Pepito the Bald Fraud | Season 6 | SC Braga | Season end

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  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    edited July 21
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    MD 14. 2414.png?lm=1518117744 Horsens (A)
    The hosts opened the score early on, and after that didn't create anything else. Chelsea legend Matej Delac diligently jumped around in goal, but still let in three goals. Our first hat-trick of the season.
    3-1 (Andersen-3 — Frantsen)

    Max Christiansen (the DM from Germany) broke his toe and will miss two months. His place in the starting 11 will be temporarily taken by Magnus Christensen (Aalborg youth CM). A couple games ago the CB Pedersen picked up a knock and will be back in about two more weeks, meanwhile Blabjerg is covering for him.
    Okore, Kusk and Andersen have been called up to Denmark NT, Rinne — to Sweden.
    Copenhagen has been defeated by Odense, and as a result we finally move in first place. Equal on points, but better on goal difference. So now Copenhagen is trying to sign Guardiola.
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    Hahaha. As the saying goes, if you can't beat them, steal their manager, or whatever. Not gonna happen, Pepito ain't no turncoat.

    MD 15. 5818.png?lm=1518120161 Hobro (A)
    We totally outplayed the opposition, but didn't score. Tough luck today. Fortunately, Copenhagen drew as well, so our table position stays unchanged.
    0-0

    MD 16. 443.png?lm=1437861930 Vejle (A)
    Third away game in a row, with our "favourite" opponents no less, are the schedule makers all right out there? In our first game Vejle scored stupid goals with deflections and rebounds, now it's our turn. Okore broke a toe, out for two months. Luckily, one of those months will constitute the winter break.
    2-0 (Andersen, Pedersen)

    MD 17. 5817.png?lm=1518117723 Sonderjyske (H)
    Andersen caught on fire at the end of the year. A brace and an assist today. The game itself was pretty typical: destroyed the opponent, scored three, then conceded the only shot on goal.
    3-1 (Andersen-2, Abildgaard — Eskesen)

    Andersen is obviously best player of November. Other Aalborg candidates were Christensen and Christiansen (not to be confused with one another).

    MD 18. 3426.png?lm=1518117756 Esbjerg (A)
    Unlucky again. Conceded early, then Blabjerg picked up a red card. We still attacked and could have equalised thrice, but the Esbjerg GK decided to have the game of his life.
    0-1 (Grbic)

    MD 19. 5724.png?lm=1518117482 Randers (H)
    Again we concede in the middle of the first half, this time from a penalty. Again we can't finish the chances we create. Right after half-time we equalized, then were all over their goal, but managed to score only in the added time.
    2-1 (Thellufsen, Kusk — Lobjanidze (pen))

    Players of the Month award in December went to Max Christiansen, who has been injured the whole time, and, I mean, come on.

    Highlights:


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    Copenhagen got the top spot back, but Aalborg won't be giving up. Odense seems to have decided to join our breakaway. Nordsjaelland leapt from the next-to-last place to seventh in seven games.
    Someone else who leapt is Andersen — right to the top of the goalscorers list.

    St. Pats lost the remaining three games and are out of Europe.
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  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    edited July 23
    For the January transfer window we were mostly concerned with squad depth and added a couple backup players.

    Left back Malte Amundsen arrived from Vejle.
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    He was warming the bench there, he will probably be doing the same here, but Aalborg bench is better than Vejle bench.

    And some attacking reinforcement — Esbjerg winger and one of the season's assist leaders Mathias Kristensen.
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    Yep, another one. We already have a Christensen and a Christiansen, and also another Kristensen deep on the bench. How to tell them all apart? Impossible. Come on, Denmark, get yourself some imagination in the last name department, will ya?

    Van Weert wasn't too happy with his backup striker status and asked to be let go. So he moves to Nürnberg.
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    Right after the transfer window closed, Feyenoord came in with an offer for Kasper Kusk. After some negotiation a deal was made for €5 million. So next summer Kusk will be leaving to get another stab at playing in the Netherlands.
  • ElMarcos
    204 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Good results, you can still snatch the title from Københaven. Let’s see if Pepito silenes the danish crytics once and for all.
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
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    MD 20. 190.png?lm=1518117389 Copenhagen (H)
    We are three points behind, and here's a chance to catch up with the leaders. The first half was pretty even, without much danger, only an exchange of goals not long before half-time. Afterwards Aalborg upped the pressure and scored two, then conceded a goal after a ridiculous deflection extravaganza, and saw the game off passing about in the midfield. Back to first place.
    3-2 (Kusk, Pohl, Andersen — Wind, Fischer)

    MD 21. 206.png?lm=1518117616 Brondby (H)
    We got lucky, tbh. Another equal first half, but a Brondby defender just carried the ball into his own net, givng us the lead. Then the visitors pressed up on us, we mostly relied on counters and happened to score another one from a corner. Not a deserved win, really.
    2-0 (Arajuuri (OG), Abildgaard)

    Danish Cup, QF. 19657.png?lm=1437861900 Vendsyssel (A)
    Guardiola started the reserves and again couldn't get any advantage in the first half. We scored from a corner, they scored from our defensive collapse. After half-time the hosts dared to go on the offensive and try to win the game and got smacked back into submission by the young hat-trick hero Wessam Ali.
    4-1 (Blabjerg, Ali-3 — Adekoya)

    New guy Kristensen got injured, out for two months. Unlucky. Thellufsen also picked up a knock, but it's not as bad, he will be beck in a couple weeks.

    MD 22. 19657.png?lm=1437861900 Vendsyssel (A)
    Our almost rivals had a chance to get revenge right off the bat, but didn't. Aalborg won confidently, while the host scored their only shot on goal, as is tradition. We, as is tradition, tore them apart on counters. Copenhagen lost, putting some daylight between us in the table.
    3-1 (Forrester, Andersen, Kusk — Jensen)

    MD 23. 678.png?lm=1518117578 Aarhus (A)
    This was hard. We scored a quick goal and retreated out of harm's way and mostly defended up till the end.
    1-0 (Pohl)

    Another injury, Kusk is down. What the what is this what? Soon we'll have no one to attack with.

    MD 24. 2778.png?lm=1518117470 Nordsjaelland (H)
    Completely overwhelmed the opponents. Two goals before half-time, two more after. Copenhagen dropping points again, we are breaking away.
    4-0 (Abildgaard, Pedersen, Christensen-2)

    MD 25. 173.png?lm=1518117592 Odense (A)
    Pretty equal game. We may have had a little bit of advantage, which we may have converted into three points, but the ref elected to invent a penalty when the opposing attacker stepped on Okore after getting off a shot. Copenhagen keeps bottling it: another draw.
    2-2 (Christensen, Andersen — Thomasen, Riviere (pen))

    We really do have no one to attack with anymore — Jannik Pohl has broken a toe too. On this occasion Pep was forced to call up a youth player from the academy, Mikkel Knudsen.
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    MD 26. 865.png?lm=1518117451 Midtjylland (H)
    Aalborg all beat up and absolutely knackered, got thoroughly kicked around, but still held on to a point. After the game the players jumped around with some trophy for some reason, even though we have the second round of the championship ahead of us.
    1-1 (Kirsch — Evander)

    So we won the "regular championship", now for the final round, where the leaders are separated from the plebs. This season the leaders are Aalborg, Copenhagen, Odense, Nordsjaelland, Midtjylland and Horsens. The points from the first round carry over in full.
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    Andersen has had a great stretch: 3 goals, 8 assists in 7 games; now leading both the goalscorers and the assistants.

  • ElMarcos
    204 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Despite the lack of a real striker you’ve gotten on top! Curious to see whether Pep can keep his magic going with a youth player on the striker position.
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    ElMarcos wrote: »
    Despite the lack of a real striker you’ve gotten on top! Curious to see whether Pep can keep his magic going with a youth player on the striker position.

    Well, I wasn't being that literal when I said there's no one left to attack with. We do in fact have not one, but two strikers — both Andersen and Ali healthy and ready. The problem is broader than that. The team needs three attackers in a 4-3-3, and we have exactly that (the aforementioned + Thellufsen who has already recovered), but then no backup. Substitutions are a thing that has to happen, and we had only Børsting there, who has already proved pretty useless. So promoting a youngster for squad depth was needed, but the situation is not as bad as it seems.
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
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    Danish Super League final round, let's go!

    MD 27. 2778.png?lm=1518117470 Nordsjaelland (H)
    Completely outplayed the opposition, they didn't create anything even close to a goalscoring opportunity. We scored four, all of them headers, three of them from corners. Therefore, three assists for Andersen, the beast keeps on beasting. Our youngster Knudsen had his debut and made a good impression: took part in a goal, broke a defender's leg.
    4-0 (Abildgaard, Thellufsen, Forrester-2)

    MD 28. 2414.png?lm=1518117744 Horsens (A)
    Aalborg dominated again, but this time around there were no corner kicks, and we gifted the opponents a goal right after half-time. We had to work hard, and in the end managed to come back and win the game. Forrester scored the winner in added time. Copenhagen lost to Midtjylland, the margin grows to 8 points.
    2-1 (Andersen, Forrester — Drost)

    MD 29. 173.png?lm=1518117592 Odense (H)
    We conceded from the first counter-attack, then ran all over Odense, while they kept bothering us with counters. In the second half they could barely get out of their own box, but the ball just refused to go into the net. Unbelievably bad luck. At the very end the ref invented a pen, just to make sure that we lose.
    0-2 (Kadrii, Riviere (pen))

    MD 30. 865.png?lm=1518117451 Midtjylland (A)
    Once again we have possession, we attack a lot, but can't create good chances. And the opponents have a tall beanpole that they can just hoof the ball towards and score. On the other hand, Pep rested the best players before the cup semifinal, so yeah. But it's all not too bad, because Copenhagen lost as well.
    0-1 (Onuachu)

    Danish Cup, SF. 190.png?lm=1518117389 Copenhagen (A)
    Perfect defensive performance from Aalborg. Mostly stayed back in the firsh half, did have a couple chances, but nothing major. After the break we turned on the pressing, scored, fell back again and finished the opponents off on counters. And of course we couldn't but give away a stupid goal at the last minute,
    3-1 (Thellufsen, Dalsgaard, Kirsch — Fischer)

    MD 31. 190.png?lm=1518117389 Copenhagen (H)
    In the previous game Thellufsen got injured again, so Pep was forced to play the fullback Amundsen at the wing. That didn't prevent us from dominating for the first half, but we could score only once, and paid for that in the second half, when Copenhagen woke up and pushed back.
    1-1 (Amundsen — Matic)

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    Aalborg still in the first place, but now a new player has joined the title race — Odense.

    Highlights:
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    edited August 2
    MD 32. 2778.png?lm=1518117470 Nordsjaelland (A)
    Nothing went right, even freshly recovered Kristensen didn't help much. Copenhagen closing in.
    0-1 (Amon)

    MD 33. 865.png?lm=1518117451 Midtjylland (H)
    Not a good performance for Aalborg, but it was enough to score once. Copenhagen and Odense drew their game and now are respectively 4 and 5 points behind us.
    1-0 (Christensen)

    Danish Cup, final. 173.png?lm=1518117592 Odense
    We scored two quick goals, then tried to sit on the lead. Didn't work too well, but well enough that we won. Cup winners!
    2-1 (Kusk, Andersen — Helenius)
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    Best Player of the Competition award went to our Thellufsen, who scored two and assisted two in three games.

    MD 34. 173.png?lm=1518117592 Odense (A)
    For the third time in a row we face our cup opponent in the following league game. Jannik Pohl has finally recovered and for the first time in a long time Aalborg is at full strength. "Why not celebrate the occasion by losing to a title rival?", we thought and conceded in the first attack of the game without even touching the ball once. Afterwards we got better, equalized by half-time and in the second half Christensen's brace brought us the crucial victory.
    3-1 (Pohl, Christensen-2 — Kadrii)

    Copenhagen drew, so our lead grows to 6 points. Two games left, we are virtually champions.

    MD 35. 190.png?lm=1518117389 Copenhagen (A)
    And we can make it official at our main rival's home field. And that is exactly what we do. Copenhagen has been thinly spread all over the pitch. But we also made sure to concede a dumb goal at the end of the game, haven't done that in a while.
    3-1 (Abildgaard-2, Pohl — Daramy)

    MD 36. 2414.png?lm=1518117744 Horsens (H)
    The final game of the season, Pep can afford to let the benchwarmers have some fun, including the veterans. We almost paid the price for that, but thanks to our youngsters Ali (another hat-trick) and Knudsen we could snatch a draw. Old-timers Wurtz and Risgaard helped out with an assist each.
    There was no award ceremony, we're champions, so what, off we go. Not even a photo with a trophy in the menu :(
    3-3 (Ali-3 — Brock-Madsen-2, Junker)
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    Guardiola triumphs again, the skeptics are silenced!



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    Player of the season is obviously Andersen, 34 goal/assist points. Team of the Season also features Abildgaard and Forrester.
    I would also personally praise Magnus Christensen, Kasper Kusk, Jores Okore and Henrik Dlasgaard. A special award goes to Wissam Ali for scoring two hat-tricks and nothing else.

    Player stats:
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    Meanwhile Milan won the CL, eliminating Barca, Juve, Man City and Bayern along the way. Talk about a deserved title, zero luck there, extremely hard-earned.
    Lazio won the Europa League, marking the renaissance of Italian football. (But not really — their national team didn't qualify for the Euro.)

    P.S. St Pats didn't deliver without Pepito, and Leicester somehow ended up in the Championship and beat all the records there.
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    P.P.S. Pep Guardiola, having shown it to the Danish haters, is leaving for Scotland.
    Post edited by sviraman on
  • ElMarcos
    204 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Champions again! You did great ending up on top! Hopefully you can do the same in scotland. Are you also going to strive for succes in Europe?
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    ElMarcos wrote: »
    Champions again! You did great ending up on top! Hopefully you can do the same in scotland. Are you also going to strive for succes in Europe?

    Thank you. Hopefully Pep will get a chance to have a stab at European glory again, but if we be realistic, it's unlikely that he can win anything in the next few seasons, these teams are not at that level yet.
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Pepito's next team is Aberdeen
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    Four-time Scottish champions, seven-times Cup winners, the most decorated Scottish team in Europe — the Dons have two trophies, while the you-know-who have only one each. Never been relegated form the top division, unlike one of the you-know-whos.
    Aberdeen are the last non-Old Firm Scottish champion. They did that 35 years ago in 1985 under Sir Alex Ferguson's command. Celtic and Rangers have been in control of the trophy ever since. So now another all-time-great manager comes to stop the Glasgow hegemony.

    Aberdeen finished the previous two seasons in second place, so of course they need a big-name gaffer to make the final leap.
    oTZehOa.png

    Season objectives:
    - high finish in the league
    - cup semifinal
    - reaching the gruop stage in Europa League (yep, Pepito is back in European business)
    - some nonsense about attendance and youth players

    The squad Guardiola has inherited is, excuse my French, la merde totale. For a start, there's only 19 players in the team. We are two injuries away from a forfeit.

    Goalkeepers
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    There are four, but the only good one is Joe Lewis — used to be promising, played for all English youth national teams, and has one game in the Premier League for Cardiff. On the bench we have Czech veteran Tomas Cerny and NY-born Irishman Danny Rogers. In the reserve there is young Irishman David Craddock.

    Only five defenders, three of those right fullbacks and none of those left fullbacks.
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    Shaleum Logan — Man City youth product, had been playing all over the English lower leagues, at Aberdeen since 2014. Ryan Garner is a recent academy graduate, he's huge but rather pacey and I have no idea how to use him. Welshman Ryan Harrington also exists.

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    Scott McKenna is one of the best Scottish talents currently, already being called up to the NT, Aberdeen youth product. Michael Devlin is older and v slow. Garner might come in useful here as backup, but we could also do with a signing here.

    Central midfield
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    Young talent from Hamilton youth setup Lewis Ferguson will hopefully become our team leader. The experienced Stephen Gleeson will likely start at DM.

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    For backup we have young academy products Frank Ross and Dean Campbell, the latter is younger and shows more promise, so will get more playtime. Both a bit weak for the starting 11, so there will be transfers here.

    Wingers
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    Gary Mackay-Steven was at Liverpool and Fulham's academies, had successful spells at Dundee United and Celtic. Northern Irish Niall McGinn is what you might call a club legend: 5 years at Aberdeen (2012--2017), then a six-month spell in Korea and he's back here again.

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    The club's youth products Scott Wright and Connor McLennan are also good and could easily take over the starting spots by the end of the season.

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    Sam Cosgrove — young, talented, tall, Everton's academy graduate. Stevie May — a more balanced striker, but a bit worse quality-wise. Both are fine, but I'm itching to sell Cosgrove to get some extra moneys for reinforcements.

    The squad seems a good fit for a 4-3-3, but we do need signings. In the order of importance: left fullback, one more fullback, central defender, central midfielder, another fullback, defensive midfielder, winger for squad depth, another CB.
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Guardiola started mending the biggest holes in the lineup before the start of the new season. Two left fullbacks, a defensive midfielder and a centre back joined as free agents.
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    gdS34xO.png 4foqUsY.png
    Jack Robinson arrived from 703.png?lm=1541925409 Nottingham Forest — Liverpool youth product, represented England internationally on youth level. Andy Halliday came in from 124.png?lm=1403469612 Rangers, and before that he sat on the Middlesbrough bench and had a loan spell in Azerbaijan.

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    The first choice for defensive midfielder was James McCarthy, but that deal fell through, so we had to settle for Jannick Stark from 105.png?lm=1501493517 Darmstadt.
    And the last free transfer was an old acquaintance of Pep's — Kevin Toner from 1189.png?lm=1522184888 St.Patrick's.

    During the summer transfer window we signed four more players: two defenders, two midfielders.
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    o4HGFtw.png GM6rqT0.png
    Jack Baird from 465.png?lm=1411207682 St. Mirren is a talented centre back who will bring more depth to our defence.
    Ex-Northern Ireland youth international Cameron Dummigan signed from 1078.png?lm=1522219747 Oldham to compete for the starting right fullback position.

    Z72jvcA.png 6yyEV68.png
    The next transfer reunited Pep with one of his favourite latest proteges — 1053.png?lm=1518117565 Aalborg's Magnus Christensen.
    After the preseason it became clear that the midfield needed more depth, so Carl Winchester was signed from 3455.png?lm=1415812229 Forest Green Rovers, another Northern Irish player.

    As for outgoing transfers, goalies Tomas Cerny and David Craddock went to Japan, right fullback Ryan Harrington left for Ireland and centre back Mikey Devlin was sold to Mexican 3631.png?lm=1403472558 America at agood profit.
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    At the preseason tournament we played in a group with Rapid, Malatyaspor and Circle Brugge. All three games were draws: 2-2, 2-2 and 3-3 against Rapid. 7 out of 8 shots on our goal ended up inside the net. Christensen scored two great long shots.

    After all the changes, here's how the team lines up:
    UQWnQbA.png?1
  • Nion
    42 posts Last Pick at the Park
    Oh lots of traffic at the transfer window. Do you think your squad has enough quality to challenge for a title?
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Nion wrote: »
    Oh lots of traffic at the transfer window. Do you think your squad has enough quality to challenge for a title?

    It's probably not quite as strong as Celtic and Rangers, but there are some exciting young players, so with their development and a pinch of Guardiola magic we should be capable of mounting a title challenge.
  • ElMarcos
    204 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Quite some movement during the transfer window. Will Pep be able to challenge Celtic?
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
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    MD 1. 124.png?lm=1403469612 Rangers (A)
    Starting the season at Ibrox, nice. Both teams fumbled a lot of chances, so we ended up with a goalless draw.
    0-0

    MD 2. 2553.png?lm=1416262960 Kilmarnock (A)
    Bad game. We were outplayed, though both Killie's goals were very silly. Our attacking peformance was terrible, we created about two chances in the whole game, but thankfully finished both.
    2-2 (Cosgrove, McGinn — Thomas, Dicker)

    MD 3. 1241.png?lm=1422899840 Livingstone (H)
    Third time's the charm, finally we did everything right. And that's with a starting 11 that lacked some of the best players, who ere given a rest before the European game.
    2-0 (Cosgrove, Christensen)

    Speaking of Europe: 1053.png?lm=1518117565 Aalborg defeated 6066.png?lm=1423677223 Dundalk twice in the CL qualification and will face 409.png?lm=1557737354 Red Bull in the play-off round.

    Europa League, qualification. 234.png?lm=1457643518 Feyenoord (H)
    I love those moments when the opponent turns on counterattacking mode and my defenders just refuse to defend. Luckily, we conceded only once from those today. But it was fun: the tiny Ayoub scoring a header from under the huge McKenna. The game was pretty even though, we had possession, they had counters, a draw seems a fair result.
    1-1 (Cosgrove — Ayoub)

    MD 4. 903.png?lm=1534336641 Hibernian (A)
    Rebound and deflection extravaganza mucked up all our best efforts.
    0-0

    1053.png?lm=1518117565 Aalborg are out of CL after losing in 409.png?lm=1557737354 Salzburg (0-2) and drawing the reverse fixture (2-2).

    Europa League, qualification. 234.png?lm=1457643518 Feyenoord (A)
    An amazing manager's victory. Aberdeen mostly wasted time for the first hour. The aim was to first and foremost prevent Feyenoord from scoring, and if they don't have the ball, they can't score. So we held possession and defended. For the last half hour the plan was to go on the offensive and try to score, and then park the bus and hold on to the lead. The plan was successfully implemented, we even managed to score another goal in the closing minutes. Guardiola is a genius, Aberdeen is through to the group stage.
    2-0 (Christensen, Mackay-Steven (pen))

    Our Europa League group:
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    I was hoping to get Aalborg, but luck wasn't on our side. The Danes got 82.png?lm=1503060755 Wolfsburg, 416.png?lm=1438548174 Torino and, again, 6066.png?lm=1423677223 Dundalk.

    MD 5. 2578.png?lm=1509917176 St. Johnstone (H)
    Aberdeen are on a roll, tearing the opponents to shreds, but also conceding two goals from two shots.
    5-2 (Mackay-Steven, Ferguson, Cosgrove, Campbell-2 — Kane, Sanogo)

    MD 6. 43.png?lm=1522182618 Hearts (A)
    Pretty even first half and very one-sided second. Hearts just fell apart for some reason. Christensen is amazing — he's not only a longshot machine, but also a prolific assistant.
    4-1 (McGinn, Mackay-Steven, Christensen, May — Wighton)

    Europa League, group stage, MD 1. 11.png?lm=1489787850 Arsenal (H)
    Surprisingly, we dominated the game (or more like dominated the ball). Arsenal looked pretty lazy, not really bothering to actually play football, but still managed to open the scoring thanks to a defender's blunder. We equalized, kept on wasting time. In the middle of the second half Arsenal scored again, we equalized again. The ending was as boring as could be expected: we were running out the clock, they were basically standing around.
    2-2 (Cosgrove, May — Aubameyang, Dzeko)

    MD 7. 511.png?lm=1416262848 Dundee FC (H)
    Aberdeen's main rivalry is with Dundee United, currently residing in the Scottish Championship. I wonder how the Dons' fans feel about Dundee FC? Is the enemy of our enemy our friend? Our players don't seem to care, they steamrolled the opposition anyway.
    3-1 (May-2, Mackay-Steven — Curran)

    MD 8. 465.png?lm=1411207682 St. Mirren (г)
    The steamroller got stuck in the hosts' pressing and tight defence. The game was rather even, but we were lucky to win. Meanwhile, Celtic lost and Aberdeen takes the lead.
    1-0 (Stark)

    Europa League, group stage, MD 2. 941.png?lm=1451812652 Viktoria Plzen (A)
    The steamroller is back in business, a great performance, we easily could have scored four, but only managed one. The Czechs had their first and only dangerous attack in the last added minute, and of course they equalized.
    1-1 (Cosgrove — Prochazka)

    MD 9. 987.png?lm=1496499308 Motherwell (H)
    An easy win, we didn't even face a single shot. Though the first half was rather bad — we scored all goals after half-time.
    3-0 (Cosgrove, Toner, Crnigoj (OG))

    MD 10. 2999.png?lm=1416263000 Hamilton (A)
    Another confident win, but both goals came from corner kicks, which may be a bit alarming.
    2-0 (McKenna, McLennan)

    Europa League, group stage, MD 3. 3057.png?lm=1496825940 Standard (A)
    About time we won, if we want to qualify for knockouts. Hence, we immediately concede. Then we equalize just as immediately, it's 1-1 by the five minute mark. Took us 10 more minutes to take the lead, and then we fell back, the Belgians pressed on, we counterattacked. We scored one at the end, they would have scored a couple but for Lewis who decided to make some saves for a change.
    3-1 (McGinn, Ferguson, Christensen — Ishak)

    We lead our group, but that doesn't mean much as it's all very close here. Aalborg not doing well.
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    MD 11. 371.png?lm=1403615766 Celtic (H)
    Celtic left their midfield in the dressing room, so we ran circles around them the whole game.
    3-1 (Mackay-Steven, Cosgrove, May — Sinclair)

    Hearts lost their game as well, so we suddenly have a four-point lead.
    vYh4gdn.png Gpedq1i.png?1

    Highlights:


    Some manager's notes about the players:
    goalkeeper Lewis is very inconsistent, but the defence is doing good, especially McKenna. Stark dominates the midfield, Christensen is playmakering and longshooting (same as Campbell, btw), the presumably talented Ferguson hasn't made an impression yet. Neither did any of the wingers, Mackay-Steven at least scores regularly. Cosgrove was amazing at the start, then stepped back a bit, but May took up the mantle.
  • ElMarcos
    204 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Great results both in the League as well as in Europe!
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    B8DmTVb.png?1

    MD 12. 465.png?lm=1411207682 St. Mirren (H)
    Easy confident victory.
    3-0 (Winchester, Stark (pen), Wright)

    Europa League, MD 4. 3057.png?lm=1496825940 Standard (H)
    We held the advantage for the whole game, didn't let the Belgians counter-attack, only scored one, but that was enough.
    1-0 (May)

    MD 13. 511.png?lm=1416262848 Dundee FC (A)
    We were a bit lackluster. First the opponents' goalie dropped the ball into his own goal, then our defensive midifelder returned the favour, but at the end we prevailed and toot three points.
    2-1 (Cosgrove, Winchester — Stark (OG))

    MD 14. 2553.png?lm=1416262960 Kilmarnock (H)
    Two at the start, one more straight after half-time. Smooth sailing.
    3-0 (Wright, Cosgrove, Christensen)

    Europa League, MD 5. 11.png?lm=1489787850 Arsenal (A)
    Arsenal parked the bus and rode us down on counters, scoring three goals from crosses. Shots on goal numbers are 1-3.
    1-3 (Campbell — Zelalem, Aubameyang-2)

    MD 15. 124.png?lm=1403469612 Rangers (H)
    This may be our best game of the season so far. Aberdeen got everything right, wiped the floor with our rivals.
    4-0 (Wright, Ferguson, Mackay-Steven, Christensen)

    Europa League, MD 6. 941.png?lm=1451812652 Viktoria Plzen (H)
    The climactic game, deciding who gets to go to knockouts. We are in second with 8 points, the Czechs a point behind. Of course we concede early on, the visitors defend tightly, we poked about for the whole game, and only managed to equalize 10 minutes before the final whistle. A draw is enough, we are through, *sigh of relief*.
    1-1 (Mackay-Steven — Beauguel)

    vEexcA2.png?1
    TPe4Y5C.png?1
    1053.png?lm=1518117565 Aalborg managed to lose to 6066.png?lm=1423677223 Dundalk, smh

    MD 16. 43.png?lm=1522182618 Hearts (H)
    Pep played the second-stringers, but still didn't meet much resistance. It's like they weren't even trying.
    2-0 (Winchester, Cosgrove)

    Left fullback Andy Halliday broke a toe and will miss two months. Some good timing, he'll be back just in time for the European knockouts.
    Speaking of — Aberdeen drew 1038.png?lm=1520934353 Sampdoria for the round of 32. That's not a bad draw at all.

    MD 17. 2578.png?lm=1509917176 St. Johnstone (A)
    Difficult game, we were met with relentless pressing and didn't get much freedom up front. There was a stretch when we couldn't leave our own half for 15 minutes. But we fought them off and managed to score at the end.
    1-0 (Christensen)

    MD 18. 2999.png?lm=1416263000 Hamilton (H)
    A classic match-up of a leader vs a underdog. They were dragging on, because they are incapable of anything better. We were dragging on, because we couldn't be arsed. Still we slotted three in.
    3-0 (McLennan, Cosgrove, Ferguson)

    A boxing day present for Pep — two players from the academy. Winger Euan Murray and very talented centre back Arthur Graham.
    MtZ15Ax.png?1 MbjwMlw.png?1
    pCGdtPC.png?1 y9d00Bl.png?1

    MD 19. 987.png?lm=1496499308 Motherwell (A)
    We opened the scoring from the penalty spot 6 minutes after kick-off, and then mostly wasted time. Scored two more shortly after half-time and kept wasting time. The score doesn't really reflect the performance, we weren't nearly that good.
    3-0 (Mackay-Steven-2, McGinn)

    371.png?lm=1403615766 Celtic got beat by the bottom-placed 2999.png?lm=1416263000 Hamilton, and our lead stretches to 9 points. 43.png?lm=1522182618 Hearts are absolutely bottling it: used to be right there with us at the top, now 10 points behind 371.png?lm=1403615766 Celtic.

    MD 20. 903.png?lm=1534336641 Hibernian (H)
    We were okay, held possession, got some shots, but the ball wasn't keen on getting inside the net. Posts, deflections, goalkeeper's limbs. The visitors scored on their only chance in the 88th minute. We equalized somehow, but that's still not fair.
    1-1 (Christensen — Horgan)

    Two central defenders got injured — Jack Baird ruled out for three weeks, Scott McKenna only for a week.

    MD 21. 1241.png?lm=1422899840 Livingstone (A)
    Narrow victory, that could've easily not happened, had the Livingstone player scored the pen. A draw would have been a fairer result, but it's not my place to complain.
    1-0 (Cosgrove)

    MD 22. 371.png?lm=1403615766 Celtic (A)
    Again we finish against Celtic. The schedule makers are sure good at their job. The game was fun and open, a lot of running and shooting. Finishing was poor for both teams, Sinclair was ultimately the only one to get the ball where it is supposed to go.
    0-1 (Sinclair)

    Cs5Z2jz.png?1 opdsvQn.png?1
    So Aberdeen and Celtic are the runaway leaders, pretty unlikely that anyone can catch up.

  • ElMarcos
    204 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    You proceeded in Europa and did good in the League. Soon Pep will become a god in scotland as wel
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    MD 23. 1241.png?lm=1422899840 Livingston (H)
    Easy win, and not without some pretty goals.
    4-1 (May-2, Christensen, Logan — Valdu Te)

    931.png?lm=1556831687 Fulham's goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli has signed a pre-contract and will join Aberdeen in the summer. Joe Lewis will be leaving the team and moving to 1244.png?lm=1422972468 Leganes, also in the summer, also for free.

    MD 24. 903.png?lm=1534336641 Hibernian (A)
    Our attack didn't do well in this game — we had possession, but created few chances, one of them went in after a deflection. On the other hand, the defence was tight and good and didn't let the opponent create anything at all.
    1-0 (Ferguson)

    MD 25. 511.png?lm=1416262848 Dundee FC (H)
    A continuation of the previous game, performance-wise. Shoddy in front, steady at the back, another win barely scraped out.
    1-0 (Wright)

    92FZbpS.png
    260.png?lm=1487920381 Zürich offered twice the market value for our winger Mackay-Steven. Considering his age, that's a good deal.
    To replace him Pep has signed Sam Nicholson from 1247.png?lm=1483887816 Colorado Rapids.
    zWQ6VGX.png?1
    0STdivd.png?1

    Europa League, round of 32. 1038.png?lm=1520934353 Sampdoria (H)
    It was not a game of football, but a load of nonsense. The teams were pretty evenly matched, but Sampdoria kept scoring weird goals as if my defenders were tanking intentionally. First they refused to defend crosses twice, then they refused to go pick up the rebound and instead slowly moved away. To top it all off — a free kick, the ball is going straight to May, there's a teammate in front of him and a lone opponent to the left. Guess where he heads the ball. That's just not fair.
    2-5 (Wright, Toner — Burgstaller, Ramirez-2, Ekdal, Tavares)

    MD 26. 465.png?lm=1411207682 St. Mirren (A)
    We have chances, but can't finish for the life of us. The ball goes anywhere but the goal. May trying out for comedy again — receives the ball alone in the box, turnes to face the goal and... sends the ball toward the corner flag.
    0-0

    Europa League, round of 32. 1038.png?lm=1520934353 Sampdoria (A)
    A pointless game. There was no use coming on the pitch at all. We still did, tried to invent something tactically, it kinda worked until the Italians figured out that they can respond to our counter-attacks with their counter-counter-attacks. So it was fun, but they were still cheaty af. I doubt we won a single rebound in the two games.
    3-3 (McLennan, Wright, Cosgrove — Praet, Zapata, Ekdal)

    This concludes Aberdeen's European run. The board's objective was to reach the group stage, we managed to qualify for knockouts.

    MD 27. 987.png?lm=1496499308 Motherwell (H)
    Toothless. We had just one good chance in the starting minutes — Winchester hit the post, May's follow-up went wide. Celtic has caught up with us in the table.
    0-0

    MD 28. 2999.png?lm=1416263000 Hamilton (A)
    Still we are experienceing some problems with the delivery of balls to the opposition's goal. The first half was miserable, after half-time we managed to squeeze a goal in, after that we got better or the opponents got worse, and at the end we even scored another one.
    2-0 (Wright, Cosgrove)

    Scottish Cup, QF. 903.png?lm=1534336641 Hibernian (H)
    It went ok. A confident win without any adventures. We should to this more often.
    2-0 (Christensen, Winchester)

    MD 29. 371.png?lm=1403615766 Celtic (H)
    It was some mayhem. Celtic employed an ultra-active pressing tactics. So active that when my players were moving toward the goal, the oponents literally ran at them full speed and whizzed past them. That led to about ten opportunities of the "5 v 2" kind. We were a bit taken aback by such generosity, got entangled in our own passes, hit the goal frame, whiffed our shots, but still the final score was hockey-like.
    5-2 (McLennan, Ferguson, Christensen, Cosgrove, Campbell — Edouard, Haraslin)

    MD 30. 2578.png?lm=1509917176 St. Johnstone (H)
    Aberdeen conceded stupidly in the beginning of the game, but went in front by half time and ultimately won pretty confidently. Two assist from Wright, he's already settled into his new starting role. Meanwhile, Celtic drew their game, we are 5 points clear.
    2-1 (Cosgrove, Nicholson — McMillan)

    MD 31. 43.png?lm=1522182618 Hearts (A)
    We didn't actually play for a goalless draw, but it sure looked like that. Hearts discombobulated us a bit with their pressing early on, so we hung back deeper in the defence out of harm's way. Celtic are properly bottling it, now they got beat by Dundee.
    0-0

    MD 32. 124.png?lm=1403469612 Rangers (A)
    This Aberdeen sometimes reminds me of Kononov's Spartak. The declared plan is a passing game with a lot of attacking play and intricate combinations, but in practice most of the goals are rebounds or gifts from defenders. The difference is, we score more and win more often. This game for example: one blunder, two counters, three goals.
    3-1 (Wright-2, Cosgrove — Goldson)

    MD 33. 2553.png?lm=1416262960 Kilmarnock (A)
    Pep let the backup goalie have a run out, which in hindsight was a mistake. But it's not all bad — we've got 6 goals in 4 games, and all of those were either scored or assisted by Scott Wright.
    1-2 (Christensen — Millar, Taylor)



    The regular season is over, we are in first place three points above Celtic. Good starting position for the "championship round".
    4n3H7Id.png?1
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    The final roud of the Scottish Premiership sees the league split in two, with the top six teams competing for championship and the rest, well, simply competing, as there's no relegation on FIFA.

    The "championship group" is comprised of 370.png?lm=1409146897 Aberdeen, 371.png?lm=1403615766 Celtic, 124.png?lm=1403469612 Rangers, 43.png?lm=1522182618 Hearts, 2553.png?lm=1416262960 Kilmarnock and 903.png?lm=1534336641 Hibernian.

    Scottish Cup, semifinal. 2553.png?lm=1416262960 Kilmarnock (H)
    Easily demolished the opponent. They reached our box only once in the whole game. In the final we will face, of course, Celtic.
    4-1 (Ferguson, Cosgrove-2, McKenna — Cameron)

    MD 34. 43.png?lm=1522182618 Hearts (H)
    Another easy win, we barely had to lift a finger. Celtic won the concurrent game against Hibs, we stay 3 points clear in the table.
    2-0 (Ferguson, Christensen)

    MD 35. 903.png?lm=1534336641 Hibernian (A)
    Hibs haven't been an easy opponent for us, this time again the game was pretty even, but we used our chances efficiently and they didn't. Scott Wright is injured and won't be back this season. That is a heavy loss, he has been one of the key players lately.
    2-0 (Cosgrove-2)

    MD 36. 124.png?lm=1403469612 Rangers (H)
    Crucial game, we opened the scoring early and dominated after that, but managed to concede in the middle of the second half. So we had to put in some work to steal the victory at the end of the game. Meanwhile, Celtic and Hearts drew, and we can officially secure the title in the next game.
    3-1 (Cosgrove, Nicholson, Winchester — Grezda)

    MD 37. 2553.png?lm=1416262960 Kilmarnock (A)
    Yep, we are the champions. A confident victory, just right for the deciding game.
    3-1 (Gleeson, Ferguson, May — McKenzie)

    MD 38. 371.png?lm=1403615766 Celtic (H)
    Three times out of four Celtic are the last team we face in the round. In the first half we ran circles round them, coul have scored three, but only scored once. After half-time the visitors built up the pressure and eventually managed to equalize. But we don't really care, what with being champions and all that.
    1-1 (Cosgrove — Johnston)

    Scottish Cup, final. 371.png?lm=1403615766 Celtic
    It was quite a scramble-y and struggle-y game, there weren't many dangerous chances, but most of the ones that were, were near Celtic's goal. We scored the only goal in the middle of the first half. It's a domestic double!
    1-0 (Cosgrove)
    UpyEC4Y.png

    Highlights:


    U4g6sdQ.png?1PLhXwrt.png?1

    Player of the Season award went to Rangers' Murphy, best goalkeeper is our Lewis. Team of the season includes only Christensen and Cosgrove from Aberdeen.
    My personal top players are Cosgrove, Wright, Christensen and MacKenna.

    Player stats:
    4iwSZS5.png?1

    CL was won by Barcelona (2-0 v Tottenham). Europa League winners are Napoli (1-0 v Monaco).

    What else is going on around the world:
    afQ7lhT.png?2 sYmnuHp.png?1 H6Pmept.png?1
    There's a revolution in Germany, Leverkusen finally got its first letter back
    St. Patrick's are champions again. Pep's foundation is stronk!
    Aalborg was in second place after the regular season in Denmark. The game doesn't know how to show the results of the championship round. Pep's foundation [may be] stronk!

    And now Guardiola is leaving again. Destination — Switzerland.
  • ElMarcos
    204 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Good luck in Switzerland
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    fSJV3OA.png

    After the fourth domestic double in a row Guardiola keeps his Eurotrip going, and moves to Switzerland, his new team is Sion.
    Two-time Swiss champions, most recently in 1997. Many-time cup winners, most recently in 2015. One-time Gennaro Gattuso's last team.

    The squad is bad in a completely new way, compared to, say, Aberdeen — there's too many players and few of them are good. The team has nine strikers, five left fullbacks and only four half-decent midfielders, one of whom is Alex Song. Half the squad needs replacing, I won't even give an overview until I get rid of some of the most unneeded players.

    But first things first — Swiss Cup final. Turns out, in Switzerland football season ends much later than in Scotland, so when Guardiola arrived from Aberdeen, Sion still hadn't finished the season. So yeah, let's play.

    Sion — Grasshopper
    I was right, this squad is trash. We barely left our own half in about an hour, and only at the end of the game managed to do something resembling football.
    1-2

    By the start of the new 2021/22 season most of the most trash players had been sold, so we can talk about the ones who are left.

    Be1hKk7.png 4RMuMws.png
    Anthony MaisonnialSaint-Etienne youth product, joined the team in 2018. Kevin Fickentscher — a club veteran, who has been warming the bench for 10 years already.

    QAiBjfJ.png 1wTWwRY.png DBnxkRv.png
    Martin Angha will likely be our starter, he's an ex-Arsenal youth player, even came on for 5 minutes in a CL game once. His partner is yet to be signed. On backup duty there's an all-rounder Birama Ndoye and Jan Bamert, who doesn't impress me much at all.

    ADUBAPk.png
    The only right fullback is Quentin Maceiras, club youth product and one of the best players on the team; his backup is yet to be signed.

    bikZPkh.png GrfHVH1.png
    Left fullback position was overstuffed, but now there are just two players left: Bayron Saavedra is our prospective starter, Bruno Morgado is going to train hard and maybe make the bench..

    IF8t6Qc.png ACPuaHq.png
    Xavier Kouassi and Alex Song are both still pretty good, but already pretty old. We should really sell one or both and sign someone younger, but we also should do a lot of other transfer business and changing the whole squad in one transfer window is not something I plan to do.

    MsS9vEw.png rS1lkEs.png2YHLXU2.png
    As I mentioned earlier, midfield is not good. We have Christian Zock and Freddy Mveng (whose attributes suggest that he should rather play on the wing), and also young academy graduate Darko Kutesa. They are bad, so we will need to sign at least two more midfielders.

    TjJFDSE.png NXMnhzR.png GzXCh2C.png yrg7rT2.png
    Attacking wings look surprisingly good. On the right there's experience and quality in Pajtim Kasami, on the left we have the once-promising Adryan, now-promising academy graduate Laureano Serra Fonseca and Ermir Lenjani, who was originally one of the countless left fullbacks, but strikes as more of an attacker. This may just be enough, but considering our midfield troubles and Kasami's aptitude for that position, another right winger could come in handy.

    3UzpoVE.png 5KHQ2lI.png
    Even after selling half, there's still far too many strikers. Roberts "In awe of the size of this lad, an absolute unit" Uldrikis didn't impress me at all in the cup final, so he'll probably be leaving (we do need money after all, and I don't like my strikers this big). Adrian Petre will probably take up the mantle of starting striker.

    HHkZe3e.png PYtYpjp.pngsKIlb9X.png
    Behind him on the bench there are three players I am not quite sure what to make of. Moussa Djitte looks like the most balanced one. Philippe and Yassin Fortune are both lacking, in different ways, so I guess we'll see how they do in friendlies and maybe sell or loan one away.

    So it's not as bad as it seemed at first glance, but still the squad needs some work.
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Summer free transfers
    HblZrQr.png
    The central midfield will be reinforced by Ludovic Blas, a talented Frenchman from 855.png?lm=1560859651 Guingamp, who for some reason was available for pre-contract in the end of May.
    The back line has received an augmentation of another French player, Loic Landre from 1160.png?lm=1526910377 Nimes.
    ZwbanRv.png sB1as25.png
    Calvin Verdonk from 234.png?lm=1457643518 Feyenoord will take the left fullback position. A returning club academy graduate, Chadrac Akolo from 79.png?lm=1487024087 Stuttgart will play on the right wing.
    DBPAPip.png eulaMa8.png

    Summer paid transfers
    QAkZTGS.png
    Davide Itter arrives from 82.png?lm=1503060755 Wolfsburg to act as backup for the starting right fullback. The plan was to also sign his twin brother Gianluca, but we didn't have enough money and had to settle for the aforementioned Verdonk.
    i4zMcna.png
    Anto Grgic, another Sion youth product, is coming back from 648.png?lm=1407563179 Tenerife to strenghten our feeble midfield.
    OOvGDxp.png

    At the preseason tournament in Italy, Sion faced 190.png?lm=1518117389 Copenhagen, 8970.png?lm=1438547543 Frosinone and 2722.png?lm=1431979505 SPAL.
    The Danish champions were easily destroyed (4-0), Frosinine managed to steal a point (1-1), SPAL were also defeated, 3-1, with a hat-trick of identical goals y Fonseca from Adryan's crosses.
    The semifinal against 1301.png?lm=1432894070 Maritimo was rather easy (2-0), in the final we again faced 8970.png?lm=1438547543 Frosinone and lost 0-1.


    The MVP of preseason is Pajtim Kasami, who scored three, assisted three and assured himself a place in the starting 11. On the flip side, we lost Petre for two month with an injury.

    During the preseason we agreed a deal with 3911.png?lm=1408780312 Brest to sell them our backup goalie Fickentscher for €350 000. His spot was quickly filled with young Gianluca Tolino from 257.png?lm=1535394361 St. Gallen. However, Fickentscher failed to agree a contract with the Breton team, so we had to find him another team, and eventually he was sold to 257.png?lm=1535394361 St. Gallen, effetively making it a swap.
    Also during the preseason Pep came to a conclusion that the team needs another non-terrible central midfielder, and to this end we booked Filip Ugrinic from 434.png?lm=1410776821 Luzern.
    ShnRNRT.png?1c1y73Ef.png
    38XEKb8.png

    As for outgoing transfers:
    VZDoSmL.png
    Pep pondered for a long time, whether to get a replacement for the Latvian striker, considering Petre's injury. The main candidate was our old friend Wessam Ali. Eventually it was decided that Sion will do fine with what they have.

    After all the transfer dealings, the squad looks like this:
    FEwbq6q.png?1

    Season objectives
    - win the league and reach cup semifinal
    - reach EL group stage
    - sign a kid from the academy and play him in 10 games
    - grow a kid from the academy by 5 OVR points and play him in 5 games
    - sell out the stadium in half of the home games

    The first two look doable, the second two look irrelevant, the last one is like whaat.

    One last thing, before the start of the season let's take a look at Pep's teams' European prospects.
    370.png?lm=1409146897 Aberdeen will play 1008.png?lm=1443702275 HJK in CL qualification.
    1189.png?lm=1522184888 St. Patrick's for some reason will start in Europa League, even though they won the league last season. Weird. They were drawn against 122.png?lm=1403016870 Sturm Graz.
    1053.png?lm=1518117565 Aalborg start in Europa League qualification and will face... *drum roll* ...321.png?lm=1410776768 Sion! We will witness the first encounter between two Pep-teams!
  • ElMarcos
    204 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    The line-up looks decent to good, but the back-up brigade looks a little thin
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    MD 1. 434.png?lm=1410776821 Luzern (A)
    First half was decent, we played well, scored two. After half-time — it all dried up. On top of that we conceded a stupid goal. But startin the season with a victory is promising.
    2-1 (Adryan, Blas — Paterson)

    MD 2. 257.png?lm=1535394361 St. Gallen (A)
    It's not that we had an exceptional quality performance, we didn't, but just about every shot went into the net. Djitte's first goal was especially great.
    4-0 (Djitte-3, Blas)

    MD 3. 9084.png?lm=1417099189 Neuchatel Xamax (H)
    We outplayed the opponent fully and completely, but only scored once. Kind of like the reverse of the previous game.
    1-0 (Adryan)

    Pajtim Kasami is July Player of the Month. The rest of candidates also from Sion: Adryan, Djitte and Blas.

    MD 4. 2790.png?lm=1528219594 Lugano (A)
    We got a lucky schedule: the first games are against weaker opponents. But we still managed to invent us some hurdles. We opeed the scoring, but quickly conceded, took the lead in the second half, and were basically forced to drop deep and boot the ball away in the closing minutes.
    2-1 (Blas, Djitte — Hallberg)

    Basel, previously going neck-and-neck with us, lost their first points, and Sion become the sole leader.

    MD 5. 26.png?lm=1537889180 Basel (H)
    The visitors scored early on and then basically just stood around for 80 minutes. Our leadership didn't last long.
    0-1 (Xhaka)

    rlI7hev.png
    Left fullback Bayron Saavedra has been recruited by Cardiff. The resulting vacancy has been filled by Jordan Lotomba from Young Boys.
    vLnRmqW.png
    6HdKS5D.png

    Europa League, qualifying. 1053.png?lm=1518117565 Aalborg (H)
    It was an even contest, Sion did well in the starting minutes and opened the scoring, but then yielded some ground. The start of the second half proved fruitful again as we scored twice more, but the Aalborg took back the initiative and pulled back one goal.
    3-1 (Akolo-2, Kasami — Pohl)

    In CL qualifiers 370.png?lm=1409146897 Abereen defeated 1008.png?lm=1443702275 HJK 5-2 on aggregate.

    MD 6. 260.png?lm=1487920381 Zürich (A)
    Despite the wide margin in final score, the teams' performances weren't that far apart. The game was pretty even and uninteresting, but again most of our shots ended up inside the net.
    3-0 (Blas-2, Kasami)

    Europa League, qualifying. 1053.png?lm=1518117565 Aalborg (A)
    The danes pressed on us from the get-go, so we dropped back and relied mostly on counters. We scored in the middle of the second half, they equalized in the added time.
    1-1 (Akolo — Gosens)

    In the playoff round 370.png?lm=1409146897 Abereen couldn't get the upper hand over Lechia and will be joining us in the Europa League.
    1189.png?lm=1522184888 St. Pats are through to the group stage too, after prevailing over 122.png?lm=1403016870 Sturm Graz (home draw, away win).

    321.png?lm=1410776768 Sion's group features 1050.png?lm=1408655310 Villarreal, 170.png?lm=1488030319 Rapid and 415.png?lm=1530117274 Toulouse.
    370.png?lm=1409146897 Abereen were drawn with 86.png?lm=1403082298 Werder, 6890.png?lm=1521449959 Basaksehir and 1090.png?lm=1402669766 AZ.
    1189.png?lm=1522184888 St. Pats have the hardest group with 11.png?lm=1489787850 Arsenal, 941.png?lm=1451812652 Viktoria Plzen and 167.png?lm=1403085893 Augsburg.

    MD 7. 938.png?lm=1407441973 Thun (H)
    We outplayed the opposition pretty confidently, but finishing wasn't too good.
    1-0 (Djitte)

    MD 8. 452.png?lm=1410776679 Young Boys (A)
    In the first half we ran all over them, but—again finishing—couldn't land a shot on goal. YB had their first attack in 44th minute and, obviously, scored. We responded in kind, qualizing almost instantly. In the second half we scored again and could have scored more, but the opposing goalie didn't let us. Petre helaed up his injury and came on as a sub, twice missing the goal from dangerous positions.
    2-1 (Kasami, Blas — Nsame)

    Europa League, MD 1. 415.png?lm=1530117274 Toulouse (A)
    We put in a near-perfect defensive performance, catching up with the runners and interecepting the crosses at all the perfect times. Nothing new attack-wise, we still shoot a lot and can't hit the broad side of the barn, but this time we did hit it twice.
    2-0 (Akolo, Djitte)

    MD 9. 504.png?lm=1410776721 Grasshopepr (H)
    Easy win, fun passing game, one-twos all around.
    4-1 (Kasami, Serra Fonseca-2, Ugrinic — Nakasaka)

    After the first round we are right behind the leader.
    Vvv7RRo.png?1

    Highlights:
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    edited August 25
    fSJV3OA.png

    MD 10. 452.png?lm=1410776679 Young Boys (H)
    We scored with the first shot of the game, they with the second and third. Sion equalized before halftime and ran all over the opposition in the second half. Wölfli suddenly turned into a god-tier goalie, but we managed to clinch the win eventually.
    3-2 (Petre, Adryan, Serra Fonseca — Blanco, Nsame)

    26.png?lm=1537889180 Basel got a draw agains the bottom-table side 2790.png?lm=1528219594 Lugano, and we are in the lead again.

    Europa League, group, MD 2. 170.png?lm=1488030319 Rapid (H)
    Yeah, no, this was one of those games. It was not Rapid, but at least Liverpool, the behelmeted guy in goal was obviously Petr Cech in his prime, and their big guy up front was more like Didier Drogba. Sion players were pretty angry, two got red cards, but we were still pretty close to snatching a draw, if not for the goalie's incredible efforts.
    1-2 (Kasami — Badji-2)

    MD 11. 938.png?lm=1564699606 Thun (A)
    Moussa Djitte with a perfect hat-trick, subtly implying that Petre is not getting his starting spot back, no, not ever. Three assists for Akolo as well.
    4-1 (Djitte-3, Blas — Sutter)

    MD 12. 504.png?lm=1410776721 Grasshopper (A)
    It was fine. The game was pretty even, but we won quite easily somehow. Basel is on a mission to bottle it: four points lost in two games, our lead grows to 6 points.
    3-1 (Ugrinic, Serra Fonseca, Blas — Sukacev)

    MD 13. 260.png?lm=1487920381 Zürich (H)
    An extremely sad occasion as the whole Sion team fall victim to an unstoppable parked bus with superbrilliant counters.
    2-4 (Blas, Djitte — Odei, Kololli, Maxso, Marchesano)

    Europa League, group, MD 3. 1050.png?lm=1408655310 Villarreal (H)
    The Spaniards pinned us down a bit at the start and opened the scoring with a long shot. But we stayed cool-headed and quickly bounced back, defended tightly and managed to prevail at the end.
    2-1 (Blas, Djitte — Barnes)

    MD 14. 26.png?lm=1537889180 Basel (A)
    Another bad game, we keep facing crosses and long shots and the opponents keep scoring from them. The lead shrinks to just two points. Talk about bottling.
    1-2 (Djitte — Rondon, Xhaka)

    MD 15. 257.png?lm=1535394361 St. Gallen (H)
    It was a gruelling experience, but we managed to overcome the opposing team and all the other evil forces that have been working against us lately. You could even say that for once, evil forces were on our side, bc St. Gallen's would-be equalized was called off for offside in a most ridiculous way: a player ran in between the shooter and the open goal, the ball lightly brushed against him on its way into the net, and that doesn't count. Hail VAR!
    1-0 (Djitte)

    Europa League, group, MD 4. 1050.png?lm=1408655310 Villarreal (A)
    I don't get this game. A counter-attack. two strikers run off towards my goal, there's only a defender and the goalie to beat. They can make three passes and get in position to score a sitter? No, they shoot randomly from 25 m away, but still somehow score. Yay, football.
    1-1 (Djitte — Abraham)

    MD 16. 434.png?lm=1410776821 Luzern (H)
    Again we get relentlessly pressed down in the starting minutes, so we turn on the Klopp-mode and press them back. So as a result we get an extremely open game, just running about back and forth. Goalies working miracles, strikers scoring Ibra-like karate goals, this sort of thing. The miracle-est thing of all happened at the end of the game, where three defenders refused to do their job and let the winger cross and the striker score unchallenged. Yay, football again.
    1-1 (Petre — Juric)

    MD 17. 2790.png?lm=1528219594 Lugano (H)
    For once there was no drama, we won easily and didn't even let the opponent shoot once at all.
    2-0 (Akolo, Blas)

    Europa League, group, MD 5. 415.png?lm=1530117274 Toulouse (H)
    We gifted them a goal at the start, equalized quickly, and then the game kind of dried up. A draw is fine, really.
    1-1 (Djitte — Leya Iseka)

    So we are very likely to qualify for knockouts, we just need to not lose the next game and we're through. Easy (or is it?).

    MD 18. 9084.png?lm=1417099189 Neuchatel Xamax (A)
    We scored two quickly and then hoped to conserve some energy and see the game off. Nope. Instead we gift the opponent two idiotic goals and let Basel overtake us in the table.
    2-2 (Adryan-2 — Ademi-2)

    Highlights, including some amazing goals:


    rI5Oo1D.png?1EArQaxY.png?1
    As you may have gathered, 321.png?lm=1410776768 Sion are in a bit of a crisis, but it's not too bad, nothing irreparable.

    Manager's notes:
    Maisonnial has been conceding a lot lately, but what can he do when the opponents just longshoot into top corners. Fullbacks Maceiras and Verdonk are mostly fine, their backup Lotomba is probably even better, I should really give him more playtime. Central defenders, I don't know. Things are bad, but it's not their fault really, is it?
    Defensive midfielder Grgic doesn't impress me at all, but then again he's a defensive midfielder, impressing people is not his job. Song and Kouassi still got it, but this "it" is almost depleted. We might sell one or both in January. Kasami and Blas are perfect, I couldn't wish for better midfielders. Ugrinic is decent enough as a sub, even got included in the latest Player of the Month shortlist.
    The wingers in rotation (Adryan, Akolo, Serra Fonseca) are all just sort of fine. Akolo is more active in Europe, the others domestically. Lenjani comes on occasionally, hasn't really been notable. Dijtte keeps scoring when he wants. Petre is a good finisher, but not nearly as good as his colleague in support play, so he'll keep on warming the bench.
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    fSJV3OA.png

    MD 19. 434.png?lm=1410776821 Luzern (A)
    Funny game. Luzern had three attacks in the whole game and guess how many goals. Though to be fair we also scored basically every chance we got.
    4-3 (Petre-2, Blas, Lenjani — Paterson, Eleke (pen), Gvilia)

    Europa League, group, MD 6. 170.png?lm=1488030319 Rapid (A)
    We need to not lose, and what do we do? Concede in the first half. Okay, we bring on Akolo, he assists two goals in 15 minutes, we are through.
    2-1 (Blas, Adryan — Knasmüllner)

    So it turned out we didn't even need to trouble ourselves — 1050.png?lm=1408655310 Villarreal lost their game and wouldn't've caught up with us anyway. As for the other, Pep-teams — 370.png?lm=1409146897 Aberdeen is through to knockouts as well, 1189.png?lm=1522184888 St. Pat's unsurprisingly are not.
    SaZoOxx.png
    0HBx4Ok.png
    eo6ZppZ.png
    In the round of 32, 321.png?lm=1410776768 Sion will face Sporting, 370.png?lm=1409146897 Aberdeen will get to be eliminated by 23826.png?lm=1504871315 RB Leipzig.

    Swiss Cup, quarterfinal. 260.png?lm=1487920381 Zürich (H)
    The visitors pressed us hard, Pep changed formations multiple times to try and keep up, we ended up in a 5-3-2 by the 90 minute mark. There were two open goal misses, thrice balls hit the posts, but both teams finished the regular time goalless. In the extra time we finally took the lead, but in the added time to the extra time the ref invented a pen for a foul that 1) didn't happen, 2) was outside the box. Then it's penalties, which is impossible to win playing on keyboard. So it's Pep's first failure, first domestic trophy not won. Fraud.
    1-1 (2-3)
    (Kasami — whatever)


    Just two clean sheets in 17 games. Something needs to change. January transfer window couldn't come at a better time.
    *fast-forward a month*
    "Something needs to change", he said, and then only sold two benchwarmers without any signings.
    fEymZ25.png
    Well, there were signings but they were academy youngsters.
    ocYUPL8.png q1K1wox.png YOtIzH4.png

    MD 20. 257.png?lm=1535394361 St. Gallen (A)
    It was a difficult game, the hosts didn't let us create much of anything at all, and our defence was far too welcoming. Still, somehow it ended in a draw.
    1-1 (Djitte — Manneh)

    Blas has broken his toe and will miss two months. That's just great. The team is in a crisis and we lose the best player right before the European spring. So we'll probably switch from a 4-3-3 to a 4-2-3-1, play Djitte as a ten and sive the striker role to Petre.

    Europa League, round fo 32. 336.png?lm=1487424635 Sporting (A)
    They had the ball, but didn't create much. We created a lot but couldn't score it. At the start of the game Sporting opened the scoring, we quickly equalized. At the end of the game Sion took the lead, they equalized just as quickly.
    2-2 (Petre-2 — Rafinha, Poulsen)

    MD 21. 9084.png?lm=1417099189 Neuchatel Xamax (H)
    In 5 out of 6 previous games we conceded in the first 10 minutes. This time we conceded two. After that we took back the initiative and even equalized, but in the second half Angha kicked the ball into our own goal, and we couldn't keep up anymore. Shots on goal: 2-2
    2-3 (Lenjani, Serra Fonseca — Karlen, Ramizi, Angha (OG))

    26.png?lm=1537889180 Basel aren't doing too well either, so it's still just two points between us up at the top of the table.

    Europa League, round of 32. 336.png?lm=1487424635 Sporting (H)
    We scored right before half-time, they scored right after half-time, nobody else scored again, Sion are through on away goals.
    1-1 (Akolo — Battaglia)

    370.png?lm=1409146897 Aberdeen are somehow also through! They won 2-0 in 23826.png?lm=1504871315 Leipzig and lost at home 1-2. In the next round we'll face 167.png?lm=1403085893 Augsburg, 370.png?lm=1409146897 Aberdeen will get eliminated by 294.png?lm=1535908439 Benfica (this time for sure).

    MD 22. 2790.png?lm=1528219594 Lugano (A)
    Finally. Finally we managed not to screw up and finish well and do some pretty passing. And that's with most of the regular starters taking a rest — Bamert, Itter, Philippe, Lenjani in the starting 11. Oof, such a relief to finally properly trash an opponent after all the recent anguish. And we take the top spot back, as 26.png?lm=1537889180 Basel lost to 504.png?lm=1410776721 Grasshopper.
    5-1 (Lenjani-2, Serra Fonseca-2, Philippe — Vecsei)

    MD 23. 504.png?lm=1410776721 Grasshopper (H)
    Another good performance, up until the visitors pulled one back 10 minutes before the final whistle. So we resorted to passing between defenders for the last 10 minutes, bc if you do us dirty with your random longshots, we do u dirty in return.
    2-1 (Adryan, Petre — Pemberton)

    Europa League, roung of 16. 167.png?lm=1403085893 Augsburg (A)
    We played well, but Augsburg used a near post power corner, and we were so stunned that this trick still works, that we couldn't mount any kind of response.
    0-1 (Cornelius)

    MD 24. 938.png?lm=1564699606 Тhun (H)
    We are bad again. I mean, we are fine mostly, but then opponents score and park the bus and there's nothing you can do to break it down. 26.png?lm=1537889180 Basel are still in our "who can bottle it the hardest" competition, now drawing against 9084.png?lm=1417099189 Xamax, missing the chance to take back the lead.
    0-1 (Tosetti)

    Europa League, round of 16. 167.png?lm=1403085893 Augsburg(H)
    The main objective was not to concede and then try to score. And we more or less achieved it. Scored one from a corner, then played tight in defence, focused on not conceding, and five minutes before the end Kasami scored the winner and took Sion to quarterfinal stage. First clean sheet in how long, and it was just the right time.
    2-0 (Djitte, Kasami)

    370.png?lm=1409146897 Aberdeen couldn't work another miracle and are out after a home defeat and a draw in Lisbon.
    Our quarterfinal opponent is 11.png?lm=1489787850 Arsenal. It was a good run, guys.

    MD 25. 452.png?lm=1410776679 Young Boys (A)
    We play as the mood takes us. Sometimes it's like our players got wings, sometimes it's like they got chains on. This, for instance, was a total wipeout, we were flying all over the field, and that against one of the strongest teams in the league.
    4-1 (Serra Fonseca-2, Djitte, Grgic — Sow)

    MD 26. 26.png?lm=1537889180 Basel (H)
    Basel had three shots on goal, all masterfully dodged by our goalie. Back on level in the table.
    1-3 (Petre — Kalulu-2, Rondon)

    MD 27. 260.png?lm=1487920381 Zürich (A)
    Sion played very well, but just couldn't score. Bad luck refuses to end.
    0-0

    Highlights:


    After the third round we, despite all our terrible performances, are still among the leaders, somehow.
    t9CSI3s.png?1OQO0uzH.png?1
  • ale1985bg
    393 posts Sunday League Hero
    Wonderful journey so far. Keep it up as the season's not over yet! :)

    I wonder if we could see Pep return to his former club Brescia and take them to Champions League glory one day.
    Seeing the results Pep's getting with lesser teams around Europe, it seems about time to move to a higher ground. Winning a title at Sion and leaving for Brescia to take the italian league system by storm, are we?
  • sviraman
    125 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    ale1985bg wrote: »
    I wonder if we could see Pep return to his former club Brescia and take them to Champions League glory one day.
    Seeing the results Pep's getting with lesser teams around Europe, it seems about time to move to a higher ground. Winning a title at Sion and leaving for Brescia to take the italian league system by storm, are we?

    Nah. This story's "mission statement" is making contenders out of teams that are just below the title race level, Brescia is too small (and unlicensed at that). Your idea would be good as a separate career mode though, a one-club road to glory thing, yeah.
    Though I do plan to bring Pep to Italy at some point — the grand finale would need to take place in a top-5 league, and out of those he hasn't managed in yet, Italy is the more interesting one. But not yet, Pep is moving incrementally, Switzerland to Italy is too big of a jump.

    P.S. Damn, I just realized, what I'm doing here is basically a football version of Pimp My Ride. More like, "Pep My Team", lol.
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