Sunday, 30 September 2012

Q.P.R. Story Retrospective

QPR Bears

These nice-looking bears are my symbols of the story start. Remember I specified the targets and principles of the story?

It was the 6-season plan. Then I wanted to stop managing Q.P.R. but you, dear readers voted to continue managing the club. For the next 3 seasons I changed everything: tactics, squad, managing approach. But didn’t manage reach newly set targets.

You can track all tournaments’ results season by season:

QPR story results

 

Now let’s get deeper into the story to recall its brightest moments!

Season 1

Supersonic tacticsI am introduced to Queens Park Rangers squad. I feel it’s quite weak to hold on in the Premier League. I can only single out Alejandro Faurlin, Shaun Write-Phillips, and Armand Traore. All other guys including odious Joey Barton didn’t look impressive for me.

The squad strength was increased by transfer campaign aimed mostly to young talents. Marco Verratti, Yaya Sanogo, Lucas Digne joined Q.P.R. Andreas Hinkel and Marco Materazzi diluted their young company with experience.

I was experimenting with different tactics and the start was not so good. But then in the middle of the season Supersonic Tactics was built by me! It proved to be the most outstanding tactical approach I’ve ever used. Quick wide passing and fast speeds formed basis of the approach.

Younes Kaboul, Andreas Bjelland, Arne Friedrich moved to Q.P.R. during winter transfer window to resolve a problem of bad defence.

The season 1 was not successful at all resulting in difficult survival at the 17th position.

Supersonic tactics was great but not for the current players. There were many slow guys who simply could not perform well in that special way.

 

Season 2

Squad revolution for the sake of Supersonic tactical approach! Several excellent footballers joined The Rangers:

- Oscar

- David Ospina

- Sulley Muntari

- Ivelin Popov

- Alberto Paloschi

- Jay Rodriguez

I wasn’t careful with spent transfer money and club balance went into $-17M debt.

As a result Q.P.R. had been playing better and better. We got the first large wins including 4:3 away victory at Old Trafford. In the end we had an excitingly unpredictable battle for the Europa League places with Arsenal and Aston Villa. The outcome was the best for my club: the 5th line in the table! I was even awarded as The Manager of the Season!

 

Season 3

After the success of the previous season I had to prepare for Europa League participation. $21.5M had been spent on wonderkid Alvaro Vadillo who didn’t meet my expectations in the end. Decent Craig Cathcart and future 16 years old defence leader Bernard Holt joined The Rangers as well.

It had been going fine during 2 thirds of the season. After 26 PL fixtures Q.P.R. was at the 5th table line just in 4 points from leading Chelsea. But later on it turned out we are not ready for the ending saturated match schedule. A row of failures in Premier League brought Q.P.R. back to the 7th position.

Nonetheless, it would be a great season if Q.P.R. managed to cope with Ajax in Europa League final. 25 shots against 4 shots from Ajax resulted in poor 1:1 draw and penalties. All my 3 players didn’t score! It was unlucky strike #1.

Unlucky strike 1

 

Season 4

Gary Cahill - $24M, Ognjen Vukojevic - $15M, Denys Garmash - $19M, these guys are 3 big signings before the season. I risked and overspent money getting some accusing but fair comments in the blog.

My second attempt to win Europa League failed at the early stage of group round. Napoli and Koln suddenly get my club out of the tournament. Premier League results were also disappointing: the 9th table position. It was the first serious crisis for Queens Park Rangers in my story.

Additional squad analysis and winter clearance sale helped team to get back to consistent mood and qualify to the Champions League from the 3rd line being above Manchester United in the table. Ivelin Popov and Ognjen Vukojevic were key players for this success.

 

Season 5

Future Champions league debut made me to perform the 2nd squad revolution with huge amount of transfers. Almost 20 players of main and reserve teams left Q.P.R. 15 newcomers came instead.

Versatile Sime Vrsaljko, talented regen wonderkid Samir Breinburg, strong anchor man Mohamed Diame, playmaker Chris Brunt… It was another risky transfer campaign from me as Q.P.R. manager.

The season results:

- Quarterfinal loss to Barcelona in CL which is good result however.

- Title competition with Man City of Mourinho in 9 fixtures turned into the 3rd place with 78 points in my baggage.

One of set targets was failed. The point #3 in my expectations was about winning Premier League in 5 seasons…

 

Season 6

It became a story deadline. I felt I should win either Premier League or Champions League after all. But it didn’t happen.

Numerous transfers which I consider as a mistake now changed the squad of Rangers. James Rodriguez, Theo Walcott, Sami Khedira, Marc-Andre ter Stegen… Only the first and the last of them proved their value. It didn’t allow to pretend on CL places after the season’s half. In desperation I even decided to spent huge amount of money on Daniel Bazan, the best player who was ready to play for Q.P.R:

Bazan

Champions League semi-final against arch-rival Chelsea. Drama. Tragedy. My Q.P.R. won the first away game with 2:0 score and was already in the Final in mind. But hat-trick of Romelu Lukaku in the reply match stroke out all our hopes…

That post came out under name Season 6 drama. Is Q.P.R. story over?

 

My expectations after 6 seasons are not achieved

image

I was feeling myself so awfully that wanted to stop the story. Therefore the poll questioning whether I should continue managing Q.P.R. was arranged. Here are the results:

poll results

 

Season 7

It began with a total squad review and another squad revolution: $173M for sold players and $143M on newcomers.

Record $42M were spent on the world class centre back Mats Hummels:

Mats Hummels

Then I created a new Fluidity tactics with 3 centre forwards that got me really excited.

Logical slippage at the season start transformed into a confident run with large amount of scored goals. I felt Europa League trophy is nearly in my hands but mad 0:6 semi-final loss to weaker Koln… well, it was a total devastation.

Among season pros are: the 4th Premier League position, feeling that tactics works, Carlos Fierro scored 36 goals

 

Season 8

Previous season was some kind of total tuning up. New tactical approach, new players… Before that season evolutional squad changes were provided by me. Several prospective youngsters and Zargo Toure were brought to the squad.

In short, it was the best season in the story. For instance, take a look at the start: 9 wins in the starting 9 Premier League matches.

And we almost became PL champions loosing it by goal difference to Manchester City. It was unlucky strike #2.

PL misery

 

Season 9

The last part of the story which was interrupted for my 2-week vacation. During winter transfer window I bought several top class Latin American players, mostly from Brazil.

Arsenal got into great winning streak for a title, and Q.P.R. was unable to catch up the Gunners. So the main accent was made on Champions League Cup. But again and again we failed at quarter-final stage. Lady lack joked over me once more.

Former Q.P.R. player Oscar buried all my hopes in the tournament after 3:2 win in the first match. Unlucky strike #3.

Well, at least Queens Park Rangers won FA Cup in the very end of the story.

 

Players

Here is the Overall Best Eleven.

image

I have also created 2 rankings of players.

Best Q.P.R. players

1. Carlos Fierro (ST).

2. Bernard Holt (DC).

3. Ivelin Popov (AML/AMR).

4. Douglas Costa (AML/ST).

5. Jay Rodriguez (ST).

6. Ognjen Vukojevic (DMC).

 

My transfer mistakes

1. Alvaro Vadillo.

2. Sami Khedira.

3. Denys Garmash.

4. Michael Kightly.

5. Theo Walcott.

 

Several historical season records

Goalscorers  Assists

Man of the match  Fans player of the year

 

My profile as Q.P.R. manager

QPR manager

 

So here it is. A long retrospective which made me typing keyboard for almost 4 hours…

But I am still excited to blog for you :)

Vitaliy Mokosiy

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Download Q.P.R. story file

Here is the link for you:

Q.P.R. story save (zipped)

Pay attention that I have archived the file with Zip. So you should unzip it before copying to games subfolder.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

FA Cup and the 3rd position with 85 points

Hello dear readers,

At last season 9 is completed, and we can take a look at its results.

Latest matches

Champions League fatal quarterfinal against Lyon was already described by me in the previous QPR post:

How Oscar buried his former club in the Champions League

This is why I am not going to discuss it anymore and want to write some words about national tournaments.

Premier League

As you see the latest Premier League matches turned into series of 8 consecutive wins.  My defence managed to concede 1 goal only in all those games. But it was too late…:( Arsenal and Manchester United showed great consistency in gaining points as well. Therefore 85 resulting points by Q.P.R. are not enough for even grabbing the 2nd position in the league this season.

Interesting that last season's champions Man City is at the 5th line only.

Final table

 

FA Cup

In spite of another unlucky outcome in Premier League and Champions League, my team managed to win FA Cup. We had a weak opponent in the final at Wembley. Sheffield United represents an average club from Championship in my game. However my players created problems for themselves due to low shot accuracy. Just 5 shots on target with so large advantaged we had! It came out we had to participate in penalties where excellent concentration helped to escape inaccuracy.

FA Cup

On our way to this trophy we beat Chelsea.

FA Cup matches

 

If we take a look at the whole FA Cup history, we see it’s the 2nd trophy for Queens Park Rangers. It looks like a small but significant achievement because only Arsenal managed to take it twice in Football Manager 2012.

FA Cup winners

 

Q.P.R. players

Hermes

Players

I am happy with my current squad and the way they performed during the last part of the season. Newcomers Hermes and Jader became essential for Q.P.R. almost immediately. Moreover, Hermes completed the season with the highest average rating in the team - 7.31.

The best Q.P.R. player in this season is again Carlos Fierro. 36 goals and 11 assists in 43(4) matches. What else should be taken as an argument? Yes, he is MVP (most valuable player). Just look, how much stable Fierro was in the Premier League during the last 3 seasons:

Fierro in PL

 

Q.P.R. story is over

Perhaps it’s sad but all things in life come to an end. I will not have enough time to play another season till FM 2013 demo release which I predict to happen in 1 month. So I stop managing Q.P.R. with the excellent squad that might win Premier League and Champions League in the next season at last…

Unluckily, after all I have only 3 trophies - 2 FA Cups and 1 League Cup - after 9 seasons. There were several chances to win CL and PL but I didn’t seize them. Sometimes of course, lady luck was against Q.P.R.

Q.P.R. story achievements

The story is over…

 

What’s next?

Surely, I have some plans till Football Manager 2013 release.

First of all, I would like to make a retrospective post about Q.P.R. and the brightest moments of the story. After that I am going to share my FM 2012 save file for those of you who wants to continue managing my Queens Park Rangers. Then it would be great to look back farther and compare results of the Q.P.R. story with the previous ones I had in FM 2011, 2010, 2009, etc.

Later on I will start two-round poll. You, my dear readers, will choose a FM 2013 club for me. The voting algorithm is going to be quite simple:

- First round: Choose nation to start.

- Second round: Vote for club from chosen nation.

And of course I am still following the latest Football Manager 2013 videos and news from Miles Jacobson & Co. My impressions of them will be published either in this blog or True.FMCrowd.com.

The last but not least. I am going to upgrade design of True Football Manager blog to make it more readable and faster for you my friends.

 

Excited to blog for you,

Vitaliy Mokosiy

Monday, 17 September 2012

How Oscar buried his former club in Champions League

Hello my dear readers,
Another dramatic event happened in my Q.P.R. story, and I would like to tell about it right now. It’s Champions League quarterfinal between Q.P.R. and Lyon. We had already a tough encounter in CL against them one year ago. 
Head-to-head QPR Lyon
As you see it was lucky one for the Rangers due to away goal.
This year I started to prepare mentally for difficult matches after Q.P.R. had been drawn with Lyon once again.

The First Match

QPR - Lyon
Lyon had 4-2-3-1 classic formation with AML and AMR wingers. Thus I had to use my backup tactics with WBL and WBR applying Standard strategy to cover flanks from their pacey wingers.
The score had been changing like a swing during the match: 1:0, 1:2, 3:2. Unluckily, my team didn’t manage to score more goals having perceptible advantage. The players and quality of football produced by the them made me sure we won’t loose the 2nd match.

The Second Match

But my expectations were ruined.
The formations were the same as in the first game. The squads didn’t change much as well. Pay attention to the AMR position of Lyon where former QPR player Oscar is placed. He became a main actor in the performance.
Lyon  QPR
Oscar needed only 30 minutes to make 3:0 score. It was so disappointing to get the hat-trick from one of my favourites in former Q.P.R. squad that was used together with Supersonic tactics…  Luckily, in the 2nd half I managed to overcome the course of game by means of touchline shouts. More pressing and better getting ball forward resulted in one goal by Carlos Fierro.
In 3 minutes Q.P.R. was given a chance to equalize total 2-match score but fantastic Hugo Lloris made a great save. Later on even Pavel Mamaev’s red card doesn’t help the Rangers to move up the game to extra time…
Lyon wins
Watch below Oscar scored his 3 different goals:
1. From free kick;
2. Penalty;
3. After cross.


Oscar. Irony of fate.

Oscar
Oscar's history
Oscar was one of the best Queens Park Ranges players. But I sold him due to usage of new Fluidity tactics with formation 3-1-3-3 that has no place for the Brazilian.
Suddenly he revenged me for that. Lady luck arranged a spiteful joke for me.
Well, it’s another season without winning Champions League… I feel Q.P.R. story has already too many dramatic events…
But I am still excited to blog for you,
Vitaliy Mokosiy
Friday, 14 September 2012

Q.P.R. Being in great form

Hello dear readers,

In spite of numerous information portions about Football Manager 2013 Q.P.R. story continues. As you remember the season start was seriously failed, and my club got overtaking role in the Premier League. January, February and half of March were nearly perfect in sense of results. Just 2 away draws in PL, all other matches were won.

14 matches: 11 wins, 2 draws, 1 loss

Played matches

 

Premier League

Premier League

But anyway you see my club has lost all chances to win the title this year. Arsenal is fantastic and doesn’t almost make mistakes loosing points. No-one of other PL is able to catch up the Gunners. This is why I am pretty happy with the kind of performance produced by QPR players at Emirates Stadium.

Tough Arsenal

Tough Arsenal

We got 1:1 draw quite confidently. I can’t say QPR had an advantage in this mage but higher possession against grand club with squad in Superb morale does matter.

Interesting that my former centre back Samir Breinburg helped QPR to equalize the score :)

 

The most significant victory in struggle for the 2nd league position was at Old Trafford. It raised morale level of all QPR players much. Read more at my FM Crowd blog:

Manchester United - Q.P.R. 2:3

 

Failed to win

Wolves is one of the most embarrassing opponents in FM 2012 for my Q.P.R. Once again they managed to take away points in the game that already seemed to won. Look at the head-to-head history against Wolves below. Every match against them is always problem for me independently of head coach they have. Weird, isn’t it?

Wolves

Head-to-Head Wolves

 

Champions League

Squad strength of Benfica can’t be compared to my squad. Therefore I was pretty happy getting one of the weakest opponents in the 1st Knockout round. Suddenly Portugal team managed to grab 2:1 victory at home seizing penalty opportunity. It made me quite nervous because they hadn’t have an advantage in the first match.

So I was completely concentrated on winning the 2nd match. Luckily, my guys didn’t let down. Interesting that all 5 goals were scored by forwards what happens so rarely this season…

QPR - Benfica

 

Q.P.R. players

Players

Worst players

My squad consists of many Brazilians and Argentineans who start understanding one another on pitch better and better. Winter newcomers - Jader, Hermes, Romulo - impressed me much. Especially Jader. I have never seen such a greatly performing goalkeeper. Well, his Reflexes attribute equals to 20… Meanwhile Hermes gave much to our defensive line. Now I feel I have the best defence in the world!

The successful series of results is not a fortuity. I made a significant squad change for the first eleven. I started to trust playmaker MC position to Oscar Rasmussen instead John Fleck because the latter got me bored with amount of inefficient long shots. This replacement resulted in higher amount of keen passes from midfield to forwards.

 

His name is Pachequinho

This striker was the best during the reported period. By attributes, he can be counted as the 5th or even the 6th Q.P.R. forward. However, Pachequinho managed to displace poorly performing Daniel Bazan from the first eleven.

He cannot boast very high shot accuracy. But 10 goals and 9 assists in 15(4) matches look impressing!

Pachequinho

Shot stats

Stats

 

Upcoming matches

Upcoming games

At the moment I don’t know who will become an opponent in Champions League quarter final. Hopefully, it won’t be Barcelona.

Q.P.R. is still in FA Cup. Next game is going to be against our arch rivals Chelsea. The high morale level should help us to beat them. And if we do, then FA Cup is most likely in my hands. There are no more grand clubs in the tournament at quarter final stage.

As for Premier League, my target is to fight for the 2nd line in the table. Arsenal seems unstoppable and will win the title this year.

 

Excited to blog for you,

Vitaliy Mokosiy

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Latin-American Queens Park Rangers

Hello my dear readers,

If you are wondered by the post title, scroll down to its last part explaining why I am naming Q.P.R. as Latin American. Now, traditionally I am starting with the latest results.

12 matches: 7 wins, 2 draws, 3 losses.

Last matches

As you see my team played better than at the start. Nevertheless, in the middle of December Q.P.R. got into poor row of matches consisting of 3 losses and 1 draw.

 

Premier League: Incredible Arsenal

3 Premier League defeats determined our position in the league. Just the 5th line in the table with 15 points distance from leading Arsenal. The Gunners have been grabbing wins one by one and seem impossible to beat in their current amazing form.

Arsenal

My series of losses started with another poor game against Blackburn. Once again my attackers were not efficient enough at the last stage of their attacks despite the advantage we had.

Blackburn

 

The same but even more irritating problem happened in home match against Tottenham. The Hotspurs had 1 serious goal chance only and seized on. While my strikers didn’t show their best football this time.

Loss to Tottenham

 

The 3rd defeat was the only fair one. Chelsea beat us making more shots and playing more accurately. However it’s always sad if you loose to arch-rivals.

Chelsea

 

After these 3 defeats Queens Park Rangers managed to cope with lowered morale and returned onto way of successful results. The most significant of them for me is away draw against defending PL champions - Manchester City.

Optimistic away match against Man City

ManCity

Totally equal game with team having better squad improved my mood, and I still hope Q.P.R. can even struggle for the title with Arsenal if they start loosing points.

 

Champions League

CL

It was difficult but we made it. Away 1:0 victory over Rubin was a key result for us. Thanks to John Fleck who scored a long-shot in that game!

In the end the target is achieved: Q.P.R. qualified into the knockout round from the 1st position. I am glad to realize that Benfica is my next opponent. Lucky draw for a while!

Marvellous long shot by Fleck

 

Q.P.R. squad

Squad

squad[4]

The exceedingly attentive of you have already noticed squad changes. Yes, I made some great transfers during opened winter transfer window. But let me tell about them in the end. Now my current squad impressions.

Daniel Bazan forgot how to score goals making assists only. I got angry of his performances and put him on a substitution bench. Instead I tried other forwards and found out Pachequinho is really great at the moment. You see he has the best average rating in the team after 6 played matches.

Unfortunately, Hummels started to make mistakes bringing two penalties in the last matches. This is why I decided to sign another defender to increase squad competition for 3 centre back positions.

The most sad story is about goalie ter Stegen. He irritated me at all. 6.78 average rating, several mistakes in important matches (Blackburn, Tottenham, Twente)… I decided to get rid of him. Moreover, I managed to get a deal regarding Jader.

 

Transfers

3 excellent Brazilians signed to Q.P.R. making the squad almost completely Latin-American. Now I have only Fleck, Holt, and Toure who represent players from other continents :-)

Transfers

Jader (GK)

Jader

Goalkeeper of Brazil with Reflexes equal to 20. Simply one of the best goalies in the world!

Frankly speaking, I have tried to buy him in summer. But Vasco asked for $38M for him. I wasn’t ready to pay the money at that moment.

 

Hermes (DC)

image

Giant centre back with height of 200 cm, Strength=20, Jumping=20, Heading=18. Hermes will boss the air together with Holt and Ezquerra.

Hermes is another guy who is long-timer on my short list. Tried to buy him twice: at first he didn’t want to move to Q.P.R., then Corinthians were ready to sell Hermes for $40M only. And now, what a luck, I signed the Brazilian for free!!!

Corinthians didn’t manage to agree on contract details with him.

 

Romulo (DMC)

Romulo in FM 2012

Very good player. Though I have Zargo Toure at DMC position and expect he will compete with the newcomer for it.

 

Team report

Team report

 

Whom should I sell?

I am going to sell ter Stegen and McCafferty only. Geis is needed at WBR position as a substitution for Coleman when we play our second 5-1-1-3 tactics. I would like to have some additional squad depth.

Do you agree with me about that?

 

Schedule

Future matches

I hope to chase Arsenal in the Premier League. One of the most important matches in this sense is the away game versus them. Wolves as usually will try to cause problems, hope Q.P.R. will manage to overcome them this time.

Can’t wait till Champions League knockout rounds. I feel The Rangers have serious chances to win the trophy. Though it depends on our newcomers, on their abilities to blend into our team and tactical approach.

 

Excited to blog for you,

Vitaliy Mokosiy