Making Northern Ireland The 'Best' May 5, 2020 18:04:57 GMT
Post by stouters on May 5, 2020 18:04:57 GMT
Making Northern Ireland The ‘Best'. A nod to the late, great George Best.
The aim of this save has been to make the Danske Bank Premiership number 1 in the League rankings, currently it is sitting 27th. The best way to make this happen is for all NI teams to do well in European competitions.
I have been the manager of Glentoran for the last 15 seasons and now i’m calling it a day with them. Why? I feel like i’m hitting a wall with them and the league needs more successful teams in Europe. This sounds more like the end of a save and not a continuation of it, that in not the case here. I’ll be looking for a new NI team to share the responsibility of making progress in Europe. In Europe we have had our fair share of progress. Qualifying from the earliest stages on a regular basis, making it to the group stages where not only the best teams await us, but £13m for making the group stage. In 2030 we even managed to win the Europa League! Not having to qualify for the group stage the following season was a little strange. Generally, qualifying from the group stage has been difficult and not something that i have been able to do often. Most of the time we 4th with the occasional 3rd place.
In the last few years qualifying has been getting almost too easy, to the point that i decided to holiday some of the fixtures. I have been holidaying the domestic cups since i did the domestic clean sweep, and now i had started to do that with the first 3 qualifying rounds of the Champions League. I take care of the playoff matches, just in case the assman screws it up. That would harm the co-efficient a lot.
Some of the ‘Qualities’ needed for a save like this -
- To achieve the goal of the save you will need patience. 15 titles in a row from the off and the league is still only ranked 27th. That’s a fair rise from what ever it starts from...105th? I can’t remember. You probably need another 30 years to make it.
There will come a time when your player will be getting chased by 15+ clubs. You will also have to surender that player who you believe will lead your team to european glory. The silver lining in that is you will probably end up in a bidding war. For example: Team 1 bids £XXm, Team 2 bids something similar, so you up it a little. If they accept, go back and reject the offer from the other team. Rinse and repeat until a bid sticks and the player agrees a contract. In the short term you won’t have that much control over the player’s desire to leave. I’ve noticed lately that if a player isn’t bothered about moving to the likes of Borussia Dortmund, if they are the only team then i’ve no problem rejecting.
I’ll admit that going unbeaten several seasons in a row, qualifying for the Champion’s League group stage only to finish 4th and STs scoring for fun, i have found my interests wandering at times. I hit a wall quite a few times, but the one thing that has helped me through is setting a target. Winning the league was obviously the first target, but as the job got easier i need more little challenges. Qualifying for the Champions League group stage, getting a player to win the European Golden Boot. Winning a European trophy, maaking massive profit on players bought, breaking points and goals scored in the league and the ultimate one...a new stadium. Seeing the league’s rep only going up 3 places is really demoralising. I know it will get harder as we climb higher, but doing so well as club in europe, but not as a group of clubs is not going to help.
I say that commitment to the club is important, but there comes a time when a manager has to move. The commitment is also to the aim of the save. Getting the league to the top.
I’d like to post a few players, if possible, to show the quality we needed to get Glentoran where they are.
Harry Philips - Bought from Institute for £500. I’m not 100% sure on this, but i think i bought their best youth prospect for beating me. No games for 2 seasons, started playing a half season scoring 24 goals in 40 games in all competitions. He then became the main goalscorer. In his first season he finished 3rd in the Golden Boot with 44 league goals, but won it in the following season with 37 league goals. The joys of improved league rep. He was then caught up in a bidding war and sold for £35.5m to Aston Villa. He has since gone on to be a expensive flop with 6 goals in 49 appearances.
Lasse Jensen - Bought from AGF for £200k in 22/23. Quite an expensive transfer at the time, but became one of the best strikers at the club. His 45 goals in the 26/27 season got him 3rd place in the Golden Boot. His goal tally is still a record at the end of 33/34. Two seasons later his head gets turned by Konyaspor and we lose him on the cheap for £600k.
Kike - Bought for £1.5m from Espanyol in 29/30 and eventually sold to Koln for £16m at the beginning of 33/34. I wanted to hold onto him as getting his sort of talent on the cheap was getting harder. His head got turn 2 seasons ago and could easily have lost him for £4m. I held on despite his protests and got a decent sale. I struggled to cater for him in the middle of a 4-4-2 and eventually put him to good use on the left as an inside forward. 27 goals in 56 appearances in all comps finally made him desirable to other clubs.
Luis Silva - Yes, another striker. I was a bit surprised to get him from Universitatea Craiova and for £1.5m. He went straight to the reserves for a season. Harry Phillips and a player on loan kept him out. When they left i had a quick look in the reserves and completely forgot he was sitting there in all of 4* glory. His first season got him the Golden Boot with 39 goals. It was a great surprise as it was the first time we get are told we play in a 2nd-tier division, i think that’s the phrase used. I haven’t sold him, but could have if i wanted. Last season we were attracting offers around £30m. The player doesn’t want to go and he is on course to win a consecutive Golden Boot.
Sam Stubbs - Arrived in the 3rd season on a free from Hamilton. Easily one of the best centre backs i could ask for in the early years. Somehow he prolonged his stay to 9 seasons. He retired after he left. Check him out as he is a real player.
There are probably loads more that i could post, but i think this update is getting big.
Probably the part of this save that i both love and hate. This season alone i reluctantly managed to raise over £100m in transfers, potentially rising to £130m. The one player i really could have done with not selling was my best RB. Bought from Olympija for £1.5m and sold a season and a half later for £46.5m. At this point money wasn’t a concern, but when a bidding war kicks off and Man Utd are involved, it’s only a matter of time. Another was a CM bought for £775k from Partizan Belgrade, sold for £35m with not even 50 games for us in all competitions.
I wanted to get a new stadium and after a few delays we got there. It started off as 11,917 and within 11 months it was a 24,174 seater. That was all i was really waiting for before i could allow myself to move on. I decided to wait until it was maxed out as i’m pretty sure the AI wouldn’t bother. I’ve heard plenty of times that the AI is terrible at buying players, especially when they have £180m sitting in the bank. What i have done to try and maintain the club’s success after i’m gone is buy high PA youth as future arrivals. As they aren’t yet 18, they will arrive at the club within 2yrs. Not all of them are cheap, some at least look good. The only thing bugging me about Glentoran is their training facilities. They have been stuck on good and i haven’t been able to upgrade them in nearly 10yrs.
Just before i get news that Glentoran have climbed up 6 places to 17th in the European club rankings, the league is up 5 places to 22nd in the Competitions ranking list and Northern Ireland (as a whole) is up to 14th in the nation’s co-efficient table. This means that Northern Ireland will have a team in the Best Placed 2nd Qualifying round and a team in the 3rd qualifying round of the Champions League in 2035/36. There will also be a team in the 3rd qualifying round of the Europa League (previously 0) and 2 teams in the 2nd qualifying round of the Europe Conference League (previously 3). This is the progress i’m looking for.
Late addition to the post. A few seasons ago I decided to try to help the league help itself. When the club had £100m I gave 8 or 9 clubs £5m each by buying a player and gave them short-term contracts. A Linfield player refused to come to Glentoran. One of the first things I do as a manager is check out the finances, its the capitalist in me. To my disappointment, this team doesn't have £5m anymore, not even £1m .
Finally. The best thing i have achieved on FM in years has to be winning the Europa League. Putting out the likes of Liverpool, Monaco, Bayer Leverkusen and then beating Lazio 1-0 in the final was epic. I didn’t do to well with Glentoran in the Champions League with Glentoran, but at least i can say i’ve won the Europa League.
Picture of the Stadium <-