95K and now valued at 875K.

thiago-eos-1

He may not be as youthful as he once was, Thiago has served as a tutor and a first team player for the later part of the season. All in all, the total outlay I made for the guy has already paid dividends. Hopefully I would be able to sell him off this season and that will be a good Moneyball example right there!

What’s Next?

We will kick off the season with a revised system but still same defensive style. We will be continuing our progress in the cup which will hopefully deliver some silverware. Lastly, there will be some sort of continental competition that we will be joining. Squad set up will be geared towards being able to delver both domestically and continental. I will still remain with our developing from within bias and may be signing only a couple of players. Let’s see…

That’s basically it. Thank you for your time! I will share another update once I close the next window. Feel free to comment and RTs much appreciated. Hit me up at Twitter @jedifootball. Shalom!

Velez S1 Update 1: Better Than Expected

Velez S1 Update 1: Better Than Expected

Hello and welcome back! Massive thanks to all the support and and RTs and kind comments. Truly heart warming to see that reaction from the community. Argentina has been a blast and it now shows me that there are better places to manage than Europe from and FM universe standpoint at least. You can find the first post here.

Transfers

There wasn’t much to be honest. I had let go of all the people on taken on loan. Those that can’t be terminated were moved to the reserves. This freed up a massive 50K in wages which then allowed me to more room to sign someone.

Transfers S1.JPG

My only signing was transfer listed CB. I was short on tutors, I also was in need of another able CB due to playing 3 at the back. It was also my first time to do any sort of transfers outside of Europe on a way smaller budget. Relatively I overpaid for a 28 year old but hopefully worth it if he can at least get along with the kids. Oh and another mistake, apparently he doesn’t speak Spanish right off the bat so he still has to do a language course. Bummer.

Results

Given the strength and age of the squad, I would say that we are in a very good place right now. The system, though a work in progress, has been really doing well. I have also been figuring out how to properly rotate guys so there are times when I pretty much fielded a weak team.There is also an issue of playing ten men on 2 instances which resulted in a huge disadvantage. More on that later.

results-s1-update-1

The friendlies were basically more for fitness and familiarity. But we continued to have good form for the first 5 games. We ran into a rough patch which started in with the Gimnasia game. That result is misleading. My right wing player decided to go on a tackling spree and was sent off on the 49th minute. Goals followed thereafter, in the 54th and 60th. We gave the the confidence to attack and well they capitalized on it.

The next loss was off a Nasuti own goal in the 31st. The game would have been a lot different had he not put it through his own goal keeper via deflection. Again the opposition gained confidence to attack which led to another goal.

The Huracan game was just utter humiliation. We didn’t show any heart or put in any effort. We were caught flat footed. Didn’t know what hit us. Poor poor showing here. No excuses.

The River game was actually more exciting than it looks. I think it has more to do with the youth of the squad than the actual system. We showed heart here though. A moral victory at the very least. Game was tied 2-2 57 minutes into the game. We were hit on the counter for the 63rd minute goal. Another one in the 89th sealed the deal.

I’m thinking it might be down to the poor concentration of one of my defenders. I need more research there but most of the goals scored against me were due to one CB missing out on marking a late runner or missing out on an easy clearance. Hopefully I figure this out sooner than later.

We rebounded the following game and comfortably beat the with an break out game from my main man Max Romero. The 17 year old had a hat trick and was world class. It would have been 4-2 had Pavone converted on the penalty. We beat BOCA, and Argentinian giant! Of course props one of my CBs for scoring in favor of the opponent. Another own goal. Had to mention that really annoying.

table-as-of-s1-update1

We are currently sitting at 11th and I am happy with that at the moment. We are meeting board expectations and I feel that gaining too much success early on will result in an exodus of my young talent. I want to establish the system, and a steady flow of talent ready to take over the next first team spot available. That will come in time but not now. I guess that can be a goal in season 3. Slowly but surely. Just like the Defensive system I want to set up. Patience is a virtue!

Well then, thank you for your time and I will see you in future updates. I will also come out with a piece on the prospects of the Defensive Arts Academy. Stay tuned! As always feel free to hit me up at Twitter @jedifootball. RTs, shares and comments are greatly appreciated! Shalom!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My First Time In Argentina With Velez

My First Time In Argentina With Velez

velez

Welcome back to my blog and hopefully you have not been discouraged from reading my posts despite my unceremonious sacking at the hands of the Wolfsburg board. My departure from Bavaria has led me to search for a new club which would interest me. Honestly I wanted to give up playing this game since I have not been good at it. Well maybe in hindsight, there are a few things I could have done better to deliver better results. And those are the following:

  • Tactic Selection and Training
  • Squad Rotation
  • Changes

These are the top three reasons I have identified which contributed the most to my poor results and eventual sacking. Hopefully I can reverse my fortunes in the new save and correct these mistakes. Ir kinda gets tiring to start pre-season and not complete a whole season multiple times. I will discuss how I plan to correct these errors later in the post since I still need to figure those out. =)

Why Velez?

I haven’t managed outside Europe ever. I decided to try my luck in the Argentinian First Division with Velez. Prediction and expectation is middling which takes a ton of pressure off me at the onset of the save. Another piece that attracted me was the level of their facilities.

facilities-velez

I plan for this to be a development save and the level of facilities will be crucial to what I am trying to do. My vision is to implement Cleon’s old article, The School of the Defensive Arts. I loved this back in FM 14 and 15 with my AC Milan saves and have not used it ever since. I feel that it will be a good fit with the current club situation as well as really fleshing out the development of all the youngsters to fit the system.

The System

I believe this was my main flaw with Wolfsburg wherein I just chucked as tactic in and didn’t really evaluate the players i plugged into the role. I know I am integrating the same system from the article but the player selection will be different now. I plan to really think about who and why I am using that player for a particular part of the system. This I feel will drive the results I want and become even more satisfying once fully implemented.

The tactic I plan to use will be the same 343 used in the article along with most of the same roles. Instructions might be slightly different as I do not want to deviate from the actual concept of the Defensive Arts as properly described by Cleon.

343-system

 

ti

 

 

 

This is not a tactical post as I really suck at that piece but I will just explain a couple a tweak and why. First was the ML was switched to an out and out winger on support. I found that this side was too negative with the MCL and STCL already on defend duties. I also wanted to match it with the strength of one of the best prospects I have. I also added the PI Close down more to mimic the same behavior that I want from the Defensive WInger role.

For GK, the PI’s that I used were distribute to CB, slow pace, and roll it out. That is pretty much it for the roles and PI’s.

As for the TI’s again pretty much the same set up from the article, except for the defensive line and tempo. I chose to push up higher up since I felt that I was too deep most of the time and was making it easy for the opposition to blast long shots from just outside the box. This changed has lessened those goals which is why I chose to add it by default.

I have not switched to a much lower tempo as the article mentioned as that is still in the testing phase. I might add it later on to see if slowing down too much will invite more pressure and result to more lost balls.Not sure if that was logical at all but lets see later down the line.

The Squad

First order of business was to cut down on wages. I was at the exact budget line. At the same time, as the save will be more on development of talent, I will give youth a chance and having a number of loaned players will not allow that. Everyone went back to where they came from or moved to the reserves in case I could’t terminate it.

sqaud-view-s1

This is the first team squad. Again another issue I had with the previous save was really not identifying who was playing where. I know that is a basic principle but I kinda neglected that which was one of the main reasons the Wolfsburg team was very inconsistent.

Here we can see that I have moved a number of youngsters into the first team. I have also identified two players for each position. I plan to do that for the reserves and the U20s but at a later date. I have given free reign to my reserves and youth manager at the moment since all the prospects I wanted were moved to the first team. The rest are on loan in the launch day DB and cannot be recalled just yet.

I slotted in the vets who were good enough to be in the first team and basically I have 6 vets and 5 youngsters. Now I know inexperience will kick in somewhere but that is to be expected in doing something like this. I will monitor performance though and will give more playing time to those who are excelling. Again another thing I neglected in the previous save.

Training and Changes

Time and time again I’ve read and been told to watch games and see how it pans out. Make changes sparingly and then watch some more. I did not do that in the previous save. I kicked on and powered through. Hence the sacking. I plan to do differently this time and have already started adhering to this practice.

I am not using any other tactic or variation of it. Just the 343 which will speed up the gelling of the squad. I always felt before that there was no cohesion due to the numerous changes I made outright rather than slowly integrating a change and doing the proper legwork. Training wise, I have also settled for balanced and 20% match training.

 

I guess that’s it for today. I feel that I have shared what I want to about my mistakes and hopefully help someone with this. Or entertain with my utter stubbornness to not watch the games. Hit me up at Twitter @jedifootball and would appreciate your comments and RTs. Thank you for your time! Shalom!

Die Wolfe: Direwolves of the Bundesliga 1.3

Hello my friends! By now you should already have an idea on the type of season I’ve had. If you’ve read the first two pieces, you can conclude that the squad have been consistently inconsistent. Obviously I was asking for it by installing a totally different system compared to what the loony real life manager/DoF envisioned the team to be. Oh well I was thinking maybe we would have to be bad to get to the worst possible situation before things brighten up. 

Oops. I was wrong. We go on winless run for seven games. Boards call me into their office and slams the door shut. Very slowly they explain the situation to me. Either I win 11 points in the next 5 games or I say bye bye. I was crushed. It was a tough challenge. We couldn’t find consistent form at all. I win three out of the four then dropping the 5th and deciding game to 3rd place Dortmund. Fate has decided that there are bigger things in store for me. I left the building without so much as a good bye to anyone. 

Wolfsburg will remain in the Bundesliga. They sit 10th at the point of my departure. In was thinking of reloading from the last save. But I decide against it. I take on a new challenge. I take my talents or lack of it, to South…America. Velez awaits! Let’s see what sort of sorecery will that require to keep me from getting sacked. Oh well thank you for your patience. Stay tuned for my next save. Hit me up at Twitter @jedifootball Ciao!

Die Wolfe: Direwolves of the Bundesliga 1.2

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Hello and welcome back. Last post left us discussing the squad under the Argt17 tactic. To begin with, lady luck has not been kind to the Die Wolfe squad. Week after week I have had to visit another bloke in the physio room. It did not help that the squad by default had a number of key players injured to start the season. We were basically lacking warm bodies to send out a competitive outfit.

I did not move as much in the transfer window. My two main transfers were both center backs. I had one good CB and he was on loan. The second was average. Both were as slow as a sloth. Unfortunately I could not send the loanee back to where he came from.

transfer-in-pre

Dias and Riedewald both have room to grow. I must admit I think I might have overspent. lol. But yeah I like investing in the defense before offense. This will be a pairing for years to come.tranfers-out-pre

I sent some deadwood away. That was pretty much it. No fireworks here.

Pre-season was pretty good. Although not the best indication of performance, I still believed that we would progress nicely. Our stingy board decided we were good enough to qualify for Europe and get to the semis of the cup. It turned difficult to fulfill given the strength of the squad. Talk about unreal expectations. We were projected to finish 8th! Below we can see the greens are at the start of the season were mostly on friendlies.

s1-fixtures-before-break

We kicked off the season with a two goal cup win courtesy of Draxler and Max Arnold. I was confident heading into the league. After beating Bremen the previous week during a friendly, we began the Bundesliga with a goalless draw. Not a bad start in my mind but gave the team a hair dryer at the end of the match.

We opened the following match with another Arnold goal in the 44th only to be tied by BMG a minute after. Told the blokes I was pissed at halftime which fired them up. That fire was doused by Andre Hahn in the 60th with BMG’s 2nd goal. The mo’ fo’s decided to then park the bus and the game ended in a sorry 2-1 loss. Bummer. Another hair dryer session ala Fergie to end the game. We recovered with a 1-0 win from a free kick. We dominated the match but just could not convert on our 7 shots on target. Yep this was domination for me at this point considering our previous performances. Two games and completely outclassed, we were slowly and steadily slipping down the table.

The 3-3 draw with Mainz the 18th team at the time was a major set back. Goals in the 6th and 17th minute gave us confidence. A false sense of confidence. Jhon Cordoba closed the half with a goal keeping the cellar dwellers close. Cordoba and Frei scored in a span of 9 minutes putting Mainz on top by the 85th. At this point I was pulling my hair from my head. In the final highlight for our team, Draxler beat the keeper from a pretty tough angle to tie the game! And the crowd went wild…I was livid! It should have been three points not one! It was a good spectacle to watch but it wasn’t good for my job security.

At this point, the team was just above the relegation zone. Seeing my job status as insecure, I decided to switch to Guido’s strikerless formation. Team instructions were pretty much the same, only the actual formation changed along with some of the roles. At this point, most the the key vets have returned from injury and have already been deemed match fit. Reinforcements have arrived.

We strung up a run of 7 wins in ten games which was a breath of fresh air. Draxler, our key man has been finding the net a bit more consistently. With the old bloke Mario Gomez still struggling to score, burden fell on Real Madrid loanee Borja Mayoral. Good thing the terminate loan option was not available at the start of the season. I planned to send that kid packing back in July.

As of this writing, the team is in a much better place. The whole group has started to click. I have been able to field a consistent and competitive eleven during the run. Hopefully we catch a European qualifying spot by the next update. Until next time. Thank you!