Super Sports - Well, they might be eventually!

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nursemorph

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Any tips for surviving my first season in League 2? ;) not sure if i need to overhaul my tactics or just get a few more better players in at the moment. Four games into the new season and ive won 1 drawn 2 and lost 1, also got beaten 3-1 in the league cup though that was by a league 1 side.
To be honest, considering it is your first season in League 2, I would consider that a good start. My first 10 games in League 2 looked like this:

Played 10 Won 3 Draw 3 Lost 4 Goals for 13 Goals against 14

It took me 6 games to register my first win but, come the end of the season, I finished in a respectable 14th position. It took me another 3 seasons before I finally got promoted.

Tactically I would keep things the same for a few months (unless you start getting battered every game) to see what happens. If you are using an attacking tactic, it may be appropriate to make the formation slightly less attacking.

As for signings, it really depends on what your aims are. My aim once I got into the League was to start buying younger players that would progress and improve with the club and so I started buying young players. This probably led to me being in the division for longer, but I felt it was the way I wanted to go. I have 1 player who I signed at the beginning of the second season who is still with me and still regularly plays. I currently have my club captain who is 26 and has been with me for 5 years, my Goalkeeper, who is only 21, has been my first choice GK for 5 seasons. I have had other players who I have nurtured and then let go cos better players have come in or they have gone to better clubs. A player I bought in on my 4th season (3rd season in League 2) spent 4 years at my club and then left on a free has recently been signed by Porto for £3.8Million. I will continue to bring in young players and nurture them.

Having said all that, you may want to buy established players. Either way, keep an eye out for better players. Get your scouts scouring everywhere. I probably spend more time looking for players than I do actually playing matches.

Hope that little essay helps! :D
 

lpooltillidie

Member
Apr 21, 2009
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Thats awesome, thanks for the advice, i think in the same way as you, i have my scouts looking for young players who have potential, just signed a 19 y/o spanish centre back who looks to be one to develop, when they are both fit i actually have 2 spanish centre backs which seem to work well together. I have bought a few experienced players (Dean Windass, Carl Cort but they were there for BSP tbh)but am leaning towards youth now to try and build up a reputable squad, i would honestly prefer to finish mid table this season and then build for next season as you have done.

My tactics at the moment are a standard 4-4-2 with team mentality on the side of defensive, the wingers have forward arrows, the centre backs have backwards arrows and one of my strikers has a backwards arrow to try and link the midfield with the strikers, not really sure how to change it, i def need to have some more saved tactics in my armoury to shut games out and hold onto leads.

If i can get around 14th at the end of the season ill be chuffed.

I definitely need to reduce the size of my squad though, wage bill is still under budget but only just.
 
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nursemorph

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My tactics at the moment are a standard 4-4-2 with team mentality on the side of defensive, the wingers have forward arrows, the centre backs have backwards arrows and one of my strikers has a backwards arrow to try and link the midfield with the strikers, not really sure how to change it, i def need to have some more saved tactics in my armoury to shut games out and hold onto leads.
Well, as I said, if tactics are working then keep them. If you do start struggling then there are a few tactics you could use:

5x5442 - This has 7 variants according to whats happening in the game
BandsOfTwo442 - This has 6 variants
Brian Clough Tactics - 1 variant

I have used all three of these and have found that the Brian Clough tactics (with some alterations) works extremely well for my team. And, to be honest, it works well for most people in the Lower Leagues. There are loads of tactics that can be used and it really depends on your team. One tactic may suit your team where another would be completely wrong. Some tactics rely on skill on the ball, others utilise pace. So you need to assess your squad and decide where the strengths lie. I use a short passing game which wouldn't normally work well with my team except that I have every single player having "ball control" set to intensive in training.

Training is also soemthing to think about. If you want your team to play a certain way, but they lack the skills, then you can alter the training to get them better in that area. If you are bringing younger players in, then they are more likely to get better at it. I also make sure that both my reserve and under 18 teams play using the same tactic as my first team
 

lpooltillidie

Member
Apr 21, 2009
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Good tips there mate :)

Any young players that you have signed stick in your mind that might be about in my game, i have a young keeper at the moment Lloyd Saxton, who seems to be doing quite well. I think as you say its important to get the tactics right, now that I actually have some decent coaches I am going to try and push the training aspect more to try and improve my youngsters :)

i am assuming that those tactics that you mentioned are ones that are available to download.
 
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nursemorph

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Good tips there mate :)

Any young players that you have signed stick in your mind that might be about in my game, i have a young keeper at the moment Lloyd Saxton, who seems to be doing quite well. I think as you say its important to get the tactics right, now that I actually have some decent coaches I am going to try and push the training aspect more to try and improve my youngsters :)

i am assuming that those tactics that you mentioned are ones that are available to download.
Yep they are available to download.....well, all except my modified version of the Brian Clough tactic but I posted screenshots of that earlier in the thread.

Most of my players have been regens. However, there are a few real players that I have had. They all came in on frees at the end of their contracts so they may or may not be available. I'll post a list in a minute as I'm currently midway through a match
 

lpooltillidie

Member
Apr 21, 2009
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Fair enough, ill def have a look at the Brian Clough tactic to see how that works out with Braintree combined with targetted training.
 
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nursemorph

Guest
Okay...the list of players I have signed that have been useful aquisitions. Bear in mind, some of them signed when I was in League 1. I'll just give name, position and when signed and where from cos they were all free:

Michiel Vrijens (DMC/MC) 09-10 Fortuna Sittard
Moses Barnett (DRC) 10-11 Everton. Now my club captain
Jonathan Hayes (AMRL) 10-11 Leicester
Seyfo Soley (DMC) 11-12 No club
Karl Moore (AMLC) 11-12 Dundee
Jonas Rasmussen (DM,MRC) 11-12 Arsenal
Filip Mentel (GK) 12-13 Man City
Jamie Ward (FC) 12-13 Sheff Utd
Oliver Norwood (MC) 12-13 Man Utd
Junior Stanislas (AMRC) 13-14 West Ham
Peter Murphy (DLC,WBL,ML) 13-14 Carlisle
Joe Bennett (D/WBL) 13-14 Middlesborough

Obviously some signed for me much later than your game is. Some you may be able to get on loan, some may have their contracts cancelled sooner. A good idea is to constantly check the Premier Division Clubs reserves to see when contracts expire cos they will often sign for League 1/2 teams.

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Update:

April:

Away (League) Blackpool 0-1 Eastbourne: Welsh. I was delighted with this result as Blackpool were only 2 points behind me and so it opened a gap. Also we rarely beat them. Also, we broke the club's record unbeaten - now stands at 16 games.
Away (League) Rochdale 2-1 Eastbourne: Javier. I was absolutely disgusted that our unbeaten run was stopped by a team in 20th place :mad:
Home (League) Eastbourne 3-0 Brighton: Clayton (3). A fantastic hat-trick from Clayton. Can't remember the last time a player scored more than 2 in a game
Home (League) Eastbourne 3-1 Kettering: Clayton (2), Zamblera. Clayton is on fire at the moment
Away (League) Accrington 1-1 Eastbourne: Ward. A shocking shooting display. They have 5 shots 1 on target 1 goal; us: 24 shots, 7 on target, 1 goal!

So, with 1 game to go, we stand in 1st place on 96 points with Bristol City 2nd also on 96 points but with an inferior goal difference. Heading into the last game we know that a win would crown us worthy champions. A draw or defeat would leave us relying on City to do the same or worse. A City win and us drawing or being defeated would crown them champions and us 2nd. On to the final game: Home to Hartlepool 10th in the League: Surely we can do it?

Home (League) Eastbourne v Hartlepool:

We struggle to do anything for most of the first half when, in the 43rd minute, Jamie Ward pops up to score and we head into the dressing room 1-0 ahead. Emerging for the second half, I am extremely confident and things are going well until the 56th minute when disaster strikes: Marius Hansen, my ever reliable defender, puts the ball in his own net. This leaves us at 1-1 and Bristol City, having kicked off later, are leading, so we are now 2nd. Nothing much happens till the 68th minute when Penney (DC) pops up with his first goal of the season. The crowd are in raptures: could this be the most important goal of the season? Bristol City are winning their game comfortably. I don't join the fans in celebrating cos I know what this game is like.

Sure enough, on 82 minutes, the game reminds me of why I hate this game: Hartlepool score. I would love to say I was surprised by this but I'm not: In fact, I would have bet a substantial amount of money on them scoring and, thereby denying me the win. Despite me changing to an ultra-attacking tactic nothing else happened in the game and we ended with a draw. I told the players exactly what I thought of them after the game.

Home (League) Eastbourne 2-2 Hartlepool: Ward, Penney

So after being in the driving seat with one game to go, we throw it away. Most people would be delighted with promotion but I am far from happy. This is the one thing that really p*****s me off about this game: the other team always manages to get that late goal to deny you! It makes me think about why I bother playing cos rather than enjoying it, I just get extremely annoyed.

Anyway, the season is now over. I will review the season when the rest of the season has been played

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End Of Season Update:

Well, I've tried to arrange pre-season Leagues without success. So, instead, I have arrange home friendlies for every other day for the entirety of July (my players will be shattered but I don't care:p).

Time for some screenshots for the last season.....cos I know some of you will moan if I don't add screenshots:p:

End Of Season Overview:

View attachment 4898

League Progression:

View attachment 4897

End Of Season League Table:

View attachment 4900

John Clayton, top scorer for the season and Fans Player Of The Year:

View attachment 4896

Javier, top for assists this season:

View attachment 4899

Now I'm getting ready for the new season
 
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nursemorph

Guest
It feels like I haven't come on here for years!. Anyway, time for an update. I haven't got very far recently. I decided to start a Man City game cos I wanted an opposite game where I didn't spend all my time trying to manage the finances:D. Anyway, pre-season in all its glory. After the success of last years pre-season Leagues, I tried to do the same again but, having tried to set up 4 Leagues, I managed to get 1 team for each League despite offering loads of money. So, with that idea abandoned, I decided to play a game every other day from 7 July till 31st July. The main aim was to put money in the bank...results not that important. Here's the result:

Eastbourne 0-2 QPR
Eastbourne 1-3 Leeds: Hutton
Eastbourne 0-2 Aston Villa
Eastbourne 1-4 Tottenham: Fenton
Eastbourne 4-0 Liverpool Reserves: Mitchell, Spence, Boyd, Clayton
Eastbourne 1-6 Middlesborough: Clayton
Eastbourne 5-1 Arsenal Reserves: Clayton (4), Boyd
Eastbourne 1-3 Everton: Welsh
Eastbourne 2-0 Chelsea Reserves: Clayton, Fenton
Eastbourne 2-3 Motherwell: Clayton, Boyd
Eastbourne 0-1 Portsmouth

All in all not the best pre-season in terms of results, other than the games against the reserves. On the plus side, my bank balance is looking healthier and also Clayton and Boyd have scored a few goals.

Right time to get to transfers (always my most excited time of any season).

Transfers out:

Fabio Zamblera (ST) Free - It was time to refresh my strike force and he didn't really perform last season.
Jamie Ward (ST) £10k - Again, didn't perform that well and better strikers came in
David Hutton (AMRLC, FC) £100k - Although considered one of my best players, doesn't really perform that well and was my 2nd choice right midefielder last season.
Peter Banks (GK) £100k - A regen GK that I bought last season. Spent all year complaining about not being first choice and din't really perform when I gave him chances.
Javier (MC) £500k - This one will shock you all. My most creative player and I have sold him. Shock, horror. I wanted to keep him but twice he was caught coming out of nightclubs at 4am before matches, twice I warned him and twice he thought it was harsh. So he had to go before he upset the rest of the team. I consider £500k a good return on a player I signed for free 2 seasons ago.

Incomings:

I will do screenshots so you can see who I have brought in:

Kris Boyd (ST) Free from Rangers. I posted screenshots of him earlier in the thread. I'm hoping he will fire us to safety and his experience should help us.
Martin Baan (WBL) Free: Not outstanding but has some potential and a useful back up to my first choice left back (Once he's learned how to be a left back of course!):

View attachment 4960

Gill Swerts (D/WBR,DM,MRC) Free: Will add a bit of experience to the side and is a useful utility player:

View attachment 4969

Paul Mitchell (DM,MC) Loan (Arsenal): A useful back up midfielder. Not really good but not really bad, middle of the road but may do a job if I have a long injury list:

View attachment 4965

Scott Fenton (ST) Loan (Ipswich): Again, a useful player who will be backup to Boyd/Clayton. He is the 3rd best striker in my squad:

View attachment 4962

Paul Johnson (ST) Loan (Tottenham): Basically signed to be used in an emergency:

View attachment 4963

Graeme Robertson (DR/L) Loan (Rangers): A backup player as I am a little thin in defensive areas:

View attachment 4967

Antonio Schetter (AMRLC,FC) Free: Another player to add experience to the team. Will mainly be used as cover for right midfield but useful as can play across the midfield:

View attachment 4968

Richie Poole (AMC) Free: Has some potential and will be a useful backup for central midfield. Was looking for someone who had some creativity:

View attachment 4966

David McLaughlin (GK) Free: Brought in as a replcement for the outgoing Banks, he will provide decent cover for McGowan:

View attachment 4964

Here is a summary of my transfer activity so far:

View attachment 4961

I have to admit that some of my signings have been pretty ordinary. This is because of 2 reasons:

1) I was struggling with the wage budget. Although, I offloaded some of the higher earners, some of the new signings are on large amounts plus, due to last years promotion (and yearly wage increases), most players salary went up by 50%.
2) Players still don't want to join my club, even on loan. So, basically, I sign who I can

Current squad List:

View attachment 4972

As Javier has now left, Craig Evans will be stepping up from backup to first choice for the playmaker role, mainly because of his creativity. Whether he will be good enough or not only time will tell:

View attachment 4973

I am pretty happy with my squad at the moment except for central defence. Although they played well last season, it is the weak link of the team. According to my manager, the entire midfield, attack and Goalkeeper are all 6 or 7 stars but my defence is 4 and 5 stars which is concerning. Therefore, I will be looking to hopefully bring in at least 1 central defender before the end of the transfer window.

Financially we are in a fairly good position at the moment. However, as you will see from the next screenshot we begin the season with a good balance but finish the season a lot worse off:

View attachment 4971

We really need to stay in the Championship this season financially. The problem I have is the size of the stadium as it is still only a 5,000 capacity (what I started the game with). I have yet to be in a good enough financial position to improve any of the clubs facilities since I began the game. Ah, I've just realised this is why players don't want to come to my team cos the facilities are ****. Every year as I try to reduce the wage bill it ends up increasing because of new players wanting more and I don't have increased attendances to cover this.

Right, now we are ready for the new season:

August:

Home (League) Eastbourne 0-0 Southend. Disappointed that the first game ended in a draw as we did enough to win. Hope this isn't a sign of things to come.
Away (League Cup 1st Round) Brentford 0-2 Eastbourne: Clayton, Navarro. Not too happy that a League 2 team matched us and we only won cos we worked out where the goal was - their players weren't sure where it was located.

Thats as far as I have got. Unsure how the season is going to pan out. I'm hpoing that I will at least be able to avoid relegation this season. At the very least, I want a better showing than the last dismal season in this League.
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Update:

August (Continued):

Away (League) Leicester 2-0 Eastbourne. They have 3 shots on target and score 2. My usually dependent keeper played like a spanner
Home (League) Eastbourne 2-0 Peterborough: Clayton (2). A rather fortuitous win, Clayton scored in Minutes 90 and 94. I'll take any win I can get my hands on.
Home (League Cup 2nd Round) Eastbourne 0-0 Norwich. Norwich are in the Premier League so I expected to be beaten. 0-0 after normal time, then 0-0 after extra time so went to penalties which we are usually **** at. We won 5-4 thanks to a save by McGowan. Pleased with this as all my players scored a penalty.

My Player Of The Month I guess is Clayton for his 2 late goals in the P'Boro match. Asides from that, no-one has really stood out.

A mixed month didn't get off to the best of starts but at least it has only taken till the 3rd game to get our first win in the League. The Cup result against Norwich was good and hopefully we can go on from that. Not surprisingly, inability to convert chances (or get them on target) is my worry yet again. Kris Boyd, so far, has performed badly (5 games and 1 assist to show 6.26 rating) and he needs to improve soon or he'll be dropped.

Despite the extra money from the Cup results my bank balance is starting to decrease and I expect it to continue to do so, so no improving facilities this season.

I have started to wonder if this is really as far as I can take this team. I will continue anyway but I wonder if League 1 is as far as I can get them given how I can't get the finances boosted much. Not sure how the season will pan out but relegation wouldn't surprise me. We'll wait and see.
 
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Rollsie

We are Northumbria
Mar 30, 2009
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Glad to see your doing well mate, lol what are the rest of the leagues like ? Like any once gloriouls premiership sides struggling to stay in league 2 ?
 
N

nursemorph

Guest
There's not really been much change in the Leagues. Most Premier teams are still in the Premiership/Championship. None have really gone bad or anything.
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Update:

September:

Away (League) Bolton 0-3 Eastbourne: Fenton, Schetter, Small. This was the most shocking result I have had for years. We were expected to be absolutely hammered and yet we won the game. All the plaudits must go to McGowan who, having had a shocker of a game recently, displayed the best performance by a goalkeeper ever in an Eastbourne shirt. Bolton had 23 shots on goal, 15 of those on target and scored none. We are now in 6th place in the table - the season is looking brighter.

View attachment 4994

Yes, I have managed 500 games in charge. What an achievement. This makes all the trials and tribulations worth it, just to see that announcement. What amazed me even more is that I realised that, despite my shocking last foray into Championship football and my regular runs of poor results, I have still managed to achieve a 49% win rate - unbelieveable.

Home (League) Eastbourne 1-0 West Brom: Scharf. A very even game. My lads fought well. This result sees us climb to 3rd in the table.

Well, well. 2 games into September and we are 3rd in the table. However, last time in the championship, we managed 3rd place at one point as well! I don't expect us to stay there for long but I am still happy considering the poor start we made to the season. I am also delighted with the last 2 wins - both against teams predicted to be in 4th and 5th by the media - and to keep clean sheets as well. That makes it 4 clean sheets out of 5 games in the League this season.

Thats it for the update. It was only really to highlight my landmark achievement :O
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Update:

September (Continued):

Away (League) Derby 2-1 Eastbourne: Mitchell
Home (League) Eastbourne 0-1 Blackburn. Disappointed with this result. Having said that, they were in the Premiership last season ans we dominated possession
Away (League Cup 3rd Round) Man Utd 2-1 Eastbourne: Clayton. I was delighted with this performance - we took the lead on the stroke of half-time but they equalised midway through the second half before scoring in the first period of extra time. We dominated posession but they had substantially more shots.
Away (League) Millwall 0-1 Eastbourne: Schetter. Schetter came on at half time and changed the game. The only negative from this game was Bennett being sent off in the 92nd minute.

My Player Of The Month is: Paul Mitchell, the on-loan midfielder from Arsenal. He has averaged 7.17 average rating over the last 4 games, scored 1 goal and got man of the match in the Man Utd game.

We are currently sat 10th in the League only 1 point off a play-off place but, more importantly, 8 points clear of relegation. We have the 3rd best defence in the League with 5 conceded equal with West Brom and Blackburn (Newly relegated) on 4 conceded. Financially we are healthy thanks to the gate receipts from the Man U away game.

Tactically, I tweaked the tactics slightly prior to the Man U game (I know, what was I thinking messing about prior to the biggest game of the season?) to try and capitalise on the fact that we are dominating possession almost every game and to try and turn it into victories. Also to try and make my defence even meaner.

That's all for now. Keep an eye out for October and see if we can continue the good start to the season or whether the team will suddenly forget how to play football.
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Update:

October:

Home (League) Eastbourne 2-1 Swansea: Clayton, Scharf
Home (League) Eastbourne 0-1 Bristol City

Thats all the matches I've played this month. Suffice to say, we get a brilliant result against Swansea and then play absolutely **** against Bristol. The first game in a long time where we have been completely and totally outplayed. Gone is the furore and excitement following the performance against Man U and replaced is the reality that this team is pretty **** and will start sliding down the table. This game is starting to annoy me now so I am going to have a break from it.
 
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Rollsie

We are Northumbria
Mar 30, 2009
481
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Looks like you will probz stay up m8 :), giv it a season or 2 u myt b un The Premiership lol
 
May 1, 2009
1,201
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keep going and good luck. i too think you will stay up, as long as you get 1 qualtity player and a couple of backups in january. I know what you said about your finances but if it keeps you in the division, then why not eh?? :D
 

GazFtw

Member
Nov 27, 2008
132
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one loss and you've given up
this is one of the best threads i've ever seen.
keep the faith, keep the passion.
 
N

nursemorph

Guest
one loss and you've given up
this is one of the best threads i've ever seen.
keep the faith, keep the passion.
I haven't given up...I'm just taking a break from it. Its surprising just how hard it is to keep the club going forwards with little finances and keeping the books balanced. I just fancied playing for a little while with a team where I didn't need to worry.
 

Druggan

Member
Apr 9, 2009
501
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I'd say that if you can sign an older player like Caldwell if he is still playing for the back... and a nice young regen, you'll be on your way to staying up.
 
N

nursemorph

Guest
I'd say that if you can sign an older player like Caldwell if he is still playing for the back... and a nice young regen, you'll be on your way to staying up.
You'd probably be right. The problem I have had with the team from the start isn't with finding good players. Its just that they won't sign for the club, probably because the training facilities are quite poor but I have never financially been in a position to improve them
 

Druggan

Member
Apr 9, 2009
501
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You'd probably be right. The problem I have had with the team from the start isn't with finding good players. Its just that they won't sign for the club, probably because the training facilities are quite poor but I have never financially been in a position to improve them
Well I gaurantee to you if he is still playing Wasilewski will sign for you... but that's besides the point. I hope you haven't decided to stop updating... lol :)
 

David 0404

Member
Apr 11, 2009
393
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i wanted to know how you get through a season so quickly? could you please tell me how long it takes to complete a season, and what you do to get through it all so quickly?e.g. the way you view a match.
Regards,
David 0404
 

askep

Most Valuable Pirate
Jul 10, 2009
778
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Fantastic game you got going here, just epic! Hopefully I can keep mine going as long.
 
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