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July 2010

View attachment 139682

Breaking news on the Sky Sports Website

After a summer of speculation, Stoke City Chairman has acted swiftly to take control of the growing rumours that Tony Pulis was going to swap the Stoke City badge on his collection of caps to those of the Welsh FA.

Pulis, who boasts a record of never being relegated as a Manager in a near 20 year career was sacked on July 6th.

Peter Coates moved swiftly to appoint recently retired footballer Dave Hammel as the Manager on a 2 year contract instantly making the delighted Londoner a millionaire.

Despite hacks from Sky, BBC and ESPN gathering to break the impending story, it was local newspaper The Sentinel that broke the story in time for the evening edition.

View attachment 139683

The closest the amazed novice had got to management recently was sitting in the dug out at his beloved Chelsea and was already making plans to sell his season ticket for the coming year.

View attachment 139671

Hammel couldn't pass up the opportunity to manage at the top level of English football.
The attraction of Stoke was the amazing support the Stoke fans provided and the strong financial position the club was in.
His aim for the season was to take advantage of both of these positives and promised a mid table finish to a club nearing its 150th anniversary.
However money in the bank and a debt free position was not a substitute for success for the trophy starved fans and with the boards backing would strive to bring in a quality of player previously unheard of at the club.

Initial Review

Staff

The quality of backroom staff was perceived as being poor and Hammel quickly moved offer the staff opportunities outside the club.
He moved swiftly to hire staff he considered would improve the training the players would receive and improve the attributes of the players he chose to keep.

Brian Horton was brought in as Assistant due to his tactical nous.
Ray Clemence came in as Senior Goal Keeping coach.
Paul Winsper was hired to improve the already considerable strength and stamina of the giant Stoke squad.
Darren Wassall was poached from Derby and he jumped at the chance to work with senior players, an opportunity not provided to him at his previous club.
A continental flair was provided by Croatian International Robert Prosinecki.

The scouting network was also reviewed and the best scouts available on the tight budget were recruited.

View attachment 139675

Transfer Targets

Hammel was keen to depart from the previous Managers policy of buying cheap ageing players on big wages who terrorized keepers and defenders alike from corners, free kicks and bullet like throws.

His transfer strategy was to bring in young, fast and technically gifted youngsters from around the world who would improve the squad, provide excitement in a fast paced tactic and could be sold at a profit in these challenging economic times.
Coates and the board were delighted with the transfer targets in mind and promised both transfer funds and wages to match.

Due to his previous footballing experience the existing players in the squad did not appear to be too fazed with the sacking of Pulis and the abrupt end to his 5 year reign which had provided a return to top flight football for The Potters in 2008.

Hammel immediately sent his new scouts to
1) Brazil
2) Czech Republic
3) Argentina
4) Spain
and finally Humberside to provide detailed reports on the transfer targets in mind....
 
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Transfer Activity

Playing 1 up front and determined to give Kenwynne Jones a chance Hammel decided that Ricardo Fuller was deemed surplus to requirements.
A furious Fuller accused the rookie manager of a total lack of respect but was not moaning too much when Liverpool swooped in with a cheeky £2.1m bid.
The squad overhaul had begun

Scout reports were being received from all around the world clogging up Hammel's email inbox.
Hammel decided that Goalkeeper and Centre Back were not a priority but was instructing his overworked scouts to report on players from every other position.

The 1st favourable reports came from Brazil and thoroughly recommended this exciting prospect.

DODO

View attachment 139712

The promising left back was available for around £1m and was willing to swap Sao Paulo for Staffordshire with the promise of 1st team football despite his tender years.

The 19th July was a busy day at The Britannia with fellow teenagers Vaclav Kadlec joining the club for a fee of £2.3m.
Exactly the same fee was required to prise Tom Cairney away from relegated Hull.
Both players were expected to push for a 1st team spot over the coming months.

By the end of the month the financial commitment of Chairman and Bank Manager had been truly tested.

Kyle Walker arrived on a season long loan deal from Spurs to provide pace and cover at the right back position.
Pulis had preferred playing 4 centre backs in defence and Hammel wanted specialist full backs in his squad.

The 31st July saw Stoke smash their transfer record for a signing.

GANSO

View attachment 139713

Highly regarded by Scouts, team mates, the press and regular readers of this website.
Ganso was impressed by the plans for the Stoke squad and was delighted to commit his immediate future to pulling the strings in the Potters midfield.
The deal was not cheap - £25m over 48 months was a risk if Stoke did not climb the table quickly.

MONZON

View attachment 139714

Attacking full back Monzon showed he was certainly up for the fight of hauling Stoke up the table.
A £4.2m deal financed over the maximum term meant that the left back slot was well covered for the coming years.

LUCAS

View attachment 139715

For now, the South American recruitment drive was over.
Exciting Midfielder/Winger Lucas was recruited and he would join on 13th August when he was old enough.
He was delighted to swap the Red and Black Stripes for the Red and White of Stoke City.
Hammel had never been a fan of Pennant and wanted to provide competition in the Inside Forward positions.
Sao Paulo were powerless to resist the bargain transfer fee of £3.6m as it triggered his release clause.

Further strengthening of the squad was seen with the purchases of Ramalho from Bilbao who was described as a signing for the future and could be expected to be on the bench later in the season.
The deal was a cheap one at £500k.

RAMALHO

View attachment 139716

The last position that needed strengthening was a holding midfielder as the existing players in that position were too old and not deemed good enough.

ANNAN

View attachment 139717

Ghanian midfield destroyer Anthony Annan was recruited for £3.3m for Norweigan giants Rosenborg and Hammel's rebuilding plans appeared complete.

This left the squad looking too big for a team not in Europe and the books needed balancing.
Joining Ricardo Fuller in being shown the exit were

1) Glenn Whelan to Fulham for £3.4m who became the clubs record sale.
2) Andrew Davies to Barnsley on Loan.
3) Matthew Lund to Orient on Loan.
4) Tuncay to Fenerbache matching the £3.4m record sale.
5) Mamady Sidibe to Hoffenheim for £2.2m

Despite taking advantage of bringing players in on installments Hammel wanted full value up front for his sales which was a risky strategy if the club did not rapidly improve...
 
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You sold quite an amount of players there- I'm impressed. Can't play the EPL because work permits would harass me in bringing youth players (even though i can bring in the Brazil and Argie, but not the Croat)
 
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You sold quite an amount of players there- I'm impressed. Can't play the EPL because work permits would harass me in bringing youth players (even though i can bring in the Brazil and Argie, but not the Croat)

Yes it is difficult to sell players and impossible to get anymore than their transfer value.
I hope the new patch sorts that out.
I always appeal the original work permit decision and 9 times out of 10 it works lol.
There are too many good South Americans not to try!!
 
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Pre-Season

Pre-season friendlies went well with a boring 0-0 draw against Bristol Rovers the only non-victory.

View attachment 139955

The preferred formation is a fast paced, direct 4-5-1 with Inside Forwards cutting inside to support the lone striker.
The defenders are set to defend and avoid crosses into the box.
The midfield work hard closing down the opposition and limit the space they have to play in.

View attachment 139956

The team for the last friendly of the season was starting to resemble the team I wanted to start the league campaign.

View attachment 139957

The goals were equally spread out amongst the forward players with 4 goals for Kenwynne Jones in the last friendly of the season v Glentoran.
Ganso and Cairney also got off the mark.
 
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Opening Day of the Season

Hammel awoke early on Saturday 14th August for his 1st game in charge of The Potters.
He flung open the curtains of his Blackburn hotel room to a slate grey miserable Lancashire morning.
The weather forecast was for drizzle all day but this failed to dampen his spirits and his excitement at the challenge ahead.

Horton and the backroom team decided that nullifying the opposition was the best chance of gaining a positive result.
The Blackburn front 3 were to be closed down and dangerman Gamst would only be unmarked when he was taking a Stoke style long throw.

The team arrived at the ground at 1pm and was warmly greeted by Sam Allardyce who was dressed appropriately for the conditions.

View attachment 139967

Just before 2pm the teams were announced to the waiting press.

View attachment 139968

Both teams were only committing one striker up front.
6 players were making their full competitive debuts for Stoke and the management team had warned on the pre-match press conference not to expect any immediate fireworks...

BLACKBURN 1 STOKE 3

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An efficient 1st half performance took the points back to The Britannia.
Goals from Whitehead, Jones & a penalty from Monzon secured the win.
A very even game borne out by the statistics with most of the action taking place in the 1st half.
The only negative was a potentially serious injury for Eidur Gudjohnsen who has pulled the strings from an attacking midfield role.

View attachment 139974

Gudjohnsen was expected to be out for up to 2 months and was the major topic of discussion as the Management celebrated that night in nearby Manchester.
 
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August 2010

STOKE 3 EVERTON 0

View attachment 139979

1 change to the starting team with the experience of Andy Wilkinson preferred at RB to the youngster Kyle Walker despite his impressive debut.

Gudjohnsen was risked despite his injury and completed a slick move on 5 minutes to provide the 1st goal of the season in front of the home fans.
That was at good as it got as he was forced off on the half hour for a 2 month absence.

Shawcrsss slotted in a cleverly worked free kick to double the advantage.
Etherington was on the end of a Ganso cross to secure the points in an emphatic 3-0 win.
6 goals scored in 2 games.
This management lark seemed easy.

OXFORD 0 STOKE 1

View attachment 139980

A chance for the new youngsters signed to show what they could do.
1st starts for Ramalho, Dodo, Cairney, Lucas and Kadlec in a narrow 1-0 win.
Lucas with the only goal in a game dominated by The Potters.

WEST BROM 1 STOKE 0

View attachment 139981

A real kick in the teeth as a lapse in concentration by the centre backs allowed Brunt to net the winner in the 95th minute.
Stoke were the better team but could not convert chances into goals.
Worse was to follow post match as the physios ruled out Kenwynne Jones for 4 weeks with a hamstring injury.
 
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Unlucky mate but decent story KIU.
 
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Transfer Deadline Day

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With 2 weeks until the next game against Chelsea and only 2 fit strikers available for the next month and both of those considered unproven, the days since the West Brom defeat had been spent considering strengthening the front line.

Despite in excess of £42m being committed on signings already the board sanctioned the move and the club had to move quickly to secure the right player.

The agents of Lukaku, Babacar, Derdiyok and Boayke all indicated their players were not interested in a move to Stoke at this time.
Macheda refused to join on loan due to the intense rivalry between the clubs.

Finally, late on 30th August a deal was done for £25m for Brazilian Wonderkid Neymar.
Santos agreed to receive the fee over 48 months and after tough negotiations the agent accepted the personal terms.
Neymar immediately headed for the airport for the flight to Manchester

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At 6am on the 31st the following story broke on the local BBC Website.

View attachment 139985

CHAIRMAN COATES REFUSES TO SANCTION RECORD STOKE BID

The deal for Neymar was off which was a bitter disappointment for the rookie manager but understood the reasons why.
Coates was willing to look at cheaper alternatives and at a recent press conference, fellow Brazilian Detinho was quoted as being interested in joining his compatriots at The Britannia.

View attachment 139986

With less than 12 hours until deadline day closed the deal had to move quickly.
A fee of £13m was arranged, the medical completed and personal terms accepted.

All seemed set for Hammel to get his man when the UK Border Agency declined his work permit.
With no time to raise an appeal the deal was called off at the 11th hour.
Stoke would have to wait to strengthen the striking positions.
 
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not liking the taking advantage of the monthly payments far to unrealistic in my view, quite annoying because i like the layout and writing style plus the promising OP... shame
 
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not liking the taking advantage of the monthly payments far to unrealistic in my view, quite annoying because i like the layout and writing style plus the promising OP... shame
Cheers for the feedback mate.
I actually canvassed some opinion last night on the thread below.

http://www.fm-base.co.uk/forum/f101/monthly-instalments-t55309.html

I actually looked at the transfer clauses and Stoke have got loads of pre-existing ones from "reality"
Therefore it is probably realistic in terms if the transfer system but maybe not the players I can attract?
It is also my demonstration at the unrealistic transfer offers the AI provides on the current patch.
 
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Cheers for the feedback mate.
I actually canvassed some opinion last night on the thread below.

http://www.fm-base.co.uk/forum/f101/monthly-instalments-t55309.html

I actually looked at the transfer clauses and Stoke have got loads of pre-existing ones from "reality"
Therefore it is probably realistic in terms if the transfer system but maybe not the players I can attract?
It is also my demonstration at the unrealistic transfer offers the AI provides on the current patch.
anyways i will follow and good luck, i didn't use the monthly payments with Leicester but struggle to stay in profit due to rising wages and and poor merchandising despite making into the champions league by the 3rd season and Europa league in the 2nd , i'd advise to get a marketing link to help finances... as without a 40k plus stadium it can be hard to manage wages and loans.
 
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thankyou zidave loved your 2010 one. I just knew it would be back will be follower. Look at mine to checckout out the transfers and tactics mate. I won the fa cup. click the link in my sig
 
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Mid Season Review

View attachment 140170

There was a loud knock at the door to Hammel's plush new office at the Clayon Wood training complex.
It was Denis Smith, Chief Sports Reporter of The Sentinel.

"How can I help you?" asked the Stoke Manager.

"Long time, no speak" retorted Smith curtly. "We have not met since August"

"Been a bit busy mate, this job is 24/7 and if you wanna quote go speak to Ian Holloway. Now, what do you want?"

"We are running a mid season review in the Christmas edition and wanted to run an interview?" asked Denis politely.

"What do you wanna know mate?" asked the popular Cockney.

How would you rate the season so far?

If you asked me a month ago then 4/10.
Now, with a decent run of results and a Carling Cup Semi Final against Nottingham Forest to look forward to I would have to rate it at a 7.

What has been the highlight of the season so far?

Definitely the cup run. The draw has not been kind to us with away trips to Villa, West Brom and Chelsea but the commitment of the team and the great support our fans has given us have really helped.

Can Stoke realistically win this competition?

Why not? We have to fancy our chances against Forest over 2 legs and with Blackburn & West Ham meeting in the other semi then we have to believe we can go all the way and win it.

What would victory mean to the club?

So much on so many levels.
The 1st major trophy since 1972.
European football would also retain & attract top players to the club and repay the substantial investment in players, staff and facilities.

Why has this form not been repeated consistently in the league?

Consistency is the key word there.
We have lost 9 times in the league this season yet have rarely been outplayed losing 6 of those by a single goal, often conceded late in the game.
We have to work harder to be more consistency and focus for the full 90 plus minutes.
The last month has definitely shown that the squad is capable of this with 5 consecutive wins and a draw.

What has been the difference in the last month?

Don't forget, a lot of new signings arrived in the club in the summer. These have taken time to gel and they are starting to adapt to the tactics and philosophy.
We also looked at the late goals we were conceding and the strengths of the players. We adopted Annan in a more defensive destroyer position against Man City Using de Jong as our inspiration.

View attachment 140184

You mention the new signings, do you consider it a huge risk in terms of the hige sum spent?

We had a budget with realistic ambitions. This club will be cash positive this season if we finish mid table. We are not adopting a reckless Risdale approach at Leeds where Champions League qualification was expected and budgeted for.
The players sold in the summer were high earners and the replacements, whilst high quality, were not expensive in terms of wages.

Player of the Season so far?

Ryan Shawcross. Has lead the team magnificently on and off the pitch and chipped in with a couple of important goals.

Signing of the Season?

Lucas.That player is gonna be a star.In fact, he is now...

That's great. When we can we meet next?

Have a good Christmas and a Happy New Year. See you sometime in January.

FIXTURES AND RESULTS

View attachment 140192
 
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Transfer Update

View attachment 140199

Hammel appears to be a Manager who learns from his mistakes and there was no repeat of Augusts debacle where time ran out.

Detinho had already agreed terms and been granted a work permit and joined on January 1st from Corinthians in a deal worth £13.75m.
A 3 and half year deal was signed on £33,000 per week and he brought more pace, technique and flair up front.

Despite Huth and Shawcross both being solid dependable players the management judged that they were too similar and were not an effective partnership.
As Shawcross was playing so well and being club captain, Huth's position was under threat not once but twice as 2 signings in consecutive days caught the imagination of the football world and outlined Stoke's determination to build on the recent progress seen in results.

View attachment 140200

Leonel Galeano arrived for a fee of £10.75m on a 3 year contract.
The highly regarded 19 year old was expected to push for a 1st team place immediately.

View attachment 140204

Rever joined from Atletico Mineiro the next day for a fee of £13.75m. He was expected to form a formidable partnership with Shawcross and improve the defensive record.

Further deals were agreed for promising Brazilian right back Romario who would join in a year for £120,000.

In addition, 2 "Bosman Signings" were due to join Stoke in the summer.

Scheletto from Atalanta would provide competition for Lucas down the right as Pennant was not expected to make his move permanent.

Little know defensive hardman Juan Manuel Torres also opted join from San Lorenzo to bolster a significant South American contingent.
 
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great story so far mate, try get them in the champions league mate. I got them in the euro cup through FA Cup qualification. Hope you win the league cup
 
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great story so far mate, try get them in the champions league mate. I got them in the euro cup through FA Cup qualification. Hope you win the league cup
Thanks mate.
I am about to start my 2nd season so will update in a couple of parts tomorrow.
Just back from The Bridge tonight :D

---------- Post added at 04:35 AM ---------- Previous post was at 04:34 AM ----------

decent story
Thanks mate
Will update tomorrow
 
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