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The Unemployment Challenge

Follow me, playing as me, as I take an adventure through world football...
Started on 20 April 2015 by InvertedWingbacks
Latest Reply on 15 May 2015 by Laurens
Ok, so as i’m sure everyone is aware, I have always had issues with keeping stories going...whether that’s down to losing track of a backstory i’ve built, losing interest, or even just plain laziness, that’s all about to stop now. Rather than writing a ‘story’, this is more of a diary - playing as myself, for myself, and sharing that with you in first person, rather than relying on myself to produce news updates, monthly roundups and transfer speculation, etc - which I can often either struggle with, or just give up on, and turn out updates of low or non-existent quality.

Personally, I’ve always found that LLM saves are massively fun, but due to my previous writing style, the only one i’ve found to be successful was my Liverpool save where I relegated them and worked my way back to the top...other times, it’s just been too difficult to replicate news articles etc which look authentic.

With a new, simple style which still gives you the information and analysis which is necessary, i’m hoping that this journey from unemployment to (hopefully) stardom will be a long and successful one, and that you will continue to read and comment and otherwise encourage me. If this goes well, who knows, FM16 may well see only one story from me!

Quite literally starting from the very bottom, I have loaded the following nations and leagues with a medium database:
England: Vanarama North/South
Germany: Third Division
Italy: Serie C
Scotland: League 2
Spain: Second Division B

And given myself the absolute minimum of experience and badges to make this as realistic as possible.

and yes, of course, me being me, I forgot to change the gender...oh well!

Starting in June 2014, only time will tell how long it will take to get a job offer, especially with the Stats I have given myself. On previous attempts at a story like this, I have rubbished teams purely based on the fact they are in say, League 2 in Scotland, etc, but I've come to recognise that that’s utterly unrealistic, and that any job offer is money in the bank, and experience under my belt.
Good Luck mate, you can do this!
At first, there were 3 positions open: Kilmarnock (Scottish Premier League), Barnsley (English League 1) and Stenhousemuir (Scottish League 1). All 3 rejected my prospective applications, and I was left trawling the ‘help wanted’ ads for something else to come up. All across the world, manager’s positions were under review, but nobody really seemed to be in a firing mood. As July speeds past, I’m really starting to wonder whether i’ll have a position in time for the new season…

Come August, both Ascoli and Aldershot had managerial vacancies, although Ascoli practically laughed my CV off...they may be a Serie C side, but they’re apparently not that desperate. Aldershot, however, offered an interview, which I snapped up straight away, promising to take them to mid-table safety (ambitious, I know), and demanding very little else, but still, no luck.

Finally, on September the 18th, Sutton United got back to me, offering me an interview, and, subsequently, a job!

The Club: Sutton United

Founded: 1898
League: Vanarama Conference South
Status: Semi-Professional
Stadium:Gander Green Lane (7032 Capacity)
Estimated Value: £525k

I don’t think I could have been handed more humble beginnings for my footballing journey, but a club is a club, and i’m going to make this club my own. Currently, we’re sitting 15th in the league, only 3 points outside the relegation zone after 8 matches. The team’s only win this season came in a hard fought game against St. Albans.

This is going to take some hard, hard work, but I have the utmost confidence in my boys...and so it begins.

September 2014 Roundup

Ok, one loss and one win in 2 games. It was a decent start in all honesty; against Ebbsfleet, we held our own right up until the 70th minute, when a Charlie Sheringham double brought us to our knees. Jerson dos Santos, our Portuguese striker, struck back on 80 minutes to bring us to 2-1, but there just wasn’t enough left in the tank to fight back to the draw.

Maldon and Tiptree were our opponents in the FA Cup 2nd Qualifying round, and we bounced back in spectacular fashion against the weaker opposition. Jamie Collins opened the scoring after just 11 minutes after he was brought down just inside the box, and picked himself up to dispatch the penalty. From there on, it was the Dan Fitchett show, as the 23 year old Striker took the crowd’s breath away with a glorious hattrick to give us the 4-0 victory.

Next Month

Player Of The Month: Dan Fitchett

Seeing that player of the month makes me cringe - good luck in the bowels of English football!
why does it make you cringe bro?

October 2014 Roundup

A mixed bag in the league was kicked off with a battling 1-1 draw against Bath, who are competing for a play-off spot at the moment. Dan Fitchett continued his red hot run of form with a 76th minute strike which seemed to have snuck us the victory, until Charlie Ward struck on 93 to salvage Bath a draw. Our next league match was Farnborough, and we never really got going; with Phil Page’s 70th minute goal sealing our defeat. We rounded out the month with a convincing 2-1 win over Bishop’s Stortford, in which first half goals from Dan Fitchett and Jamie White gave us a comfortable lead. Bayan Fenwich pulled one back for the visitors, but we had enough in the tank to take home the win, and give ourselves a 6 point cushion in 17th.

Our FA Cup run continued with two convincing performances, firstly against Billericay, where goals from Jamie Collins and Jamie White seeing off the non-league side in a performance which in all honesty was one of the best i’ve seen us give so far. Slough were the last obstacle between us and the first round proper, and again, it was the Dan Fitchett show; the striker scored his 9th and 10th goals of the season (all competitions) to give us a 2-0 cushion which was only depleted by a 91st minute penalty from Jake Sargent. Home and Dry, and now we can really look to the latter stages of the competition, and hopefully some significant cash.

Next Month

Player Of The Month: Dan Fitchett

Dan Fitchett looks like a consistent performer, and will be key while you are in the lower leagues. A reasonably good start to the league too!
Tallery: he's been an absolute machine so far; really keen to get him tied down on a decent deal - he looks like he could be useful for a long time to come

November 2014 Roundup

A great month in the league for us, as we climb to 14th by the end of the month, although if it weren’t for the draw against Bromley, we were in with a shout of a top-half spot! The turnaround at the club has been incredible, and the way we are playing now is excellent to watch. Against Hayes and Yeading, we left it late - two goals from Billy Medlock, followed by a Dan Fitchett strike (all in the last 20 minutes) cancelled out Dominic Green’s first half strike. Next up, Eastbourne Boro, where Jamie Collins and Dan Fitchett combined three times to put us miles ahead, before Adam Watts pulled one back for the visitors, in front of a rowdy 757 fans! Dan Fitchett, still the man of the moment, was the inspiration behind the 2-0 win against Hemel Hempstead, scoring twice either side of halftime to give us a solid victory. Our final match, against Bromley, was a quiet affair - and it’s our defence we have to thank for the point that we escaped with.

In the first round of the FA Cup, we came up against League 2 side Cambridge; and we fought for every ball, and chased every loose pass, eventually drawing 2-2, thanks to two Jamie White goals, to take the match to a replay, which was televised on the BBC. Unfortunately, there was to be no giant killing in the home game - Jamie Collins put us ahead, but our legs ran out, and Ryan Donaldson and Luke Chadwick struck late on to put Cambridge through to the second round. I’m proud of our FA Cup run though, and to reach the first round proper is a massive achievement for my first season in charge.

To round out the month, we travelled to Bishop’s Strotford, to compete in the 3rd Qualifying round of the FA Trophy, and off the back of a loss and a draw, it was a tough ask. Shaun Cooper and Jamie Collins were our main men, and their goals helped take us to extra time; but with no resolution to be found, our next game will be a replay of this game, this time at home, which should be easier.

Next Month

Player Of The Month: Dan Fitchett

New unemployment story :) Good luck mate!
MisterLister: Thanks! hopefully it runs for a very, very long time!

December 2014 Roundup

With only one league defeat this month, morale is running seriously high as we head into the new year. In our first league game, Ricky Wellard’s 87th minute strike gave us a narrow win against Basingstoke, who are challenging for a play-off position. next up were Whitehawk, another top side, and we absolutely trounced them 4-0; an amazing result for us, with goals from Jamie Collins, Dan Fitchett and Ricky Wellard giving us an assured victory, which delighted the fans and myself! Wealdstone were a slightly tougher opponent, but Louis John and Jamie White scored twice to give us a last-ditch win and keep our run going. We rounded out our month with a disappointing loss to St. Albans: a game which we dominated, right until Elliot Bailey’s 94th minute strike robbed us of the precious point.

In the FA Trophy, we were matched with Vanarama Conference side Kidderminster - a big ask for the boys, but when Dan Fitchett struck just before half time, we had a glimmer of hope - could we be in line for another big result? No, was the short answer. Jack Byrne struck after 67 minutes to take the tie to a replay which we would play in front of her own fans. In that replay, Dan Wishart and Dan Fitchett struck to give us a massive 2-0 victory, and send us into the 2nd round.

Next Month

Player Of The Month: Louis John

Very good start to the story, plenty of promise here! I really hope you can stick with this, as you're hoping, because I believe you are a talented story writer and am looking foward to following this challenge for a long time. ;)
2015-04-23 16:32#211913 pompeyblue : Very good start to the story, plenty of promise here! I really hope you can stick with this, as you're hoping, because I believe you are a talented story writer and am looking foward to following this challenge for a long time. ;)

Thanks man :) I reckon removing the pressure of having to write in a news article style and make everything continuous and consistent with the media's style will really help...makes it more personal too!

January 2015 Roundup

A mixed month for us, but a change in tactic saw us turn our fortunes around, and we have rocketed up the table from our starting position of 15th, to the giddy heights of 6th! First up, Wealdstone were our New Years Day guests, but Ricky Wellard and Dan Fitchett weren’t in a generous mood, and we ran out 2-0 victors thanks to goals from both men. Weston-Super-Mare were next, and once again Dan Fitchett was on the scoreboard, alongside Portugese striker Jerson dos Santos to give us another 2-0 win. But this month wasn’t all rosy - a loss to Ebbsfleet, followed by a bore draw against Gosport threatened to derail our top half finish, and something had to be done. The answer, seemingly, was in the Under 21 side - 17 year old striker Shaqulle Hippolyte-Patrick had really been impressing in training, and with something lacking in our final 3rd, I took a gamble, and promoted him to the senior side for the game against Hemel Hempstead; a gamble which paid off. Shaq (his shirt name) scored twice in a 3-0 win, with Dan Fitchett providing the comfort factor in an assured performance. Again, against Farnborough, Shaq got himself on the score-sheet, alongside Callum Hart and Dan Wishart, to give us a 3-1 victory to finish what has, on the whole been a good month for us.

Less Succesful though, was our FA Trophy tie against Leamington, which saw us crash out in a disappointing 4-2 defeat, despite early goals from Dan Fitchett and Ricky Wellard. In the Second half, Leamington were too strong, and 4 goals saw them come back from 2-0 down to knock us out, and leave us with only the league to focus on.

Next Month

Player Of The Month: Dan Wishart

Some good results there, atm the playoffs look likely :)

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