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Jan 31, 12 at 11:19am ^My Career, Creating The Best Team I Can - End of Season Review / Suggestions Welcome
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Here are a few screenshots of who my best are including those who shine, the surprise transfers and players I didn't expect to do so well.
As you can see I have alot of talent so I try to rotate as best as I can.
Steve Mandanda is a player I have often used in different save files and I would definately recommend him. He will cost you around £11m, give or take, but he is good enough for top clubs such as Arsenal, but would also become a key player for a club such as Everton, Tottenham, PSG (mainly Europa League clubs).
As back-up I have a regen Jordan Murray who I feel will be a fantastic replacement for Mandanda when he is aging. At just 20 I have plenty of time to give him experience and train him in attributes that are lacking behind the others needed to make a top quality goalkeeper.
Ryan Shawcross is my main defender, I like him because he's still young yet exceeds the talent of most his age. I initially planned to get Phil Jones to play alongside him but the asking price was too much from Man Utd. Shawcross is someone I will be keeping for a long while and I look to make him vice captain.
Mats Hummels. I didn't really plan on buying him but after a bad start to the season I desperately needed someone in January and he stood out as being a cheaper option to other players with his age and talent. He has proved he has what it takes and I have seen improvements through the seasons and he becomes a bigger part of the club.
Per Mertesacker is a player who I often cash in on early into the game as you can get around £10m for him, but after selling Vermaelen and Djourou not being good enough I thought I'd give him a chance for once and he has provided excellent cover for the main two.
Valeriano Gomez is the last of my first team centre backs, he is a regen who displays exceptional talent. I got him on a free and at a 4 star potential rating I thought I'd be silly to miss out on him. At 19 he has plenty of time to develop and I'm certain he'll be one of the best centre backs in the world in the future.
Rafinha is my main right back, after I sold Sagna (due to his attitude) I found it difficult to decide who I should buy as a replacement. After much scouting and a process of elimination he was the best choice. £10m wasn't too expensive of a price tag however his first season had an overall rating of 6.98, which was lower than his back-up. However now he has had a chance to gel and become familiar with the language I'm sure he'll produce better seasons.
Cheik M'Bengue. I had never heard of this player before and he was brought pretty much through the same process as Rafinha in the same season, I had my doubts at first but he has proved to be a top quality defender. At 24 he still has plenty of time left in him and he is another player I plan to keeper for many seasons.
Kyle Bartley is a player I can't help being proud of. Of course he isn't naturally a right back but I had no cover to Sagna at the time and he had reasonable attributes that the position requires, so I saved my cash and it's been one of my best decisions as a manager. I also often found myself choosing him ahead of Rafinha in big matches against top clubs and he has shown that he can be part of a top club and its success, would definately recommend Arsenal managers to keep him and get the best out of him.
Kieran Gibbs, an excellent back-up to M'Bengue and has performed consistently well although he isn't picked very often, I also like the fact he can play down the entire left side making him a back-up wide midfielder in an emergency and doesn't disappoint.
Yann M'Vila is one of the most expensive buys I have made during this save and although started slowly he has become a key role in my team. He posesses all the attributes for a world class player and you would often see him breaking up attacks and making inch perfect tackles, rarely ever makes a mistake. Definate candidate for vice-captain or even club captain.
Alex Song I believe could easily be part of my first team however he is beaten to the pecking order by M'Vila and its very difficult for me to allow Song to start many matches. Although I plan to keep him for more seasons aslong as his performances and attributes don't begin to dip.
Jack Wilshere has unfortunately been riddled with injury and it's very hard to get him to perform consistently because of this. But, when he is playing he performs his heart out and I have often seen him all over the pitch completely involved in defensive and attacking roles. Top player who I have no intention of selling.
Aaron Ramsey is an almost identical player to Wilshere (although not as versatile in his positions) and because of Wilshere's injuries this has allowed Ramsey to play week in week out with top notch performances. Also for someone who's long shots is 13 I have seen him score many screamers that would make even Gerrard cry.
Ashley Young is one player I didn't expect to be part of my team, he was transfer listed and at £6.75m I thought he'd be a clever addition to my squad and he was. Due to his low price and not-so-high wages I make him an absolute steal and he is always an integral part of my attacking play.
Nani is another ex-United player who was transfer listed and I couldn't believe it when I expressed my interest and they offered him to me for £2.1m, bargain! Although he's only been here for 6 months I'm sure he can give the club alot and at 27 he is still in his prime.
Eden Hazard, what can I say, we all know of his talent. He is often on the shortlist for the World Golden Ball and rightly so. In total he has played 98, scored 27 and assisted 44 in all competitions, and for a price of £28m I would of been happy to pay double that for his services.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, I am abit disappointed in him, I feel he is slightly underated in Football Manager but he still hasn't been nowhere near as good as he could be in real life and I'm giving him another 6 months until January and then I will decide if I am to sell him on or not.
Shinji Kagawa came to this club on a free contract and I didn't think he's make than big on an impact but I think there was considerably less pressure on him to do well and that has allowed him to thrive. There is a constant battle for a first team appearance between him, Young and Nani and Kagawa is often the winner, posesses a brilliant shot and makes key passes.
Mario Gotze is a new addition to the club, and I actually wasn't going to purchase him at all as I wanted to save money, but I tried to get him for cheap at £25m and they asked for £29m, I'm hoping he can be a major player for the club and play at Hazard's level of quality but we will have to wait and see if I can get the best out of him.
Rafinha, yes thats right, I have 2 Brazilian's at the club called Rafinha. Another new addition this season who came to me on a free, I am trying to get him on loan to an English club before the window closes but nobody seems to be interested, otherwise he'll play in cup games and get sub appearances.
Robin Van Persie, is nowhere near as good as he should be, he is an inconsistent performer who will score a hat-trick one game against a top club, and then fail to do anything against lower clubs for the next 5 matches and I can't stand this, my main formation plays 1 striker upfront and for the first 3 months of my save he contested for the spot but was beaten by Damiao. RVP is now 3rd down the pecking order behind Damiao and Tevez. However he isn't that bad that I want to sell him and I have got his contract wages down to £60K p/week.
Leandro Damiao is my golden boy. I wouldn't sell him for £100m and he has produced some insanely brilliant performances. 2nd season he notched up 36 goals in 38 league appearances and he is always a consistant performer, regardless of team morale or form. You will often find him smashing the ball home from even 10 yards out and has all the attributes for a world class striker. I signed him for £20m and he has definately been the best buy of my save, maybe even one of the best buys I have ever made on Football Manager. He is my new club captain after I demoted RVP.
Carlos Tevez is another player I didn't really expect to buy, because of his status in the world of football he is available at a cut price on any save, however I didn't expect to get him for as little as £6m, and at that price he has played 66, scored 35 with 29 assists (often setting up Damiao) and is one hell of a player, the only problem is that if I play a 1 striker formation he is often left on the bench and Damiao rarely needs to be subbed off.
Yaya Sanogo the young frenchman has great potential, had a season out of loan at FC Lorient and performed well, now it is make or break time for him, I plan to play him a little more than I would play RVP and try to get as many starts as possible, hopefully he won't let me down as I plan to make him part of my first team.
Reserves and U18's:
There aren't many worth mentioning but here are those who are worth it.
Christian Eriksen has been in my first team since the first season but he plays very little games due to him being injured so much. He wasn't too expensive but I feel that a season on loan will do him well and with FC Lorient in the french league he can hopefully gain better fitness, or he may have to go.
Jabuzane Dlamini was stolen from West Ham's youth squad on a free and shows amazing potential, he's been the main man of the youth squad and although he is still young enough to play for them, I wanted to get him out on loan and grab some early experience at professional clubs, definately worth it for the future and hopefully can shine at the club.
Benik Afobe I'm starting to lose hope in, I had him in the first team last season and in cup games he was a decent striker, but in league matches he failed to show any colours so a season on loan will hopefully kick start his career, otherwise its the door to lower league clubs.
Chuks Aneke surprised me as I thought he'd become deadwood, however he's recently started getting some pretty good attributes and I think some loan experience will help him become a good player, definately going to keep my eye on him and allow him some first team action when he's back from loan.
Marc Duffy is still part of my U18's and I've had to fight off much interest from Man City, he's shows bags of potential and I plan to get him into my first team within the next season or two, although he is young I feel that first team experience with the club would do him better than a loan spell.
Dominic Pickard is another one who my staff believe has high potential, initially came from Southampton but I will keep my eye on his development in the future.
I have kept most of the backroom team at Arsenal and I've only really brought in my own, these include John Jensen as assistant manager (ex-Arsenal player), Andy van der Meyde, David Trezeguet, Thierry Henry, David Platt, Angel Vales, Bernhard Trares, Franco Baldini and Gian Nicola Bisciotti.
Also within the next few days I should be signing Robinho, he is no longer with A.C. Milan so for free I cannot really complain although I don't need him, perhaps this will line up an exit for RVP?
I'll get in some regular updates and screenshots of how many career progresses and will be happy to provide any screenshots of players.
The main man at the club, Leandro Damiao.
Police In Helicopter...
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Feb 1, 12 at 6:50pm ^re: My Career, Creating The Best Team I Can - End of Season Review / Suggestions Welcome
Great team. Maybe add Neymar to your strike-force, and you'll really have an awesome team.
Mbiwa is a top defender you should consider, as well. Very versatile and a strong defender.
Feb 1, 12 at 7:31pm ^re: My Career, Creating The Best Team I Can - End of Season Review / Suggestions Welcome
How do you play Leandro Damiao? My Liverpool team cant score and so im looking to buy a new striker in January was considering hulk along with yer man here
The cup with the big ears is my holy grail.
Feb 3, 12 at 10:25am ^re: My Career, Creating The Best Team I Can - End of Season Review / Suggestions Welcome
LisbonLion unfortunately I was outbit by Barcelona for Neymar's signature because I couldn't afford more than £35m for him, I've got Robinho now on a free and I'll explain his progress further in the update. As for Mbiwa he's going to cost too much aswell but perhaps you could find me an alternative further on.
Taggz Leandro Damiao is a brilliant piece of business, cost me £20m but people have gotten him for less than that. Heres a screenshot of how I usually play him, I often use slow tempo tactics with lots of passing and he does alot better on the left (his stronger foot being his right) or alone upfront. Start him whenever you possible can as a Target Man and you should see the results soon enough.
Between my last update and my current save progress I signed Robinho and Chivu who had both been released from their respective clubs.
Chivu was signed as a back up incase I had defensive injuries through important parts of the season and on £11k p/week it didn't seem too bad but he hasn't really been needed and I won't be renewing his contract come the end of the season.
Robinho has been far greater than I imagined, I lost Damiao through injury which put him out for 4 months so Robinho stepped in and has been on fantastic form, this has really pushed RVP down the pecking order who has been dreadful and I'll be selling him come the end of the season.
As you can see Kyle Bartley is once again outperforming Rafinha even though he has played less he still has a higher pass completion, tackles won and dribbles made. Also Bartley hasn't had a single yellow or red card and as you can see Rafinha has already been punished with 9 yellows and 1 red. Chivu and Mertesacker's contracts are up at the end of the season and I won't be renewing them so I'll have Shawcross, Gomez and Hummels.
As you can see my midfielders are doing fine with the exception of Ashley Young who I failed to sell during the January window. Kagawa needs more starts than sub appearances. Nani has been brilliant this season and Gotze has settled in very well.
Damiao has struggled to get back into form since his injury (3 goals in 9 appearances) but I'm hoping consistent matches can bring it back. Robin Van Persie can't do a thing on the pitch and is definately past his best. Sanogo has been unlucky with injuries here and there but I'm hoping to play him alot more 2nd half of the season now that RVP wont be featuring. Robinho came for free and on £75k p/week I think its a fantastic capture!
Having a good season and everything is going to plan, apart from being knocked out of the League Cup to Swansea but I'm on course to win the Premiership aslong as I can keep my form up.
Heres a screenshot of my form in recent months. Click me!
Hopefully I can keep on course and win all the competitions I'm still in, I'll do another update at the beginning of May just before any major finals and the last couple of matches in the league and let you know how I'm getting on again.
Come the new season I'll be looking for a new CB and a new young striker so suggestions are welcome I've got 6 months to decide!
Police In Helicopter...
Feb 6, 12 at 12:49pm ^re: My Career, Creating The Best Team I Can - End of Season Review / Suggestions Welcome
I've finally reached that critical point in the season, the final month. Not gone completely my way but I'm still more than in the fight.
I was top until those two fixtures against Blackpool and Wolves and I'm still baffled how that happened.
In Europe I was beaten by Bayern Munich in the Quarter Final 1 - 0 after both legs.
Spoiler:FA Cup Run
I'm doing well in the FA Cup I've got Chelsea in the final and I've recently beaten them 5-1 at home so I'm feeling confident about that match.
My strikers were my biggest concern in January and it seems they're going to need some work, Robinho and Tevez are into their 30's now and Damiao has sadly lost his form completely, also Sanogo cannot seem to make a difference in any sort of way. RVP is also rotting away in the reserves.
My only remaining fixtures are:
I'll do a detailed update after these 3 games to conclude my seasons progress.
Police In Helicopter...
Feb 6, 12 at 4:32pm ^re: My Career, Creating The Best Team I Can - End of Season Review / Suggestions Welcome
So here are the results of my final 2 League matches of the season.
Line-up: Mandanda, Bartley, Shawcross, Gomez (Hummels 76'), M'Bengue, Nani (Kagawa (76'), Gotze, Song, Hazard, Tevez (Robinho 76'), Damiao.
Unused Subs: Murray, Rafinha, Wilshere, Ramsey.
Line-up: Mandanda, Rafinha (Bartley 79'), Shawcross, Hummels, M'Bengue, Gotze, Ramsey, Song, Hazard (Nani 79'), Tevez, Damiao (Robinho 79').
Unused Subs: Murray, Gomez, M'Vila, Kagawa.
It looks like I've still got lots of work to do to make the best team, I've finished 2nd behind Man City by a point!
Spoiler:Final League Table
Over the 2nd half of this season I've got players who were in key roles that are now useless to me.
Several of my players did win awards (Hazard - Footballer of the Year, Gotze - Players Young Player of the Year, Mandanda - Golden Glove Award 21 Clean Sheets in Total) and these few made it into the team of the season.
Spoiler:Team of the Year
I also managed to win the FA Cup Final, at least, to salvage something from the season.
Spoiler:FA Cup Final
Line-up: Mandanda, Rafinha, Shawcross, Hummels (Gomez 60'), M'Bengue, Gotze, Ramsey (Kagawa 80'), Song, Hazard (Nani 60'), Tevez, Damiao.
Unused Subs: Murray, Bartley, Wilshere, Robinho.
Leaving the club this summer will be Chivu, Mertesacker, Luke Shaw, Kieran Gibbs (requested to be sold due to "achieving all he can" with the club), Ashley Young, Chuks Aneke and Yaya Sanogo but I'll post a screenshot exactly who came and left come September 1st.
This does however leave me with gaps in the formation. I'll be looking for a Centre Back, Left Back (23 or younger), Striker or two (Under 25). I'd love to hear some suggestions but I doubt I'll get many replies!
My transfer targets this summer will be:
Centre Backs - Either Mamadou Sakho, Benedikt Howedes, Raphael Varane, Kyriakos Papadopoulos or Phil Jones.
I'm going to do some scouting for the Left Back position but I've got Gareth Bale on my shortlist whose currently at Everton valued at £11m so I may buy him?
I've also got my eye on Alexis Sanchez from Barcelona, going to be very expensive but he would be amazing in midfield alongside Hazard, M'Vila and Gotze.
Strikers - Iker Muniain, Erick Torres, Carlos Fierro, Sergio Aguero (£33.5m)
I look to strengthen my required positions and push forward and win more silverware this year, until I conquer Europe and win the League I won't feel like I've got the best team I can.
Police In Helicopter...
Feb 6, 12 at 4:51pm ^re: My Career, Creating The Best Team I Can - End of Season Review / Suggestions Welcome
Definately go for Sanchez and Fierro
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