Schalke: Back to the future!

TaymuirFC

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May 30, 2020
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Taymuir, Scotland
Didnt realise you'd left Schalke till hitting page 2 lol. I think i've joined just at the right time too as you're heading for scotland. Im guessing Celtic are still the big force in Scotland so your job should be relatively safe for a few years. It was funny though seeing your first post Tottenham then Enfield, talk about a massive fall. :/
 
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RaySunshine

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Didnt realise you'd left Schalke till hitting page 2 lol. I think i've joined just at the right time too as you're heading for scotland. Im guessing Celtic are still the big force in Scotland so your job should be relatively safe for a few years. It was funny though seeing your first post Tottenham then Enfield, talk about a massive fall. :/
Yeah - it definitely wasn't what I'd planned when I set out on the save but I'm glad that I stuck with it as it's the deepest I've got into any FM game and I've learnt a heck of a lot from fighting my back up from the bottom again!

January 2032

Fixtures.JPG
There's three games left this month. If we're going to really close down that ten point gap and make a serious challenge for the league we need to get going and fast. Every game is going to count if we're going to stand any sort of chance.


24.01.32, SPL, Hibernian
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It’s a familiar story – all the possession, all the chances, lose 1-0. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

28.01.32, SPL, Dundee
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This is much more like it! I’ve brought in Solanke (who I worked with at Napoli) to be that bully upfront and he kicks things off with a headed corner goal. Substitute Whittaker scores the pick of the bunch with a free-kick beauty.

31.01.32, SPL, St Mirren
3 StM.JPG
This was close – we absolutely smashed them in terms of chances but we couldn’t grab a winner until the last minute! Being so far away from Hearts to begin with, we really can’t afford to drop a single point now!

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So, across the course of my three games we've managed to chip that gap down by a single point. It's a start but it still feels like we've got a long, long way to go to chase down David Moyes' Hearts side.

 

TaymuirFC

Member
May 30, 2020
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Taymuir, Scotland
Oh didn't realise it was Hearts you were chasing, they've done well. 9 points is a gap but with the split anythings possible as they'll have to play the top teams as well. Glad to see the Dees are in the premier though.
 

RaySunshine

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Jul 26, 2018
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Oh didn't realise it was Hearts you were chasing, they've done well. 9 points is a gap but with the split anythings possible as they'll have to play the top teams as well. Glad to see the Dees are in the premier though.
Yeah - this whole save has been pretty crazy so I wouldn't talk down the chances of either winning the SPL or being on the road again at the end of season given how regularly I've been moved on! I really want that title though - perhaps I should have looked at the league table before signing on the dotted line!

February 2032
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February comes jam-packed with games. The ones I can't ignore are the trilogy that finish the month. I've got an important clash with Aberdeen, my first Old Firm Derby and the small matter of taking on my first employers in my first champs league game since I left them - oh and Hibs are doing pretty well too. All-in-all, just a quiet month eh?!

04.02.32, SPL, St Johnstone
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This was putting up the barricades and then some! We dominated this game. They didn’t even have a shot. However, the only time we got the ball in the net, it was ruled offside. Simply not good enough!


07.02.32, Scottish Cup, Hibs
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I’ve put a full first team out for this. I’m here to win things so every chance has to be taken. We didn’t take every chance but Caravjal scored a 20-yard scorcher to send us into the next round.

10.02.32, SPL, Ross County
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To be fair to them, Ross County really had a go here. The chances came thick and fast and Todorvic’s goal at the end was a 20-yard belter to finish the goals.

13.02.32, SPL, Aberdeen
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Headers came to fore here with both sides making good use of them. A draw isn’t really good enough for us though – we need wins!

20.02.32, SPL, Rangers
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This wasn’t a bad way for my first Old Firm Derby to go! Solanke led the line superbly – scoring himself and bringing others into play too. 3 out of the 4 goals were headers, sounds just like my sort of team!

24.02.32, Champion's League, Spurs
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I tried to be clever against my original employers and set up on a counter-attacking defensive note. As a result, they pummelled us. Thankfully, as we began to push forward, we grabbed a last-minute goal that gives us the faintest of hopes to carry to London.

29.02.32, Scottish Cup, Aberdeen
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The otherwise superbly solid Cristopher makes a gaff here and Aberdeen pounce. From there on in, we dominate the game and create all the chances. No goals though means one chance of silverware slips away.

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All-in-all, this month hasn't been easy on us. We're still nine points behind Hearts, out the Scottish Cup and we face an uphil struggle to get the better of Spurs in their own place. I'm gonna have to work hard for my dough on the banks of the Clyde!
 

RaySunshine

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March 2032
Fixtures.JPG
This month gives us a critical league game against table-topping Hearts and also lines me for a visit to my former employers in Spurs. Around those are all games that I must, must win if I'm to have any chance of chasing Hearts down!

03.03.32, SPL, Queen of the South
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This was the Whittaker show! QOS had no answer to the nippy right-winger and he had a role to play in all the goals – we’re still chasing you Hearts!

07.03.32, SPL, Hearts
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So close; so, so close! I thought we were going to get a win that would get us within 2 points of them. In the last few minutes, the ball gets passed around a bit and our keeper then smashes the ball into their striker and into the back of the net. Aaaargh!

14.03.32, SPL, Motherwell
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Another frustrating draw and a game we nearly lost. Whittaker saves the day with a beauty of a shot. In some ways it doesn't feel so bad as Hearts drew too but it’s not helping us make the ground up on them.

17.03.32, Champ's League, Spurs
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For a good chunk of this game, I thought I was going to be beaten in my first place on Fm20. Whittaker had other ideas though and his early second half goal allows me to leave head held high even if we’re out the contest.

20.03.32, SPL, St Johnstone
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Solanke comes up trumps here smashing home a lovely volley to give us a vital 1 goal win. Every 3 points counts from here on in.

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This is a nice stat but I am worried that, looking back, four of those six games are draws. I'm just worried that that will be too many to get us that SPL title.

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Looking at the table now, we've definitely made some good progress. We're now closer to 1st place Hearts than we are to 3rd place Rangers so we're definitely stepping it up. The whole title race does feel more possible than it did at the start of the month but there's only six games in which I must haul them in!
 

RaySunshine

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April 2032

03.04.32, SPL, Hamilton

1 Hamilton.JPG
Another vital win – including a smashing volley from CM Leydanker. It’s all getting tight as we go into the league split! Hearts have drawn their game so we're now only two points. Who will blink first? What's going to happen across these five crucial league games? Can we really do it and chase them down?! Only the split will tell us!
 
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RaySunshine

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May 2032
Split Fix.JPG
So this is the run of games that will take me into the end of the season. It's the split so no game can be counted as unimportant but those last two stand head and shoulders above the rest. If I'm to wrestle 1st spot out of Moye's hands, it will be decided there or at Ibrox - it can't any bigger than that!

24.04.32, SPL, Aberdeen
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Another Leyendanker bullet gives us the three points in this game – even bigger news comes in the form of Hearts losing to Rangers! We top the table for the first time!

01.05.32, SPL, Hibernian
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Solanke puts on a show here – his first goal is a particular beauty slotted low into the corner past the keeper.

Hearts draw their game v Aberdeen so we have daylight at the top!

08.05.32, SPL, Dundee
4 Dundee.JPG
I thought that another stunner from Solanke was going to be enough to give us the win until they score a 94th minute free kick!

Hearts win their tie against Hibs so they're now 1 point behind us again!

12.05.32, SPL, Hearts
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If we win this game we win the league – but we don’t! We dominate the match but can’t find a way through so it all goes down to the final day!

16.05.32
6 Rangers.JPG
What a place and what a way to win the league! We know that we have to better Hearts’ result and when we sail 3-0 up I think it’s all under control. Then Rangers get a goal and it's 3-1. Then another makes it 3-2 and I begin to worry. Hearts are winning so another goal would let the league slip away - but we hold firm and take the crown!

Final Table.JPG

The table dreams are made of - at last I've won a league! I know that I wasn't there for the whole season but taking Celtic from where they were when I arrived to where they are on the final day of the season was a dream I could barely imagine would come true. That medal feels well earnt to me!

 

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RaySunshine

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As you can imagine, our season gave quite a chunk of the awards so it was nice to see these coming in!

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Next up, I'll give you the story of the summer in's and out's and what happened in pre-season!
 

RaySunshine

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Pre-season 2032
It's been a busy time at Celtic and the phones have been ringing pretty much non-stop! I'll begin by showing you the ins and outs.

InOut.JPG

In terms of the outs, the big boys came calling. I wasn't too fussed on losing Todorovic as he'd had his first-team place stolen by Whittaker anyway. Leyenderker was the heart of my middfield but he'd made it pretty clear that he wanted to go to Liverpool so he was off - don't want any unsettled players here.

As far as ins go, Solanke retired in the summer and my scouts found the 22yo Riberio who fitted perfectly my profile for a striker. If all goes well, I see him leading the line for years to come. Pleuler was a bit of a statement signing. I went to RB Leipzig and offered the big bucks to get their 21yo hot prospect middfielder in. I was never convinced by Solberg as a keeper so, having sent scouts to South America, I got my own in Adriano. Solberg still arrived on his deal but will have to get used to the bench. Finally, Dramah, my starting RB got a injury and was out for five weeks so I brought in Man U's wonderkid on loan to fill the gap.

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We had a good pre-season. It was always pleasing to win the Celtic Park Shield (I do love a pre-season tournament). Then, it was the routine wins against smaller clubs to boost fitness and morale.

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The expectations are pretty much as you'd expect - win stuff and do well in the Champion's League. Let's see how we get on!
 

RaySunshine

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July/August 2032
Fixtures.JPG

Well the season doesn't start quietly! This month is book-ended with big games. Playing our competitors Hearts in the first game and Aberdeen in the last.

31.07.32, SPL, Hearts
1 Hearts.JPG
We start the season away at our title rivals from last time round. We have no difficulty here though. Carvajal is on top form and helps us carve them apart. And all of this despite Whittaker being sent off for a moment of madness lunge on the halfway line. 1 game, 1 win!

07.08.32, SPL, Kilmarnock
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This was another commanding performance with Carvajal again leading the way. The pick of the goals was a 25 yard thunderbolt which crashed in off the post from new signing Plueler

17.08.32, League Cup, Raith
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Anywhere I could, I rotate here as I know there’s going to be plenty of football for my team to play. I still get caught though as emergency RB Kabsele gets a knock and will now be out of action for 5-6 weeks! The goal is the first the youngster Benitez brought in in the summer.

21.08.32, SPL, St Mirren
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You know that game where you forget to change back from your cup keeper and they make a costly howler? Well this was nearly that until the youngster Benitez popped up with two late goals!

27.08.32, SPL, Aberdeen
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This was a close, tough and match and in truth a pretty dull match too as a result. The point is Ok – we’re still unbeaten and we’re still top of the table. But I don’t want to get complacent.

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So, we finish the month top of the table. It's certainly the way that we want to go. After the late drama of last season, I wan to mean the business this. However, it's still all early days.
 

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RaySunshine

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September 3032
Fixtures.JPG
Well this certainly isn't a quiet month - is any?! Two games against Rangers and two Champion's Cup games, the second against Man City certainly can't be ignored.

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This really isn't the news that I wanted to start the month with!

11.09.32, SPL, Ross County
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Perhaps we were saving all our goals for this game! Set pieces to come to the fore here and we use them to deadly effect in ripping Ross County apart!

14.09.32, Champion's Cup, AZ
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This was a really close game which could have gone either way. Unfortunately, it went their way courtesy of a 20 yard belting effort.

19.09.32, SPL, Rangers
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This was the first of an old-firm double header. Both sides exchanged goals with a player picking up the ball in their own half and finishing off a solo counter-attack. Carvajal then made the difference by sending over the cross for our LW to sma29.09.sh home.

22.09.32, League Cup, Rangers
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We left this one late but young substitute Benitez tucked home an Isea cross and that sends us into the semi-finals of the League Cup.

25.09.32, SPL, Hibs
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At last, Riberio comes up big when it matters. Our summer signing had so far failed to score a goal but a free-kick and a penalty gives Rib his first goals for the club and a vital win over the side in second.

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This isn't a bad record to have eh? It stretches all the way back to my first game and sole league defeat as Celtic boss so far.

29.09.32, Champion's Cup, Man City
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We stood up well here against the bigger side and, until they leapt first onto a loose ball in a goalmouth scramble, I thought we could get a point off them. Next time maybe…

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After a successful domestic month, we remain in the League Cup and keep our spot at the top of the table. In Europe though, the task is much harder and we will have plenty of work to do to get out of this group.
 

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RaySunshine

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October 2032
Fixtures.JPG
So the cups give us the big games this month. It's vital to beat Genk if we want to stand any chance of getting out of the group. We then face Hibs in the semi-final of the League Cup and a close chance of winning of a cup.

16.10.32, SPL, Dundee
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Whittaker led the way in this game – his second goal in particular was fine. A real bullet strike from the edge of the area beating the keeper at his near post.

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This was the good news after the Dundee game. However, there was some bad news to come too!

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This was news I really could have done without. I hope the less-than-convincing Dolberg can do the job!

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This news also came in. When I came to register the European squad this season, it was clear that nowhere near enough of our squad was home-grown so I thought this might help us create our own home-grown Spanish talent!

16.10.32, SPL, Morton
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We really put on a show here. In fairness, promoted Morton are really struggling having lost 7 out of their first 8 before this one. There were a couple of beauties in the goals – Riberio’s Bergkamp-esque turn and finish for his first goal in open play and Tait with a driven header from 18 yards out come to mind.

20.10.32, Champion's Cup, Genk
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This was our second barn-storming performance in a week. It puts us back in the race to grab 2nd place from AZ and helps us towards getting 3rd at worst. Even better, there was a hattrick from newbie Riberio – hopefully I don’t have to worry that I’ve signed a dud!

23.10.32, SPL, St Johnstone
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We had to rotate a bit here as the squad were getting some legs that needed a rest. Overall, it was a routine win but at 1-0 for most of it, it always feels a bit nervy.

27.10.32, SPL, Motherwell
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This was another close 1-0 game – they’re the kind that always make me nervy. Rotation and injures seem fairly commonplace at the moment with the games coming thick and fast.

30.10.32, SPL, Hibernian
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We had to work for this one. We dominated from the off but couldn’t get a break-through until they gave away a pen for shoving at a free-kick. This was followed up by a smooth second to send us into the league cup final!

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Well you're never going to complain about a month where you've won every single game! I just hope the injury to Adriano doesn't do too much to derail our season - I know what injuries can do. I'd like to say that, being ten points clear, the league already feels like a formality but I know what I did to Hearts last season...
 

RaySunshine

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November 2032
Fixtures.JPG
This is a key month in terms of the Champ's League. We've got to beat Genk and probably beat AZ to if we're to stand any real chance of getting out of the group. As far as the league goes, Hearts is this month's standout fixture.

02.11.32, Champion's Cup, Genk
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Riberio likes scoring against this lot. His brace helps us on our way to a comfortable win and I get to give game time to some youngsters too. I think now we’re guaranteed some European football after Christmas.

07.11.32, SPL, Hearts
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This game looked like it was going to end all square until the final few minutes where super-sub Daramy showed he had other ideas in mind!

20.11.32, SPL, Kilmarnock
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This was a solid win and our 9th in a row. This is a run in which we’ve only conceded three goals so that’s not bad going either. First-choice keeper Adriano has recovered from injury and taken the gloves back.

24.11.32, Champion's Cup, AZ
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We dominate this game but their keeper is simply a brick wall. This is a serious blow for us and, barring a miracle in the last round of games, condemns us to the Europa League.

27.11.32, SPL, St Mirren
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We smash this game too with Riberio leading the action. We’re really leading the way here and now have won the last 10 in a row!

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This isn't a bad record so I must be doing something right!

Table.JPG
Well we're stil top and we're 12 points clear. I'm beginning to like the column number of defeats! Let's keep it up!
 

RaySunshine

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December 2032
Fixtures.JPG

So what stands out this month? The first is a League Cup Final - the chance to win a cup in the game against Queen of the South. That's closely followed by the must-win game away at Man City and then there's an old firm derby in there too!

01.12.32, SPL Ross County
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This was the Adaes show – by the end of the game, their RB never wanted to see or be on a football pitch again. Adaes turned him inside-out and upside-down to provide goals and assists. Pleuler finished it all off with a superb 30 yard strike.

04.12.32, League Cup Final, Queen of the South
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We dominated this game but had to work hard for a break-though. When it came, it only lasted ten minutes before we were outdone by a long ball over the top. We continued to create chance after chance but they beat us in the penalties. A famous day for Queen of the South.

07.12.32, Champion's Cup, Man City
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We needed to better AZ’s result to have any chance of getting through to the next stage of the Champion’s League. As it was, we were nowhere close. Man City dominated the game comfortably and we drop down into the Euro Cup.

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Well, there is the chance that we could get a few interesting signings here. A lot looks indifferent but let's hope that one or two stars begin to shine in the future!

12.12.32, SPL, Hibernian
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We had to wait until the second half for goals but when they came, they were beauties. Riberio scored a lovely free kick for the first and Pleuler scored a screaming 30 yard volley for the second.

15.12.32, SPL, Rangers
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This was a much closer Old Firm Derby but a sweet header by Christopher gives us the win and 3 points to keep us marching on.

19.12.32, SPL, Dundee
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Headers come to fore again in this one as both Tait and Benitez take advantage to give us the win.

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22.12.32, SPL, St Johnstone
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A Ribiero brace – including a sweetly-struck free kick gives us the win here. The Old Bhoys keep marching on. We’re nearly halfway and unbeaten so far!

26.12.32, SPL, Morton
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We have 11 shots on target. They have one. You know the story.

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So we're eleven points clear and we still have a game in hand. However, one dead cert chance to win a cup went passing by which was really frustrating. I also think we'll take quite a financial hit from dropping out the Champions Leauge in the group stage. Let's see what our Euro Cup run brings instead!
 
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RaySunshine

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January 2033
Fixtures.JPG
Fixture-wise, this might count as a quieter month. Hearts is the stand-out league game but then there's Motherwall who are doing well too. We also start our Scottish Cup with a game against East Fife.

15.01.33, Scottish Cup, East Fife
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When we go in at half time a goal down, I start to fear that the heavily-rotated side aren’t up to it. Thankfully, a two-goal turn around in the second means we progress in the competition.

19.01.33, SPL, Motherwell
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Motherwell keep things tight and we’re level pegging with them for a good deal of the game. But, as time wears on, we make good use of two corners to grab the three points in our first post-break league game.

22.01.33, SPL, Kilmarnock
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Our full-backs do the work here putting in the two crosses that we need to get all three points. Let’s keep this run of form going and grab a big league win eh?!

26.01.33, SPL, Hearts
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Twice Hearts take the lead and twice we have to peg them back. Our last goal is a neat cross from Whittaker finished off low into the corner by super-sub Benitez.

29.01.33, SPL, Ross County
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Well you don’t get 11-0 in a league game every day! I could scarce believe my eyes. The pick of the bunch was probably a beauty of half-volley smashed home by Carvajal to complete his hat-trick.

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So we carry on - game in hand and 14 points clear mean we probably don't have much to worry about league-wise. We're also still in the cup and the Euro Cup to look forward to so on we go with the Celtic!
 

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RaySunshine

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February 2033
Fixtures.JPG

Well this month it's all abou the cups. We have games in both the Scottish Cup and Europe League to win in order to get our hands on as much silverware as possible! Let's go!

02.02.33, SPL, St Mirren
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Penalty-box pinball gives us an early goal. Despite dominating the game, we can’t score any more goals but one seems to be enough for this one. To the next …

05.02.33, Scottish Cup, Dundee United
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A reserve side plays this one in order to rest some tired legs and we get the goal-scoring done early. Ten minutes in and we’re two goals up. They pick one up later on but we carry on through to the next round.

08.02.33, SPL, Aberdeen
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A goal apiece either side of half-time means that we share the points with the dons. Their goal is a 30 yard free kick that Adriano gets a glove to but he just can’t keep it out.

11.02.33, SPL, Hibs
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Hibs have been playing well so far this season but two smart goals sees them off. Carvajal knocks one into the corner from the edge of the box and youngster Tiffoney sends over a beauty of a cross for the second.

17.02.33, Euro Cup, Salzburg
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Well I never saw this coming. I’d hoped that we could beat Salzburg across the two ties but not like this. 9-1? Away from home? It’s the things dreams are made of!

24.02.33, Euro Cup, Salzburg
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We don’t have a league game in between these two so a reserve side come out for this one. They still win to send us on in European competition.

27.02.33, SPL, Hibs
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We might have been in dreamland in Europe but Hibs bring us down to Earth with a bump. They make the most of some defensive untidiness on our part to send us spiralling out the cup.
 
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