It's all a load of balls.... The Rise Through Europe

April 2024 Review


April 2024 Review


Serie A
Sampdoria 1 - 2 Inter Milan

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April started with a massive game against Inter Milan. It would see 8th vs 6th in the league and if we lost, we'd probably be out of the running for a European qualification spot. Inter Milan had seen a complete turnaround since Luis Enrique took over - they were struggling in 18th when he was appointed - now 18 games later and they sit 6th in the table, having only lost 3 league games under his reign. The first half was really tight but with us looking slightly the better side. But it didnt work in our favour as it was our opponents who took a 1-0 lead into half time through their only shot of the half. The 2nd half started and Koulibaly got his 2nd of the game to extend Inter's lead and we were really up against it now. But it was only 10 minutes later when Nouri floated in a corner for Denis Alibec to get up above the Inter defence and nod home to make it 2-1....could the comeback be on? Once Inter had gone down to 10 men, we really turned up the pressure and we played some great football, coming close to an equalizer on a number of occasions, but luck just wasn't on our side today and we suffered a gutting defeat in a game we didn't deserve to lose.

Serie A
Pescara 3 - 3 Sampdoria

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Pescara came into this game on a massive high off the back of a 2-1 victory over AC Milan in their last game. I felt we needed a quick start to knock their high confidence levels quickly and aimed to put them on the back foot immediately. Young striker Samuele Ferrini was given his first start for the club and I was hoping he could make an impact....and he did exactly that as he struck to give us a 12th minute lead with his first shot of the game. To be fair to Pescara, they came back at us and were probably the better side for the remainder of the first half, although they failed to find a goal and we took our lead to half time. In the 2nd half, it was Pescara who started fast and within 7 minutes they were level as Krapikas came racing out of his goal to close down the ball, leaving his goal wide open....the winger passed to his side and striker Sartori had an easy tap in. Poor goalkeeping! Only 4 minutes later and they were in front as the words 'for f*ck's sake' could be heard coming out of my mouth!! Then within 12 minutes of that, Ferrini bagged his 2nd of the game and El Shaarawy got in on the act to give us a 3-2 lead....What an amazing half of football this was turning out to be! That wasn't the end of the action either (unfortunately) as Pescara fought back yet again to level the scores on 83 minutes, Odjer firing in a decent shot after controlling the ball well from a free kick. The game finished 3-3....a great one for the neutrals but a result I was bitterly disappointed with!

Serie A
Sampdoria 0 - 3 Palermo

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10th placed Palermo were up next. After his 2 goals in the previous game, Ferrini kept his place in the starting lineup and I was interested to see if he could follow it up with another good performance. Well I didn't get it from Ferrini or any of the squad to be honest as we put in what can only be described as a f*cking awful performance. Not happy and tempers were flairing in the dressing room after the game....what is happening - the team has just completely gone to **** over the past couple of months and we've slipped to 10th in the table with this result. Not good enough!!

Serie A
Benevento 2 - 1 Sampdoria

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Awful again....losing to the team in 19th! No wins in 5! This is becoming a disastrous second half of the season and there will be massive changes this Summer at Sampdoria with a clearout on the cards. I have entirely too many players here who are not good enough!

League Table

Sorry, forgot to screenshot the table but we dropped all the way down to 10th this month with the shocking form throughout the month.

Player of the Month

I refused to hand out a player of the month award this month as the performances have been so awful!

Defenders Earn New Contracts

Roberts Veips has been rewarded for his improved form this season with a new 3 year contract. The 23 year old Latvian centre back has been given a contract as a squad rotation player, worth £12k per week, a £4.5k pay rise on his previous deal. Veips has made 13 appearances for the club this season, scoring 1 goal and achieveing an average rating of 7.12.

Jacopo Sala has signed a new 1 year contract with the club. The 32 year old Italian right back has been handed a contract worth £29k per week, with a squad status as a backup player. Sala has made 17 (13 starts) appearances for the club this season with an average rating of 6.99.

May 2024 Review


May 2024 Review


Serie A
Sampdoria 2 - 1 Atalanta

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Serie A
Genoa 0 - 4 Sampdoria

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Serie A
Empoli 1 - 1 Sampdoria

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I had the **** going into May, feeling massively let down and disappointed in the team as a whole. So I thought I'd drop half the team and focus on my younger players rather than normal first team starters who were aging and pushing towards their mid 30s.... It actually seemed to work and we didn't finish the season too badly with 2 wins and a draw. Young striker Samuele Ferrini looks likes a revelation for next season. Bioucas who I signed in January will definitely be getting more opportunities next season too!

Final League Table

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Well the media got it spot on. They predicted us to finish 9th and that's exactly where we ended up, same as last season but with a few more points. Juventus have wrestled their title back from Inter Milan.

Player of the Month

Salvatore Del Giudice

Appearances: 3
Goals: 1
Assists: 0
Interceptions: 45
Average Rating: 7.63

Salvatore has played defensive midfield all season for me. To give some of my younger players a chance this month, I dropped him back to centre back (where he classed as competent) and he has been fantastic there. May just have found his new position for next year!!

Ferrini Wins U19 Player of the Month

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Young striker Samuele Ferrini has been awarded the U19 Serie A Player of the Month award for May!

Four Named In Team of the Month

Roberts Veips, Salvatore Del Giudice, Marin Martinek and Kyle Walker have all been selected in the Serie A Team of the Month for May.

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End of Season Financial Update

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Things don't look good with a negative balance in excess of £3 million.

Serie A Prize Money & Squad Bonuses

The club have been given £2.4 million in prize money for finishing 9th in Serie A this season.

The club have paid out a total of £775k to be shared amongst the squad on a pro rata basis after finishing 9th in Serie A this season.

Board Set Next Season's Budgets

The board have set the initial budgets for next season....

The transfer budget has been set at £2.96 million.
The wage budget has been set at £1 million per week. The club are currently spending £926k per week on wages.

Allegri Named Manager of the Year

Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri has won the Serie A Manager of the Year award as voted by his peers. I personally gave my vote to Luis Enrique at Inter Milan as I thought what he achieved after he took over was an amazing turnaround on their season.

Coppa Italia

Luis Enrique Guides Inter To Coppa Italia Success

Inter Milan have lifted the 2024 Coppa Italia, following a 1-0 win over Juventus, who find themselves runners up for the second season in a row after losing to Roma in the final last season.

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End of Season 2024


End of Season Player Stats

Top Average Rating (in relation to appearances):

1st: Vasco Regini - LB - 29 appearances - 7.29
2nd: Kyle Walker - RB - 27 appearances - 7.16
3rd: Roberts Veips - CB - 22 appearances - 7.16

Top Goalscorers:

1st: Denis Alibec - ST - 13
2nd: Stephan El Shaarawy - AML - 8
3rd: Karol Linetty - MC - 7

Top Assists:

1st: Stephan El Shaarawy - AML - 9
2nd: Vasco Regini - LB - 8
3rd: Denis Alibec (ST) & Abdelhak Nouri (AMR) - 7

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European Update

European Competition Winners 2023/24

Here's the update from around Europe as the major competitions have now come to a close for the 2023/2024 season...

English Premiership Winners: Chelsea
English Premiership Runners Up: Manchester United
English FA Cup Winners: Manchester United
English League Cup Winners: Manchester United

Spanish La Liga Winners: Barcelona
Spanish La Liga Runners Up: Real Madrid
Spanish Cup Winners: Real Madrid

German Bundesliga Winners: Bayern Munich
German Bundesliga Runners Up: Dortmund
German Cup Winners: Bayer Leverkusen

French Ligue 1 Winners: Paris Saint Germain
French Ligue 1 Runners Up: AS Monaco
French Cup Winners: Paris Saint Germain
French Coupe de la Ligue Winners: Toulouse FC

Italian Serie A Winners: Juventus
Italian Serie A Runners Up: AC Milan
Italian Cup Winners: Inter Milan

Holland Eredivisie Winners: Ajax
Holland Eredivisie Runners Up: Feyenoord
Holland Dutch Cup Winners: PSV

Portuguese Premier League Winners: Benfica
Portuguese Premier League Runners Up: Sporting Lisbon
Taca de Portugal Winners: Feirense

Scotland Premiership Winners: Celtic
Scotland Premiership Runners Up: Rangers
Scottish Cup Winners: Aberdeen

Champions League Winners: Atletico Madrid
Champions League Runners Up: Real Madrid

Europa League Winners: Fenerbahce
Europa League Runners Up: Benfica

European Super Cup Winners: Paris Saint Germain
Top work with this! Good to see that the youngsters made an impact in May, positive signs for the future
June 2024 Review


June 2024 Review

Club Announce Profits

The board have announced that the club made pre tax profits over the last financial year of £2.8 million.

The club will therefore have to pay a tax bill in the region of £850k.

TV Rights

The club have been informed that we will receive £36.6 million for Serie A TV rights over the coming season.

Sponsorship & Shirt Sales

Our Commercial Director has announced one new sponsorship deal for the club. This is a youth team sponsor and the deal is worth £50k per year. The previous youth sponsor was also worth £50k per annum.

Total sponsoship over this past year has exceeded £5.6 million, which is down from £7.6 million from the season before.

Shirt sales this season brought in a total revenue of £2.35 million, with £235k of this coming from abroad. The most in demand player name this season was Karol Linetty again, followed by Abdelhak Nouri and Stephan El Shaarawy.

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Ball Dishes Out New Contracts

Kyle Walker has signed a 1 year contract to stay with us for another season. His new contract has been downgraded to a backup player status with a pay cut to £26k per week from over £45k per week. I felt he had a good season for us last year and could still have something to offer as a backup player next season even at the age of 34.

Salvatore Del Giudice has penned a new contract worth £38k per week, giving him a £13k pay rise on his previous deal. Del Giudice has grown to become a key member of the first team over the past season and his new squad status will reflect this. The deal will keep Salvatore at the club for a further 5 years!

Hungarian international goalkeeper Gergely Hutvagner has signed a new contract with the club which will see him extend his stay with us for another 3 years. The contract is as a squad rotation player and is worth £8k per week, a rise on his previous contract where he was earning only £2.5k per week.

Three Depart Luigi Ferraris Stadium

Attacking midfield player Denis Baumgartner has left the club after being transfer listed by me at the end of the season. Denis has joined french club Stade Rennais FC for a fee of £3.8 million. Although Baumgartner had made 42 appearances at Sampdoria under my command, I felt that he just hadn't impressed me enough to sustain a long term future at the club and I feel I can get better for his position.

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33 year old centre back Rafael Toloi has left the club after I offered his services out to other clubs. The only club to come in for him was Russain club FC Krasnodar who have paid a fee of £525k to snap him up. Toloi made 118 appearances for Sampdoria during his 4 years at the club, but at the age of 33 and with better options at in the squad, I felt it was time to move the player on.

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34 year old centre back Lisandro Lopez has retired from playing football and had therefore left the club.

great read

loving this thread - hope you can make a success of it in Italy. Hopefully a youth policy will help inject some pace, and goals into the team for a euro place next season
loving this thread - hope you can make a success of it in Italy. Hopefully a youth policy will help inject some pace, and goals into the team for a euro place next season

Thanks mate, glad you're enjoying the thread! I hope so.....need to push on next season and I think younger fresher players is the way to go
Transfers Update


Summer of Change at Sampdoria

Players Out

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Veteran left back Vasco Regini has become a Sampdoria legend over the years, having been with the club since 2008. However, he has decided to call it a day on his time at the club as we couldn't agree a suitable contract moving forward. Aged 33, I wanted him to take a backup role in the team with a significant pay cut, but Vasco is looking for first team football and a salary in excess of £40k which I just couldn't warrant. Vasco made more than 330 appearances for the club over the years, scoring 4 goals from the trusty left back role, 2 of which came under my management. I'm sad to see him go but wish him well with his next venture.

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Maximiliano Romero has officially been sold. The 25 year old Argentinian striker only joined us last Summer but has been bitterly disappointing, scoring only 1 goal in his 17 appearances for the club and clocking up an average rating of only 6.66. I have therefore decided to move the player on and he has joined Stuttgart for a fee of £3 million.

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Inside forward Arber Zeneli has left the club to join SK Rapid Wien on loan for the season. He has been asking for more first team football over the past 6 months and I'm afraid I just can't give it to him. Not wanting to stand in the lads way, I agreed to offer him out to clubs and Wien came in with a loan offer for a season with a potential future fee of £3.2 million.

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Maxime Leverbe is surplus to requirements at Sampdoria so I have decided to move him on. Leverbe was put up for transfer and has joined Watford for a fee of £1.3 million.

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Jacopo Sala has left the club to join Danish Superliga side Odense Boldklub for a fee of £425k. The 32 year old full back was not needed at the club following the signing of Robert Gumny.

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The board have sold Abdelhak Nouri on my behalf....I didn't want the player to leave and pleaded with the board to reject the bid but they overuled me! Nouri has joined German side RBL for a fee of £19 million. They have paid £14 million up front and will pay another £5 million over the next 12 months. RBL will also pay us £2.5 million if they win the German Cup and another £4.9 million once Nouri has made 50 league appearances for the club. Gutted to lose him but it is at least a cash boost to the bank balance even though I've only had £6 million made available to the transfer kitty.

Players In

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Olivier Kemen has joined the club on a free transfer from Olympique Lyonnais. Kemen has been struggling for first team opportunities at Lyon over the last couple of years, only making 14 appearances for the club, but I think there is an opportunity for him here. He is a decent defensive midfielder with excellent work rate, good tackling and marking and I think he'll do a good job for us!

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Norwegian inside forward Tobias Svendsen has joined the club on a free transfer from Manchester City. The 24 year old has spent the last 7 seasons at Man City, with 6 of those spent out on loan. His last loan spell was at Serie A side Torino where he made 28 appearances, scoring 8 goals and bagging 7 assists, a very respectable return rate. So I think he could be a very good signing with his proven experience in the division. Also, he has cost us nothing and is immediately valued at a whopping £16.75 million.

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One thing I am trying to achieve at Sampdoria is a decent youth system and to do that, you need to keep the youngsters coming through the door. I have added another to the ranks in Daniele Spano, a 17 year old Italian defensive midfielder who joins us from Perugia where he has already made 7 senior appearances. I have paid a fee of £230k to secure the youngster who will be added to the U20s side to develop.

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21 year old Ivorian striker Joel Bakayoko has joined the club on a season long loan. Bakayoko joins us from spanish giants Barcelona, who he signed for 2 years ago for £6 million from Bochum. Bakayoko spent last season on loan at Marseille where he scored 6 goals in 14 appearances. He is a welcome boost to our attacking options for the upcoming season.

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Following the departure of Vasco Regini, I was desperate to add a good left back to the ranks...someone who would come in and play a key part in the side. I think I've found that man in Maximilian Mittelstadt, who joins us from German side Gelsenkirchen. Mittelstadt, 27, offers good pace in the left back role, can get forward and provide excellent crosses and is competent in his defensive duties also. I have agreed a total fee of £7 million for the player, with £1.5 million paid up front and £5.5 million to be paid over the course of the next 4 years.

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Full back Robert Gumny has joined us from Polish side Lech. I was keen to add better quality full backs to my ranks this Summer and I think Gumny gives us a better option at right back than what we had, and at 26 years old he has a few good years ahead of him too. I've forked out a fee of £2.1 million to secure his signature.

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After the board sold Nouri from under my nose, I needed to bring in a decent inside forward to replace him. 24 year old English inside forward Reiss Nelson has joined us on a season long loan from Arsenal. Nelson has spent all of his career at Arsenal but most of his time out on loan at various clubs including Norwich, Middlesbrough, Lille and most recently Red Ball Salzburg. Last year at Red Bull he managed to bad 15 goals and 7 assists from 34 appearances and I'm hoping he can bring this kind of form to Serie A.

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I've managed to bolster the side's attacking options for the upcoming season with the signing of another attacking midfield player. Adrien Bongiovanni has joined the club on a free transfer after being released by AS Monaco, where he failed to establish himself as a first team regular amongst their multi talented squad. The 24 year old Belgian international who has made 12 appearances for his country, is a good coup for us as he joins the squad and immediately commands a valuation of £12 million. He is a small, technical player with excellent dribbling skills who can play on both sides of the pitch or through the middle.

Pre Season Roundup


Pre Season Roundup


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Juventus Favourites To Retain Title

Juventus have been made the bookie's favourite to win the Serie A title this coming season, at odds of 5-2. They are however, closely followed by Roma at 3-1 and AC Milan at 13-4.

Sampdoria have been priced at 33-1 to lift the Serie A trophy, and the bookies have offered 30-1 on us to be relegated.

Board Set Season Expectations

The board have set their expectations for the upcoming season....

Serie A - Achieve a top half finish
Italian Cup - Reach the quarter final

Both targets match the same as last year.

The media have predicted us an 8th place finish in Serie A, again the same as they did last season.

Top Goalscorer Odds

The bookies rate Denis Alibec as our best chance of having a player win the Serie A Top Goalscorer award and even his odds are very slim at 200-1!! Obviously, our strikers are not rated as very good, so they'll have a point to prove this season!

The favourite to win the award is Napoli striker Arkadiusz Milik. The Polish striker scored 19 goals in 33 appearances for Napoli last season. AC Milan are clearly expected to bang in a lot of goals this year as they have Andre Belotti, Alberto Tenconi and Kelechi Iheanacho all in the top 5 favourites with the bookmakers.

Serie A Top Player Odds

The bookies have released their odds on who they expect to compete for the Serie A Top Player award this season. The favourite is Juventus's defensive midfielder Marco Grassi at 11-2. Assane Gnoukouri of Inter Milan and AC Milan's goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma are also expected to have major impacts for their clubs this year.

Our best chance of winning the award is Salvatore Del Giudice at odds of 75-1.

Linetty To Keep Captain's Armband

Karol Linetty will keep the captain's armband for the upcoming season.
Vice captaincy has been handed to central midfielder Leonardo Capezzi.

Italian Cup Draw

Sampdoria have been drawn against Serie C side Livorno in the third qualifying round of the Italian Cup. As the higher seeded side, Sampdoria have been awarded home advantage for the tie and will be seen as heavy favourites to win the game. The tie will take place on 18th August.

got top love a good freebie, even if they don't come off a 16 mill windfall will help you out no end! Same the baord sold Nouri - hopefully he wont be too missed.
August 2024 Review


August 2024 Review


Italian Cup 3rd Qualifying Round
Sampdoria 1 - 2 Livorno

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Dear oh dear! Not the way I wanted to be kicking off the season. Dropping out of the Italian Cup at the very first stage against a much lower rated team. Worrying and disappointing!

Serie A
Palermo 3 - 1 Sampdoria

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We kicked off the Serie A campaign with an away trip to Palermo, who had given us a solid 3-0 thrashing at the back end of last season. Not only was revenge on the cards, I was also keen for us to bounce back quickly from the disappointing defeat against Livorno in the cup. But we started this game in the worst possible fashion, going behind within 2 minutes to a La Gumina volley from 6 yards. On 30 minutes though, we were level, Leonardo Capezzi slotting home a tidy effort from just inside the box into the bottom corner. Early in the 2nd half we went down to 10 men, when Reiss Nelson was sent off for a two footed lunge. Things got worse from there when Karol Linetty was shown his 2nd yellow and a red card on 67 minutes and we'd now have to play the last 20 minutes with only 9 men!! Palermo made the extra manpower tell, and secured the opening day win with 2 more goals for a 3-1 victory. Not a good start.

League Table

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1 game, 1 loss.

Financial Update

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The bank balance looks the strongest since I've been here following the sale of Abdelhak Nouri.

Injury Update

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A healthy squad.

New Centre Back For Sampdoria

Swedish centre back Filip Helander has joined us from Serie A rivals Bologna. I was keen to bolster the defence going into the new season, and Filip is an experience player in the italian league, who offers great height at centre back with decent tackling and heading ability. Helander has spent the past 8 seasons at Bologna where he has made 283 appearances. He has signed for us for a fee of £875k.

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European Championship 2024

European Championship 2024

Just realised I forgot to provide an update on this year's European Championship so here it is, albeit a little late....

Semi Finals...

England 4 - 0 Spain

Turkey 0 - 0 France
(France win 4-2 on penalties)


England 1 - 3 France


September 2024 Review


September 2024 Review


Serie A
Sampdoria 0 - 5 AC Milan

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AC Milan were up next and as if the task wasn't tough enough at the start of the game, it got even tougher only 3 minutes in with already our 3rd sending off in 2 games. 10 men for 90 minutes against one of the best teams in the league....I wasn't looking forward to this. It wasn't long before we found ourselves behind on the scoresheet, only 5 minutes in fact as AC Milan carved open our defence with ease and went 1-0 up through Belotti. On the stroke of half time it was 2-0 to Milan when Belotti bagged his 2nd of the game. 3 more goals followed in the 2nd half, Bellotti bagging 4 for himself and we were literally thrashed 5-0 on the day! Awful performance again and things were not looking good for the season ahead after just 2 games.

Serie A
Udinese 1 - 0 Sampdoria

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Udinese had started the season with a draw and a loss, so they were coming into this game as desperate for a win as us. When Udinese took the lead towards the end of the half, it was a bitter pill to swallow as we'd been the better side during the first half but our finishing had let us down. Despite dominating the remainder of the match, we just couldn't find the equalizer and went down to our 3rd defeat in 3 games. I'm struggling to understand it - I have some fantastic attacking players in this squad but they just cant score goals at the moment. Hopefully in time, the team will gel a bit more and things will start coming together, but it needs to happen sooner rather than later or my job is going to be in jeapordy.

Serie A
Sampdoria 1 - 1 Chievo

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The game against Chievo on paper should have been a perfect opportunity to get off the mark with our first win of the season. But with the way we'd started the season, I couldn't go into any game with any real confidence at the moment. Again, we were dominant, again we created a lot of chances, but again we struggled to take them and the game ended in a disappointing 1-1 draw.

Serie A
Torino 1 - 3 Sampdoria

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An away trip to Torino would follow and with a point on the board from the Chievo game, I was hoping we could kick on and add a victory to the tally too. Things didn't start well with Torino taking a 7th minute lead and I thought to myself 'not again' as we started poorly again! But the second half performance from my lads was much improved and 3 goals secured our first win of the season and lifted us off the bottom of the table :)

Serie A
Sampdoria 1 - 1 Fiorentina

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We followed up the win at Torino with a home game against Fiorentina. We played some excellent football throughout this game and were pretty dominant with 57% possession and creating 19 chances to their 6. But our dominance was not rewarded with a victory as we ended up with a 1-1 draw. It had been our opponents who took an unlikely lead on 62 minutes completely against the run of play, only for Del Giudice to get a goal back and earn us a point 8 minutes later.

League Table

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Only one win in September sees us sitting just above the relegation places with only 5 points from the opening 6 games. Although, we are now unbeaten in the last 3 games so hopefully we can use that to kick on and go on a bit of a run to boost our position in the table.

Player of the Month

Felix Beijmo

Appearances: 3
Goals: 0
Assists: 0
Interceptions: 43
Average Rating: 7.42

Once Beijmo came into the team, the defence tightened up and we haven't lost in the 3 appearances he has made!

Financial Update

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Big losses this month but still £7.5 million in the positive.

Injury Update

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New left back Mittelstadt will be out for the whole of October.

October 2024 Review


October 2024 Review


Serie A
Genoa 1 - 0 Sampdoria

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We kicked off October with the della Lanterna Derby against Genoa. Our opponents had made a decent start to the season and sat in 5th place coming into this game, but we went in knowing that I'd won all three previous games against Genoa since taking over, so both teams could take some confidence into this one. The first half was very slow with neither team creating many chances, and although we'd had 67% of the possession, it was Genoa that took a 1-0 lead into half time through a Cabral goal. We continued to dominate possession into the 2nd half, but struggled to create chances as Genoa defended deep and pretty well to be fair. It looked like our persistance had paid off though when substitute striker Bakayoko shot from close range and levelled up the scores on 83 minutes, only for our celebrations to be cut short as the referee disallowed the goal for offside. Genoa held firm and we kicked off the month with a defeat against our fiercest rivals....I feared the fans could soon be on my back after this result.

Serie A
Sampdoria 1 - 1 Roma

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If our poor start to the season had been a surprise then today's opponents Roma's start would have been a complete shock. They found themselves down in 15th position coming into this game and who would have thought that coming into this one at the start of the season, both manager's would find themselves under early pressure from their respective fanbase. But neither manager was able to relieve that pressure here as the two teams laboured to a 1-1 draw that didn't really help either of us out. We'll probably come away the slightly happier with the result as Roma had been the better side throughout.

Serie A
Napoli 0 - 3 Sampdoria

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Another team that had made a pretty awful start to the season were Napoli, who found themselves down in 17th place early in the season. And they would be our opponents here and surely looking for a win against us to kick start their campaign. But it was us who took the lead on 18 minutes, when Stephan El Shaarawy got on the end of a Svendsen cross to tap in from close range for his first goal of the season. Early into the 2nd half, Napoli found themselves down to 10 men following the dismissal of Bernadeschi for his 2nd bookable offence and I felt we had an excellent opportunity here to kick on and seal the 3 points. And it wasn't long before we bagged the 2nd goal, Svendson again on hand to get the assist as Alibec scored a powerful effort from inside the box. On 61 minutes, Alibec bagged his 2nd of the game after being put through on goal with a perfect through ball from El Shaarawym and it looked like game over for Napoli who would drop into the relegation places with defeat here. The game did finish 3-0 and this was a massive win for us!

Serie A
Sampdoria 2 - 2 Cagliari

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Newly promoted Cagliari would be our next opposition and I was hoping we could get back to back wins for the first time this season. But it was Cagliari that took the early lead inside 10 minutes with a scrambled effort that was eventually put over the line by Lancini. An equalizer did come late in the first half through Tobias Svendsen, but Cagliari were back in front only 4 minutes into the 2nd half and this was looking like another potentially awful result. We pushed forward and changed formation to a more attacking unit, and it paid off when on 80 minutes Svendsen scored his 2nd of the game to make it 2-2. Although we had fought back twice for a point, I still felt this was a poor result as it was definitely a game on paper we should have won!

League Table

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Again a pretty poor month with only 1 win to our name. But 5 points from 4 games have seen us lift to 14th in the table although things a very tight from 10th down to 18th.

Player of the Month

Tobias Svendsen

Appearances: 3
Goals: 2
Assists: 2
Shots: 7
Average Rating: 7.80

Excellent form this month from the youngster who bagged 2 goals and 2 assists in only 3 games.

Ferrini Named One of the Top Youngsters This Month

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Striker Samuele Ferrini was named 2nd in the Serie A Under 19 Player of the Month.

Tagliafico Named In Team of the Month

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Left back Nicolas Tagliafico was named in the Serie A Team of the Month. A fantastic achievement as he stepped up to take the place of injured Maximilian Mittelstadt this month.

Financial Update

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Losses of £3 million this month are not good!!

Injury Update

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A couple of minor injuries but nothing to worry about.

November 2024 Review


November 2024 Review


Serie A
Pescara 4 - 1 Sampdoria

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Pescara had started the season very well and with 5 wins from their opening 10 games, found themselves sitting pretty in 5th place, despite being tipped for a 16th place finish by the media pre season. Well, all I can say about this game is we were f*cking awful, and fully deserved to be booed off the pitch by our travelling fans. I can only apologise to them for the dire performance today!

Serie A
Sampdoria 4 - 4 Inter Milan

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3rd placed Inter Milan were our next opponents and I feared the worst as we came up against a side that had won 8 of their opening 11 games! We almost got the perfect start when we were awarded a free kick right on the edge of the 18 yard box and Capezzi stepped up to shoot literally inches over the bar. But it wasn't long before we were in front, only 7 minutes in fact, as Olivier Kemen fired in a beautiful shot from outside the box to put us 1 up. And on 13 minutes, we were in dreamland as El Shaaraway increased our lead to 2-0 from close range! When El Shaarawy scored his 2nd of the game and we were 3-0 up, I couldn't believe what I was witnessing as we were tearing Inter apart. They got one back before half time to take it to 3-1 at the break. I told the boys to keep focussed as I knew our opponents would be getting a good kick up the **** in the opposite changing room. But it was us who came out in the 2nd half and extended our lead further to 4-1 through Leonardo Capezzi, before Inter pulled back one of their own on 63 minutes, Bosoni getting his 2nd of the match. Inter rallied and pulled another back to make it 4-3 with 14 minutes left on the clock. It was going to be a nervous quarter of an hour for us. Inter piled on the pressure and just when it looked like we'd hold on for the 3 points, the b*stards scored with virtually the last kick of the game to equalize. I couldn't believe it and walked away feeling totally dejected. I have to admit that as I left the pitch today, thoughts of jacking it in crossed my mind for the first time. Maybe Italy just wasn't for me!

Serie A
Bologna 0 - 0 Sampdoria

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Bore draw against Bologna who stay 1 point ahead of us in the table. Difference is that they're expected to be there. We are not!

League Table

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No wins this month see us drop to 16th in the table and it's looking more and more likely that this season is going to be about battling relegation :-(

Injury Update

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Mittelstadt is close to making a return to first team action.

Alibec Reaches Another MilestoneDenis Alibec made his 250th league appearance for the club in the game against Bologna.

Walker Sets Retirement Date

Kyle Walker has decided to hang up his boots and retire from playing football at the end of the season.

End of the Road


December 2024 Review


Serie A
Sampdoria 1 - 3 Verona

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This game would give us a perfect opportunity to pick up a win and move ourselves away from the relegation battle, as we took on Verona, who were placed 19th with only 9 points to their name this season so far. With home advantage, I started with an attacking formation in the hope we could get off to a good start and push on from there. We did get off to the perfect start when Svendsen put us 1-0 up inside 10 minutes. However, what wasn't part of the plan was Verona then scoring 2 within the next 3 minutes to give them the lead. From there on, my team had no fight, no desire and to say I was ****** off would be a complete understatement....I'm coming to resent these lads as they just have no character in them at all. I'm set up to attack against a weaker team and they've just got nothing....its awful and I'm losing the will to live as Sampdoria manager. As I stand on the sideline I contemplate my time in Italy and my mind starts to turn to walking away from this club while my reputation is still intact. The decision is all but made up for me when Verona smash in a 71st minute penalty to put the game beyound our reach and I end up walking off the pitch acknowledging our fans who quite rightly boo the team off the pitch and not for the first time this season either. But the lads deserve it, they've been shocking and they're just not giving me anything to work with at all! I feel for the fans and as I leave the field, I know in my heart that this is the last time I'll manage Sampdoria.

End of the Road For Chris Ball At Sampdoria

Following the game with Verona, I was called to an emergency meeting with the Board of Directors, as the result saw us drop to 17th place in the table. As mentioned previously, I'd already made my mind up during the Verona game that I'd be tendering my resignation after the game, so this gave me the ideal opportunity to do so. When the board questioned me on the poor performance this year, I didn't even try to fight my corner or keep my job. Immediately I told them that if they feel disappointed then I think it's best for all parties if I just resign from my role, to which they promptly agreed.

After nearly 2 years in charge, I have officially left the club and will be looking forward to my next challenge in football management, wherever that may be. I've decided I am not going to apply for hundreds of jobs just to get back into management....I feel very disappointed that things haven't worked out in Italy and I'm going to admit I'm feeling a little needy, and what I need is to feel wanted again so my new team will need to make me feel that way. So let's see what happens....Watch this space...

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I will be waiting to hear your new destination my friend ! Feel sorry that things did not worked out with Sampdoria since I saw the effort you 've put to restore this club to its old glory.
Jobs Update

Unemployed But Not Inactive

December 2024

Italian Serie B side Spezia have made an approach for my services, just days after my resignation from my post at Sampdoria. I don't really want to stay in Italy, so have rejected the opportunity to even attend an interview for the job.

For the 2nd time in my career, I've been offered an international job, this time for the Greece national side. It's not a challenge I'm looking for at this stage in my career and have rejected their offer.

Rudi Garcia has replaced me as manager at Sampdoria within 2 weeks of my resignation. The ex Lille, Roma and Marseille manager will have the inital task of stearing the club away from relegation this season after their poor start to the campaign.

January 2025

Scottish side Dunfermline came forward and offered me an interview. I decided to attend to see what they had to offer. They were willing to let me make widescale changes if I went in there, but when they offered me the job, the salary was only £1,100 per week and I just couldn't justify taking that much of a pay cut.

I applied for the vacant manager's role at FC Zurich in the Swiss Super League. They were currently sitting 3rd in the table, half way through the campaign so it looked like a decent opportunity. Following the interview process, the club decided against offering me the job and have instead opted for Giorgio Contini who offers much more experience managing in the country, having spent 12 years in charge of FC Vaduz.

February 2025

It seems I am in pretty high demand with the international sides as I have been offered another role, this time to manage the South Africa national side. Again, not for me so I rejected.

I applied for the job with German First Division side Mainz. Unfortunately, I wasn't even shortlisted for an interview.

Birmingham City have approached me to interview for their vacant manager's role. I attended the interview but was not offered the job based on the fact I'd asked for a much higher wage budget than they were offering and they couldn't accept that demand.

I applied for the vacanct manager's post at German Second Division side Dusseldorf, who have shortlisted me for the role and invited me to attend interview. The interview went very well with everyone seeming to walk away pretty happy...I await their decision with great anticipation.

March 2025

Whilst awaiting a decision on the Dusseldorf job, I thought it best to keep my options open so kept an eye on the job market. I applied for the role with French side Montpellier and they very quickly offered me an interview. Again, things seemed to go well and as we parted, the chairman said he'd be in touch swiftly...

Scottish side Dundee United approached me to interview for the vacant manager post at the club. I attended and walked away feeling it had been a productive meeting. I will be awaiting a potential offer from the club.

I also attended interviews with Swiss team Young Boys, German side Hoffenheim, French sides FC Lorient and Bordeaux, and Portuguese side Vit.Guimaraes all of which seemed to go pretty well.