On-form Prato right back Andrea Bagnai has signed to join Sudtirol for next season, after his contract expires. The 22 year old Bagnai has been on form this season, and has the tools to prove that it's no fluke. He failed to make the breakthrough at Fiorentina, but he has the skills to make it at this level. Manager Sabrina Schwartz said, "This was a player I've had my eye on, and had extensively scouted. I know he can do it at this level. Right back is a position we were short on in depth this season, and I'm glad I've gotten this player in for next season."
Pordenone looked better but we kept them off the scoreboard. Our lack of fire in dangerous areas was frustrating, though.
January 11, 2015
Arezzo 3 - 3 Sudtirol
After going down early, I finally switched to the 4-4-2, and it got us to 3-2, but we conceded a long shot goal to resign us to another draw.
January 17, 2015
Sudtirol 3 - 2 Giana Erminio
This game had a very nervy ending as it seemed Giana had all the possession after we went up 3-2. Their equalizer was disallowed, and we hold on for our first win in a while!
January 25, 2015
Real Vicenza 1 - 4 Sudtirol
Real Vicenza had Daniele Della Bona sent off at 3-1, Michael Cia immediately took advantage of the space left in the shape and made it 4-1. An incredible team performance with four different goalscorers. Roma loanee Luca Mazzitelli led the charge with 1 goal and assisting 2 more.
February 1, 2015
Sudtirol - Torres
Standings - After Round 24
7 points out of the promotion playoff discussion, we still have a lot to do.
Mamady Dianga - Free
I saw his physicals and that he was only wanting 400 a week, so I took a chance and signed him. His mentals and technicals are crap, but he definitely can be used as a super sub. He made his debut as a sub against Real Vicenza.
Michael Laletin - Free
He has incredible jumping reach and isn't too slow. Defense is an area I wanted to improve on and I definitely think he can help. He is a German-Russian dual international who came up from Hertha BSC's youth setup, and was last seen with Regionalliga side Rot-Weiss Essen.
Andrea Orsolin - 150K to Frosinone
He was signed by Frosinone to a pre-contract, and they agreed to buy him immediately for 150K. I don't think he's worth 150K, so this is a good sale.
Dianga looks like a worthwhile striker for the hold up play he brings alone. Laletin will fit nicely into your team, even if it's just to warm the bench for the time being. A real Sabrina Schwartz defender, if you catch my drift.
As for happenings on the pitch you seem to be on the up, although the play-offs seem to be too ambitious an aim.
We couldn't hold on to the ball, and we had a man sent off late which hurt our chances even more.
February 14, 2015
Renate 0 - 3 Sudtirol
This was a really great result! Riccardo Melgrati missed the game due to an injury and the defense protected the backup goalkeeper, Ivan Taibon, incredibly well, preventing Renate from recording a single shot on goal. Sudtirol turned up the style offensively, too, with Marco Martin intercepting a ball an immediately launching it to a streaking Ivan Lendric down the left wing, who cut in and scored. Mamady Dianga came off the bench with an assist, a nice through ball to Fischnaller who found a comfortable gap in the Renate backline.
February 21, 2015
Sudtirol 3 - 2 Mantova
I was hoping Riccardo Melgrati would be back in time for this fixture, but sadly he was still recovering. Ivan Taibon was in goal again and this time he was tested much more. Manuel Fischnaller was fouled in the box and injured, having to go off and earning a penalty, which gave us an early lead. Mamady Dianga came on much earlier than expected, and scored his first goal and won his first player of the match, scoring a nice strike from distance. Mantova came back, but Michael Cia's creativity and Hannes Fink's finishing saved the day, as they combined for a wonderful scoring play.
March 1, 2015
Pro Patria 1 - 1 Sudtirol
Melgrati is back, but we had a rash of injuries, and a flat performance overall, with our only good attacking play coming late in the game chasing a goal.
March 8, 2015
Sudtirol 4 - 1 FeralpiSalo
Ivan Lendric had 1 goal and 1 assist as Sudtirol charged to a very impressive team performance.
Standings - After Round 29
Still 7 points out, with only 9 matches left to play, the clock is ticking.
Somehow we get this big win against the run of play.
March 18, 2015
Sudtirol 3 - 0 Monza
The mid-March snow in Bolzano was a good omen as we continued our form, with Fischnaller scoring twice, the best of which was a strike from at least 25 yards out. Sadly, left back Marco Martin tore his hamstring at the very end of the match and won't play again this season.
March 22, 2015
Alessandria 0 - 3 Sudtirol
After Simone Branca's goal to open things, Alessandria stymied us until Davide Pacifico headed in at the far post on a corner kick, his fist pump in the air was a delight to the Sudtirol fans and a despairing sight to the Alessandria fans. With the win, Sudtirol is only 3 points out of the playoffs with 6 matches left to play.
March 29, 2015
Sudtirol 2 - 0 Lumezzane
There are no easy games any more, as this tough battle against a lower-table team proved. Still, Michael Cia burst down the left flank and sent in a cross for Manuel Fischnaller to head in, and that opened the scoring. Manuel Marras took advantage of the keeper being out of position to double up and secure a more comfortable win.
April 12, 2015
Cremonese 3 - 2 Sudtirol
This one would've been for third place, and we blew it. We were up 2-0, and we blew it. I am livid, my players didn't concentrate and got complacent. It was always hard to move the ball against them, but I thought with a 2-0 lead we were handling them well defensively, then our organization broke down and committed stupid fouls.
Standings - After Round 34
Still, despite the loss to Cremonese, the other teams ahead of me blew it, and we're still only 2 points out of it with 4 to play, if we can get back to winning, there's no reason why it can't be us.
Fuck this. Como got a weird off-the-ball penalty and we sucked.
April 26, 2015
Pavia 1 - 1 Sudtirol
Other than Fischnaller's lovely headed goal, every time we were in a position to score it was ruled offside.
May 3, 2015
Sudtirol 0 - 3 Bassano
The collapse continues as this loss officially puts us out of the running for a playoff spot.
May 10, 2015
Novara 0 - 2 Sudtirol
Oddly enough, Novara's ground has a video screen. Of course, once we have nothing to play for we start winning again.
Standings - Final
7th place. Better than I was expecting at season start, but once you get close enough to the playoff spots, it's disappointing not to get there.
Ivan Lendric fell to third in the goalscoring chart in the league with the team's poor performance in the last 4 games. Still, he, Michael Cia, and Manuel Fischnaller had great seasons. I had a lot of problems with the defense and goalkeeping, and desire to improve them this offseason.
Tim Sebastian is 31 years old but still has a lot in the tank, he will also add another veteran presence in the locker room for a team that lacked it at times. While not a full-on Sabrina Schwartz Special, he does have 15 Jumping Reach and good marking, tackling, heading, and positioning.
Daniele Croce - Free
This veteran of the lower league scene in Italy was out of his depth in Serie A for Empoli, but he will be the primary ball-winning midfielder for Sudtirol this season.
Fabian Reese - Free
He looks very talented for a young player and will provide valuable depth at DLP and right midfielder. As you can see, there's a reason he failed at Schalke but there's no reason why he can't do a job here.
Free Loanees From Sassuolo
I have seven players from my new parent club, Sassuolo, in order to provide cheap depth. I will be converting Emanuele Terranova, the most notable of these players, into a right back for the duration of his stay here, although he can also play center back in a pinch.
Salif Dianda - Free
He drops a level from his last team, Ternana in Serie B, but he is a very traditional run and cross winger who will do very well in this system.
Manuel De Luca - 225K to Udinese
Half of the figure is up front, the other half is in installments. When you can sell youth players at this level, you do it. He'll get a better development at Udinese and he wasn't going to make the breakthrough here for a while yet.
Simone Branca - 550k to Cesena
Simone Branca has been sold to Serie B side Cesena for 200k up front, 350k in installments, and 300k in potential add-ons.
The friendlies were more about making money than winning, and my assistant manager does a better job of rotating players than I, so he took control of the friendlies.
A pretty credible draw against your parent club in pre-season I see, you look raring to go for the season and hopefully the fresh squad will help. It won't be long term considering you'll probably be in the same league before long but for now the Sassuolo loanees will help. Dianda has some lovely stats too, I must say.