Ok boys, I've made a decision. I can't be arsed with playing the CWC really haha. The season effectively ended and the players are on holiday. In my books, that ends my turn. I will make a season report and upload the save for the next one to play later today.
Deportivo La Coruña 2028-29 Season April-May 2029 Report
Overview Sorry for the lack of activity lads. I lost a full written update for April and that really pissed me off and thus I have relegated this save and doing this final report to the back of my mind.
News We need to lower the payroll. That's a fact and I'm gonna offer my two cents of advice here. - We currently have 4 players earning over £200k p/w, arguably our top 4 players so I have no issue there, Ruan, Vítor Soares, Gürkhan Ulaş and Salva Condemi. Maybe Soares is a bit too high, but he's the world's best fullback. - Then, we have 10 players earning over £100k p/w and here we have a lot of fat to remove or trim at least. Pedro Rego, Víctor, Pablo Sánchez and Kevin are full time starters and quality players. Adauto is a magnificent footballer but we've got Angel Kostadinov right behind him and I think we might be better selling off the Brazilian (or selling Condemi if you prefer), and promoting Kostadinov. I played the kid a lot on my stint and he's ready for a full time job. Finally we need to either get rid of or re-structure the contracts of Gio Reyna, Felix Uduokhai, Boubacar Kamara, Emanuel Vignato and Seb Esposito, all of them earn a ton of money and are not starters. Offloading them and getting cheaper alternatives for the bench might be our way to ensure financial success down the road.
On other news, I know we're talking about financial stability and this is quite the opposite, but I left an offer put up for Jean Patrick, activating his release fee. If the next one in charge wants to get him go ahead, if not just cancel it (he's non-eu, we currenly have 2 spots taken in the first team, Oberdan and Mohamed Abdallah and one in the "B" team, Maycon so he's within limits I think).
Matches So, this will be long (that's what she said...). We'll start off with the Copa del Rey Final, then 7 La Liga games, and finally the UEFA Champions League.
The Copa Final was against our rivals Celta in another instance of the Gallego Derby. It was a tight affair as al derbies are, and despite us being clearly the better side we struggled to make our dominance into the scoreboard. In the end a lone penalty goal from Vignato sealed the title for us.
First La Liga game, was against Girona. We were a bit undermanned with Ruan, Pedro Rego and Salva Condemi sidelined by injuries (besides Esposito, obviously). Still we played good and outshot Girona 33-2 but only managed to get the game winning goal via a penalty from Vignato.
Next up was Espanyol, who didn't put up much of a fight and we smashed them 4-1 with a hattrick from Víctor and a goal from Adauto. We looked pretty good in the first half and Victor as the lone forward took advantage of their leaky defense and profited.
Ruan came back for the next game, against Sporting and made his mark quickly with a penalty goal in a 4-1 routine win. The other goals were scored by Víctor, Vítor Soares and Condemi.
As we won our game and Barcelona drew theirs, we sealed the La Liga title with 4 games left to play.
Our next game was the "pasillo" game, and we beat Granada 3-1, with a brace from Ruan and a goal from Adauto. Pretty straightforward stuff at this point.
We then beat Athletic 2-1 with a brace from centre back Kevin, in a somewhat strange game haha as we didn't play greatly, dominated from the middle without much danger and scored on 2 set pieces.
In our last two games, we beat Tenerife 4-1 with goals from Ruan, André Luis and a brace from Adauto, and we easily dispatched Real Madrid in the last game of the league, with another 4-1 win, with goals from Ruan, Pedro Rego and a brace from André Luis. Sorry I don't have screenies of those games as I forgot to take them and cannot go back in the save as my autosave screwed up and didn't save for all May.
We had a good La Liga. +100 points and +100 goals is impressive, but it's 5 points from our best season performance. It is our first unbeaten title though and our most goals scored.
Now, onto the meaty business, the UEFA Champions League. I was afraid, coming into our Quarter-Finals matchup against Bayern as we had a lot of injuries and had to improvise a bit with the lineup. But Emanuel Vignato put up his big boy pants and by '18 minutes had us already 3-0 up with a hattrick of his own. Mohamed Abdallah scored the 4th in the second half and we secured a fantastic first leg 4-0 win at home.
The return leg was a bit of a similar game, with Bayern controlling the pace and possession but us being clinical in our counter attacks. Vignato kept his form and scored again at '58 from the penalty spot and Vítor Soares rounded up the score at the end of the game to seal our pass through the Semifinals with a 2-0 win at Munich.
Semifinals saw us play against PSG in another hard matchup. Ruan had recovered but we were still missing Rego, but again we had a dominant first leg at home, with a fantastic 4-1 win with a brace from Ruan, and goals from Víctor and André Luis. The away goal had me worried, but we played really good.
In France it was a whole different story though. We weren't up for the races and I feared the worst at times, specially near the end of the game. We lost 1-3 and narrowly quailified for the UEFA Champions League Final.
The Final was a whole different story. We had a full squad, and a far inferior team on the other side of the pitch in Borussia Mönchengladbach. It was a walk in the park, and we ended up winning our fourth straight UEFA Champions League, and sealing the Quintuple (UEFA Super Cup, Supercopa de España, Copa del Rey, La Liga and UEFA Champions League), with a terrific 6-0 win with a hattrick from Ruan and another hattrick from Víctor.
Final Words - We had a fantastic season. We lost just two games in all season. Both against French sides, a 1-2 loss against Lyon in the UCL Group and the 1-3 loss in the UCL Semifinals against PSG. - The financial situation is what's most worrying at the minute. I think we can field a highly competitive side, trimming the fat from the squad and getting cheaper replacement players. It's time to offload. - We currently have £40M in the bank.
Sorry for the lack of enthusiasm at times lads. I've been playing a lot of games lately and haven't had much time for FM, which has been also divided as I've kept playing my own save as well. I'm genuinely sorry as I know this wasn't my best effort. Here's the SAVE LINK.
Cracking season. Who is next, haven't seen much of @nick of late.
What is the B side like? Can we trim that, or is there anyone there to promote?
Hi mate, next up is either Nick (who's effectively M.I.A.) or Guido. Regarding the B side, I don't think there's much to trim as the salaries are low. We do have a couple of players either there or on loan who can become good squad players for us at a lower cost than what we currently have. It's worth taking a good look at the squad, to decide who to sell and replace either with what we have or bring in a new player.
Ok lads, I talked with Nick and he told me he wasn't gonna keep playing the save. So, we need to know whether we will go get someone to replace him (and maybe +1 to replace Kova as well) or just leave this here.
It's sad it ended like this, but to be fair, we've all won everything we possibly could so unless you guys made it more challenging for yourself by implementing some new rules, I think it'd become quite stale to play it any further.
Let's start with the deals out. We will work our way through the list in chronological order.
Salvatore Condemi was asking for a new contract and he was bloody expensive... While he was certainly a class act and a home-grown player, he was asking for 250k a month. Arsenal offered to pay us 120 million. I took the money.
Giovani Reyna was one of our best players in our first seasons. He was instrumental in helping the club grow into the behemoth it is today. He had also lost his spot in the starting line-up to other, even more talented players. With the wages he was earning, he needed to go. Derby County offered us a fair sum for him and we basically sold a squad rotation option for 60 million. He racked up a mere 12 league appearances last season, so it's fair to say his glory days for Depor were behind him.
Boubacar Kamara was a beast for us in defence, a defensive stalwart for many seasons. He was also getting old and I figured we had a fair few youngsters waiting to step up. Leicester offered us a great deal and we have several talented youths who can step up. Missing from this list somehow was the deal of Uduokhai, who was sold to Bournemouth for 43 million.
José Castaño was a backup forward, destined to remain in the shadows behind Ruan and Esposito. Despite a few decent performances, I felt the time had come for him to move on. Because of FM's reputation mechanic, his value had risen to nearly 50 million. With some negotiating, I managed to wring 70 million out of Celtic to take over our backup forward.
Seoane was a player from the B-squad. His contract was not renewed.
Emmanuel Vignato was a key player on our right flank but I feel André Luis is at least as good and cheaper in terms of wages. We also had a talented youngster anxious to break into first-team, so selling Vignato seemed like a good idea. 97 million was a sweet deal.
Gustavsen was part of the B-team. I couldn't see him breaking into our first-team and we needed the money for the renovation of our first-team squad.
Mohammed Abdallah was one of five options for the attacking midfielder position. He was also taking up a valuable non-EU slot, while not being an undisputed starter. Bayern offered to pay a premium fee, so I reckon this is a good deal.
Adauto is arguably a world class midfielder. He also demanded an excessive wage. For 90 million, he moved to Chelsea, leaving up with Adjogo-Ewono and Kostadinov in central midfield, plus a lot of money in the bank for new signings.
The most surprising departure is that of Esposito. Our talismanic forward is leaving on a loan deal worth 2.5 million per month with a mandatory option to buy for 70 million if he plays 20 games a season for Everton. I reckon that is a fair deal. Don't worry about our offensive firepower, new blood is coming in. I reckon this clinches the Esposito vs Ruan debate as well.
Van Meel, Hermansen, Rodriguez, Fontana, Maycon, Griffiths, Trabelsi, Van Hoogdalem, Bielstein and Olivares were all squad fillers who needed playing time. These loan deals bring in a bit of extra money and hopefully some personal development for our assets.
Unai Alonso is a product of our academy. Despite a few convincing performances in first team over the past years, he was never going to be a steady squad member. 12,5 million is a good deal for a player like that.
Third-choice goalkeeper Leroux was fucked off as well. We even recouped what we paid for him.
Pedro Rego was a star player on our left flank but one who wanted a new and even more expensive contract, so selling him seemed like a smart move. The money he brought in can be used to sign a proper replacement.
Bacchilega was our third-choice left-back. His loan spell at Milan saw his value skyrocket, so this was as good a time to offload him as any.
Vales had an expiring contract, Elche paid the tribunal fee.
Toni Herrero was our back-up left-back but he was a tad too expensive to act as a backup. I sold him to Ajax.
Darwin Molina was one of those young defenders who could step up. He didn't convince during pre-season, so he was sold.
The first two categories are important, while the third is mostly cheap squad filler for the B-squad, with a few players who can bag us a nice profit in the future.
Promoted from within the ranks
As we had quite an extensive B-squad, I looked towards these players in an effort to replenish our strength before hitting the transfermarket. I like to think most of the players we brought through the ranks are worthy to be in first team, even if they are not (yet) as good as their predecessors.
Hugo Santiago had a stellar season for our B-squad last season, so he is brought in to replace Vignato. Vignato is a better player but also in his prime whereas Santiago is still developing. For now, he can act as a backup to André Luis, while we get him ready for the big work. He also contributes to our HG-quotum, as he's from our own academy. Not a one-on-one replacement but one with growth potential and financial benefits.
Strictly speaking one cannot consider Helier a new player. He has made his debut already but he was on loan at Juventus for the entirety of last season, so he is new to the A-squad this season. An ideal shadow striker, ready to step up into first team and on 26k wages. We lost Abdallah and gained someone of equal talent but with less financial demands.
Álvaro Martín Frías Peralta (holy shit, what a mouthful... We'll just nickname him Álvaro) spent last season on loan with Real Madrid. The talent is there, though not quite (yet) on the level of people like Adauto. Now, he can duke it out with Kostadinov and Edjogo-Edwono for a spot in the starting line-up. Less of a playmaker and more of an energetic and mobile force, I feel he offers a new dimension to our midfield.
After three loan spells, two of which took place in Spain, Duván Osorio is finally given a chance in first-team. Cheaper than his predecessor, he can act as an understudy to Soares and possibly even on the left flank if needed. He isn't world class but he doesn't have to be (yet), as he is intended as a backup. He does have room to grow and develop, so we'll see. We slashed wages a lot by promoting Duván and selling other, more expensive squad members.
We sold three central defenders, including our starting pair of Kamara and Uduokhai and one wonderkid called Darwin Molina. That surely does not bode well or is at least indicative of major spending for the position of central defender... Not when Emiliano Torres is in your B-team. He scored twice in two appearances for the reserves and well, I decided to sell off Molina (who was worth more but looked like a lesser player) and promote Torres to the A-team as a rotational option. Fast, tall, strong, low wages, a willingness to sit on the bench and decent skills on the ball. What's not to love?
We also strengthened our first team with a number of outside signings. Some of those were expensive, all of them are worth it (I reckon).
We paid 18 million for a keeper who is going to play for our U19. That's a lot of money. If he keeps developing the way he does, however, he can replace the Turkish fella and we'll be set for another decade or so. Jean Patrick is the name; please don't loan him away to non-Spanish sides.
Another signing for the future is Blas Pomares. He played an important role in Osasuna's survival in La Liga last season. We signed him and loaned him back to Osasuna for a season. I reckon that if he keeps developing as he has so far, he can compete for a spot in our starting line-up. Never a bad idea, since Kevin wants to leave and Chelsea is lurking.
The departure of Toni Herrero meant a vacancy for a backup left-back. I reckon Francesc can fill that gap for the next few years. He is not yet fully developed but again, he is supposed to be an understudy for the first-team choice Sánchez. If needed, Salva Suárez and Osorio can deputise on the left flank as well. Francesc can develop without the burden of immediate expectations.
We needed a new backup keeper. Israel (what's in a name...) is Spanish and talented and fits the bill. He was expensive but fuck it, when you sell for 800 million, you can splurge some millions on a backup goalie.
A major new signing is German Ghanian Evans Salifu, hailing from Mainz. A versatile and quick lad, capable of playing as a playmaker, shadowstriker, forward and winger. Capped for the senior German national team at only 20 years of age, he has a bright future ahead of him.
We really splashed the cash on Djordje Koruga. Nearly a 100 million for a backup to Ruan but in a few years, Koruga should be good enough to replace the Brazilian, who will undoubtedly become too expensive to maintain. Koruga is a player in the same mould as Ruan but not quite as refined and polished.
I managed to replace Pedro Rego with a Spaniard of equal calibre. Sergio González was not cheap but he is worth every penny in my opinion.
Central midfield was a bit of a problem zone, so Henrique gives us extra options there.
Javier Pérez is our new backup left winger, who can also deputise in attacking midfield and upfront.
I signed a few players with the aim to shift them in one or two seasons for a massive profit. These guys are never intended to play for our first team, just to max out their reputation and value and be sold on.
Signed for 200k, already worth a shit load more. Give him a season and flog him.
Signed for 1,2 million but I reckon not playing in the lower echelons of French football can do wonders for him and his value.
This is the team I have built with all the options.
Excellent rebuild. What are the finances like? What is the wage budget/spending like
Clear sailing all the way. Operational losses are still there because we are limited by our relatively small stadium. We can sell four or five B-squad players end of season and recoup that money though. Also, we need to loan away for fees far more often.