Hello there, and welcome to part two of this new Football Manager blog.
It was my intention on this post to talk about players' positions and roles, the "role-playing" aspect of Football Manager, and how they relate to real life football. Change of plan! Something nasty just happened on my current FM18 save, that's prompted me to talk about something else - specifically, why is this blog called Football Manager Ambition? What's the ambition part all about? Well, there is a reason behind it, but before we get into that, here's the first of a regular ongoing feature...
GREAT FOOTBALL MANAGER QUOTES
Bound to raise a smile on the face of any FM gamer, old Cloughie. We all love the tactical side of the game, don't we? But is there anything more satisfying than building a squad of the best players you can find, and watching them demolish the opposition?
This kind of leads me on to the new subject for this instalment of FMA: Ambition. What exactly is my ambition when playing Football Manager - and how does it stack up against yours?
So what happened on my game to prompt this discussion?
Well, apart from the news that my rivals Man City sacked their manager, Simeone (lol), I had this message pop up:
Okay, it happens. This is why you have a squad. But it does burn a little bit when you look how much I overpaid for the lad. First, have a look at his profile:
Not bad. He's only 22, and he's just going to keep getting better, although I'm a little disappointed with his goals return. But having said that, with the tactics I use, it's not unusual for my wide men to score more than my strikers. More on tactics in a later post. But, you can see from the lad's profile he's worth £65 million. How much do you think I paid for him?
That's right... £103 million smackers. But why? I hear you ask. Why would I pay £103 mill for this up and comer? Well, this is where my very personal, very idiosyncratic ambition comes in...
It all started with FM17. I had a couple of great saves going on that version of the game; one with SWFC, and another with Arsenal. On both saves, after a few seasons, I got my club to a place where it ranked among the best in Europe, and was going around cherry picking the best young players across the continent. But I found it hard to hold on to some of the bigger names, who started to get unhappy, and wanting moves to Real Madrid and the like - particularly on my SWFC save. At the same time, though, the club had invested a lot on my youth facilities and I was getting some excellent new gens coming through. I'd also managed to hold on to some top English players, like Lewis Cook. Some of the new gens went on to become regular first teamers and England players, and before I knew it, I had several SWFC players in the England squad. And an idea crept into my mind... What if I could build a SWFC squad purely of England internationals? And then it went a step further... What if I could make that squad so good that the England team was made up purely of SWFC players? Would it be possible to achieve this? I'd have to have some ground rules of course: No cheating with the game editor (I don't have the editor installed), and I'm not allowed to take the England Manager's job (that would make it too easy, heh).
Well, I got close to my ambition in FM17, but never quite made it. Could I do it with FM18? Well, let's have a look at how close I've got. Here's my current squad:
As you can see; all English, although not all current internationals in my save. Below is the current England squad on my save:
A fair few SWFC players there. Now, the problem with buying all these England players in that it seems to drive up the market price of English players, particularly with the so-called big teams (not that Bournemouth count as a big team, obvs). And this is why I ended up paying Bournemouth £103 million quid for a hot prospect! I kept increasing my bid, but it became obvious he was going nowhere unless I matched his minimum fee clause. All of which racks me off a little bit when I find out he's out for nine months injured on England duty!
I'm going to have to do some serious business in the summer transfer market. Firstly because the balance of my squad is all wrong, due to a couple of deals falling through in January. I need another keeper (always like to have three in the squad), and another ball-winning midfielder. But my top transfer target is Chelsea's world class English midfielder Shane Fuller. I've already had a bid of up to £170 million rejected, and as things stand right now, I've only got roughly £70 million left in the transfer kitty.
I'm going to have to sell Brendan Galloway (no longer good enough), and both Luke Shaw and James Ward Prowse (while they still have some market value). The board are usually pretty generous, and I'm not bad at wheeler dealing, so hopefully in the close season, I'll get closer to my ambition. Unfortunately, a lot of this hope depends on me winning the Premier League. My first match after losing McGreal to injury was an embarrassing home 0-0 with Leicester, leaving me now only one point clear of Arsenal. It is, as they say, "squeaky bum time".
Thanks for dropping by. Next time, I promise, I'll be talking more general FM stuff about player positions and roles, the "role-playing" aspect of the game, and how it relates to real life football.