Football Manager Series Catch-All

Godzilla Blitz wrote:

Grats on the new job, Prederick! Did you check to see what league Solihull Moors ended up in? I'm curious if the game forced them to stay down instead of getting promoted.

Clusks, for networked games does everyone play at the same time then?

Pretty much, although you can carry on without players there, the only one who always needs to be there is the host. We played without comms which was a bit frustrating, as we had one moment when someone forgot to press continue, although I'm sure there's ways to force this. So if one person finishes their match early, you just wait it out until they're done, you can even jump in and watch their match.

If you can get a regular schedule with people going, Network is definitely worth it, I'd say 3 for us is a perfect number, it depends who you have able to commit really. The worst thing about it is that it ruins normal FM for you though!

Godzilla Blitz wrote:

Grats on the new job, Prederick! Did you check to see what league Solihull Moors ended up in? I'm curious if the game forced them to stay down instead of getting promoted.

Well, I left right after Solihull's promotion to League 1 (and Rotherham's relegation to), so I'll be getting to see how they get along without me all season. I must have built a pretty good squad though, they're predicted to finish 8th in the season preview, although a few of the best guys are leaving on End of Contract deals to other teams (part of the reason why I left, the budget wasn't increasing significantly).

I gotta admit, I am really enjoying this longer-term LLM stuff recently.

Before, when I played, I'd get a little fatigued of using unknowns, but now, for some reason, I really prefer it to playing with the usual suspects (Arsenal, PSG, etc). I like to create little narratives in my own head, and it's been a blast to build in-game relationships with players I would've never have heard of otherwise.

So, Rotherham? I showed up, and immediately 3 of my best (and highest-paid) players wanted out, due to the team getting relegated. I had no interest in trying to cling on to them, so I agreed to let all 3 go, except a transfer offer only came in for one. The other two hung around, being midly disgruntled but still pretty professional, and we kicked off the season, albeit in sub-optimal form. We got the living snot kicked out of us in the 3rd game of the season by Portsmouth, losing 5-0 in a total humiliation. But, the season was 46 games long, so one bad loss in August really doesn't tell you very much about anything, and this team (allegedly) was good enough to be looking for immediate promotion again.

The beginning of the season, as I mentioned, wasn't fantastic. We got knocked out of the Carabao Cup in the first round, and were having an incredibly difficult time turning some of our shots and possession advantage into goals and points. So I decided to shake up the roster for real using the free transfer market, bringing in a new midfielder, a new winger, and promoting a highly-touted striker from our reserves, and lo and behold, things began to turn around.

The young striker was the kind of player that gives you fits in FM, he had FANTASTIC physicals, and pretty good technicals for a 18-year-old, but his mental abilities were all sub-par, especially his determination, and I wasn't getting as much improvement on those fronts as I wanted, even after I set him up with a tutor to try and get it into double-digits. But, he was a big, tall battering ram we could use up front, which I did for much of the early season. I'd like to pretend we played the slickest, most fan-friendly football, but I started playing a 4-2-3-1 formation, with two DMs and a AMC, and by god if that didn't allow us to start grinding out results. And not just in the league!

We basically romped to my second Checkatrade Trophy in two years, as we faced inferior opposition in just about every single game (or U-23 squads that just were NOT ready for prime-time). The FA cup also went splendidly for us, as we managed to upset, in order, Sunderland, Aston Villa, and Swansea before coming up against a Everton side being managed by Maurico Pochettino (and in the Champions League!) and giving a great showing for ourselves in the Quarter-Finals, losing 2-1 but arguably playing them evenly for 90 minutes. I was a bit disappointed to lose out on a chance to get a trip to Wembley, but the revenue we pulled from our cup run was really fantastic.

Currently, it's April, and we are sitting happily in 4th. The bad news is that the league title is out of the question, Sheffield United are absolutely walking League 1, and currently have a 12-point lead on the rest of the pack. However, in true lower-league form everybody from 2nd to 14th is currently separated by just five points, with 7 to play. Should be a barnstorming end to the season.

I have a somewhat particular problem with this year's FM that I've experienced in both games I've played.

I have teams set up trying to fit as many players to their best position. With both Parma and Milan, I got off to blistering starts, absolutely dominating games in an attacking sense. My very first game with Parma, for example, was 6-0.

Then, after about 10 or so games, the wheels fall off. All of a sudden, my team just doesn't attack with the same tenacious attitude. For example, with Milan, I was winning non-stop, got a 1-0 defeat to Fiorentina, then all of a sudden found it really difficult to even beat the lesser teams. Hellas Verona (newly promoted) managed to hold me to a draw where I only registered 6 shots in the entire game. Compare this to where I played Genoa earlier in the season, and I managed 21 shots.

Surely tactics aren't worked out that quick by the CPU, right? It just seems a bit bizarre that they totally don't show up all of a sudden.

If you've played the exact same tactic in every game then I guess 10 is enough for people to work you out, but I don't have enough experience with the very recent FMs to know how quickly that happens these days.

It's also possible that this is where the arcane and impenetrable magic around team talks shows up. If you walk a bunch of games to start the season then it's easy to fall into the "well played chaps!" trap.

You need to find a game at home where you're favoured to win and give the team a "disappointing performance" talk even if you win and maybe a bit of "don't get complacent" too. Also watch for people ticking down from superb to only very good morale, which can be a sign that they're getting a bit accustomed to things being easy.

Of course, the interaction stuff in game doesn't make a lot of sense - I've said "well done" to someone for scoring their first international goal and that person immediately got really annoyed with me and I've seen the same with someone who got four goals in a game reacting badly to being told they'd played well.

I feel like SI have never met actual humans before.

FM definitely needs a "your club captain has been charged with stealing a taxi in a foreign country" addition next year.

Our network game is going rather well, although Serie A is tough going.

There appears to be a rather annoying bug as well in which when 2 human players have a match, towards the end of the game (75 mins +) it’ll get stuck and not move any further. We were going to report it on the SI forums, but there’s plenty of people who’ve already done so! Only way to solve it is for one person to quit out the game and rejoin (in which you can’t return to the game itself.)

I do love a long-term FM game, just because of the weird stuff it spits out. I just watched a Red Bull Salzburg v. Celtic Champions League fixture that had a Celtic starting 11 that featured Thiago Silva and Radamel Falcao (both of whom are 34+ and move about as quickly as I might).

Why was I watching that game? Well, I did it in service of my gig as the new manager of Austria! How did that happen, you ask?

Well, last time I reported in, the League One season was coming to a absolute barnstorming finish, and, lo and behold, it did! Our last 7 games went L-D-L-W-W-W-W, as we nearly threw away the chance for promotion before I sat the team down for a bit of the hairdryer treatment, which genuinely appeared to have worked! (Along with a switch in tactic and replacing our DM.) We scraped a 2-1 win in the fourth game, and then won the last 3 by a combined scoreline of 12-2, and by God, we got ourselves promoted at the first attempt!

It was, on the whole, a great season. Our young striker was colossally inconsistent and still managed to lead the team with 22 goals, and we had a grand total of 5 players finish with double-digit goals (albeit, none of the other four had more than 12).

In the offseason, while we were strengthening our team, I tried applying for some new jobs, but despite my fine record, no-one who represented a step up was willing to take a chance on met yet. At the end of Euro 2020, Austria fired their head coach after a hugely disappointing finish where they only managed a single point in 3 group stage games, failing to qualify in one of three spots in a group with 4 teams (the others were Denmark, Portugal and Russia, to be fair). So, on a lark, I applied for the job.

And... lo and behold, they said yes and offered me the job! I've literally never done international management in this game before, so this will be an interesting experiment.

"And the whistle blows, the fans are on the pitch, light blue everywhere....and 1860 Munchen follow their promotion from Regionalliga Bayern with another one, as they will play in 2.Bundesliga next season. They're chairing their English manager from the pitch..."

Yes, my team of German lower league youths will start next season in 2.Bundesliga. Only one player over 25, almost all German, things are going well. So well, in fact, that I'm currently awaiting the outcome of my interview at Chelsea...

Feeling a little pessimistic about my league chances here. We can't play at our own ground because it's not big enough (Board have already announced expansion from 12.5 to 19.5k, but it'll take a year to do), so we're playing down the road at Unterhaching. Just played a friendly there and it looks nicer, but will we be able to recreate the atmosphere? Will I still be there ?

In other news, City won the league in a four team race on the final day (I was in the crowd, watching them thrash Swansea 5-0), but for some odd reason United (who finished 2nd) were also at home. I bet the centre of Manchester was a bit naughty after that excitement..

davet010 wrote:

"And the whistle blows, the fans are on the pitch, light blue everywhere....and 1860 Munchen follow their promotion from Regionalliga Bayern with another one, as they will play in 2.Bundesliga next season. They're chairing their English manager from the pitch..."

Yes, my team of German lower league youths will start next season in 2.Bundesliga. Only one player over 25, almost all German, things are going well. So well, in fact, that I'm currently awaiting the outcome of my interview at Chelsea...

Feeling a little pessimistic about my league chances here. We can't play at our own ground because it's not big enough (Board have already announced expansion from 12.5 to 19.5k, but it'll take a year to do), so we're playing down the road at Unterhaching. Just played a friendly there and it looks nicer, but will we be able to recreate the atmosphere? Will I still be there ?

In other news, City won the league in a four team race on the final day (I was in the crowd, watching them thrash Swansea 5-0), but for some odd reason United (who finished 2nd) were also at home. I bet the centre of Manchester was a bit naughty after that excitement..

I had a game a few years ago where I took Hellas Verona from the bottom of Serie A to champions. After a while, I thought I needed a change and took the Real Madrid job. It was a big mistake, I should've stayed with Verona and tried to win the Champions League. Weirdly enough, Barcelona manager Mick McCarthy prevented me from doing so on two occasions in that game!

I totally lost interest being at Real Madrid, and preferred my team that I'd built up over the years.

Good stuff, thanks for the updates, and congrats on the promotions!

davet010 wrote:

Feeling a little pessimistic about my league chances here. We can't play at our own ground because it's not big enough (Board have already announced expansion from 12.5 to 19.5k, but it'll take a year to do), so we're playing down the road at Unterhaching. Just played a friendly there and it looks nicer, but will we be able to recreate the atmosphere? Will I still be there ?

Heh, that's a nice touch with the stadium construction piece. I wouldn't have expected that.