I swore I would never, ever pick up FM ever again. I had more things I needed to be doing, and Magic and writing should be my primary free time devotions. And then I wandered over to Steam and searched for Football Manager for the hell of it.
Football Manager 2014 now on sale for $15! Cloud saves! Resume your career from any computer in the world!
Before I knew it, my credit card jumped out of my wallet, eagerly typed in its details, and I had FM 2014 installed on my mom's Mac laptop that I've been borrowing in the morning hours.
I downloaded a Level 12 English database, where I quickly discovered whoever made the database assigned numerous lower level teams really good facilities. I sense an imbalance coming.
Me being me, I had to pick one of the teams that has not so great facilities. Couldn't find a Poor/Poor squad I liked, so I went with...
Inkberrow FC Eagles
Makes sense, no? The whole writer thing, and Eagles being the same team name as my undergrad alma mater.
One thing to know about this deep a level. Everyone's a gray name, so that means hitting the transfer market. But first, we need to change up our staff, which I do, firing everyone and bringing in better replacements. Of course, everything is amateur contract only at this stage.
I can only get one team to agree to a friendly - a Spanish team I have to pay $24k to. We beat them 3-0 because I have my assman managing all the friendlies. For some reason, my assman can't get any other friendlies lined up, so we go into our season opener with just 1 friendly.
Midland Football Combination Division Two Odds
Coventry United: 3-1
Northfield Town: 12-1
Everyone else that I can see: 16-1
And yet, we're also 16-1, and we're supposed to avoid bottom. Yeah. Okay.
We're running a 4-3-1-2 formation away and a 4-2-3-1 formation for at home. Oh, I suppose I should introduce our scrapheap signings, eh? I prioritized pace and strength together because at this level, everyone's so bad, being faster and stronger than everyone else should be the key to winning games. Oh, and I uh, stole the tactics from Football Manager Mad :P
Ash Malhotra (23) - 1.5/5
We've had a hard time finding any goalie to join us, so we grabbed Ash as a young emergency solution.
DR Brian Close (31) - 5/5
DR Doug Ford (24) - 1.5/5
DL James Kay (24) - 5/5
DC Phil Lindley (32) - 5/5
DC Bernard Morley (29) - 5/5
DC Tom Rowbotham (19) - 5/5
DC Gbenga Sonuga (30) - 5/5
DC Craig Suddaby (29) - 4.5/5
Rowbotham plays other positions, and so do a lot of these other guys. But I have to say, I'm really excited about him and Kay as the young cornerstones of our backbone. Either everyone sucks or we have a lot of talent here. Probably a little of both.
MC Andy Catley (34) - 3/3
MC Brian Close (31) - 5/5
MC Phil Lindley (32) - 4.5/5
MC Craig Mitchell (26) - 1/1
MC Tom Rowbotham (19) - 2.5/5
MC Tom Schofield (22) - 4.5/5
Obviously you can expect Close and Lindley to play a lot of MC as opposed to DC, given our insane depth there. Schofield excites, too.
AMC Tom Schofield (22) - 4.5/5
AMC James Tevendale (30) - 0.5/0.5
Need more and better depth here, much like the DLR spots, though I plan to make Rowbotham an all backbone guy.
Mark Corbett (30) - 0.5/0.5
Brian Haule (29) - 4.5/5 (Tanzanian)
Kyle King (23) - 0.5/4
James Tevendale (30) - 2/5
King is someone we have high hopes for, but depth here would help too.
We get $10k a year for a uniform sponsorship deal. Yay.
I belatedly realize one of our tactics calls for an AML and AMR, neither of which we have other than James Tevandale
, who is 1.5 at AMR. Boo. Fortunately we rush in a few wingers.
MR/AMR/ST Tony Wynne - 21
- 0.5/2 at AMR/Bottom at ST. I'll immediately train him into being AML and start him there.
DLR Tremain Walters - 24
- 3/4.5 at DL; 0 .5 at DR
MR/AMR Matt Martin - 23
MC/MR/AMR Paul McDonnell - 32
- 4/4 at AMR; 1.5/1.5 at MC
-Huge, huge get that saves our home formation.
will also get AML training.
vs Kenilworth Town
G: Ash Malhotra
D: James Kay/Bernard Morley/Gbenga Sonuga/Brian Close
M: Phil Lindley/Tom Rowbotham
AM: Tony Wynne/Tom Schofield/Paul McDonnell
ST: Brian Haule
- ....Yeah, that didn't go well 0-1
- Why were we favored again? Indirect kick goal given up 0-2
- Gorgeous ball to the outside left of the box by Schofield
to pick up. Our lone non-English player crosses to the left post where Wynne
is waiting, and the kid knocks in the diagonal! 1-2
has the free kick outside the box... and he flights it in for the quickfire double! 2-2
gets sent off with a double yellow. Great. I pull Schofield
and put in Suddaby
, making Rowbotham
go into support duty.
keeps having a shit game, so I move Close
to DC and put Walters
in at DR.
- Absolutely incredibly interception by Rowbotham
, who feeds Haule
in the middle of the pitch. Streaking ahead to catch the pass in wide open space is McDonnell
, who races through the converging horde to fire in the shorthanded goal!!! 3-2
- Just fucking great. Rowbotham
's knocked out, so we spend our last sub on Catley
launches a rainbow of a ball that McDonnell
gets to *just* as it's about to hit the touchline. Our new AMR crosses it to the goal. Haule
is charging hard, and the opposing defender gets so flustered, he own goals it. 4-2
What an amazing game, and my first ever debut win!
Brian Haule - 8.8
Tony Wynne - 8.0 (Not bad for playing a position he's not comfortable with, eh?)
Paul McDonnell - 7.9
Brian Close - 7.6
This may well be the best this dynasty ever gets, because we're in 1st place after one game!