Damm He’s Good

FIFA 19 Career (In Menus)_10.pngThat’s my RMF Jurgen Damm, signed pre-season, collecting his Player of the Month award for October, he uses ‘Jurgen’ on his shirt, and is fast becoming my go-to player in FIFA 19.
One of those players that oozes individuality, he has pace to burn and a canny eye for a finish, he reminds me very much in his playing style as a taller Mo Salah, not a bad thing at all, Damm his also the league top scorer so far with 11 goals in 15 matches.
His goals  and general wing play have contributed heavily to our good start to the season, a third of the way through the season, the table is shaping up, I have an idea who my title contenders are and which teams will pose difficult matches, although there is rarely an easy game.

I decided to rest 6 first team players for a match against Sheffield Wednesday, when are mid-table, and almost regretted it after trailing 1-0 for a large portion of the game, after re-introducing several key players around the 70th min mark, we started to get a grip on the game, Wednesday were playing very tight, packing midfield and giving us no real room to pass around, but a counter attack and break down the left-wing in the 84th min saw LMF Guerrero smash home in the top corner for a well deserved 1-1 draw which kept us topping the table.

table.pngBelow is my current starting XI, playing in a 4-2-2-2 formation, the two DMF’s give me some central stability and protect the defence, with Tachtsidis anchoring back and keeping a defensive position, whilst Doukouré has more freedom to join the attack, and actually has a decent shot on him, which I am also focusing on in his training schedules, he’s chipped in with a few goals already this season.
Team Selection.png

Subs (not shown) include:
Albrighton LMF (74)
Soudani CF (76)
Cools RMF (76)
Aguissa DMF (77)
Guerrero LMF (69)
Figueiredo CB (75)

I will be looking to sign a backup right back come January, but I’m pretty happy with everything I have in the other positions, I plan to give some game time to some promising youths too at some point, maybe in cup games, which will also help satisfy the board objective of developing youths and having one youth player play ink at least 70% of matches over 2 seasons.

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Lastly is short video showing a few goals scored this season, some nice counter attacks and good finishes, first clip in the video shows a. nice goal scored against me by the COM, with the CF pulling off some stopovers to wrong foot my defender then planting a daisy cutter into the bottom corner from the edge of the box.

There won’t be a post Thursday this week as I am away from Thursday morning all weekend, so won’t be about to post, but normal service will resume again next Monday.

The King is Back

FIFA 19 Career Match 0-4 MID V NFO, 2nd Half.pngSeason three has started well, off the back of last seasons relegation the boys had a point to prove, the board and fans expect immediate promotion, we can’t let them down.
The first few matches were tough, but after tweaking any formation to now play a 4-2-2-2, with two DMF’s, 2 wide midfielders and 2 up top, our play has started to balance out, we have more cover in the centre of the field, and with the instructions for one of the DMF’s to always hang back and take up a defensive role, we aren’t getting caught quite so much, although the essential quality of a good DMF has always been to be able to pop off shots from range, and neither of my two DMF’s can shoot for shit, Decouré is the better of the two, chipping in with the odd goal but nothing from ‘PES DMF’ territory.

Also, watching a few FIFA 19 tips n tricks videos on YouTube has made a big difference.
It was nothing I didn’t already know, or knew that I should be doing, but in the hustle and bustle of a live match you often just forget the discipline and go into button mash mode, proper use of jockeying and contain when  defending and laying off the damn sprint button has made a huge difference, and my play has improved.

Muto, a CF signing from Newcastle, hasn’t really done much since joining, he got a hat-trick on his debut in the pre-season tournament but since then, only a single league goal.
Josh King, a signing last January from Bournemouth, is now starting to settle in to his role as the main striker, bagging a couple of braces and being pivotal in most matches, along with another January signing, Jurgen Damm, from Middlesborough, who is also now starting to shine out on the right-wing.

FIFA 19 Career (In Menus)_7.pngTop of the league after 7 matches, but still a long way to go, I will be disappointed if we are not in the title race come April time, I have invested around 48 million into the squad, in order to gain promotion back to the big time, we cannot afford not to go up this season.

Pantimillion in goal, has been really good but he’s only rated 71, I needed another keeper, and managed to bag this stalwart on the last day of the transfer window, aged 33 but an experienced keeper and 76 rated, he will do nicely, has already made a great legs save from close range on his debut in a good 3-2 win over relegated Watford.

FIFA 19 Career (In Menus)_6.png

I also adopted the Operation Sports (forum) sliders for FIFA 19 at the start of this season.
After trialling them in a friendly I was so impressed with much more balanced the game play was, and realistic, that I kept them, in short they only change a few stats, mainly the run frequency, pass speed, and first touch error, for both Player and COM, this keeps it balanced but introduces more randomness into proceedings as the ball bobbles about more and there are more midfield battles.

I shall not be tweaking anything, it’s the OS sliders, or vanilla, no messing about wasting time.

Lastly, I leave a short compilation of goals scored so far this season, nothing stand-out, a few nice team goals but some of them were at critical points of the match, and a result of tweaked tactics, play style, so meant more in-the-moment.

The Final Day

The above video shows a few goals scored in the last 4 or 5 games of season 2, including a nice 2-0 away victory against an under par Liverpool side at Anfield, unfortunately I only won one, drew two, and lost 2 of those final games, leaving me in a very precarious position at the foot of the table.

Here is the league table going into the final day of the season:

League table 1 game left.pngAs you can see, I’m 18th, only a win in the last game against Chelsea, and a defeat for Crystal Palace at home to Stoke, would see me survive, it’s out of our hands, World Class has been a cruel mistress, it’s very hard, especially against the top sides.
I’ve conceded far too many goals, and as a result far a far inferior goal difference, so not even a draw for Palace would let me off, they had to lose, we had to win, against Chelsea, who were top of the league, it wasn’t likely, or was it?

So there we have it, we got battered 4-0, as expected, another haul of goals shipped, another defeat, it summed up our season really, too inconsistent, and not good enough players or depth to be able to cope in the Premier League on World Class level, so down we went, here’s there final league table.

final table.png

Second bottom. Down and out. Didn’t deserve much more to be honest.
Now I had to wait to see if I still had a job, as the board objective, the sole objective was to avoid relegation, and I didn’t even manage that.
There was no massaging of the table or fixtures to ease up on me and give me a glimmer of hope, no fixtures going my way, it was just pure realistic hardship all the way, Palace drew in the last game so even if I’d have beaten Chelsea 10-0 I still would have been relegated.

In an attempt to pre-empt the sack, I applied for the vacant managers position at Stoke, who remained in the Premier league, this was their response:

stoke manager.png

They didn’t want me, can’t blame them.
SO down to the Championship I went, and plundered through my pre-season dealings before finding out if I’d kept my job our not.
Parachute payments from the Premier league gave me a decent transfer kitty in the Championship, around £45 million, I signed Muto at CF from Newcastle for £15mil, Damm, a pacy gherkin RMF for £12mil and Denswill, a strong CB for £9.3mil.
I also let Bojan go, and chose not to renew loans for a few other players.

Then the review meeting from the board came in:
board message.png

I kept my job, just.
So at the time of writing, I will be taking Forest through another EFL Championship season, my board objective is to win the league, nothing less.
Have a few new signings, and a few mil left in the kitty, so onwards and upwards.

Out but not quite down

Team.png

That’s my usual first team selection above, with an average player rating of 75, it’s not a bad side, but life in the Premier League on World Class level, is frustratingly hard.
I have the worst defence in the league, and the weakest goal scoring ratio in the league, it’s no wonder we are languishing near the bottom of the table.

Josh King, an emergency CF signing from Bournemouth on the final day of the transfer window, has struggled to settle in so far, not living up to his 79 rating, and being pretty anonymous in most matches.
I only signed him because I had a cheeky £16 million offer from PSG for my star striker, Emmanuel Dennis, I did not want to sell, so thought I’d be cheeky back and counter with an ask for £28.5 million, to my surprise, and dismay, PSG accepted, and before I knew what I’d done, Dennis was gone, at least I had a chunk of cash to find another forward.

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Second from bottom, just, 2 wins could take me out of the relegation zone, so whilst it looks ominous, survival is definitely doable, it’s just going to be difficult.
I need to hope that the remaining 7 fixtures are against weaker sides whom I may be able to take points from, I know for a fact though that I have to play Man Utd at home and Liverpool at home, so plausibly 5 actual games to save my job.

Another new signing, Zambo-Anguila at DMF had all the stats I look for in a defensive midfielder, strength, agility, ball winning prowess, tackling, but again hasn’t overly impressed with anything he has done so far, usurped regular in that position, Tachtsidis, isn’t happy and demanded showdown talks.

player moans.pngI’m going to have to put him back in the side for a few matches to appease him as I can’t afford a low morale, under-performing player of his quality.

I have about £13 million in transfer funds and around £400k in wage funds left over, the transfer kitty could be boosted to around £15 million by adjusting the wages available slightly, this will carry over to next season and form part of my transfer war chest, should I keep my job.

Have also lost my Captain, and CB, Gurreiro, for 3 matches due to a straight red card, as shown below, which I don’t think was a Red. He may have come in from behind but was a stretch-tackle, and actually played the ball, harsh decision, second clip in the below video is the same match, coming back from a goal down and a man down to equalise through RMF Dion Cools.

Towards the end of my session last night, Josh King finally broke his duck since signing and bagged a couple of goals, the first being a typical goal ;poachers finish, and the second with a scorching mid-ranger. More of that please.

I should finish the season over the weekend so Monday’s post will wrap up season 2 and my fate as Nott’m Forest boss.