Jul 16, 2009
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Welcome to my story in which I will take on the challenge of guiding Championship side Peterborough United as far as possible. I'll open up the story with a team report and then move things on from there. But first off, why would I pick "the Posh"?

The first thing that made me attempt this is simply the fact that they are my local club and I have a decent knowledge of the club and it's players which will give me a nice head start into my first FM 2013 game. But there is certainly more to it than that: Peterborough are a fantastic challenge for many reasons; they are a club that are well supported by a sensible chairman and has the potential to slowly progress to being a top club but through a sensible route.
Secondly, they are a local club; they try to support the side through local support and have also recently invested well into their youth setup. This gives me an opportunity to hone my abilities as a nurturer of talent which I find one of the most rewarding aspects of football manager.
Thirdly, there is an abundance of quality and team ethic in the squad already and requires very little tweaks to be really challenging at this level.

My Ambitions at London Road
I think the possibilities for this club are fairly extensive; there is decent funding and through sensible scouting and careful business work I think I can progress the financial situation of the club in a number of years: this is the long term policy of the club.
As for the playing side, I will go into this in more detail in the team report, but fundamentally I want a disciplined side with a tendency for flair in the right moments. I will look for hard working British players that have versatility and ambition - this is fundamental to our long term aims.

For these reasons, I am really looking forward to this story and I hope you all enjoy watching my team progress. A team report will follow!

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Peterborough United are a modern, forward-thinking club with decent facilities. London Road is a decent stadium with further potential for development and there are improving youth facilities. This is something I will look to develop more as my career progresses.

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Last season the club managed to finish 18th in the nPower Championship - their highest ever league finish. We will look to maintain our position in the league again this year and inherit a decent squad. Summer additions made by previous manager Darren Ferguson include:

Bobby Olejnik (goalkeeper) from Torquay for 300k
Danny Swanson (attacking midfielder) from Dundee United on a Free Transfer
Michael Bostwick (central midfielder) from Stevenage for 500k
Nathaniel Knight-Percival (central defender) from Wrexham on a Free Transfer
Nathaniel Mendez-Laing (right winger) from Wolves for 100k

There was therefore decent investment prior to my arrival which leaves me with very little room for manouevre in terms of making new signings meaning I will have to rely on the loan market for further improvements.


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Just two goalkeepers in my first team squad means that this is an immediate position requiring improvement. Bobby Olejnik is decent and will be my first choice but Joe Day is no more than a reserve goalkeeper. I will be scouting round for a backup. Potentially a position for long term investment also.

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Several options here. Mark Little is a pacy full back but doesn't have as good an understanding of the game as Alcock, who also possesses a useful versatility. Certainly decent competition for places in this position and not somewhere I am looking to strengthen immediately.

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Clearly a position of weakness. Tommy Rowe is listed as my strongest player in this position but he is also my first choice in central midfield, leaving me with Craig Alcock and the raw Kgosi Ntlhe. Ntlhe is a fine talent but I think this is somewhere where I need a loan player to bolster my options.


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A position where I genuinely like to have at least 4 quality options. Brisley and Zakuani are undoubtedly my first choices but I am left with very little after them. We have a couple of youth options with talent but I will probably need to look at improving here. Nathaniel Knight-Percival is poorly rated but I think he can still be a useful player at this level and his versatility is important.

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Arguably a position where we have the most quality. Bostwick and Tommy Rowe will be the starters here but I have plenty of other players who can come in and provide something different. Very happy with this and it will be handy when we are looking to control the tempo.

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Great depth here. Boyd is the best player at the club and a legend whilst Joe Newell is a very exciting prospect indeed. No qualms with this position.

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A couple of different options available here. Swanson is better deployed behind a striker so Kearns will be first choice but Mendez-Laing has potential as well. I am satisfied with the cover available in this position and with a deeper midfield I think that Mark Little can also progress to play here.

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Great depth here. Swanson will be my first choice attacking midfielder as well as the diminuitive Lee Tomlin who provides guile and quality support to our lone striker. My only worry is the fact that Swanson is regarded as injury prone so this is somewhere where I will keep an eye out for potential loanees.

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A couple of different options here and all at a decent level. Tyrone is first choice for me personally and he can play that lone striker role well, but we also have decent cover. Will definitely look round for a prospect as well though.

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So these are the two formations I will look to deploy this campaign. The first tactic (4-2-3-1) will allow us to dominate possession and hopefully make the most of our flair players, whilst the second (3-5-1-1) will allow us to sit back on the opposition and break with the pace and guile that we have. These two formations will allow us to make the most of the team available and also gives us good options against the level of quality in this division.

So there is a decent squad available to me. I will be looking for additions to the goalkeeper role, left back and also keep my out for any cheap youth prospects as well.
Long term transfer targets include:

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A fine defensive prospect and I am already looking to establish a relationship between the two of us. My long term fix for the lack of depth in centre back.

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A player who has decent versatility, is young and hungry, and has real quality to boot.

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A real prospect and could be available cheaply. Will keep my eye on his development but could certainly be a future talent.

So having looked at the depth in terms of the squad, I have also highlighted our three best players who will be key to any success we have this season:
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These three boys have been at the club for a long time and their quality and experience will prove vital this year. George Boyd is a tricky left winger with a great attitude and should chip in with plenty of goals and assists. Tommy can play almost anywhere and will always put in a shift - has real quality to boot. Zakuani is the club captain, a true pro and a great defender.

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Here we have our three best youth prospects. Joe Newell (centre) is the most exciting and will probably see a lot of game time this season. Peter Grant is a great prospect and could certainly play in the first team in the next couple of years. Jaanai Gordon (right) is an exciting centre forward with real talent but also a lot to learn. I am excited to see their progress this campaign.

There is a lot of quality available to me here and I am excited by what I can do with this squad. We will look to bring in a couple of players on loan over the pre-season whilst looking to hold onto our best players despite Premier League interest.
The next update will cover our pre-season in terms of matches, transfers and team news. From then on I will do month by month updates!

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So pre-season is over, and after 6 competitive matches I have a match better idea of what to expect from the team this season. I brought in a number of trialists and made a lot of changes in the matches so results were inconsistent but performances were by and large very pleasing. So let's start with the matches.


Peterborough United 2 - 0 Liverpool Reserves
Boyd, Swanson
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An impressive start to proceedings. We got an early lead and kept on improving. Liverpool have some technical players in their ranks but the industry of Bostwick and Rowe kept them mostly nullified.

Hednesford 0 - 4 Peterborough United
Zakuani, Maskell o.g., Kearns, Newell
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Some more trialists were given a look in for this game, and we completely dominated our non-league opponents. We played some nice football with our enterprising 4-2-3-1 formation showing it's full potential. I won't read too much into this result though.

Peterborough United 0 - 1 Roma
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We put on a decent performance here against Roma, proven by the amount of shots we had on their goal. We played our 3-5-1-1 formation to good effect and were unlucky to lose. Delighted to test ourselves against quality opposition.

Peterborough United 0 - 0 Scunthorpe
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A tough game, but we showed we were the better team outplaying Scunthorpe. We just showed a lack of quality in the final third though I will put that down to being rusty.

Peterborough United 2 - 4 Manchester United Reserves
Swanson, Barnett
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Unlucky to lose this one, I urged the team to play more expansively and we carved open plenty of opportunities but also showed some defensive frailties that I am keen to work on. Got ourselves back into it after going 2-0 down but late goals struck us off. Decent run out.

Peterborough United 1 - 2 West Ham United
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Barnett bagged his second of pre-season and we put in a decent display against Premier League opposition but their class showed through in the end. I have seen enough in these few matches to suggest that we have more than enough quality to compete well in the Championship.


The team is starting to take shape and I have a clear idea in my mind of my best starting XI in preparation for the new season. Lee Tomlin has been subject to a lot of interest from Premier League teams and could leave in the next few weeks, meaning I will be keeping my eye out for a decent replacement.
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In terms of players coming in, Daniel Devine impressed enough on trial to earn himself a contract whilst Rob Elliot joins us on loan from Newcastle to provide back up for Olejnik. Swansea's Ben Davies also comes in to provide back up and competition at the left back position.
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I am happy with the squad I have available and cannot wait to see how we get on next month.

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As a fellow Posh fan I'm interested to see how this plays out. Just started a new career with Posh last night so will upload that soon. Who are you thinking for backup keeper?
Loving the detail that you've put into this mate. Definitely got a follower!
Nice start to your story! Will definitely be following, I signed Emile Sinclair once and he was amazing. Keep an eye on him, I was Crystal Palace and Barnett and him had 25 goals between them mid-season and got Peterborough to 3rd before I signed Sinclair. I have never tried Barnett and he might be better than Sinclair but Sinclair is a good super-sub and if you want to sell him you can for a good price. :)
Cheers guys, just seen these comments! Will update when I'm back at uni but have gotten up to jan in the mean time, great fun to play as
Sell Boyd for 3 million and rebuild the team, let McCann go too!
Yeah Boyd will go at the end of the season as newel has been better anyway. McCann is decent backup but isn't a starter so will probably go too, he's nice to have on the bench though cos he's an assured head.. Won't be able to do this T&L next Saturday but it was going very well if I remember correctly so I'm looking forwa to it!
okay well my computer crashed with this file on it so i'll be doing it again! wish me luck, should update pretty soon.