Sunday, 25 August 2013

Season 8 completed! What should I do next?

Hi everybody,

My long report about the season 8 finish today! As you can recall from my previous story blog post, Forest was at semi final stages in Champions League and FA Cup, and also in 4 points from the closest pursuer in the Premier League table standing having 6 fixtures to play. The outcome is interesting and should be entertaining for you.

Moreover, I am ready to make review of achieved and non-achieved story targets and decide with your help how I should act in the next season…

 

Champions League semi final versus PSG

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My tactic choice for the first leg at home was quite logical. The point is in that I could start with control tactics against so mighty opponent. PSG are very good in attacks. Particularly they like to use experienced Mata and Pastore on flanks creating real danger from there. Sure, I could try classic 4-4-2 formation with Fierro and Promutico ahead but was a bit uncertain of its efficiency in sense of scoring goals. It’s just not attacking one.

However, my choice to use the tactics with wide flanks and direct passing didn’t work out. Nottm Forest had been struggling to enter penalty area and didn’t create a single clear cut chance.

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Though we played better by quality of football, the match ended with 0:1 defeat. Ukrainian Denis Garmash scored the goal with a fierce strike after their forward Felipe extracted both my centre backs higher.

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Reply match in France

0:1 at home is a miserable result agaist PSG. But I had some hope Forest can turn over everything keeping in my mind the semi final encounter against them two years ago. That time after the home 1:1 draw we manage to qualify into the final making 2:2 draw at the Parc de Princes…

Unfortunately, Carlos Fierro got injured and its ruined my plans to use the best pair of strikers ahead. Anyway I went with the classic 4-4-2 tactics. Rodrigo joined Promutico and was actually better attacker by performance than the Italian goal scorer. PSG got brilliant Marouane Fellaini back to the squad (he was suspended in the first match).

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Well, you see what happened… No final this year and still no Champions League trophy for Nottingham Forest. Fellaini helped PSG so much to hold out in this game, you can’t imagine! His goal and superb work in defence became decisive things there. That’s why he got the MoM award.

Will Hughes and Alessandro Promutico became major disappointments for me. The first one had a captain band but failed to seize on several good goal moments. Promutico merely dissolved on the pitch. He did nothing to help Forest to get into the final…

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Higher quality of football by Nottm Forest and larger ball possession doesn’t help this time. I feel a bit unlucky but PSG deserves to play in the final. By the way, Pastore is a fantastic attacker, it’s tremendously difficult to tackle the ball from his feet.

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Watch two goals here:

Premier League title with 5-star victory

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Alessandro Promutico failed the Champions League semi final. But then he compensated the failure in Premier League scoring hat-trick and bringing title back to Nottingham in two fixture before the end. The last title was won by Brian Clough and his team in 1978…

Premier League title + League Cup – these are two trophies I can be proud of in the 8th season!

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Latest Forest matches and PL table

Here was also FA Cup semi final against Sunderland. It was lost intentionally. No, I didn’t want to get defeated but intentionally sacrificed the game selecting second squad players. Just wanted to give some rest before facing PSG in CL.

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The final table standing looks pleasing. Especially, I like 100 scored goals and goal difference of 62. Seems like a large achievement, doesn’t it?

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About players

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Looking on to the Forest squad sorted by average match rating, you should pay attention to two facts:

  • Just 6 player have rating below 7.30! Just amazing. By the way, it’s somewhat unpleasantly to see Will Hughes among them. He totally failed the season ending…
  • Look at the player values! They had never been so high as now. 7 players cost above $30M!

I can’t say who was the best Nottingham Forest in the season. There are some candidates like Chris Smalling, Carlos Fierro, Alessandro Promutico, Gylfi Sigurdsson, or Alexey Solodukhin. All of the deserve to be called the best actually…

So I’d just like to share some player stats from different tournaments where Nottm Forest players appeared.

Premier League player stats

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Champions League player stats

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My career with Nottigham Forest

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The picture shows my progress with Nottingham Forest in Premier League. Hope you also like it :)

We are the champions my friends, and the board is happy about that and regarding the whole season.

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What should I do next?

If you remember Nottm Forest story was started in October 2012 with the following blog post:

Forest story. Targets and restrictions.

The story was planned for 8 seasons and now I can look back over my shoulder at the total results after 10 real life months of gameplay.

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The last Champions League is failed at all, the title of Premier League winner was got late. I should win it with Nottm Forest in the last year according to this plan. Nevertheless, I am almost totally pleased with results, in particular considering the 6th season events when we could win all trophies failing the final matches only.

Now regarding the question of what I should do next with Nottm Forest. First of all, I want to notify that season 9 is going to be the last in the story because Football Manager 2014 will come out quite soon. Normally, it’s October/November when new FM gets released.

What I want to do is my favourite thing I restricted myself from the very story beginning. Long-time blog readers now that I love making squad revolutions ;) So this is what will certainly happen with Nottm Forest. Then we’ll see if I’m able to stay with the club at the same high level and win Champions League at last. The claimed bias to British players will be cancelled for the last season as well.

That’s my wish. Though you can forbid me to do that in comments. If there are many fresh comments against squad revolution, I will continue using the current squad with minimal changes in season 9.

So please write your opinions, it would be nice to know what you think regarding this idea.

Excited to blog for you,

Vitaliy Mokosiy

Author: Vitaliy

Playing Football Manager since 1996. Blogging about it since 2007.