Just Popping Down To Iceland


May 10, 2018
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With my Paris FC save coming to an abrupt end with a sacking after taking them from Ligue 2 to Champions League football, I needed to get my teeth stuck into something new. I've had 48 hours away from the game to think up an idea that will keep me as invested as I was with the Paris one. And I've come up with something very different for me, and something I've not seen anyone else do on this site over at least the past 3 years or so since I've been here.

I'm heading off to Iceland, where I'll be taking over as manager of a side called Fylkir. I knew I wanted to do a save in Iceland for several reasons....firstly, I visited the country 2 years ago and fell in love with it's beauty and the people. Second, nobody dislikes Iceland....I mean what is there to dislike? Thirdly, I wanted to go to a country that has never had a team represent them in the group stages of the Champions League and a national team that has never won a major honour. Iceland ticks that box....no Icelandic side has ever made it through the qualifying round for the Champions League - in fact they've never even be represented in the group stages of the Europa League.


So let's have a little look at my new club. Fylkir is a sports club in the Eastern region of the capital city, Reykjavik, which has teams in football, karate, handball, gymnastics and volleyball. The team was formed in 1967 by young and enthusiastic footballers that wanted an opportunity to train and play football in their local region. They've had some success over the years, winning two Icelandic Cups, 4 First Division titles and 3 Second Division titles. However, they are yet to win the Premier Division, with their best performance being a 2nd place finish in 2002. They have now established themselves as a regular side in the top tier, but recent seasons have seen them finish predominantly in the lower half of the table (there are only 12 sides in the division).

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The club play their football at Fylkisvollur, which has a stadium capacity of just 1,854.


I've got a few personal targets I'm aiming to accomplish on this save and I'm really interested to see how many I can manage to tick off along the way.

* Win the Icelandic Premier Division for the first time in Fylkir's history.
* Win the Iceland Cup.
* Win the league and cup domestic double.
* Be the first Icelandic team to qualify for the Europa League Group Stage.
* Be the first Icelandic team to qualify for the Champions League Group Stage.
* Reach the knockout stages of a European competition.
* Raise the club's value from £337k to over £100 million.
* Build a stadium with a capacity of more than 20,000.
* Raise the youth and training levels to 5 stars.
* Bag the Iceland national job.
* Lead the Iceland national team to it's first ever major trophy (Euros or World Cup)

Now assuming I don't get sacked, this should take me a while. I think the tasks at hand are hard enough, so I won't be restricting myself further by only signing Icelandic players or anything like that.
Good Luck - I always enjoy trying to build minnow leagues, but eventually gets to a stage where you completely dominate domestically and are only really waiting around for the European games each season. Interested to see how it turns out though!
Good to see my new bosses are realists. They're simply looking for us to stay in the division during my first season in charge, which should relieve the pressure a bit. Over the next 5 years, they'll be looking for me to establish the club as firm top half finishers, so I'm not expected to pull off any miracles.


When it came to meeting my squad, it was no surprise to see a team full of Icelandic players....all except for Bermudan midfielder, Djair Parfitt-Williams, that is - a player that actually came through the ranks at West Ham. It was also no surprise to see that every Icelandic player in the team has a name finishing with 'sen' or 'son'.


As far as the better players in the team go, one that immediately stands out is Orri Hrafn Kjartansson. The central midfielder is easily one of the most capable players in the squad with some all round ability and at just 18 years old, he has his whole career ahead of him. The only concern might be keeping hold of players like him as time progresses.


One of the more experience players in the side, Asgeir Eyporsson, looks like a solid enough defender for this league as well. His lack of concentration is a worry, but he has the attributes to stick the boot in and be a strong tackler at the back and we'll likely rely on his defensive ability this season.


My main man up front looks to be Hakon Ingi Jonsson. His attributes don't look terrible but a goalscoring record of just 16 goals in 75 appearances doesn't fill me with confidence that we have a sh*t hot goalscorer on our hands here!


Likelihood is that I'll have to work with what I've got for now though, as there is only £60k in the bank and no money available for transfers.


Maybe we've got some good youngsters coming through that I can nurture into the first team...

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Or maybe not!

Well, this is the formation I'm going to try. It's very different to my usual sort of formations as I tend to always stick to a 4-1-2-3 or a 4-2-3-1. However, I felt I needed to adapt a formation to suit my players down at this level rather than stick with my preferred formation and sign/build a team to suit it. This might not work at all, but I have gone very detailed on the tactic so that everyone is playing to their strengths and individual player instructions reflect a specific way I want everyone to play. I don't expect it to come overnight, but I'm hoping in time the squad will come to grips with what I want them to do.


It seemed to work well enough in my first friendly, although we did play lower league opposition.


And our next few fixtures will be the group stage of the Icelandic League Cup, so we'll quickly get some competitive football under our belt.

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Our first competitive game under my management was a rather underwhelming one as we kick off our League Cup Group Stage in unspectacular fashion.

1st cup game.jpg

And although our second game threw up a couple of goals, it was again a largely uninspiring performance from us against lower league opposition.

2nd game.jpg

Three games, three draws and absolutely nothing to get excited about at this stage.

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Despite not yet winning a game, it's still all to play for in our League Cup Group, with 2 games remaining! Only the group winners go through though, so we'd likely need to win both!

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And we chalked up our first competitive victory under my management, thanks to an 83rd minute penalty against Fram.


Which meant that going into the final group game, we would need to win against Vikingur and hope that HK lost against Fram. A big ask considering Fram hadn't won any of their 4 matches so far!

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But Fram came up trumps, getting the victory over HK to give us a shot at winning the group!

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Which made it even more disappointing that we couldn't get the job done at our end, even with our opponents playing the entire 2nd half with 10 men!


So from having a chance to finish top of the group on the final game, we actually finish 5th!

final group.jpg

What did I learn from my first 5 competitive games in charge then....well, we seem to be solid defensively having only conceded 2 goals, but we're also rubbish in attack, having only scored twice as well!

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I also learnt that some of our players could be very, very bad (based on these average ratings).

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Let's hope that we are just adjusting to the new tactics and formation and things will get better!
I'm really sorry guys and girls....I can't get into this save at all. I don't know what it is....as stupid as it sounds, I think I'm really struggling with the fact that every Icelandic player sounds the same and the most common surnames pop up a couple of times at every club! It seems like it will make it really tough to have iconic players in the future who stand out. I just can't get any enthusiasm about this save at all, which is a shame as I think it could make for an interesting challenge for someone to take on. I think I'm going to go back to a nation save where I buy players only of that nationality....I did this earlier in FM21 with Norway and was really enjoying it until my save file got corrupted.