After last season fantastic season where we came 8th in the League and reached the FA Cup Final expectations for my 2nd season with Huddersfield Town are high, we had a crap start to season 1 but a fantastic end and it gives me hope that this season will be a success.
Success will be reaching the play-offs, making a profit and building a decent squad. This episode will take you through transfers, the ins, the outs and any other news that has taken my eye.
Personally I don’t like making too many changes to my squad but we have quite a few unhappy players due to lack of first team football or wanting to move on for other reasons and I do have a few players who don’t fit my ethos in what I want a Huddersfield Town player to be. I set this out in my Intro episode the base attributes I want in a player, any player who hasn’t reached 10 in any of these will be assessed and if they haven’t performed then they will be moved on.
Some big early news
I always like to get links with big teams as I feel it gives us easier chances to gain players on loan for free. As we came to the end of May the board decided to enter into an affiliation with a top English team.
Manchester United, a club that prides itself on bringing through decent youngsters are now my senior affiliate. And there are some outstanding players who have been made available to loan to use. Here they all are:
I did get a couple of these on loan who I will go through later on.
As you can see there are a lot of outs but not much money made. None of the free transfers were really worth any money apart from Payne who had already made noises about wanting to leave. Lolley and Hefele were sold for fees which was pleasing as neither wanted to stay and neither had the attributes I wanted in a player. The one player who left that I didn’t want to lose was John Davidson, he played most of last season but after Aberdeen came calling he wanted to leave and nothing I said changed his mind so he moved on for £725k.
A few players went out on loan as well. Scannell I wanted to sell as he really didn’t perform last season, nobody wanted him so he ended up moving to Sheffield Weds on loan. Dempsey is one for the future and was around the 1st team last year but didn’t get enough starts. The other player I’m keeping an eye on is Regan Booty, he looked good but isn’t improving fast enough to be in the 1st team so will spend the season at Conference side Eastleigh.
It was a very busy pre-season with regards to ins, we needed to really improve the team and with all the outs we had I needed lots of players. I didn’t want to spend a lot of money so made the most of the Man United link and also some other loans. And here they all are!!
Kasey Palmer – Central Midfield
Yes I managed to persuade him to stay for another season long loan from Chelsea. He was one of our best players last season so he was my No.1 option to sign.
Jack Stephens – Central Defence
After losing John Davidson I had to go all out and buy a new CB. After Southampton transfer listed him I had to sign him. I really want to try and sign young English players and this guy fits the bill. Signed for £800k which in my eyes is a steal.
Deji Oshilaja – Defenders
Another defender but Deji will be a back-up in CD. He is versatile and can play as full back on either side. He wasn’t massively needed but cost us nothing and his wages are pretty low so will be there if we get a few injuries
Ben Garratt – Goalkeeper
With Joe Murphy leaving and Danny Ward’s loan running out I needed 2 new GKs. Ben Garratt is a player I love on FM, at the end of season 1 he hardly ever signs a new deal with Crewe so can be snapped up on a pre-contract deal, he cost us £83k in compensation and as you can see below is already worth £350k. He is one for the future and may be back-up for season depending on how the other GK I signed gets on.
Marco Silvestri – Goalkeeper
And here is the GK I got in to be 1st choice, as I have a lot of faith in Garratt for the future Silvestri has come in on a season long loan. He looked really good with some fantastic attributes and is definitely a step up from what I had last season.
Tom Lawrence – Attacking Midfield
Another loan signing, this time from Leicester. Tom Lawrence is a great player on FM and will play as IF Right. I lost nearly all my IFs as none of them really performed as well I wanted and due to a few injuries pre-season Lawrence came in.
Callum McMananam – Attacking Midfield
Another player to play as an IF and this one for me is a bit of a risk, when searching for players who fitted my base attributes Callum kept popping up and when Wigan decided they wanted to sell him I had to give him a chance. He cost me £375k and if he lives up to how good his attributes are will be a huge player this season.
Marcus Rashford – Striker
The 1st of 2 players to come in from Man Utd on loan and when I saw him on the list of possible loanees I had to get him. He looks good and can player in a number of positions. With Nakhi Wells playing well last season Rashford may start on the Left side as an IF.
Cameron Borthwick-Jackson – Left Back
The 2nd loan signing from Man Utd, I needed a new LB after we lost Davidson and Cameron will be back-up in this position, he can also play CB if required.
So that’s all the signings, I’m really pleased with the business I have done, overall we have spent just under £1.5m and we have recouped £1.47m so have nearly broke even in the transfer market which is something I really wanted to try and do to try and keep the bank balance sweet.
Here is how my squad looks now, it’s definitely looking better, hopefully they will gel quickly and we can have a positive start to the season.
These haven’t really changed from last season where we were predicted to end 15th, this season the predicted finish is 10th and instead of 40-1 we are now 33-1 to win the league. The board expect a top half finish which is more than acceptable, I fully expect a play-off push this season.
One final piece of news. I won’t go through the pre-season results but this is something I wanted to show you, as we headed towards the start of the season the injury list is absolutely terrible!
Not lots but look at the players. Take Cameron B-J and Lowe away (who are my only 2 natural LBs!) and all the other players are forwards.Which leaves us with a real problem for the season start. We have 1 fit Striker and 1 fit IF. This is going to be a massive struggle, after the injuries I had to lower training levels to try and strop any more. It seems to have slowed down but with so many players out for quite a few weeks it’s going to be a very tough start to the season.
Well that’s all from me for now. Hope you enjoyed the post. The next one will be at the end of the season.
See you all soon!