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Thread: The Rookie That Shook The World..

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    The Rookie That Shook The World..

    It was the 8th of may 2016 and the final game of the English Football League One 2015-2016 season. The local pride of Doncaster had ended the season with a 0-0 draw against Burton Albion and finished 21st in the leauge. The whole season had been a struggle, but there was still hope that manager Darren Ferguson, son of United's legendary manager Sir Alex, could turn the tide. Grown men cried their eyes out after the realisation came that Doncaster Rovers had relegated to the League Two.

    A turbulent couple of weeks followed and there was a lot of speculation if Ferguson would keep his job. The manager had been at the club for less then a year, but eventually got sacked by chairman David Blunt. The search for a new manager began and the club set out to find someone who could get Doncaster back on track. In the beginning Blunt was sure he could lure a top manager to the Keepmoat Stadium, but it soon turned out not a lot of managers were aspiring a job in the League Two. A month went by and still there was no interest in the job opening. When june ended the board became anxious and at the end of july finally a candidate emerged.

    Applying for the job was a 31 year old Dutch rookie who had just attained his coaching license. His prior experience was at amateur level only, but his enthusiasm won the board over and they offered him a 1 year deal.

    And so this story begins.. A rookie foreign manager takes over Doncaster Rovers as his first job, not knowing that it would turn out to be an epic adventure....



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    Goal: Win the Premier League and Champions League



    More soon...
    Last edited by GFRay; 16-09-17 at 09:57 AM.

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    Will keep an eye mate - 15k stadium not to be sniffed at for a 2nd division team

    Good luck!

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    Doncaster (or Donnie as I call them myself ) are too big for the League Two. Got a decent squad, but it will be tough cookie since not many players that can improve my squad wanna come.

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    First day at the club



    My first day at Doncaster Rovers started off with a meeting with the chairman.

    Chairman: Welcome to the club! Although you don't have a lot of experience, we do think you're the right man for this job!
    Me: Well thank you for your confidence!
    Chairman: I'm not going to lie to you.. We're in a bad spot. We have little to no resources and the fact that we're playing in the League Two will mean that few players will want to come to us. Nonetheless we should focus on achieving promotion back to the League One immidiately!
    Me: That's a fair goal sir, but I'm a little disappointed that we can't invest anything in the squad.
    Chairman: We have a small funds, but you should focus on bargains and maybe get some players on loan. If you sell someone, the funds will become available for new signings though!
    Me: Okay thanks boss! I'll go talk to the squad now!


    After the meeting was concluded I met up with the staff first. We had an assistent manager, two coaches, two scouts and three physio's. I think I will be looking to bring some better quality coaches in.


    Then I headed to the dressing room to meet the players. We had a pretty decent mix of aging players and youngsters, but only 28 players in total. After the first training I had a good picture of my team and the best players:

    Squad:



    Luke McCullough: Our best defender, but also on a 9 month injury with damaged cruciate ligaments.
    Spoiler!

    John Marquis: Our best striker, only 24 years old so has potential to improve.
    Spoiler!

    Tommy Rowe: Decent midfielder and probably my captain.
    Spoiler!

    Andy Butler: 32 year old central defender with decent quality.
    Spoiler!

    James Coppinger: 35 year old attacking midfielder, will add experience with his age.
    Spoiler!


    I knew immidiately we needed 5-6 players to strengthen the first team to have a shot at promotion, so I sent my scouts out looking for possible newcomers.


    After the meeting with the players it was time to meet the press. And by press I meant there was one reporter from Doncaster's local fanzine "Popular Stand".


    Reporter: Thank you for taking the time to talk to me! First off, what did you think when the board decided to hire you?
    Me: Well I thought they hired the right man for the job! I'm here to make Donnie great again and achieve great things!
    Reporter: Don't call the club Donnie please... Okay second question: What kind of great things do you hope to achieve here as a manager without any experience in professional football?
    Me: First we want to achieve direct promotion, maybe even win this league. Then we will look how we can strengthen our squad further to eventually end up in the Premier League!
    Reporter: Premier League?? *chuckles* Are you sure you're the right man for that job? Or did you get hit in the head on your way here?
    Me: Mock me all you want, but I will make this club great again!

    They think that I'm crazy, but we'll let them think that for now! They'll come around eventually..

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    Nice start to this story, a bit more background this time in comparison to your first one on the ODB. Something tells me this may be more challenging Good luck!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Nice start to this story, a bit more background this time in comparison to your first one on the ODB. Something tells me this may be more challenging Good luck!
    Yes it will definately be more challenging! I'm not on ODB anymore, but Saturn patch and with samsami's strongest AI tactics. With his help I've finally made a decent wibwobble tactic!

    Also I like the way samsami and redders are doing their story (a post every day with a couple of games) so I will try to do it a bit like that with my own touch ofc!

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    Wib wobbing

    I tend to not follow wib won stories but like Samsami I like your writing style

    Some decent players already there where a spine can be formed

    Much out there in free transfers you can attract? Any decent youth?

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    Pre-Season

    Staff
    The pre-season started out with the hiring of some new coaches. I let my current assistent manager and two coaches go because they were not good enough. Since I'm dutch there were a lot of dutch coaches interested to join me. I eventually found an assistent manager, five coaches en two scouts who wanted to work for me without asking for a lot of money.
    Spoiler!


    Players In and Out
    On the transfer market I searched for some potential new signings and was also trying to sell some of the players that weren't good enough for my team. Before the season started I was able to bring in and load off the following players:




    New arrivals
    Ross Turnbull: I was surprised that he wanted to come to us playing as third goalkeeper at Leeds in the Championship. A good solid goalkeeper that hopefully will win me some points.
    Spoiler!

    Dwight Tiendalli: Free agent right back with decent stats all around. Will fill the void I had on the right back spot.
    Spoiler!

    Joel Lynch: Decent left back that can also play central. Was withering away at QPR.
    Spoiler!

    Yordan Miliev: Free agent Bulgarian central defender with decent all around stats.
    Spoiler!

    Sean Dickson: Decent midfielder for only 3k from Stirling Albion. Good bench player for the midfield.
    Spoiler!

    Cameron Stewart: Very fast and versatile midfield player that can play all the four attacking midfield spots.
    Spoiler!

    Darren Bent: The man himself. At the age of 32 he still has got good pace and finishing. Was surprised Derby let him go.
    Spoiler!


    Friendlies
    We arranged three home friendly games against our three biggest rivals. The idea was to get the fans to the stadium to watch the new team play and in the mean time generate some extra funds by selling out.

    First game was against Championship team Rotherham. A crowd of 14.502 saw us draw 1-1 against Rotherham in a solid but a little disappointing game.
    Spoiler!

    Second game was against also Championship team Barnsley. An almost sold out Keepmoat Stadium (15.222 attendance) saw both teams score all the goals in the first half. The second half both teams subbed a lot leaving it at 2-2.
    Spoiler!

    Third and final game was against League One team Scunthorpe. 13.664 people saw us bag a 3-1 victory over Scunthorpe, finishing our pre-season friendly run unbeaten.
    Spoiler!


    Fixtures
    Now that the pre-season is over we can focus on the league. First up is Portsmouth at home, so hoping for a good start of the season!



    The first round draw of the EFL Cup has matched us against Championship team Reading. A tough draw, but at least we have the home advantage!


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    Quote Originally Posted by Redknapp69 View Post
    Wib wobbing

    I tend to not follow wib won stories but like Samsami I like your writing style

    Some decent players already there where a spine can be formed

    Much out there in free transfers you can attract? Any decent youth?
    I'm playing against samsami's strongest AI tactics pack that he put together. Against those tactics you need to wibblewobble yourself otherwise it's impossible to be succesful.

    Just posted the new signings and the pre-season!

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    Doncaster Rovers need to adjust to new style of play

    The first game of the season was against Portsmouth. A tough opponent that also had his eyes set on the promotion spots. We only missed captain and star midfielder Tommy Rowe who was still recovering from a calf strain sustained in pre-seaon.

    A crowd of 9.012 people saw referee Larry Varney open the season for Doncaster and Pompey in the League Two. It was Portsmouth that applied heavy pressure and we could only defend in the first half. Portsmouth had 8 shots of which 4 were on goal, but all saved by the outstanding keeping Turnbull. We didn't manage to shoot at their goal once in the first half.

    During half time I applied two substitutes with Blair coming on for Dickson and Houghton coming or for Taylor-Sinclair. Houghton didn't start because he wasn't fully fit after an injury. I had to bring on my third and final substitute after 52 minutes when Tiendalli had to leave the field injured. Alcock was brought on as his replacement and in the second half we managed to take control of the game little by little, but the Portsmouth defence proved to be unbeatable. The game ended the same way as it began. Our newly joined central defender Miliev got MoM with a solid performance at the back.


    Spoiler!


    After the game the board told me they were a little bit disappointed by the draw against Portsmouth. The medical staff also brought bad news as it turned out Dwight Tiendalli had sustained a torn groin muscle and was out for at least three months.




    With Tiendalli being my only suitable right back I started looking for a temporary replacement. I found one in Adam Chicksen who was put on the loan list by Charlton.

    Spoiler!


    In my search to strengthen the squad further I realized I needed more money to attract quality players so I went to the board:

    Me: Boss, the game against Portsmouth showed us that we need better players. To get those I need more money. Can you raise the transferfunds?
    Chairman: I'm sorry lad, but that's not something I can do. We can't just spend money like water, we're not Man City or Chelsea you know?
    Me: I understand, but I'm not asking for millions and millions! If we could just raise the budget a little b...
    Chairman:NO, that's not possible and that's final!



    Being born very stubborn, I started shouting at the board and used expletives that I will not repeat here. It didn't had the effect I wanted..



    This means we'll just have to make do with what we got and hope for cheap bargains that fit within the budget.




    Leyton Orient gets a firm beating from on fire Doncaster Rovers

    Second matchday was an away game at Leyton Orient who had won their first game of the season. Manager mer Riza was playing a standard 4-4-2 formation and ref Jones Finlay started us off in front of 6.954 people.

    It took us only 3 minutes to score the first goal of the game and the season. It was McSheffrey that squared the ball for Lynch who found goalie Cisak on his way, but Houghton was there to apply the finish. Just 5 minutes later it was Coppinger who laid the ball off and Chicksen found himself in some space. He struck the ball with fury and put it in the net, but it was ruled out since Dickson was offside. the 2-0 came in the 38th minute when Bent opened his goal tally by putting a Dickson cross behind goalkeeper Cisak. Just before half time we got a corner when Cisak parried a shot by Bent. Coppinger swung in the corner and McSheffrey headed it towards goal to put it past Cisak for 3-0.

    In the break I complimented my team for their excellent performance and told them to keep it up. The second half had us pushing Leyton Orient further backwards and we created some good chances. Bent hit the bar and McSheffrey headed it wide. In the 76th minute it was Dickson that picked up the loose ball and laid it off for Stewart who fired it low and hard to score the 4-0. Unfortunately the goal was denied after the linesman ruled Coppinger offside. A minute later I subbed Houghton, who had a potential knee injury, for Taylor-Sinclair and Blair came on to replace the well playing McSheffrey who seemed a little fatigued. We created more chances, but didn't score any more goals.


    Spoiler!


    When we returned to Doncaster the board told me they were delighted with the excellent victory.





    All in all we had a decent start to the season. The game against Portsmouth had me scared because we didn't create any chances whatsoever. I was glad to see that we bounced back against Leyton Orient and that my team got a very good win. Next up is the EFL Cup game against Reading which whill prove to be a tough challenge.


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    Nice story so far! But surely Tiendalli must be one of your best player so to have him injured is a bit of a blow.

    Glad the Board are so lenient, though! And perhaps it's just as well you won that second game!

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    Quote Originally Posted by samsami View Post
    Nice story so far! But surely Tiendalli must be one of your best player so to have him injured is a bit of a blow.

    Glad the Board are so lenient, though! And perhaps it's just as well you won that second game!
    Yeah Tiendalli out is a huge blow, but Chicksen is proving to be a decent replacement. Got some new faces coming in as well!

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    Doncaster Rovers upset Reading in EFL Cup first round

    The first round of the EFL Cup had us playing at home against Championship team Reading. With midfielders Rowe and Blair still injured we filed our best squad to try and get a result versus a stronger opponent. Keepmoat Stadium was half full with 7.250 people when referee Lawrie Goode blew his whistle to start the first half.

    The game was 13 minutes underway when two bookings, one on each side, already had been noted. We started out nervous and it was Reading that took the lead when McCleary unleashed a volley at goal that left Turnbull rooted to the spot. Another yellow card for a Reading player before Darren Bent took control of a loose ball and drove it at goal to score the equalizer. The referee immidiately ruled out the goal since Bent had been offside. In the 44th minute Chicksen and Bent exchanged passes and the latter blasted it towards the top corner only to see Al-Habsi parry it. It was Dickson that followed up the safe to even the scoreline.

    At half time we subbed off McSheffrey, who had taken a knock, for Taylor-Sinclair. We put the pressure on Reading in the second half and it was in the 71th minute that Bent got shoved by McShane in the penalty area. The referee awarded the penalty on advice of his assistent. It was Bent himself who took the penalty and he made no mistake putting us ahead by 2-1. We were in the lead and felt comfortable to push on, but in the 78th minute Chicksen received a yellow card for barging someone in the back. In anger Chicksen kicked away the ball which earned him his second booking and we had to survive the last 12 to 15 minutes with ten men. Substitute right back Alcock, who came on for attacking midfielder Coppinger, received a yellow card a minute after he entered for holding an opponent. We kept it tight at the back and sealed the win to advance to the second round of the Cup!


    Spoiler!


    After the game the board told us they were pleased with the win over Reading. The EFL Cup second round draw was made and sees us playing rival Rotherham. We will be playing away at The AESSEAL New York Stadium and it will be another tough draw.




    The FA dropped by with a one game suspension for Adam Chicksen following his red card in the game against Reading. We appealed the ban, but lost it so he'll be missing the next game against Grimsby. With Tiendalli still injured we have a problem at the right back spot.







    Tough Grimsby give Doncaster a good scare

    Following the win in the EFL Cup we faced Grimsby at home on matchday 3. Tiendalli, Rowe and Blair were still out with injuries and Chicksen was suspended, but other than that we fielded our best squad. Gareth Lukins blew his whistle and 7.486 supporters watched us start the game.

    We started the match very well when Dickson took control of a loose ball in the 4th minute and tried a low drive scoring the 1-0. Left back Lynch received a yellow card in the 15th minute for holding someone back and both teams had their chances, but no more goals were scored before half time.

    The second half saw no changes and it a Grimsby player received a yellow card for upending Houghton. In the 53th minute it was McSheffrey who fed the ball to Dickson in the are, but he got dispossessed with a solid tackle from a Grimsby defender. It then was Houghton who took control of the loose ball and made it 2-0 with a low attempt on goal. Another yellow card for a Grimsby player before they pulled one back in the 86th minute with a brilliant move. Suddenly we got very nervous, but kept it cool and made sure the three points stayed in Doncaster.


    Spoiler!





    Unlucky Doncaster lose at Notts County

    It was matchday 4 and we faced Notts County at their hometurf. With Rowe and Blair returning from their respective injuries and Chicksen from his suspension, we only missed Tiendalli. Rowe was give a spot in the team in favor of Dickson and Blair started on the bench. A total of 8.110 saw referee C.T. Finch start the match.

    Notts County seemed keen on getting the early goal and put a lot of pressure on us. In the 19th minute a Notts player got to a loose ball and tried a low drive that was deflected by Houghton. Unfortunately it put our goalkeeper Turnbull on the wrong foot and so Notts took the lead. We immidiately put the pressure back on Notts and in the 39th minute Coppinger hit a volley after a 20 yard pass from Rowe, but his goal was cancelled out by the linesman flagging for offside. We created a lot more chances, but Bent and Stewart couldn't score the equalizer.

    At half time we made two substitutions, Taylor-Sinclair come on for the fatigued Butler and Dickson came on for the disappointing McSheffrey. Again Bent and Stewart had good chances, but again couldn't get the goal we needed. In the 61th minute we subbed off the fatigued Rowe for Blair and that was the starting sign for an all out offensive from our side. Coppinger saw a free kick parried, Dickson shot a volley over the bar and Chicksen found his shot deflected wide. Whatever we tried, their goalkeeper could not be beaten today and so we took our first loss of the season home with us.


    Spoiler!




    The next day we greeted two new signings. The first was Kvin Bru, a 27 year old attacking midfielder who will replace Coppinger in the starting eleven. The second was Thimothee Dieng, a 24 year defensive midfielder who will rotate with Houghton. With those two on board I feel we now have a balanced squad, but I will remain on the lookout for bargains.

    Bru:
    Spoiler!

    Dieng:
    Spoiler!

    Unfortunately our new signing Bru sustained an injury which will rule him out the next game.



    Following the loss at Notts County we find ourselves on the 6th place only 3 points behind the league's leaders. We now prepare for two home games in a row against Crewe and Blackpool.




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    A lot of back room staff turnover and got some nice staff there

    Wow - some great signings such as Teindelli who is very versatile and steady and Bent will surely bang in goals for you

    Turnbull should be a decent keeper at that level as well


    Weird that more fans came to friendlies than 1st game of season

    Got very lucky v Portsmouth!

    Shit - awfu news about Tiendalli!

    Wow - bit cheeky of you TWICE asking board for more funds - surely that hasn't set you on the right foor with them?!

    Fine result over Orient and Reading - looks like Rotherham is a good draw as well and you can maybe have a cup run and a big awau game for some €'s

    Sweet result v Grimsby but then the old CM "superkeepered!"

    Good to see the squad fattening up - you need it in these lower leagues!
    Decent enough pre season - plenty of actiona nd goals for fans!

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    A solid start! Pity about that own goal, but those things happen.

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    Like the story writing style, very similar to samsami

    The board proved right in the end when you won the next game Plenty of experience in your new signings, shame about Tiendalli.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Like the story writing style, very similar to samsami

    The board proved right in the end when you won the next game Plenty of experience in your new signings, shame about Tiendalli.
    Well it was samsami's entertaining story that made me want to do one as well. I think Redders and you like our writing styles, because we're both Dutch and as you know the best things come from the Netherlands!

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    We were at end of August and a meeting was arranged with a reporter from Doncaster's local fanzine "Popular Stand".



    Reporter: Thank you for taking the time to talk with us. It's been a quite promising start you've made with the club, how do you look back at your first months here?
    Me: Well when I came here a lot of things needed to change. For example the backroom staff wasn't up to my standards and too small. If we want to become better as a team and club, we need to invest into the staff as well.
    Reporter: One thing we've all noticed is that you brought a lot of new faces into the squad and that some of them are performing quite well.
    Me: At the moment I'm very happy with my team. Some of the signings like Turnbull, Miliev, Dickson and Bent have made a good start. Others are still adjusting to the club and style of play, but I expect they will start delivering soon.
    Reporter: About the league. You've made a good start collecting seven points in four games, bur you must be gutted about the loss to Notts County.
    Me: I'm still in total disbelieve about that one! To fall behind by an own goal can happen to anyone, but in the remainder of the game we couldn't get back, no matter how hard we tried.
    Reporter: How do you see the coming months going?
    Me: We want to put together a good run in the league and advance in EFL Cup, but Rotherham will prove to be a tough challenge.
    Reporter: Thank you for you time and good luck!




    Lucky Doncaster steal win in final minute

    It was matchday 5 and we faced Crewe at home who were three points and two places above us. Newcomer Bru and Tiendalli were the only ones absent because of injuries. Other newcomer Dieng made his first appearance and McSheffrey was benched in favor of Dickson. Referee David O'Flaherty blew his whistle and 7.793 fans saw us take the game underway.

    We started out good with a shot at goal in the 6th minute by Dickson who saw it parried by Crewe's goalkeeper. In the 16th minute Rowe pushed an opponent and received a yellow card. Crewe picked up the pace and had several chances to open the score, but goalie Turnbull had several brilliant saves. A Crewe player had to be replaced with an injury in minute 33 and nothing more happened before half-time

    In the break we brought on McSheffrey for the disappointing Rowe who was also booked. The second half again saw Crewe putting a lot of pressure on us and creating chances, but again it was Turnbull that proved to be a solid rock in the goal. In the 59th minute Dickson was subbed for Blair and in the 71th minute Houghton came on for Dieng. Crewe was hunting for that opening goal, but the Doncaster defence held firm with Miliev putting in an excellent performance. We then switched back to a less attacking style and tried to take more control of the game. Just when the game was about to end in a goalless draw, it was Chicksen who picked up the loose ball and shot it low at goal to score the 1-0. Immidiately after the goal the ref blew his whistle to end the game and we undeservedly kept the three points at home.


    Spoiler!





    Superb Stewart guides Doncaster past Blackpool

    Matchday 6 saw us take on Blackpool at home who were at the bottom of the league. Houghton and McSheffrey returned in the starting eleven replacing Rowe and Dieng. A total of 8.774 people saw the game being kicked off when referee Robbie Worth blew his whistle.

    Right from the get go we applied some heavy pressure on Blackpool, creating some chances in the proces. In the 7th minute Chicksen received a yellow card when he stuck out his leg to bring down an opponent. Two minutes later it was Bent who drove the ball low at goal only to see it parried behind by the keeper. Coppinger whipped in the corner and it was Stewart who headed it past the keeper to score his first goal since he joined this summer. A fierce shot by Dickson and a low drive from Bent didn't result in goals and on the other side it was Turnbull that had saves on two Blackpool attacks. In the 41th minute Coppinger hit the ball ahead of Stewart in the area who hit a volley at goal. The goalkeeper saved the shot, but couldn't hold onto the ball and Stewart scored the follow up to make it 2-0.

    No changes were made at half time and in the second half Blackpool were looking to pull one back, but our goalkeeper Turnbull again proved unbeatable. In the 68th minute Blair was brought on for McSheffrey who had taken a knock. Only five minutes later Blair made a great run skipping past an opponent and put a low cross into the near post. It was Houghton that made himself some space and he kept calm and scored the 3-0. In the 81th minute it was Blair that found Stewart with a pass into the area who hit it high and hard towards goal to score the 4-0 and complete his hattrick.


    Spoiler!

    After the game the board called me to their room and complimented us for our excellent win against Blackpool.






    With two home wins in the bag we now find ourselves at the third place, three points behind league leader Portsmouth. Next up will be two away games against 19th placed Carlisle and 13th placed Cambridge Utd. After that we travel to Rotherham to take them on in the second round of the EFL Cup.


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  32. #19
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    Cruising! Is Houghton the ex-Chelsea player?
    The Alphabet Game #3
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  34. #20
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    smash \and grab win v crewe! Lucky to get the 3 points there but positioned really well at the mo

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  36. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Cruising! Is Houghton the ex-Chelsea player?
    I think so. In game he's set to transfer to Chelsea at 1/7/18, so that's after the second season. I got him on loan from the reserves now..

  37. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redknapp69 View Post
    smash \and grab win v crewe! Lucky to get the 3 points there but positioned really well at the mo
    I had no shots at all until the 70th minute or so. Then I switched the mentality to Normal and started to create something. I settled for winning a point, but it became an undeserved three points in the end!

  38. #23
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    Ah, he's on loan IRL.
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  40. #24
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    Man alive! It couldn't have gone better!

    But you need the points (as many as you can get!) because the dip will come some time as well.

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  42. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsami View Post
    Man alive! It couldn't have gone better!

    But you need the points (as many as you can get!) because the dip will come some time as well.
    True, I need to get as many points as possible before it stagnates! Right now I'm going well and defensively we're doing well!

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