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The Champions League Awaits- An Austria Vienna story

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For a long while I've been thinking of doing a Manager Story on this site. The only problem was deciding which team to play as.

I was considering playing as my favourite team Arsenal, but frankly that's far too mainstream and being a top team at the start? A bit unrealistic.

So naturally I then, being Kentish, considered my local(ish) team Gillingham. But again, guiding a team from League 2 to the Premiership is a bit mainstream.

Then I considered guiding a team like San Marino to World Cup glory. Then I looked at other stories and swiftly shelved that idea as, again, too mainstream.

But then an interesting challenge arose for me. I thought that it might be fun to guide a team from a middle of the road European League to Champions League glory. So my first thought was Basel in Switzerland until I saw them against Tottenham the other night and realised they were quite a good team so it wouldn't be as challenging as I would like to be.

So then I thought of the Austrian League. It has a decent amount of history as a footballing nation and has hit tough footballing times recently so it should be challenging. I picked Austria Wien because I remember playing as them on FIFA 08 or 09, I don't really remember which, so I thought it would be interesting to play them on Football Manager as my first Managerial Story.

So here we go. My next post will contain club details or I may edit them in here.

PS. I would really appreciate it if someone could show me how to screenshot tables and stuff from the game since I've never done one of these before
 
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Nice start mate, look forward to more. To get screenshots, create a folder called 'screenshots' in your FM folder, then alt f9 on the page you want to take a shot of, and hopefully you should find it in your new folder. Hope that makes sense. :)
 
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Thanks streaky.

So I began this game. I was very disappointed to learn that my war chest for buying players was £0 and I was simultaneously expected to get the team into the Champions League in my first season. I might do some scouting for free agents at some point to snap up and I'm also intending to sell some players so I can produce some funds to buy some decent players.

I skipped pre-season 'cos the Austrian season starts early enough for me to get some transfer business done and skip pre-season. I'm aiming to qualify for the Champions League this year which involves finishing in the top two of the Austrian Bundesliga.

My team is this: View attachment 328881

My original intention was to use a 4-5-1 but my assistant kindly informed me that my players were unaccustomed to the formation. Moreover two of my best players are strikers in Hosiner and Jun so it made sense to go with a 4-4-2 of some description. I settled on the Diamond because my players are apparently accustomed to playing the game that way.

Moreover you can swap Jun and Hosiner around. I found out that Jun's only got 8 Finishing but the rest of his stats are excellent which made him my natural choice for a deep lying forward while Hosiner's got higher Finishing making him more useful as an advanced forward.

My first game is in the Austrian FA Cup away to Fc Ostbahn XI which is a game I should win comfortably. More when that game is done and then I'll shut down for the evening.
 
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SC Ostbahn XI 1-3 Austria Wien
Ortlechner
Gorgon
Vrsic PEN
Overall a good result. Not a particularly impressive performance and I would have liked to have scored more goals but, overall, pretty solid. We went two-nil up fairly early on but then took our foot off the pedal a little bit allowing them to pull a goal back. We then turned up the heat again, won a penalty, dispatched it and went back to sleep again. So we did what we had to do but not particularly impressive.
 
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By the way does anyone have any decent free agents to recommend?
 
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July

Transfers
Only one thing actually happened in terms of transfers this month. I sent 19 year old Marco Stark on loan to FC First Vienna (an Austrian First Division (read Second tier of Austrian football))

View attachment 329017
He's got some decent stats for a young player and first team football can only help him.

I then noticed that I was short of cover in central defence so I chased a couple of decent centre backs only for the board's restrictions to prevent me from signing any of them. This becomes very relevant later on.

I also received an interesting loan offer from Kapfenberg for Rotpuller, an average centre half.
View attachment 329018
26480% of the guy's wages. I looked at the offer and rejected it because:
a. It's a display glitch and they mean 0% of his wages which is a bad offer, particularly since I want to sell the guy to be honest with you.
b. They're serious in which case accepting the offer will make the whole challenge of this file redundant.

I'm also still trying to find enough funds to buy a player, in particular another centre back.

Matches
Austria Vienna 3-1 SC Wiener Neustadt
View attachment 329019
An excellent start to the season. Mader scored direct from a corner and we generally controlled the game. I got a bit worried when Neustadt pulled one back but we held on for a good opening result.

Wolfsberger AC 3-2 Austria Vienna
View attachment 329020
Do you remember when I said that I was looking for another centre back? This game was the perfect illustration why. Ortlechner, who'd been excellent in my first two games was out due to food poisoning (suspicious, the restaurant was clearly owned by some rival fans) and without him my defence crumbled badly. We generally controlled the game and did ok in the final third but defensively we were atrociously poor. We conceded a goal within 40 seconds of the game and then fought back well to 2-1. Then we conceded within 50 seconds at the start of the second half before a defensive horror show resulted in Wolfsberger winning the game.

Overall an average start. We've faced the two weakest teams in the division and next up we're facing the two best sides in the division in Red Bull Salzburg and Rapid Vienna. Either way I have a feeling that that defeat against Wolfsberger could be crucial come the end of the season.

I won't post the table at this point since only 2 games have been played. For the record we're fifith at the moment.
 
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August
An interesting month. I still cannot decide whether it was a good one or a bad one.

Transfers
I sent a load of youth players out on loan to various sides in the hope that they'll come back far better than they are at the moment and may maximise their potential by playing good first team football at a fairly competitive level.

Two players permanently left to free up my wage bill a bit so I could sign that centre-back I was harping on about last month.

View attachment 329114View attachment 329115

So I sold Ivan Kardum and Marin Leovac since they weren't good enough for the club and they cost money which could be spent on better players.

Now the new centre back did arrive once I freed up the wage bill:
View attachment 329117
Micheal Umana who served me quite well throughout the month once he joined in shoring up my previously leaky defence.

Matches
Red Bull Salzburg 3-1 Austria Vienna
View attachment 329118
I tried to go for a 4-5-1 in this one and it failed miserably. These guys really don't like playing with just one forward. This game was a disappointing defensive performance although I did fully expect to lose the game. We had a goal disallowed for a foul which I'm still not sure actually was a foul but, overall, Salzburg probably deserved the points. Next up the Viennese derby, one of the biggest games of the season.

Austria Vienna 2-1 Rapid Vienna
View attachment 329119
I switched back to the diamond for this one and it worked well. A big game which we had to win and we did. We took the lead through Gorgon and, overall it was a deserved lead since we had controlled the game to that point. Rapid scored a smash and grab goal through Boskovic just before half time. I was worried at that point but sent the players out for the second half and Boskovic conceded a penalty. Vrsic smashed it home to regain the lead and we kept Rapid at arms length after that. An excellent victory and one which kept us in touch with the early front runners.

Austria Vienna 0-0 SV Mattersburg
View attachment 329120
This one was a really frustrating game against the early leaders. We were by far the better side but Mattersburg parked the bus and we couldn't quite find the breakthrough despite creating a few good chances to take the lead.

SK Sturm Graz 1-1 Austria Vienna
View attachment 329121
Yet another really frustrating game. We dominated the early exchanges and took the lead through Dilaver. We were utterly dominating them but they broke out once and equalised. So frustrating since, again, we didn't get what we deserved.

FC Wacker Innsbruck 2-3 Austria Vienna
View attachment 329122
This was a game high on drama. We took an early lead through Hosiner and then stretched it with a great free kick from Mader. Innsbruck didn't create a chance until the last ten minutes and then, almost unbelievably, they scored twice in two minutes from corners. I couldn't believe that we were about to throw away another lead and drop points in a game we deserved to win so I switched to Overload and went for broke in the last five minutes. We won a corner in the last minute of injury time, Mader put in another one of his wicked balls into the box and it deflected off Roman Wallner and in. One of our most important goals of the season but, overall, we made life needlessly difficult for ourselves again.

Other News
Red Bull Salzburg qualified for the Champions League group stages by beating Slovan Liberec (Czech Republic) and AE Limassol (Cyprus) which can only be good for me due to their increased fixture congestion and the improvement in the ranking of the Austrian Bundesliga in general which might give us another European place or something. I'll keep you up to date with events but they've got Shakhtar Donetsk, Basel and Chelsea in their group so I think that's it for them in the Champions League although they have half a chance of making the Europa League knockouts.

Finally here's the league table at the end of the month:
View attachment 329124
Overall five points off top but we have a run of four or five fairly straightforward games coming up which should successfully propel us right into the mix for the fun stuff at the end of the season.
 
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By the way I forgot to mention, tried to get the board to upgrade the youth facilites but they weren't having it.
 
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September
The season's really starting to heat up now but more on that later. First of all:

Transfers
I let David Oberortner and Pascal Grunwald go because neither of them were going to get into my first team, they're both fairly expensive in terms of wages and neither of them are going to improve anytime soon.

View attachment 329397View attachment 329398
As you can see, neither of them have great stats. I let them go because I'm looking at bringing in a couple of players, one of whom is better and the other of whom has great potential. But more on that in the next update when I hope the deals will be completed.

Matches
Austria Vienna 3-0 FC Admira Wacker Modling
View attachment 329399
A very good performance here and a game which we won comfortably. Hosiner, Jun and Gorgon got the goals and overall a great performance.

SV Ried 1-2 Austria Vienna
View attachment 329400
Once again we decided to make life difficult for ourselves against Ried. We were excellent in the first half, keeping Ried at arm's length while scoring two goals through Hosiner ourselves. In the second half we conceded an early goal from a corner just but we held on in the end. It was a just a bit more nerve-wracking than it needed to be although I won't complain since we won the game.

Wiener SK 0-3 Austria Vienna- Austrian FA Cup 2nd Round
View attachment 329402
Another very professional performance against a side who are admittedly a lot weaker than we are. Kienast scored a great goal from about 30-35 yards out and Thomas Murg, who is a seriously good young player for anyone who wants a good young player who's nice and cheap, scored a goal. We drew 1.Simmeringer SC who are another team who aren't in a league in the next round and I think our passage through to the quarter finals is all but guaranteed.

SC Wiener Neustadt 0-1 Austria Vienna
View attachment 329403
This was a tough game. I thought we were going to drop more points away from home here with five minutes left. I took a risk in switching to Overload at that point, deciding that there's no difference between a draw and a defeat against a team like these guys and we snatched a late winner through Stankovic. Not our bext peformance but it completed a perfect month for our team.

Other News
Red Bull Salzburg began their Champions League campaign with a 2-2 draw at home to Shakhtar Donetsk.
View attachment 329405
The first big managerial change of the season happened to as Aurelio Andreazzoli was sacked as Roma manager at the end of the month. A replacement hasn't been decided yet.

Table
View attachment 329406
We're up to third in the table and have put a lot of distance between ourselves and the midtable scrap since last month. We're now only one point off top spot so I think we might be in a for a title challenge this season if we can maintain our form, although we've got a tough run coming up with Salzburg, Rapid Vienna and Mattersburg as back to back games coming up. Before that though we face Wolfsberger which is a game I expect to win.

Player of the Month

I forgot to do this last month but the award's going to the same player it would have done last month in Manuel Ortlechner.
View attachment 329407
I considered giving it to Hosiner but the clean sheet against Wiener Neustadt decided it in a month where we really tightened up, only conceding one goal in the four games we played.

PS. If anyone wants to see any of my players' stats just ask and I shall provide.
 
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October
Transfers
I signed another player this month who'll arrive in January, Dragan Blatnjak, for free.:
View attachment 330495
As you can see he's a decent enough player who'll be solid for a couple of seasons.
I tried to sign Rodney Lopes Cabral from Feyenoord. He's a young player with great seasons but his wage demands were unrealistic, he wanted me to increase his wages from £300 to £6500 which I wasn't going to do.
I also put in a bid to sign Lionel Messi for free. Amazingly and surprisingly Barcelona rejected the bid. I was horrified when they did so.

Matches

Austria Vienna 0-0 Wolfsberger
View attachment 330508
This game was so frustrating. We thrashed them on the balance of play but their keeper was playing incredibly well and we couldn't find a way through their defence to get the goal we needed. 2 points dropped that really shouldn't have been dropped. Wolfsberger are becoming a bit of a bogey team for us.

Austria Vienna 3-4 Red Bull Salzburg
View attachment 330509
Game of the season but I wish it wasn't. We had Lindner injured on international duty and I had to replace him with my youth keeper Osman Hadzikic who could have stopped two of the Salzburg goals. In fact all four of their goals were preventable. Jun headed us in front from one of Mader's excellent set pieces. Straight from the kick off though we conceded a goal to Berisha that Hadzikic could have saved. Then Hadzikic messed up another shot from Salzburg but we equalised through Hosiner to make it 2-2. Then just after half time they scored from a corner which we really should have defended. Afterwards we managed to fight back and make the game 3-3 through Hosiner again but right at the end Simkovic passes the ball to a Salzburg player in the penalty area and Salzburg take the three points. I really don't know how we lost this one but woeful defensive errors cost us. Don't you hate it as a manager when that happens? The Vienna derby next.

Rapid Vienna 0-1 Austria Vienna
View attachment 330510
Amazingly I thought this performance was worse than the ones against both Salzburg and Wolfsberger yet we came away with a win. I do have to wonder why we didn't defend like this against Salzburg though. Hosiner scored the only goal and we held on for the win thanks to a titanic performance from Ortlechner despite Kienast missing a penalty. They did put the ball in the net right at the end but, thankfully it was offside. Anyway this was a huge win for us. Lindner returned here by the way and made a couple of good saves. Wolfsberger beat Salzburg and Mattersburg drew too which made this a good week for us.

Simmeringer 3-4 Austria Vienna- Austrian FA Cup 3rd Round
View attachment 330511
We really enjoy making life hard for ourselves don't we? 4-1 against a non-league side with five minutes to go and we still almost mess it up. To be fair neither Ortlechner or Umana were on the pitch, I substituted Umana for Ortlechner to give Umana a break and then Ortlechner for injured for a month, which could really hurt us next month. Still, I'm not sure what on earth went wrong defensively in the last fifteen minutes but we crumbled. What's even worse is that they had a one on one with Lindner in the last minute which he thankfully managed to save. Good to see Murg scoring again, I expect big things from him in the future. We drew Mattersburg in the quarter finals.

Table
View attachment 330513
It's very close between the top three. We're right in the title race at this point, only two points off top spot and with a run of easy games coming up. I'm hoping that Ortlechner's absence won't be felt too keenly.

Other News
Ciro Ferrara became the new Roma manager.
Amazingly Massimo Morrati is set to buy out St.Mirren which would be quite a story.
Salzburg drew away against against Basel and lost 3-2 at Stamford Bridge in the Champions League. They might defy all predictions and ****** a last 16 spot if they keep performing like this.

Player of the Month
View attachment 330514
Manuel Ortlechner again. That performance against Rapid was special. Hosiner is now joint top scorer in the league so I was, again, tempted to give it to him.
 
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By the way, good win today for the Arsenal in real life. I was worrying when we were a goal down with 5 minutes left but the mighty Gunners pulled it off :)
 
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November 2012
Transfers:
Nothing happened.

Matches:

Mattersburg 1-1 Austria Vienna
View attachment 332980
Considering we had no defence for most of this game since we got another defensive injury, to Mally this time, and we were against one of our rivals and they went in front, this is one of the rare occasions where a draw was a good result in the end.

Austria Vienna
0-1 Wacker Innsbruck
View attachment 332981
Most frustrating game ever. 19 shots to 6 with two offside goals and we lost because of a penalty. So frustrating. We should never have lost this game.

Austria Vienna 5-2 SV Ried
View attachment 332982
My strikers managed to locate the net again here and played magnificently. Jun scored a hat-trick and Hosiner bagged a brace. Shame we weren't so ruthless against Innsbruck in our last match but this was a lot better. Hosiner could even have scored a hat-trick which makes me wonder, who gets the match ball if two players score a hat-trick in a match?

Table:
View attachment 333019
Fell slightly further behind Salzburg in the league because of that slip up against Wacker Innsbruck.

Other News

Salzburg qualified from their Champions League group after back-to-back wins against Basel and Shakhtar.

There were also a lot of managerial changes at the major clubs:
Brendan Rodgers was sacked as Liverpool manager and was replaced by Manuel Pellegrini. Joaquin Caparros became the new Malage manager.
Tito Vilanova was sacked as Barcelona manager and was replaced by Jurgen Klopp. Felix Magath became the new Dortmund manager (I swear Magath always seems to replace Klopp as Dortmund manager...)
Diego Simeone was sacked as Atletico Madrid manager and was replaced by Luciano Spalletti. Mircea Lucescu became the new Zenit manager and Shakhtar are currently searching for a new manager.
Thomas Tuchel replaced Jens Keller as Schalke manager.
Laurent Blanc replaced Elie Baup as Marseille manager.
So, a nice quiet month in terms of managerial changes.

By the way, I'm curious about how many people are actually reading and enjoying this so if you are then could you like this or respond so I can see how many people are following it?
 
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December
Transfers:
Still nothing.

Matches:
Admira Wacker Modling 1-1 Austria Vienna
View attachment 333084
1-1 draw. Boring game. Nice to see we came back from behind to earn a point away from home but not a particularly impressive performance.

Austria Vienna 4-1 SC Wiener Neustadt
View attachment 333085
An excellent performance. My forwards really clicked again here and we thrashed Wiener Neustadt in every department.

Wolfsberger 1-2 Austria Vienna
View attachment 333086
These guys really are my bogey side. I know we won but still, only 2 goals from 24 shots on target isn't good enough and their keeper was in magnificent form, until we got the first goal it was looking that he wasn't going to be beaten. Thankfully we finally managed to beat these guys so there we are.

Table:
View attachment 333087
Only one point behind Salzburg now after they had a couple of slip-ups and we had a good month. We've got the winter break coming up which should give me the oppotunity to find some more good players.

Other News

Salzburg lost 3-1 to Chelsea but still progressed to the last 16 of the Champions League.
Other than that the only really noteworthy thing is that Arsenal are 16th in the Premiership at this point, only 3 points above the relegation zone.

Player of the Month
Tomas Jun
View attachment 333088
Another good month for Jun.
 
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By the way, I'm curious about how many people are actually reading and enjoying this so if you are then could you like this or respond so I can see how many people are following it?
Following and enjoying!
 
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Winter Break
Transfers
I signed someone for the summer. More details on him when he joins the club. Blatnjak also joined the club after the deal was done in October.
Friendlies
View attachment 338337
Results to be seen there. Some pretty decent results that set us up nicely for another derby against Rapid Vienna.

Awards
Manuel Ortlechner got the Writers' Austrian Bundesliga Player of the Year. This shows the exceptional standard of performances he has put in throughout the season.
View attachment 338338

Other News

Salzburg drew Bayern Munich in the last 16 of the Champions League. I think that's the end of their European adventure (although I think the first leg against Bayern is just before they play me in the league so a couple of nice, long-term injuries to their key players would be nice).

Moreover, the Diamond formation is working really well so I think I'll stick with it rather than switching to a 4-5-1/4-3-3 formation. As they say, diamonds are forever.

February update will come shortly.
 
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