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Tots units fem força - The FC Barcelona guide to FM

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TOTS UNITS FEM FORÇA

CLUB NAME

Futbol Club Barcelona

ALSO KNOWN AS

Barça
Els culés (The asspeople) [Yes, really]
Els blaugranes (The blue-and-maroon)

LA LIGA 2011/2012 POSITION

Runner-up to Real Madrid

YEAR OF FOUNDATION

1899

STADIUM

Estadi del Futbol Club Barcelona

also called

Camp Nou
View attachment 336493

RIVALRIES

The eternal opponent: Real Madrid
The other local team: RCD Espanyol

EXPECTATIONS

You will win La Liga. No questions asked.

ECONOMY

You will never have to worry about FC Barcelona's income. As long as you don't go far too overboard with your budgets, the club will always stay wealthy and fine. More often than not, the good economic situation of the club will result in a large bonus to your transfer budget, though chances are you won't even need it.

You will be handed a 139 € million per year salary budget, of which 131 are already spent, and 5 € million to spend on the first transfer window. It may seem a bit low, but you won't need that many reinforcements on your first year. You can also increase it selling some players as we'll see below.YMMV but, in most if not all my games, the staff gives you a ~30 € million extra to sign players around mid november. Yep.

BOARD EXPECTATIONS



  • [*=center]Develop players using the club's youth system
    [*=center]Play possession football
    [*=center]Play attacking footbal

Don't worry about them; Barcelona can and will play a spectacular, flashy attacking football based on pass-and-move, and most of the time possession will be on your side. In real life, FC Barcelona has gone on a >300 matches string without ever having less than 51% possession of the ball. They're just that good.

Using the young talents of La Masia, FC Barcelona's young talents' developing school is as easy as it could be. Out of their starting 11, an average of 7 players come from their youth system. We're talking about prodigies such as Andrés Iniesta, Sergio Busquets, Víctor Valdés and everyone's favorite argentine midfielder.

STAFF

Assistant Manager: Jordi Roura

Sadly, Jordi Roura is just not good enough for Barcelona. End his contract ASAP, then sign Francisco Ayestaran or Jorge Valdano as your second-in-command. Both have very good Defense and Tactical Knowledge attributes, making them prime candidates to handle your Opposition Instructions.

Physiotheraphy team

FC Barcelona's fisios are awesome, period. They've been working together at Barça for years and know the players as if they were their children. You have room for one more Physio at the start, so you could sign Aldo Esposito, a great addition to your medical staff.

Coaching staff

Since training is directed entirely by the manager and assistant, FC Barcelona has a single coach and four for the youth squad. They have however many physical trainers, who are sadly not as good as their physio counterparts. Feel free to terminate all of their contracts, then sign a whopping new team of coaches. You can sign a grand total of 10 coaches, 2 goalkeeper coaches and 4 physical coaches.

Reccomendations on who to sign include but are not limited to: Ángel Vales, Francisco Ayestaran if you sign Valdano as your Assistant, Gerd Müller, Stefano Bonaccorso, Massimo Bonini, Paolo Tomassoni, Nestor el Maestro, Dave Parnaby, Norbert Elgert and Michele Salzarulo.

Your aim is to have AT THE VERY LEAST 3'5 stars in each training category. Chances are you'll have 4 stars in a couple of them, and 3'5 in the rest.

Scouts

Honestly, I've never cared too much for scouts. Barça has many at their disposal, and in case you need more of them look for someone with 15+ in: Adaptability, Determination, Quality rating and Potential rating. That's all.

FACILITIES

FC Barcelona's facilities are among the best in the world, and in case they don't stay that way you won't have many trouble upgrading them.



FC BARCELONA'S SQUAD

THE GATE GUARDIAN - GOALKEEPER

FIRST CHOICE: Víctor Valdés

Age 30 - Spain

All around a superb goalie with awesome technical and mental stats, and fairly decent physicals. His jumping and aerials may be a bit lacking, so he will most likely suffer with set pieces and strong, tall forwards. He will hold your goal for two seasons: two and not more, because he's set on leaving Barcelona. Wether to keep him for both seasons or sell him before his contract expires, your choice. I'd keep him.

BACKUP: José Manuel Pinto

Age 36 - Spain

Widely known for his braid-like hairstyle and rapping band, Pinto is a decent keeper who can hold his own in Barcelona. Better at lunging forward than Valdés but not as secure anywhere else. He will, however, perform decently enough when needed, and will never complain about not having enough playtime.

YOUNG SQUAD: Oier Olazábal

Age 22 - Spain

Oier is very good with aerial balls, mostly thanks to his privilegiate physique. Sadly, that's all there is about Oier, and it's not enough for him to become a member of the first team. Leave him on Barça B until his contract expires; chances are a new, better goalkeeper will be on his way to the first team by then.

The rest of Barça's goalkeepers are nothing special. Until a better regen spawns, you'll need a young, talented goalkeeper to take after Víctor Valdés when he leaves, so you'll have to sign. And we all know where does that take us...

RECCOMENDED SIGNING: Marc-André Ter Stegen

Age 20 - Germany

Everyone's favorite goalkeeper on FM13. Not much to be said about him: he's young, he's good, and he'll become THE BEST. His stats are almost on par with Valdés', and will only increase from there. He can use some Handling training, so focus on it.

It's pretty easy to tempt him to leave Gladbach (we're the best team of the world after all, remember?). You should be able to unsettle him with press comments and/or offers. Gladbach will probably ask for 26€ million for him; refuse that offer. This will more often than not unsettle him; if it doesn't, you'll have to negotiate. In the end he should join Barça for around 16..20 € million.

COMING DOWN THE EAST ROAD - RIGHT DEFENDER

FIRST CHOICE: Daniel Alves


Age 29 - Brazil

Great at attacking and defending, faster than a speeding bullet, ready to fight from 1 to 90. That's Daniel Alves. Incredible stats all around make him a force to be reckoned with when attacking, and a hard to evade obstacle when defending. Easily one of the best defenders in the game, although his stats will decay rapidly. He'll be a key player for two seasons; then his legacy will be passed on to

BACKUP: Martín Montoya

Age 21 - Spain

Much more defense-focused than his senior, Montoya will soon develop into a **** of a beast right-back. Has the potential to surpass Alves if trained correctly and has a bit of luck with injuries. Fast, strong and nimble with the ball on his feet, it would be a good idea to have Alves tutor him and have him play unimportant or Copa del Rey matches. One of the best products of La Masia on these last years.

YOUNG SQUAD: Edgar Ié

Age 18 - Portugal

A recent signing for FC Barcelona Atlètic, Ié has nice stats for his age and has potential to be a quite decent player, although maybe not good enough to be part of the first team. Once Alves is done tutoring Montoya, have him tutor Ié.

You don't need a right back right at the start of the game, but if you're looking forward for a replacement for Montoya once Alves leaves the team, my suggestion would be to sign

RECCOMENDED SIGNING: Sebastién Corchia

Age 21 - France

Corchia is an amazing fullback. He has stats similar to Alves and will prove more than capable to strip him of being the first choice in a couple years. Definitely a worthy signing; in a couple of years Corchia and Montoya will cover for sure all of your right-back needs. He'll leave Sochaux for around 12 euro million.

THE LEFT-FOOTED SPEEDING BULLET - LEFT DEFENDER

FIRST CHOICE - Jordi Alba

Age 23 - Spain

One of the two new incorporations to FC Barcelona this season alongside Alex Song. Think Alves on the left; Alba plays A LOT like him. Whereas Alves is more suited for hugging the touchline, reaching the corner and crossing, Alba will frequently cut inside and pierce into the box to secure a last pass or even a clear shot. Even more agile and nimble than Alves, Alba will be the worst nightmare of every right back for many years to come.

BACKUP: Adriano Correia

Age 27 - Brazil

Not as near as impressive as his real-life counterpart, Adriano is a decent player. He can play from defense to wings on both sides of the pitch, being one of the few truly ambidextrous players of the game. His stats are all decent and he does fine both attacking and defending, but his injury proneness will limit his usefulness a lot. One of the prime candidates to sell in the first transfer window; you'll make more profit of the money you'll get by transfering him, than you would make from his play.

YOUNG SQUAD: Marc Muniesa

Age 20 - Spain

Young and with lots of room for improvement, young Muniesa has seen his career truncated by fairly serious injuries many times. Still he's determined to work his way onto the first team, and certainly has the potential to do so. His stats are much more like those of a "standard" leftback than those of Alba, making him to Alba what Montoya is to Alves. Tutor him with any good defender, such as Piqué or Puyol, to help boost his already decent mentals.

A PROMISE FOR THE FUTURE: Álex Grimaldo

Age 16 - Spain

You have to see him play to believe how good he is. Undisputed starter at FC Barcelona Atlètic (spanish second division) at age 16... says a lot for him. He will develop into a potentially better version of Alba; his stats are more suited for a winger than a fullback. Correct training, tutoring and first team playing can help him become the best left back in the game in a few (6~8) years.

You also have Éric Abidal in your squad, but he's ineligible to play during the first season. He's aging not too well and his contract expires at the end of the current season so, unless you haven't signed a decent backup and Muniesa is not ready to play as a backup to Alba, you shouldn't extend his contract. If you do, he'll perform pretty fine, but it's not worth the cost.

RECCOMENDED SIGNING: David Alaba

Age 20 - Austria

The young austrian fullback from Bayern München. He's almost as injury prone as Adriano, so this signing is a bit of a gamble: he will perform well when placed on the pitch, but you'll never know for how long. His stats are, however, absolutely brilliant, although he should work on his marking. A versatile player, he can also play all down the left side or even in the midfield. He starts the game injured so you'll have to wait almost until the transfer window closes to sign him. About 20€ million should do the trick.


THE GAME STARTS WITH ME - BALL PLAYING DEFENDER

FIRST CHOICE: Gerard Piqué

Age 25 - Spain

Most of FC Barcelona's play origins on Gerard Piqué's boots. He a great defender and also a great playmaker, with perfect stats and player preferred moves to suit the ball playing defender role. He's tall and very good with his head, and will score lots of goals from set pieces. He is, sadly, the only FC Barcelona defender capable of defending against aerial balls. Long story short, treasure him. He'll be probably your best defender for at least 6 or 7 years.

BACKUP: Marc Bartra

Age 21 - Spain


Piqué not available? Don't worry. Another late addition to the team coming from Barça Atlètic, Marc Bartra is a good young player with lots of potential. His stats and playstyle are similar to Piqué, but his smaller frame makes him a bit more agile. He's a bit shorter though, and can't defend on air as effectively as Piqué does, but he will become a great defender in a couple years. You can have Piqué tutor him, essentialy making Bartra Piqué 2.0.

YOUNG SQUAD: Sergi Gómez

Age 19 - Spain

Although he's not on the same level as Piqué and Bartra, Gómez can become a good player given the proper training and playtime. He's kind of a late bloomer, and will take him many years to reach his full potential. You can keep him on Atlètic until then, or loan him to smaller clubs so he can get those necessary minutes of play. He's also a good candidate to be tutored with Piqué, or even Bartra once he's veteran enough to do it himself. Have him improve his first touch too.

These three are FC Barcelona's best candidates to take the role of ball playing defender, a vital one for this team since Guardiola took the manager spot back in 2008. As Barcelona thinks of attacking and defending the same way, it is vital to have players who feel comfortable with the ball in their feet in all lines of attack and defense. Fortunately, we have.

Signing a defender to take after Piqué is not really necessary, but if you somehow don't trust Bartra (or want to loan him) the obvious candidate is

RECCOMENDED SIGNING: Mats Hummels

Age 23 - Germany

More defense-oriented than Piqué, but as skilled with the ball in his control as him. Young and reliable, Hummels will be a safe bet and a great addition to your team for almost a decade. Dortmund won't let him leave easily, so if you can't unsettle him somehow, expect to spend at least 30 euro million to get him. Worth every cent, though.

I GOT YOUR BACK - LIMITED DEFENDER


FIRST CHOICE: Javier Mascherano

Age 28 - Argentina

The best. Simply the best at his work. Tackles 20, Bravery 20, Work Rate 19, Concentration 19, Determination 19, Teamwork 18. Fast, strong, will crave for each and every ball that gets past Piqué. Mascherano is a real lifesaver at your defense line, always staying one step behind his partner and catching wether ball or player that tries to break through him. He can also play at the defensive midfield, but we have other options more suited for Barcelona's playstyle there, and Mascherano really shines as a center back. Well he shines wherever he plays. He's just too good.

BACKUP: Carles Puyol

Age 34 - Spain

FC Barcelona's long time captain and icon has seen better days, but he's not done yet. His stats are similar to Mascherano, even better at heading thanks to being a bit taller, but that's pretty much all there is for Puyol: everything he can do, Mascherano can do better. Pitching him can have a good effect on the team's morale, too. Also be careful with injuries, as the next one could sadly be his last.

YOUNG SQUAD: Macky Bagnack

Age 17 - Cameroon

Bagnack is the closest thing we have in our youth ranks to Mascherano or Puyol. In a few years' worth, Macky can become a decent player, but chances are he'll not make it into the first team. Try to tutor him with both Puyol and Mascherano, give him spare minutes, loan him... He might become pretty good in the end.

This is probably the position we need to reinforce the most. We have two quality players for the role, but Puyol is long past his prime and Mascherano needs a reliable backup to let him rest without the team's resenting his absence. So my bet on this would be

RECCOMENDED SIGNING: Kyriakos Papadopoulos

Age 20 - Greece

Funnily enough, any of the three of Schalke 04's center backs (Papadopoulos, Höwedes or Matip) are well suited for this position. However among the three of them, Papadopoulos is my favorite. Rock solid and fast, with great marking, tackling and heading attributes. His mentals may be a bit lacking though, so have Puyol and Mascherano help him with that. You should be able to get him for around 12..15 euro million.


MASTER AND COMMANDER - DEEPLYING PLAYMAKER

FIRST CHOICE: Sergio Busquets

Age 23 - Spain

The king of the midfield. He defends. He constructs. He assists. Whatever in many teams would take two or three midifielders, Busquets does it all by himself. He'll be one of your most valuable players for many years, sporting a long and successful career. He'll get the ball, look for whoever's in the best position to receive, and pass the ball with millimetric accuracy. While defending he'll position himself so in case the opponent gets past him, he'll be an easy prey for the defenders. Yet another product from La Masia and Pep Guardiola's personal bet, time has proven him right. It's unbelievable how good Busquets is.

BACKUP: Alex Song

Age 24 - Cameroon

The other of the two new incorporations to FC Barcelona this year alongside Jordi Alba. Song is probably the best replacement for Busquets you could have, not being as technically gifted as the catalan but equally suited to the defensive midfielder position for Barça. Song will rush forward way more often than Busquets and look for chances rather than mantaining control of the ball. His physique makes him much more adept than Busquets at direct clashes, but lacks the tactical intelligence and superb positioning his partner has.

YOUNG SQUAD: Jonathan Dos Santos

Age 22 - Mexico

Brother to former FC Barcelona player Giovanni Dos Santos, Jonathan is a very decent player. He lacks the finesse of Busquets or the great physical form of Song, but has a nice mixture of both. A very well balanced midifelder with great passing ability and a surprisingly good long shot. He can make it into the first team, or rather could, if he had not to compete with two beasts such as Busquets and Song. Not even age is going to help him, as he's only one year younger than Busquets. All in all, a good reserve player.

You have two world class players for this position with a good one for backup to those two, so there's no need at all to look for a defensive midfielder at the start of the game. Should the need arise, my reccomendation this time would be

RECCOMENDED SIGNING: Koke

Age 20 - Spain

Seeing as you're most likely in need of immediate quality, this is a looking-to-the-future signing. Koke is already pretty good, and will become even better over time. He plays similar to Busquets within his limits. Koke has a 15 euro million buy-out clause, so make sure you exploit that weakness if you want to sign him.

-----------------

To be continued soon, feedback or suggestions are always appreciated.
 
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Cules = Catalans, otherwise, good start
 
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you could always bring back Cruijff to Barça as assistant manager
He is no longer present in the database as a signable entity as of the latest patch (13.3.3). On vanilla however he was a great assistant.
 
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