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Sporting Clube de Portugal to Futbol Club Barcelona - Football Manager 2019

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Leões!

The first time I am managing out of England since Football Manager 2007 and I'm taking my self to the Estádio José Alvalade. 

It's a new dawn in Lisboa following the replacement of club president Bruno de Carvalho who was likened to Donald Trump. So let's get to it...

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2 hours ago, Stan said:

your players been attacked yet?

They nearly attacked me after the first week. Forgot to tell the assistant to take control of training xD

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How many mega offers have you had for your players from Leicester?

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7 hours ago, Dan said:

How many mega offers have you had for your players from Leicester?

We don't have any players you would want to make a mega offer for any more xD

Bruno Fernandes and Bas Dost are being sniffed at by Inter Milan but that's about it.

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League Form

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Well everything's going to plan at the moment as we've been finishing off the teams that are significantly worse than us. Porto and Benfica started off very poor at first so we've never really needed to get out of second gear.

Our losses were against Guimaraes and Benfica. Our draws were against Porto and Braga. That begs the question to me that we haven't actually improved as a team at all. With that in mind I haven't been able to get excited about the direction we're heading in. We beat Marseille in the Europa League which gives me some hope, but then again we lost the second match 4-1. I've rotated the squad heavily to keep everybody happy at the moment and it's paid dividens in that aspect.

Future Plans

Well we have AC Milan next in the Europa League so i'm not getting excited about that tournament.

Two big players want to leave in Sebastian Coates and Bruno Fernandes. Coates i'm not so worried about as I don't think anybody would gamble on him after Sunderland. Fernandes on the other hand has had offers from Liverpool, Tottenham and West Ham. There offers were around 12-15 million which is a piss take really. I'd want 45 million given his impact on the team and potential. I wouldn't be worried if he was to go as Andreas Perreira is available on a free transfer at the end of the season and is keen to sign up.

Targetting players has been difficult. The game hasn't taken in to account the compensation for players that left so there isn't any money available. I'd like to make big changes so I can have a more 'modern' system. At the moment it's a 4-3-2-1 in a similar way to how Barca played under Riijkaard. We have full backs, central defenders, wingers, deep lying forwards when really I want wing backs, inside forwards and trequaristas. That's made signing players difficult too, as whilst there's a lot of players available it's difficult to find those that will be affordable and suitable to play the formation at the same time.

Qualifying for The Champions League is the big one now. If we can do that I should be able to build a squad that I want by the third season.

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End of Season Review

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Champions!!

I didn't realise this was Sporting's first triumph since the days of Mario Jardel in 2002. Which feels weird really as I felt like for most of the season I was just going through the motions developing certain players. 

For the majority of the second half of the season we remained four points ahead of Porto. What was pleasing is that we didn't lose to either Benfica or Porto second time round, which makes me believe we have improved over the course of the scene.

We got knocked out to AC Milan in Europe. We lost the first leg 3-2 thanks to two late goals, and the won the second leg 4-3 with four goals coming from the 86+ minutes. We went out on away goals but it was definitely one of the most gripping matches I have been involved in ever.

Next season will be a real indicator of where we are as a team. We're in The Champions League playing against the best team in the world. I've loaded all the major leagues to see where we would be as a guideline. As AC Milan finished fourth in a close Serie A from 2nd to 7th I anticipate we would have finished outside the top four in all other major leagues other than Ligue One. 

 

Future Plans:

We have a budget of £7.25 million. To put that in perspective Huddersfield signed somebody in January for £18 million.

I have Andreas Perreira joining from Manchester United on a free transfer, which will soften the blow if I cannot keep hold of Bruno Fernandes who seems destined at some point for a major move. I also have a ball playing defender in Juan Forlin arriving from Real Oviedo which should allow me to play three at back in a similar system to how @Blue initially set his side up. Other than that i've had a quick gander in the under 23 and under 19 and there's so much talent there that could just step up it's borderline mental. So I don't expect to spend any money.

The big loss we could see is Bas Dost. I want to play with a complete forward whilst Bas Dost is more of a target man or a poacher. We could flog him to England for serious money too,

 

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Ball playing defenders in a back 3 is great. Allows more tactical fluidity in a system for the more gifted players.

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Jurgen Klopp has been sacked after Everton beat him to fifth in the final game of the season. Imagine the scenes on this forum if that happened.

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I should have applied for the Barca job. Unai Emery has got it after finishing 7th with Arsenal xD

And Liverpool have appointed Arsene Wenger xDxDxD

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We've been handed the second most difficult group. Man City won The Premier League with ease last season so I imagine they'll be cruising through this group. We really need to win both games against Shaktar and hope we can better Inter head to head. I don't think there's much in it between us and Inter who finished third in Serie A last season.

As for my squad I spent my entire budget on Geronimo Rulli who had a release clause of eight million. I see it as a good investment as he should go up in value over the next season by double or possibly treble.

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Week one was a pleasing yet frustrating experience to begin with. I was quite annoyed that the fixture gods put us against the most difficult team to begin with. Credit where it's due though, my players surprised me by being competitive for the majority of the match. The unfortunate thing for us was that Manchester City had Dybala on the bench who could come on for the last couple of minutes and cause us chaos. What was most frustrating was that Shaktar showed that they're more than capable of finishing second.

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The second round of fixtures was very pleasing. More because of the manner of the victory than everything. All the goals came from good short passing movements across the floor and each of my four attacking minded players got themselves on the score sheet. It was the first time I could genuinely see that my methods were working as we lack competition in our division. Thankfully City turned up against Inter.

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To tell you the truth I gave up on second place after this fixture. The difference between us an Inter was evident. They had a world class striker in Mauro Icardi. Now whilst Bruno Fernandes and Joavne Cabral are on the verge of being very, very good footballers... they're just not at that level yet. It reminded me of England's performances against Uruguay and Italy in 2014 where Balotelli and Suarez upstaged Rooney. As for Shaktar beating City. Give me a fucking break. Bottom of the group at the half way point.

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This was one of those games where I couldn't believe what was happening. Bas Dost isn't as prolific in the Portugesse Leagues as he should be, yet against Inter he just turned in to a fucking animal. They really struggled with his physicallity. He even drew in both of the penalties. City doing there part really pleased me too. From bottom to second in a week.

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I was quietly optimistic for this round of fixtures. I had it in my head that we were a threat at home, and I now knew how to prepare for City if it was 0-0 in the latter stages of the game after the first defeat. They threw the kitchen sink at us again near the end but we remained resilient. The win also meant that qualification was now in our hands given Inter absolutely destroyed Shaktar.

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Well, in the last week we did what we had to do with a professional performance at a very difficult place to travel to. It was a very even contest, and Shaktar had their chances near the end, but once I saw Brozovic had been sent off I was adamant we were going through. For the evolution of this team, doing well in this competition was really important. We have far exceeded expectations and can hopefully persuade Rulli, Cabral and Fernandes to stay around.

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There's no easy fixture in the next round. It's either... Barcelona, Madrid, Atleti, Juventus, Man United, Dortmund or Monaco 

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On 25/10/2018 at 08:12, The Palace Fan said:

We don't have any players you would want to make a mega offer for any more xD

Bruno Fernandes and Bas Dost are being sniffed at by Inter Milan but that's about it.

Didn't stop us twice before xD

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On 11/11/2018 at 10:08, Cannabis said:

FM loves a shit appointment. Benitez is running things at Bayern and Brendan Rodgers is at the top of Schalke xD

My best two I've seen recently were David Platt managing Atletico Madrid and, incredibly, Barbara Berlusconi managing Sevilla.

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9 hours ago, Dan said:

My best two I've seen recently were David Platt managing Atletico Madrid and, incredibly, Barbara Berlusconi managing Sevilla.

David Platt. What the actual fuck?

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10 hours ago, Dan said:

Didn't stop us twice before xD

AC  Milan seem to have replaced you. It's a bit of a cycle at the moment. They get linked to one of our players for 39 million and then that agent demands a new contract.

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Linked with jobs at Spurs, Wolves and Leicester @Stan @Dan. Given we are still in The Champions League I would like to stay put but I wouldn't be adverse to any of those clubs if the board start taking control of transfers.

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28 minutes ago, The Palace Fan said:

Linked with jobs at Spurs, Wolves and Leicester @Stan @Dan. Given we are still in The Champions League I would like to stay put but I wouldn't be adverse to any of those clubs if the board start taking control of transfers.

I think you know what to do mate. The Foxes are calling... 

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I reject £40,000,000 for Bruno Fernandes from Manchester City.

The board negotiate a new contract work 90k p/w.

New contract has £28,500,000 release clause.

Bruno Fernandes is a Manchester City player a week later.

Should have taken the Leicester job.

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So... Life without Bruno Fernandes...

Champions League Last 16 - Manchester United

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What a promising game this was. Up against the Champions League winners. We were the better team. We dictated all the play. The only thing stopping us Manchester United constantly fouling our players to slow the tempo of the game. This was a confidence filling first leg. We had easy reason to believe we could beat United at Old Trafford. So what happened.....

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... Well that's the end of that. Season over. 

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Summer 2020

Throughout the course of the season, there has been somewhat underwhelming incidents going on behind the scenes.

Firstly, as I touched upon the board f**ked up with Bruno Fernandes contract allowing him to leave for twelve million less than we had rejected half a week before. I was only entitled to spend 30% of the money from the deal too. This led to five players coming to me on seperate occasions with concerns about the squad quality. Bruno Fernandes is the only player we had who looked capable of playing for a top, top club. Geromillo Rulli and Joavanne Cabral I image will get there one day, but for now, Bruno was the man. Yet we sold him for half as much as Porto and Benfica were letting their key players go for.

The Second thing was my contact. I was making £13,500 p/w whilst the Benfica and Porto managers were making in excess of £25,000+ p/w. Given I won a double last season I thought after the January debacle I would ask for a new contract. The board weren't going to give me a contract until I threatened to resign. It was gamble that worked as they offered me a new contract, but they wouldn't go over £15,000k p/w. So the talks broke down pretty quickly.

Napoli were willing to interview me for their job without me applying. I decided I had nothing to lose so went for it. Sporting then agreed to offer me a new contract to quash the rumour. They agreed a significant pay rise. This pay rise was to £16,000k p/w so again the talks broke down quickly.

I thought we were going to blow the title to be honest. Benfica and Porto had net spend's of over £40,000,000 over two seasons whilst we had a ridiculous net profit. The players were all progressing nicely, but when Benfica are making signings like Karim Benzema, there's only so much time you can do until the penny pinching catches up.

Then the summer came along, I was given £13,000,000 to spend. I got my four targets in just before Euro 2020 was about to commence. Everything was in place for the new season now. I was looking forward to it.

Then the board behind my back sold Geromillo Rulli to Napoli for £15,0000,000. Napoli in terms of prestige are slightly bigger than us. However they got just as far as us in The Champions League and finished fourth in Serie A. If they offered double, which I reckon is his max potential, I wouldn't have cared too much. But that fee bothered me.

I was scouring Europe and South America for a new Sweeper Keeper to compete with Dani Martin for the number one jersey. I decided on somebody called Claudio Ramos, he was ok but never going to be bigger than Lisbon. All pretty underwhelming really.

Then I had that 'holy shit' email....

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The 'Holy Shit' Email....

"Barcelona would like to offer you a job interview...."

Yes, Barcelona had just finished third in la liga despite leading for the entirety of the season. This led to the board replacing Unai Emery, who had been made manager the season before because Ernesto Valverde had finished third.

The Barcelona board were impressed that I had won four trophies in two seasons which was emphasised heavily through the course of the interview. Sporting Lisbon caught wind of this, and promised a new contract if I agreed to stay. Lol. Not falling for that one again. I decided that regardless of what Barcelona offered, if there were to make a job offer I would take it. Based on the last two managers i'd probably be gone after one season anyway and would get a massive pay out.

Barcelona came back with a contract offer of £105,000k p/w and a budget of £10,000,000 to make staff changes. This was a dream come true as I could take all the staff that wanted to come with me. There was no negotiating the terms of the contract. A two year contract with those wages and a Champions League bonus was all I needed to become the third Barcelona manager in three seasons.

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Barcelona Recap 2018/19 & 2019/20

So as I briefly touched upon, Barcelona have finished third the last two seasons and have ended both seasons trophy less. This has been deemed unacceptable and the baord are hopeing my quick trophy fix can offer a short term solution.

Uani Emery was somehwat of a weird choice as his Arsenal side finished fifth below Everton in the Premier League. However he wasn't helped by the Director of Football as the signings have been rather bizarre.

 

Here are the players that have been signed:

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Juventus must have been pissing themselves that they made close to £45,000,000 profit on Emre Can in less than six months. Unsurprisingly they were trying to loan him out to Bayer Leverkusson after eighteen months. A colossal waste of money there.

Kurt Zouma must have an absolutely worldy season for Everton to get signed by Barcelona too given he had been mediocre for Stoke City before that. All that money on Zouma and Can... what were they thinking?!?

The only good additions really have been the full backs. Juan Bernat, Joao Cancelo and Faouzi Ghoulam all cost a bit of money but are aguably good signings.

David Silva is an ok signing, albeit you can't blame MAn City accepting close to £44,000,000 on a Midfielder that is 33 years old. 

 

And these are the faces he's let go. It's only letting Ghoulam go that i'm a bit annoyed about in all honesty. Denis Suarez is about to leave on a free too...

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