Good morning all and welcome back to what is a sad day for me. I have decided this is to be my final post, not only for this save but on FM15. I always like to take a break before a new version is released and due to work and life in general I feel now is the perfect time to stop. BUT I will be back for FM16 I have some great ideas of saves/blogs that I will do.
But for now here is the final update on what has been one of, if not my favourite ever FM save. I will do a re-cap at the end of the whole journey so please read it all.
So we entered into Season 5 with Stranraer, last season was amazing, our first SPL season and we had ended 2nd behind Celtic which meant a spot in Champions League, we also managed to win the Scottish Cup. It was a fantastic season and one I’m not sure can be topped, but I was determined to give it a try. The chance to topple Celtic to me seems a challenge too far but we have the opportunity of the Champions League where we will enter in at the 3rd Qualifying Round, so 2 rounds to qualify for the group stage.
I didn’t want to mess around with my squad too much, they had done so well last season so they all deserved the chance to give it another shot. I did however need to replace the 5 players who had left on free transfers due to being out of contract. A CB, CM and Striker or 2 were needed. We had around £6m to spend to more than enough to sign what I needed
Firstly as I mentioned in my previous post I managed to get Striker Shaun Galsworthy on a another season long loan, he was amazing last season ending as top goalscorer in the SPL, I tried to sign him but Swansea wanted £13m for him so I settled for another loan.
I did make a couple of other signings and here they are:
Signing 1 – Dragan Popovic was signed as I decided to sell one of my RBs. Popovic will provide good competition to Liam Walker. Signed for £170k from Atalanta
Signing 2 – Dom Walsh was signed from West Brom on a pre-contract deal and for nothing he looks really good!
Signing 3 – Dean Herbert will be one of my main CMs, his Mental attributes are absolutely amazing. He was signed from Reading on a pre-contract deal
And finally signing 4, Pedro Tavares cost me £5m from Leeds but after looking at my GKs available I really needed someone decent and Tavares definitely fits the bill
I also made 2 more loan signings:
Jason Johnson was signed on a season long loan from West Brom and will provide good back-up
Louis Newman was signed on loan from West Brom as my 4th Striker and like Johnson will provide decent back-up
So signings are complete, the squad hasn’t been messed about too much and we looked primes for a decent season. My aims are to get a bit nearer to Celtic, end 2nd, try to win a trophy and also to enjoy the Champions League experience!
The Champions League
I wasn’t expecting a lot from this competition, as long we held our own and weren’t embarrassed I will be more than happy. It didn’t start easy as in the 3rd Qualifying Round we were drawn against Zenit! We were major underdogs but somehow in the 1st leg we managed to beat them 1-0 away! I changed formations for the game and it worked wonders, they were all over us for most of the game but we nicked it in the 75th min. In the 2nd leg I kept the same defensive formation and it worked again as we managed to draw the game 1-1 to send us through 2-1 on aggregate, but it was going to get even tougher!
We were drawn against German giants Dortmund! The 1st leg would be at Home so I went attacking and hoped to god we could come out with a decent victory. And it worked!!! We won the game 2-0, what a start, but could we keep it together in 2nd leg?
Errr no we couldn’t, after 20 mins we were 3-0 down but we knew 1 goal would send us through on away goals. Somehow we managed to score twice in the 2nd half and although Dortmund scored late on 4-2 to them wasn’t enough and we went through on away goals and into the Group Stage!!
What an amazing achievement!! The draw for the group stage on paper didn’t look too bad. We had Southampton who were in because they won the Europa League, Napoli and Sevilla. It was going to be tough but I hoped we could scrape that 3rd place.
In the end it was anything but easy, we were absolutely hammered in all but 1 game. I’ll let you see the results and let it sink in!
Bottom! Absolutely shocking, but to get into the group stage was an amazing achievement and one i’ll always remember. Lets just forget what happened in the group stage!
The Domestic Season – Scottish League Cup
I really wanted to do well in the cups and with the depth of squad I had I could take both of the cups seriously.
We entered the competition in the 3rd round and were drawn against Championship side Raith Rovers, it was a comfortable win and put us in to the Quarter Final
Where we would play Hearts, and even though we were away we absolutely smashed them. A great result and next up would be Aberdeen for a place in the final
It was another easy win, even though we had 10 men by then we were 4-0 up and coasting into the final
And it was the toughest possible game. Our record against Celtic was terrible, only 1 win in 7 games and we made that 1 in 8 with a really poor performance.
We were beaten 2-0. A disappointing end to the league cup
The Domestic Season – Scottish FA Cup
After the league cup disappointment I was more determined to win this
We entered in at the 4th round and we thrashed 2nd division Airdrie 5-0, the 5th round was a little tougher but we got past Premiership Kilmarnock 2-1
It then got a lot tougher, we played Celtic in the Quarters and after the league cup final I changed tactic and went a bit more conservative.
And it worked!! Although we got battered for most the game we nicked the game 1-0 with ex-Celtic player Garry Hay scoring from the spot! A semi final place and it would be against the other Glasgow side Rangers
And it was a lot easier that the Celtic game as we coasted past them 3-0 and with that we booked a place in the final
And it was against Premiership side St Mirren, we were overwhelming favourites to win and win it we did!! A comfortable 3-1 win and our 2nd consecutive Scottish Cup win
The Domestic Season – Scottish Premiership
So one trophy in the bag but this was the big one, could we get nearer to Celtic and stop their domination of the SPL. Well it started well, after 9 games we had won 8 and lost 1. We continued well but as the games started to pile up with cup games and Champions League games we started to tail off, poor defeats at home to Kilmarnock and Rangers along with away defeats to Aberdeen and Celtic saw us slip off top spot and Celtic took control. They never looked back and when we reached the 33rd game we were too far behind to catch them up, but we had wrapped up 2nd place. Rangers had kept up with us most of the way but could never over-take us. The final 5 games saw 10 points and we had ended 2nd. Another good season and another qualification for the Champions League
One bright spot was we beat our points total from last season (71). So another great season, a 2nd place finish and a cup win.
End of Season Awards
Unlike last season where we won every award going we only won 1 this season. Unsurprisingly that man Garry Hay won the Young Player of the Year award
We also had 4 players in the team of the year (not Garry Hay though!). It was nice to see new signing Popovic in there
So there you have it, another great season but overall its been one hell of a journey. This has been probably the best save I’ve ever had on FM15 and I’m kind of pleased it’s going to be my final one. Nothing would be able to top this so I can now finish my FM15 journey and take a well-earned break before the FM16 beta version is released in 6 weeks time. I can’t wait if I’m being honest! I have some good ideas for save and blogging ideas so please stayed tuned on twitter @thatfmregen for what I am planning to do
But to end this off I will show you how I have done over my whole career on this save
An incredible 1,307 games and 975 of them wins, giving me a win percentage of 74%. Overall I have 34 cup wins and 18 leagues wins which is amazing in the 23 seasons I have played. With all these trophies this put me 6th in the Worldwide Hall of Fame which I think is the highest I’ve ever ended on any FM version!
And here is my whole journey on this save, season by season
And finally I just want to thank each and every one of you for reading my posts. I never thought id get so many views. You are all incredible, and a special mention to all the guys on twitter who have RT’d and promoted my posts. I love all of you so much
Thanks for reading, take it easy and if you ever wanna chat you can catch me on twitter @thatfmregen