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Feb 6, 2013
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Chelsea Football Club
The Global Free Agent Challenge

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I will be playing the Global Free Agent Challenge as Chelsea FC and tracking my progress here. My manager is a Frenchman by the name of Jean-Baptiste du Roi -- former French international footballer who began a managing career. I like to think he started managing in the second French league and made his way up over the last 15 years to, ultimately take over the storied CFC immediately after UEFA decided that its top leagues would have to restart.

My season goal, as discussed with Roman Abramovich, is to win the league title. This gave me a wage budget of 88/annum and I intended to use it all. As of now, here is what I've got:

Here is my starting XI:
Glen Johnson (FB[R]) ________________Nemanja Vidic (CD)________________Jan Vertonghen (CD)___________Leighton Baines (FB[R])​

View attachment 364989 __________View attachment 364991
Yaya Toure (CM[BWM]) ______________Arturo Vidal (CM[CM-S])

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Arda Turan (AM[L--W]) ________________________________________________________________Mesut Ozil (AM[R-W])

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Sergio Aguero (S)_______ Demba Ba (S)

And here is my entire squad with contract type included:

Iker Casillas (FT)
Tim Krul (BU)
Eugenio Lamanna (BU)
Jack Butland (HP)

Centre Backs
Jan Vertonghen (FT)
Nemanja Vidic (RT)
Ryan Shawcross (RT)
Kyriakos Papadopolous (RT)
Stephen Caulker (BU)
Toby Alderweireld (BU)
Sebasitan Coates (BU)

Right Back:
Glen Johnson (FT)
Alvaro Arbeloa (BU)
Martin Montoya (HP)

Left Back:
Leighton Baines (FT)
David Murphy (BU)
Ben Davies (HP)

Central Mid:
Yaya Toure (FT)
Arturo Vidal (FT)
Benat (FT)
Paul Pogba (BU)
Zakaria Labyad (BU)
Nick Powell (HP)
Arda Turan (FT -- Work Permit Pending)
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (RT)
Alessio Ceci (RT)
Wesley Verhoek (BU)
Matt Phillips (HP)

Mezut Ozil (KP)
Mario Gotze (RT)
Adam Lallana (BU)
Gary MacKay-Stephen (HP)

Sergio Aguero (KP)
Demba Ba (FT)
Olivier Occean (BU)
David Goodwillie (BU)
Romelu Lukaku (BU)
Kolbeinn Sigurdsson (HP)

I am using Might and Magic by Raikan007 as my tactic so I think this team fits well. I will update as I go.
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Feb 6, 2013
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Pre-Season and Community Shield

Ahead of the Community Shield, we had a good performance in the pre-season and I was feeling confident. I took a look at the Man City lineup and it was a good one but I believe we have more talent in our squad -- and especially in our starting XI. For me, it was a match we should win but I wasn't going to place too much emphasis on it. Would it be nice to add a trophy to our case (and win my first trophy in my first competitive fixture with the club)? Absolutely. Was it a goal for the season? Frankly, it didn't really even show up on my radar. I want Premier League victory and to, at least, win the Europa Cup. So as we headed into the Community Shield match, I made great effort to make it clear that the pressure was off.

I wanted to put forward a good team for this match, though, because it is my last chance to see them work together under this tactic and then make some changes as we went forward with the domestic campaign.

We pulled ahead in the middle of the first half with a beautiful goal by Vidal and looked like winning until the 80th minute when they scored on a headed cross to the far post. My defenders just didn't have the teamwork to be able to organize themselves and they lost the scorer in the crowd. Casillas was caught way out and was never going to be able to make the save. So penalties it was. We each missed one in the first five and then we fell on the third sudden-death shot. We lost but I wasn't too disappointed because we played very well, commanded possession and had a number of shots. So we lost the Community Shield but it wasn't so bad as it was never my goal anyway.
Feb 6, 2013
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Start of the Season, Champions' League Group Draw

After the seasons' first two matches, I am pretty excited. Tactically, we are starting to come into our own: becoming more fluid in the three tactics I've selected for us to use, and developing a level of understanding between all of the players that I thought we would be waiting for months to get. Defensively, we're still struggling a bit -- Vertonghen isn't quite performing where I'd like him to but a surprise has been Papadoplous who has been at an average of 9 in his match rating. I'm chuffed for that and will start playing Caulker next to him if Vertonghen continues to do badly in his role. In short: we're allowing too many goals.

Our first match against Everton was a promising development: we managed to get some attacking movement going. Unfortunately, we also conceded too many goals and far too many shots. 3-3 was the final score which was disappointing since we had a huge amount of possession. Any concerns that I had later were relatively allayed when we played (and trounced) Newcastle 7-2. In this match, everyone was extremely good. The average match rating on our team was 9. I was absolutely chuffed and look forward to a great season. Next, we play Atletico Madrid in the European Supercup final. I'm keen to win this to give us some more momentum.

More good news: we drew an excellent group in the Champions' League. Group F is as follows:

  • Chelsea
  • Dynamo Kiev
  • Olympiakos
  • Dinamo (Croatia)

We will win this group without much trouble, I imagine, and will be able to rely, largely, on our young guns to do it allowing the bulk of our best players to focus on the Premier League (our other goal for the year). So all in all, great news from this update.